Marketers continue to push the envelope as they challenge society’s norms regarding what topics are appropriate to discuss in public. Products that people only used to whisper about now pop up in ads and billboards; these include feminine hygiene products, condoms, lubricants, grooming aids, and pregnancy tests. A commercial for a digital home-pregnancy test kit even broke a taboo when it showed urination on TV. As a stream of liquid flows onto the device, a voice-over says, “Introducing the most sophisticated piece of technology . . . you will ever pee on.” Ads for feminine hygiene products used to barely hint at their function (typically they depicted a smiling woman who wore white to subtly signal how well the item worked). Today, Procter & Gamble’s Always line of menstrual pads advertises with the cheerful theme, “Have a happy period.” Where do we cross the line in what we show in advertising?

  • CreatedJuly 10, 2015
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