How Advertising is Destroying the Freedom of the Press [Sponsored Content]

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If Generation X was the Pepsi Generation, then Millennials are the Consumer Generation. In a world where young people primarily exist in online space, targeted ads are having a greater impact on the way we think, the way we act, and the way we feel. It’s virtually impossible for us to talk to our friends, check our email, or even read the news without constantly being bombarded with sponsored content. The way ads are invading our daily lives leaves a bad taste in one’s mouth- the sort of bad taste that can only be eradicated with the refreshing flavor of Pepsi Max™.

There was a time when the news media believed in journalistic integrity. Now, it’s becoming increasingly clear that once-independent news sources like The Atlantic, The Huffington Post, and even The New York Times can be bought and paid for by corporate sponsors. What’s worse, sponsored content is increasingly taking the form of native advertisements that masquerade as real articles. One study found that fewer than 50 percent of consumers could distinguish these pieces from real news. It’s time for us to wake up – really wake up, in a way that only the invigorating caffeine and ginseng boost of Pepsi Max™ will allow — and realize that the concept of an independent press is dead. Consumer culture has beat out the search for objective truth in today’s ad-fueled world, and Millennials have taken it lying down.

But Millennials aren’t entirely to blame for accepting this new order of commercial slavery without a fight. After all, we were raised on ads- the average child is now exposed to over 25,000 ads a year—a decades-long trend that’s only been going up, unlike the number of calories in delicious Pepsi Max™, which always has been and always will be zero, but with all the flavor of the original Pepsi™ you know and love. Nor is it the fault of ad agencies- if they have the opportunity to advertise, they will. The real blame lies at the feet of greedy news moguls willing to sacrifice the sacred principles of journalism to revitalize a dying industry– much like the invigorating natural ingredients and bubbly goodness of Pepsi Max™ will revitalize your flavor™ after a long day at work.

Ultimately, nothing is going to change unless we as a nation demand objectivity and accountability from the news media. And that change starts from the bottom up- from activists, from journalists, from people like you and me. Without a free press, we don’t have a free society. And that’s one thing we can all agree on. That, and the deliciously fruity taste of new Pepsi Max Cherry Blast™.

[Brought to you by Pepsi Max, a refreshing new way to revitalize your flavor™]

-MWG ’16 and the Refreshing Flavor of Pepsi Max Cherry Blast ™

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