Regulating ageism in UK advertising: an industry perspective

Carrigan, M. and Szmigin, I. (2003). Regulating ageism in UK advertising: an industry perspective. Marketing Intelligence and Planning, 21(4) pp. 198–204.



Demographic trends are suggesting that older people are growing in importance in the population. The advertising industry has been accused of ignoring older people in advertisements, or treating them inappropriately. In order to respond to accusations of ageism within the industry it is suggested that regulation may be required to raise the awareness of advertisers and agencies to the importance of older people, and to encourage more age diverse advertising. This paper presents the findings of a study conducted to elicit the opinions of advertising industry commentators about the issue of ageism in advertising. The general opinion was that the industry was ageist, and may require the incentive of regulation before it will respond to the needs of the older population.

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