Blog 8: Propaganda in Advertising

By Armen Vardanian

One of the propaganda techniques that is used in mass media for advertising purposes is called “Demonizing the Enemy,” when one of the side depicts the other side in corrupt, inhuman and bosh way.  Portraying a group or an individual in a negative way, by falsifying the information, intends to create an opinion which may swing the view of audience in to certain way.  Generally, the “Demonizing the Enemy” technique is used during a war or for political purposes to build an adverse case against the opponent.  Verbal and visual propaganda was used very effectively by both sides of the nemesis during WWI and WWII.  Today, the examples of “Demonizing the Enemy” propaganda can be seen in North Korea.  The anti-American posters with caricatures of sneaky and ugly American invaders are helpful in creating hateful mentality towards the United States.  This powerful propaganda tool is very popular and is used prevalently by the North Korean government.

“Lying and Deception” is another propaganda technique, which is used in mass media.  This method involves untruthful and fraud statements in order to misguide the audience.  By covering up true meaning of the subject, this scheme is often used for public deception in attempt to avoid stating the reality.  Commonly used by politicians, this method has been long established to gain political power before public becomes aware of the facts.  Nevertheless, this technique was used by a company called “See Clearly Method,” which advertised a program that helps improving eye vision sight for those who were glasses and contact lenses.  The television and radio advertisement claimed that the “See Clearly Method” program is an alternative to the eye surgery, and would easily and naturally recover the original eye vision.  However, the method was not based on scientific evidence or research, and the company closed in 2006 after several lawsuits were filed for public misleading and consumer fraud.

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