On Sunday, November 26th the major US. Tobacco companies started to run federal court-mandated TV and print ads highlighting the negative health effects of smoking and secondhand smoke, as well as how the tobacco industry designed cigarettes to be more addictive.
These ads are a result of a 2006 federal court ruling which ordered the tobacco companies to issue “Corrective Statements” after finding that they had deliberately deceived the American public about the health effects of smoking and industry plans to market tobacco to kids.
Some of the statements included in the ads are:
• Smoking kills, on average, 1200 Americans. Every day.
• Cigarette companies intentionally designed cigarettes with enough nicotine to create and sustain addiction
• When you smoke, the nicotine actually changes the brain – that’s why quitting is so hard.
The federal court order forced the tobacco companies to run the ads however the tobacco industry used appeals to delay and weaken the rule for over 11 years. The industry’s unwillingness to run these ads is made even more obvious when you look at them. While most cigarette ads feature bright colors, attractive models, and the promise of fun, these court-mandated ads almost seem designed to be ignored — simply featuring plain text over a white background.
The ads will run five times per week for one year (52 weeks) for a total of 260 spots. The ads can run Monday through Thursday between 7:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. on one of the three major networks (CBS, ABC or NBC).
The W3TFL Coalition encourages anyone who smokes to talk to their doctor or take advantage of free assistance provided in Wisconsin; through the Wisconsin tobacco quit line at 1-800-QUITNOW. Also if you are interesting in joining local efforts to help reduce tobacco use visit the W3TFL website: www.W3TFL.org and Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/W3TFL.