Advertising and Authority

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Advertising and Authority

Postby Fixed Cross » Tue Nov 12, 2013 3:19 am

In advertising lies a danger: it does not usually represent the actual value an advertised object has to an average audience, it rather evokes a basic lust within the human and connects that to a brand name. Advertising is a means of getting people to do what someone else wants them to do, but because it is not done by violence, it is wholly accepted.

Ads aim at the most vulnerable, susceptible parts of the human brain, and affect them with messages which are not checked for the kind of effect they might have on a persons well being. Is it perhaps legitimate to view advertisement as a form of non physical violence?

Advertisement forms an authority in our daily lives. I would even say it's the first and foremost. I don't mean the fact that the president of the USA is elected on the basis of the quantity of advertisements, but all other advertisements for all products serve as authority. Advertisement is the authority that tells us which nourishments we buy and which president we elect.

In as far as this is a hyperbole I am aware of it being one. It's true that we can ignore advertising, some even claim to be uninfluenced by it. It's also true that not all products can be advertised so as to be sold.

In order to answer whether there is or isn't any morality implicit in advertising, let's address the question of what can not be advertised so as to be sold. Is such an item thinkable - or is there an a priori condition in the very act of advertising that disallows for certain realities to be advanced?

On how advertising was designed to penetrate the depths of the human psyche, or "heart": The Century of the Self.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Tyrannus » Tue Nov 12, 2013 3:29 am

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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Fixed Cross » Tue Nov 12, 2013 3:22 pm

Fixed Cross wrote:I would ask Magsj to give us her reasons for being here first, and to ask how she sees philosophy connecting to advertising.
What is the worth of philosophy in the mind of an advertiser? What kind of philosophy is worthy of being pursued?
Serious questions.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Neither Nor » Tue Nov 12, 2013 3:27 pm

What can not be advertised so as to be sold?


I can't quite get my head around that question. In the UK, cigarette advertisement has been banned, so that is not-advertised, yet still sells nonetheless. However, I don't think advertisement of cigarettes per se results in direct purchase. Just that the gradual removal of them in public space results in lesser inclination to pick up the habit.

Either way, I agree that advertisement is a form of violence. Its invasive and manipulates immature minds, children for example being especially prone and as a result pressuring parents for things. Another case in the UK recently is the Labour leader speaking out against the advertisement of pay-day loans during daytime TV when children are more likely watching due to the adverts creating a kind of acceptable air to the whole notion of pay-day loans and ever-present debt. Fuckers.

I am slightly inclined to say that companies have a right to advertise their wares. However, I'd be a bit of a fascist regarding when, where, and how they are allowed to do this. The whole data-mining sctructure of the likes of Facebook and Google for one I find toxic. I'd outlaw that shit in an instant.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Tyrannus » Tue Nov 12, 2013 4:25 pm

Paging Magsj. Your presence is wanted in the thread.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Silhouette » Wed Nov 13, 2013 12:07 am

Fixed Cross wrote:Is it perhaps legitimate to view advertisement as a form of non physical violence?

Absolutely.

Of course you are referring to the style of modern advertisements rather than advertising in any way at all. "Advert", coming from the Latin "turn towards", the practice simply involves attracting attention, or even attention simply being attracted. There is nothing wrong with something being more attractive than another thing - that's the basis of survival. But given the question of how attention is attracted, and for what purpose? Now we're entering the realm of morality.

Non-physical violence is precisely what modern advertising qualifies as. I cannot stand them, and despite trying to avoid them at every step, I cannot be free of them. I still cannot "choose to ignore them" which absolutely should be an option. I find anything to do with it utterly disgusting.

What's wrong with simply making information available, quietly? Containing nothing other than neutral fact? To dream...

Is there an item that cannot be advertised? Is there an item that cannot be presented as having value? I would say no - especially within the realms of modern advertising that could do an impressive job even of selling suicide if advertisers were so inclined. One would only hope that they would all suffer from the consequences of such adverts before they were ever released though.
Is there anything that cannot be advertised? As distinct from an "item" that implies conceivable physical existence, I would say it is impossible to advertise something that cannot be conceived. Though the processes used today might end up selling something else that can be conceived. Think of religion - it's advertised in all sorts of different ways, using techniques familiar to the modern day advertiser. The concepts that it attempts to present are supposed to be beyond human conception, at least in some (divine) ways. But instead, something else becomes sold through this message. Could anyone sell Taoism to advertisers? Such a success would probably rob them of their essential qualities that make them an advertiser.

Nothing feels real with advertising. It all feels like a trick, even if the product is a good one. Just makes me not want to buy it.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Fixed Cross » Wed Nov 13, 2013 1:54 am

The Tao, yes. That's a good example of something that can not be advertised so as to be sold.
The non violent nature of Tao applies to the physical as well as the non physical.
You can only advertise it by direct example, and not even then can the transaction take place.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Fixed Cross » Wed Nov 13, 2013 2:17 am

Tao is unadvertizable because the Tao is separate and unique to every one who walks it.
Every conscious path is unlike any other path. Tao is the purest identity of the human psyche. It's the creature that finds its path equal its goal, and is constantly surprised to learn what else it turned out to value.

He who advertises Tao is furthest away from it.
Man comes to the one who walks, his instinctive path leads him to the conscious path.

Buddha is inconsequential, the formation of birds is the Buddha nature. The silence of the Geese is the Buddha nature. I wait, Buddha nature suspended. There is a tree that fell on a boat near where I suspect the Geese hide now from my mind.

Buddha nature is that the biker did not throw his shoes over the power line across the bridge, where also the tree is who fell.

Buddha is the owl who closes his face to me by staring
He who knows not his own gaze is Buddha
innocence is impossible and to laugh at this is ...

our home. German huts and my vision is blurry
mud

Heidegger

Rock, skewed wood
more rock, moss, grass, little of everything, tree in the distance, high, tall and thin trees... waving slowly with the unfelt wind...

I disappear in non-Buddha - Tao takes over.

But then Buddhism has not brought man closer to the Buddha.
Man walked the Tao long before Buddha gave it his name.
Even as hordes of multitudes root around in uniform formations, many humans walk a path. The Earth is weird.

Is Buddha weird, or does it lack weirdness?

Avertizement is weirding out the Buddha nature.
Skewing the Buddha perspective and obscuring it by saying that Buddha is a reward.

But to create advertisements - this can be Buddha nature.

Perhaps we need to develop a Buddha nature vis a vis advertisements. Value ads in terms of the Buddha.
As a flock of geese, as a fallen tree, as a fool in the dark.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Silhouette » Wed Nov 13, 2013 2:37 am

Fixed Cross wrote:But to create advertisements - this can be Buddha nature.

Perhaps we need to develop a Buddha nature vis a vis advertisements. Value ads in terms of the Buddha.
As a flock of geese, as a fallen tree, as a fool in the dark.

In the current economic climate, I would still feel like I was being sold something.
It's a good antithesis though, isn't it? Tao...
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Pattern » Wed Nov 13, 2013 7:29 am

Advertising is the greatest form of art of the 20/21st Century.

Saying it is a form of violence is like saying that any other form of art is: born from weakness.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Pattern » Wed Nov 13, 2013 7:33 am

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The author of this is weak.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby MechanicalMonster » Fri Nov 15, 2013 12:55 am

Excellent topic, but why was it moved? I almost missed it here.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Moreno » Fri Nov 15, 2013 2:03 am

Fixed Cross wrote:In advertising lies a danger: it does not usually represent the actual value an advertised object has to an average audience, it rather evokes a basic lust within the human and connects that to a brand name. Advertising is a means of getting people to do what someone else wants them to do, but because it is not done by violence, it is wholly accepted.
I would say that even more important than the buying of the Product is the way advertising gives Brains, especially children's Brains, all sorts of ideas about what is going on, what is important, what a human being is, what to be scared of, what is cool......This all taking Place in the background of the Products. The background of a coke Commercial often includes all sorts of messages about what emotions one should have, how the men and women should dress and relate, what happiness is, what is cool. This is poured into the brain and then associated with the Product. Sure, it is unpleasant if people buy sugar water, but what they are being taught about Life is even more damaging.

Ads aim at the most vulnerable, susceptible parts of the human brain, and affect them with messages which are not checked for the kind of effect they might have on a persons well being. Is it perhaps legitimate to view advertisement as a form of non physical violence?
Sure. Or cult training.

In as far as this is a hyperbole I am aware of it being one. It's true that we can ignore advertising, some even claim to be uninfluenced by it.

I am very skeptical About this claim. They may not buy a toyota because of the latest advertising, but the background messages will reinforce brainwashing they got as kids and they are very likely not immune to that. They Think they are not influenced because they Think reality is the way it is presented in advertising. Their skepticism gets aimed at the Product - though even here I Think people are more influenced than they realize - but Corporate ideas about what ontology and methodologies 'citizens' should have are getting in there and settling in.

'You are (only) your Surfaces and spending more Money on these Surfaces is the way to improve who you are'

The war around that one is nearly over.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby phyllo » Sun Nov 17, 2013 4:45 pm

:text-bump:

You guys are waiting for MagsJ?
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Neither Nor » Sun Nov 17, 2013 7:55 pm

Pattern wrote:Advertising is the greatest form of art of the 20/21st Century.

Saying it is a form of violence is like saying that any other form of art is: born from weakness.


Horseshit.

Advertising is merely a ploy to sell crap.

There are some good ads, no doubt, but I'd rather throw the baby out of the bath-tub if it meant being free of it all.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby anon » Sun Nov 17, 2013 8:33 pm

Neither Nor wrote:
Pattern wrote:Advertising is the greatest form of art of the 20/21st Century.

Saying it is a form of violence is like saying that any other form of art is: born from weakness.


Horseshit.

Advertising is merely a ploy to sell crap.

There are some good ads, no doubt, but I'd rather throw the baby out of the bath-tub if it meant being free of it all.

Are you saying that all products are crap? Are you saying that nobody should know about products that are available? Or are you just against deceit, or ugliness?
"Distraction is the only thing that consoles us for our miseries, and yet it is itself the greatest of our miseries." - Blaise Pascal

"The bombs we plant in each other are ticking away." - Edward Yang

"To a fly that likes the smell of putrid / Meat the fragrance of sandalwood is foul. / Beings who discard Nirvana / Covet coarse Samsara's realm." - Saraha
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Neither Nor » Sun Nov 17, 2013 9:20 pm

anon wrote:Are you saying that all products are crap? Are you saying that nobody should know about products that are available? Or are you just against deceit, or ugliness?


The vast majority of products advertised are crap, yes. Cars, perfume, fast food, charities. Crap, crap, crap.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Silhouette » Sun Nov 17, 2013 10:07 pm

Neither Nor wrote:The vast majority of products advertised are crap, yes. Cars, perfume, fast food, charities. Crap, crap, crap.

Agreed.

If something is worth buying, it doesn't need advertising. That is not to say no information is needed about products/services and where to find them, I'm talking about pushing a product/service and manipulation/persuasion.
"Leave ppl the fuck be".
Can something crafty and stealthy be violent? I'm not sure, but it most certainly feels violating and forced. What was that about negative liberty? I guess it doesn't apply to mind control.

Even if a product/service is not crap, as soon as it is advertised it suddenly feels like crap to me. And so does the rest of the world of people when they go and buy it. I really don't want to hate people, and I really don't want to find material things detestable. Advertising just makes me react this way.

I have a real problem with advertising.
A survival tip I find useful is to mute ones with sound. Then I can look away and don't feel quite so violated (but I still feel extremely disgusted).

But I know why it's done: it stretches demand beyond its natural balance, to encourage the maximum possible trade, which is the lifeblood of "growth". Growth being the rate of increase in profits netted by an economy, which will be positive anyway if left alone - but greed demands cheating and then we all suffer when we have to come back down to reality during each bust that follows every illusory boom.
Advertising is just another thing that makes us all suffer all the more for each recession.

Advertising is a disease that sickens the soul.

phyllo wrote:You guys are waiting for MagsJ?

I think we all are.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Pattern » Sun Nov 17, 2013 10:38 pm

Neither Nor wrote:
Pattern wrote:Advertising is the greatest form of art of the 20/21st Century.

Saying it is a form of violence is like saying that any other form of art is: born from weakness.


Horseshit.

Advertising is merely a ploy to sell crap.

There are some good ads, no doubt, but I'd rather throw the baby out of the bath-tub if it meant being free of it all.


That has no bearing on what I said.

To persuade someone is an art form. The highest art form.

People are the canvas nowadays. Only the strong can make art on such a canvas.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby MagsJ » Sun Nov 17, 2013 10:47 pm

Fixed Cross wrote:I would ask Magsj to give us her reasons for being here first
I came here looking to expand on my pre-formed ideas through debate with others but haven't achieved that here.. hence my joining PhilosophyNow in recent weeks.

and to ask how she sees philosophy connecting to advertising.
Through manipulation... the classicists were very good at it. DaVinci has to be the epitome of the artist/scientist, without the manipulation angle (I think) and the person I have the most admiration for due to that combination. Then there were The Impressionists...

What is the worth of philosophy in the mind of an advertiser?
It's worth is in the conceptualisation process... helping to draw up a concept to have maximal impact upon release, which is exponentially linked to cost.

What kind of philosophy is worthy of being pursued?
Serious questions.
I'd call the philosophy that's linked to Media/Advertising a surface philosophy, as they only require what works and discards what doesn't, and any allegiances are also discarded along with that.. hence those industries being deemed shallow.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Moreno » Sun Nov 17, 2013 11:58 pm

Fixed Cross wrote:The Tao, yes. That's a good example of something that can not be advertised so as to be sold.
The non violent nature of Tao applies to the physical as well as the non physical.
You can only advertise it by direct example, and not even then can the transaction take place.
Tao comes suddenly!
You cannot sell the Tao, but you sure as shit can make Money Selling the Tao.
And the number of Products proclaiming to sell you the Tao is rather large.
And if we take the tao as something that could, say, enhance the presence of someone hooked into it, man they will sell t-shirt with his photo
or tv Movies with her Life story.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Neither Nor » Mon Nov 18, 2013 12:21 am

Pattern wrote:To persuade someone is an art form. The highest art form.


"Persuasion" is a stretch, 'manipulation' would be more accurate. Note, I said "stretch" not 'wrong'. I do concede that there is some skill in manipulating someone's mind, but it's a damn shame to have it in existence. The world, and I'm not being hyperbolic here, would be better off without advertisement, whereas the same can't be said so much of other art forms. So, I call BS on your second claim, too.

People are the canvas nowadays. Only the strong can make art on such a canvas.


"Only the strong! Only the strong!"

Is that a quote from that movie? Y'know the one with the Greek guy with the 12-pack airbrushed onto his abdomen...I think it is...I sounds kinda Spartan. I know that stuff's all in vogue nowadays anyway...maybe there was an ad for it....
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Pattern » Mon Nov 18, 2013 12:51 am

I don't know about that. Seems like this is an inevitable progression and some people here are trying to hold onto the past.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Fixed Cross » Mon Nov 18, 2013 1:09 am

Most posters have impulsively chosen sides in a moral question that I did not actually raise. I tried to find out if advertising is a-moral or if there is a morality implicit in it - but I wasn't suggesting that the lack of morality necessarily implies an evil.

I agree that advertising has the power to treat man as a canvas, but I've rarely seen an advertisement creating a beautiful thing out of man. Ads usually seem to speak to man on very base and narcissistic levels, driving him to do impulsive and pointless things and consider them important, realizations of happiness and completeness.

Completeness has never been so close. And so pointless.

However advertising is only a means. It might be used to very different ends. Of what can man be persuaded? Of almost anything. It's not that there is news or sitcoms in between the ads, these are ads in between the ads - ideological campaigns in between sociological ones all littered with references to the consumer market

The basic form of the art of persuasion, the one selling specific products, is by far the most truthful of the lot. What held in Jefferson's time still holds today: “Advertisements contain the only truths to be relied on in a newspaper."

Violence is not avoidable - man will be persuaded, of something, of anything. He craves it... I'm not making this up. We can't 'stop the violence'. But I will say that since a year I don't have a tv anymore, and I haven't missed it for a second. Whenever I turn on the tv my eyebrows keep rising in disbelief, about how much worse it has gotten since I last checked, and turn it off when my head begins to hurt. Usually after about 30 seconds of zapping I've seen so much stupidity that it almost makes me laugh in utter dissociation.

The worst of it is not at all the advertising. The shows programmed around it are often ten times as disturbing in the assumptions they make about the stage of the viewers lobotomy.

Within advertisement, due to the sheer production value and the talent and will required to produce them, I see a great danger because I see a great power.

Pattern wrote:Advertising is the greatest form of art of the 20/21st Century.

Saying it is a form of violence is like saying that any other form of art is: born from weakness.

Is violence not the original "art of persuasion"? I certainly recognize that advertising is very persuasive. To the point even that I compare it to violence. I don't see how that has to do with weakness except that advertisement is generally used to make people weak, to weaken them in their instinctive self-value and releasing uncontrolled vitality to compensate for that. Impartially I can view it as a spectacular process. I just don't think it has become art yet.
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Re: Advertising and Authority

Postby Fixed Cross » Mon Nov 18, 2013 1:40 am

MagsJ wrote:
Fixed Cross wrote:I would ask Magsj to give us her reasons for being here first
I came here looking to expand on my pre-formed ideas through debate with others but haven't achieved that here.. hence my joining PhilosophyNow in recent weeks.

Interestingly that site is evidently designed with the purpose of advertising itself.
I find such layouts distracting - I am being told what to value. This is very difficult to reconcile with my philosophical mindset.

and to ask how she sees philosophy connecting to advertising.
Through manipulation... the classicists were very good at it. DaVinci has to be the epitome of the artist/scientist, without the manipulation angle (I think) and the person I have the most admiration for due to that combination. Then there were The Impressionists...

Could you post and impressionist image as an example of something that might work in an advertisement? Since you have practical experience.

What is the worth of philosophy in the mind of an advertiser?
It's worth is in the conceptualisation process... helping to draw up a concept to have maximal impact upon release, which is exponentially linked to cost.

Interesting. What would be one concept that has been maximized for impact in a way that was very costly?
For example, is "Just do it" an expensive concept?

What kind of philosophy is worthy of being pursued?
Serious questions.
I'd call the philosophy that's linked to Media/Advertising a surface philosophy, as they only require what works and discards what doesn't, and any allegiances are also discarded along with that.. hence those industries being deemed shallow.

There must be some kind of depth to it. Which employee, in a typical agency, would you say is the most profound thinker, the deepest mind?
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