Media Literacy And Mobilizing Children: The Image Of Child In Automobile Ads
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The image of the child raises questions that need to be analyzed and discussed, particularly in the visual messages of the advertisements. The presence or absence of children and the characteristics of their reflections in the media, specifically in the context of television commercials, put forward controversial issues. Due to the easy positioning of the child image, different narratives aim to place the child as a family member, a cute object, or a potential future user. The paper discusses how children´s image is used in the frame of the automobile ads. As the main source of data, internet commercials were given priority. Also, a focus group of 20, and a sample group of 100 children were questioned regarding their reflections on ads and sample actions practiced in the ads. The findings indicate that car ads containing children´s images tend to take precedence. In the ads, the concept of family is portrayed and associated with happiness, comfort, freedom, and trust, etc. While the samples provide examples from all segments of society, representations of white and blond kids in well-off families are more frequent. Childish purity and sensitivity are exhibited and emphasized in the context of car ads: their quality, performance, features, and capacity are always within the limits of the interests of children. If not real cars, the toy versions are enough to set the agenda as long as they are accessible to children to use, touch, and feel.
media education, media literacy
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