Every day, everyone is bombarded with a copious amount of advertisements. Most people are exposed to about hundreds of ads on a daily basis from a wide variety of sources. These ranges from billboards, to bus ads, to TV commercials, and even those news paper ads that no one remembers. About 65% of the ads viewed on a daily basis are commercials. The younger generation spends more time on TV or on social media websites, thus the youth is exposed to more commercials on a regular basis.
The message shown in ads have made the younger generation more self-aware of their image of having the “perfect” body shape, and being up to date with the latest product to fit in amongst their peers. With people getting bombarded with ads from all directions, people are more concern about which products to get than anything else. Advertising companies target girls and make them believe they always have to have the latest fashion.
Even television series enforce negative gender stereotypes by showing that in order for not to be a social outcast, the latest fashion is a must for girls. For example, a popular show called Gossip Girls shows the division between popularity and non popularity. It is shown that the popular girls are highly fashionable. Advertising agencies are more prone to target these groups and market these products in an effective way that makes girls believe that they need a particular product to fit in. This gives young girls a negative conception of fitting in.
It is not only females that are being targeted. For males, ads tends to focus more on technology and sport equipments, enforcing the idea that in order to be more masculine or “cool” males need to have these products. For example, all the iPhone commercials don’t have girls talking about the iPhone but rather males. This shows that the product makers believe it’s better suited for males. This creates a negative gender stereotype for male, and doesn’t allow them to be different from the norm, or they are called “fag”, “queer”.
But the case is that since the younger generations have little knowledge they are easily affected. This is ultimately making the youth believe that the stereotypes as a reality. Advertisements haven’t only boxed in males and females in buying certain products but also in how they have to look. This want for an ideal body starts off at a young age and progresses into a more serious matter as he/she grow older. This is due to the image created by popular TV shows. This image differentiates between genders. As for example a man is tereotyped to be more dominant and has to be feared by everyone to gain respect and must be able to show his masculinity. This is evident by the society showing ads of guys showing off their abs, muscle, or anything that show dominance. As in the PSA “Tough Guys” they took a survey of a high school asking how a men is supposed to be (looks, how they are supposed to act, etc). They all responding in saying men have to tough, feared, and show off their masculinity. It seems that men are not supposed to have emotions, but that isn’t possible in human nature.
And the younger generations of boys believe this stereotype created by the advertisements to the reality of fitting into the society. In comparison women are faced with similar problems. With so many ads and forms of media showing how women should look. This is creating an obsession in the younger generation of girls to find the perfect body type. Advertisement portrays the perfect woman to having a thin hour glass figure, have no dominance in society (compared top men). Ads show that women have to show their appeal by their looks and figure and man show their appeal through their masculinity and muscles.
This is shown throughout all forms of ads, but this case is only in Canada and America. In regions like Korea men are less masculine and show more famine features than masculinity. In Japan your body features don’t dignify who you are but it’s more that the blood type that dignifies the personality and who you are. The idea of society’s labels based on how you look is only defined to the perspective of what the society believes it to be, and the blame for corrupt perspective can be put on many ads that target these areas.
In this materialistic world with media having so much control over the mind of the youth it can lead to them have low self esteem. The blame can be put on the ads shown in the areas. It creates a division of the norms and the abnormal, and that ultimately lowers there self-confidence. Media has a grasp around the society and it creates a corruption in the society as do the advertisements that are gender targeted. Which create a negative gender stereotype as a reality for younger generations.