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Title: Alcohol, Advertising, Media and Consumption among Children, Teenagers and Young Adults
Authors: Hansen, Anders
Gunter, Barrie
First Published: 1-Jul-2012
Publisher: Taylor & Francis/Routledge
Citation: Hansen, A;Gunter, B, Alcohol, Advertising, Media and Consumption among Children, Teenagers and Young Adults, ed. Salmon, CT, 'Communication Yearbook 36', Taylor & Francis/Routledge, 2012
Abstract: While much research on the roles of mediated communication in relation to alcohol consumption, drinking practices and alcohol-related issues has traditionally focused on alcohol advertising and related types of alcohol promotion, recent decades have witnessed a growing recognition that research attention needs to be given to the wider media and symbolic environment, through which norms and values associated with the use and abuse of alcohol are communicated. We start by reviewing the growing body of research which has examined the extent, distribution across media and genres, and the content of media messages about alcohol and drinking in advertising and entertainment media content. We then proceed to review the research evidence on how young people’s learning about alcohol, beliefs about alcohol and alcohol consumption practices are informed or influenced by alcohol advertising/promotion and by the types of media representations of alcohol identified in the first part of our review. Key approaches and frameworks for analysing the role and influence of media representations of alcohol on young people’s alcohol-related beliefs and practices are examined before considering the role of communication research evidence in relation to (political) questions about the regulation/restriction of alcohol promotion and images in the media. The review demonstrates that significant progress has been made in recent decades towards mapping the contours of the mediated message environment regarding alcohol and, hence, towards identifying where potential effects or influences of media messages about alcohol may or are likely to occur. Our review of research approaches and research evidence on the impact of mediated messages about alcohol on (young) people’s beliefs, perception and behavior regarding alcohol and its uses confirms the complex theoretical, conceptual and methodological challenges which continue to confront research on media influence/effects. Research evidence in this field has thus established significant and extensive correlations between exposure to media messages and alcohol consumption and beliefs, but has generally failed to demonstrate causality. We conclude by noting areas for improvement in the approaches and measures deployed in research on the influence of media messages about alcohol, and by delineating the areas revealed by the review as areas that in particular would merit further and intensified research attention, namely notably communication (promotional or other kinds) about alcohol in the new media environment.
ISBN: 0415525489
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Chapter
Rights: Copyright © 2012, Routledge/Taylor & Francis. Deposited with reference to the publisher’s open access archiving policy.
Appears in Collections:Books & Book Chapters, Dept. of Media and Communication

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