Influence of the Media on Teens Drinking
Alcohol is the most preferred drug among the young generation hence, the most widely abused substance. Most teenagers are facing the consequences of engaging themselves in alcohol consumption habits at an early age. According to Beck et al. (633), many factors lead to alcohol abuse among the young generation. Also, as children move from childhood to teenage age, the experience many changes in their lives. Some of these changes are emotional, physical lifestyle changes. Also, some development transitions like puberty and the increased sense of independence have been directly linked to the abuse of alcohol among young people. Finally, in this Century, alcohol consumption is in most places of the globe is seen as a form of entertainment hence, creating room for teenagers to drink. The paper covers an analysis of the influence of the media on alcohol consumption among teenagers.
The media has a more significant influence on the lives of most young people. According to Austin et al. (376), with the rising advertisements on alcohol, teens are exposed to drinking ideas since these publications make drinking look more appealing to them. Most of these commercials on alcohol do not provide a warning to the teenagers on the effects of alcohol drinking but instead, promotes these drinks.
Many of the commercials on alcohol portrays it positively. There are apparent both positive and negative impacts of alcohol consumption, but these ads make younger viewers think that the idea of drinking is fun hence, the temptation to try to arise. An example of an alcohol advertising video is the Superbad movie. The movie starts two adolescents with the names Seth and Evan. The two are about to graduate from high schools, but before the graduation day, they want to attend a party to break their virginity. While planning their party, one of their friends known as Fogell reveals his intention to obtain a fake identity Card and Seth uses the plan to take advantage and go purchase alcohol with the fake ID. After Fogell goes to the store and successfully purchases the drinks, a robbery takes place where robbers come is and punches his face before stealing the money from the cash register. The movie appears more appealing to the young generation, and most of them in most cases try the same trick when they intend to have drinks for their parties.
Most of the companies claim that they do not advertise alcohol with the intentions of entertaining the young people to start drinking but rather, to create more awareness to the people of the right age to switch to other brands but, drink the new name with moderation. Another way in which the media influences young people to drink is via the news coverage of celebrities plus the entertainment industry. According to Braun et al. (153), the media shows off the lifestyles of many celebrities lives which in a way leaves many teenagers exposed. Particular magazines publish information on celebrities out in clubs consuming alcohol. In cases where teenagers see these stars drinking alcohol and taking part in these activities, in most cases they become tempted to try to engage in such activities. An article published on the role of celebrities in promoting the abuse of substances among the young generation shows that most cases of alcohol abuse begin at the age of 14. Many experts have proven that many experts even though the primary cause of alcohol abuse among the young is varied and sophisticated, the influence from the lives of celebrities plays a vital role too.
The media also influences thee, teenagers, to drink via the entertainment industry. In most of the entertainment firms, the media portrays alcohol use via televisions, music, and movies. The music industry serves as the primary influence of alcohol consumption among teenagers. Many song’s lyrics talk about parties and alcohol drinking. Most of these songs are put out, and the teenagers enjoy them which leaves them more exposed to the idea of alcohol consumption Hanewinkel et al. (1068). Additionally, reality television shows also play a more significant role in portraying the abuse of alcohol. The youngsters watch most of these reality shows. For instance, shows, for example, the real world and jersey promote a lot of partying and alcohol use. In cases where young people see this show, they face the danger of being exposed to the idea which as a result, can influence them to start consuming alcohol (Anderson et al., 229).
According to research conducted by different scholars, the reports obtained from more than two thousand teens on their favorite drinks, clearly indicates that most of the brands named by these teens tend to be the same brands with high marketing expenditure such as Smirnoff. This serves as a clear indication that advertising influences teenager’s attitudes towards alcohol consumption (Anderson et al., 229).
In conclusion, the influence of the media on teenager drinking is continuously becoming a serious challenge. The development is technology is only going to expose alcohol use to the adolescents further. Even though the media in one way or the other tries to show the negative impacts of drinking, it is not enough to eradicate the implications of their content n alcohol to the young people.
Anderson, Peter, et al. “Impact of alcohol advertising and media exposure on adolescent alcohol use: a systematic review of longitudinal studies.” Alcohol and Alcoholism 44.3 (2009): 229-243.
Austin, Erica Weintraub, Meng-Jinn Chen, and Joel W. Grube. “How does alcohol advertising influence underage drinking? The role of desirability, identification, and skepticism.” Journal of Adolescent Health 38.4 (2006): 376-384.
Beck, Kenneth H., and Katherine A. Treiman. “The relationship of the social context of drinking, perceived social norms, and parental influence to various drinking patterns of adolescents.” Addictive behaviors 21.5 (1996): 633-644.
Brown, Jane D., and Elizabeth M. Witherspoon. “The mass media and American adolescents’ health.” Journal of adolescent health 31.6 (2002): 153-170.
Hanewinkel, Reiner, Susanne E. Tanski, and James D. Sargent. “Exposure to alcohol use in motion pictures and teen drinking in Germany.” International journal of epidemiology36.5 (2007): 1068-1077.
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