THE ADVERTISING REGULATION AND SELF-REGULATION ISSUES RIPPED
FROM THE HEADLINES WITH (SOMETIMES MISSED) OPPORTUNITIES
FOR DISCIPLINED MULTIDISCIPLINARY RESEARCH
Herbert Jack Rotfeld and Charles R. Taylor
With a focus on advertising, the most visible and publicly criticized marketing activity, issues that impel advertising regulation and self-regulation themselves often generate headlines in the popular press as well as business magazines. Beyond the basic longtime concerns of advertising veracity, or accusations of its inherent dishonesty, advertising regulation often becomes the advocated solution for problems of public health, privacy invasions, excessive consumer debt, and public aesthetics, as well as social critics’ desires to diminish the modern cultural trait of secular consumerism (i.e.,
“excessive shopping”). The problem is that actual research on the issues requires more than responding to the headlines. The model for understanding the existing literature of advertising and public policy research presented by Rotfeld and Stafford (2007) provides pragmatic guidelines for conducting quality research that is informed by and possibly guides advertising regulation and self-regulation decisions. The resulting inherently interesting future publications would be interdisciplinary, pandisciplinary, and multidisciplinary, but also needing discipline.
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