Is it ethical to use women as a marketing instrument?
Mass media plays a great part in our lives. Television, newspapers, magazines surround us
everywhere every day of our lives. All of them are stuck with different kinds of ads. But how
often do we pay attention to the real sense of those ads and the ways the advertisers try to sell
various products to us? There have been growing concerns about and critics toward the usage of
women as a sexual object in marketing practices. However, firms are still using women as an
instrument to attract consumers. This paper examines some business ethics theories to determine
whether firms’ use of women as a ...view middle of the document...
It could be easily
said that sexualizing ads has become very common nowadays. It may occur as a way to get
people closer to each other, to awaken love and passion, to bring a romance into our lives that
precious love adventure, that is sometimes missing. Unfortunately, it turns out to be the opposite
way. Taking a closer look at some of the ads makes it easy to see that they point out power of one
over another in all spheres of life.
It is obvious that advertisers play to our worst fears and secret wishes to get us to buy
their products.The reason that the product itself would be unclear is that it is not actually being
shown because the product is not what is most appealing to the consumer. The ideal or image
that is most likely projected is the attention grabber. The fantasy that is being put forth by the
company is what the consumer is really investing in. The goal of this study is to determine
whether firms’ use of women as a marketing instrument is ethical or not. Business ethics is a
form of professional ethics that analyzes ethical principles and moral problems that arise in
business environment. Therefore, business ethics literature must tell us something about the
firms’ controversial application mentioned above. This study aims at evaluating the abuse of
women in marketing practices in the lights of business ethics theories.
Women have always been obsessive to achieve the dominant image of a perfect woman. The
characteristics of a dominant image of beauty include small waist, small thigh, big breasts, slim
and tall bodies. Advertising images do not cause these problems, but it could contribute them by
creating a climate in marketing that what is the perfect and ideal body for women.
Women are used as a marketing instrument by firms in a wide range of marketing practices. In
most advertisements women are portrayed as material.
The problems with the abuse of women in marketing practices arise at both the individual and
the societal level. Individuals and parents are increasingly worried about the common use of
sexuality. According to a State of Industry Report on Sex on TV (2003), a great number of
surveys showed that not only were parents increasingly concerned about their children’s
exposure to sexual content, but also adults were uneasy with the common use of sexuality.
Many studies have shown that women abuse in marketing practices negatively affects social
values and women’s role in society. Although the actual position of many women in society has
improved significantly, the images of women in ads have not changed appreciably, and women
are still being used as a marketing instrument in a way that degrades women’s value.
It seems like no other human act...