Center for Digital Democracy and the Berkeley Media Studies Group
Food and beverage companies are using cell phones, instant messaging, video games, user-generated video (such as YouTube) and three-dimensional virtual worlds to promote their products to children and adolescents, according to researchers.
The report documents how major food, soft drink and fast-food brands are targeted at youth, often under the radar of parents. It also covers a range of new strategies for targeting specific ethnic groups, including African-Americans and Hispanics. Among the examples: young cell phone users text-messaging a special phone number to receive an instant electronic coupon for a free McFlurry dessert at McDonald’s. Free. 98 pages. (202) 494-7100, http://digitalads.org/documents/digiMarketingFull.pdf.