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Advertising, Alcohol and Maclean's

Canadian Journal of Communication/CCSP Press
Publication Date
  • Communication


Advert king, Alcohol & Maclean's By Ross Irvine Regina, Saskatchewan Journalists should take a few moments to look at advertising. A few minutes thinking about it would cast a different, and possibly unfavorable, light on the role of media in society. For some reason, media personnel don't like to dis- cuss advertising. During a four-year journalism course at the University of Western Ontario I heard almost no discussion of the subject. It was as if advertising didn't exist. When it was discussed most instructors were determined to keep advertising and editorial material entirely separated as though one did not influence the other. Such a view of media is false. Editorial and ad- vertising content go hand-in-hand; they share the same magazines, newspapers and airwaves. Discussion of one is not complete without discussion of the other. Advertising is big business. In the end, it pays the journalist's salary, puts the car in his driveway and pays his press club membership. In 1972, adver- tisers spent nearly $111 for every man, woman and child in the United St.ates. By 1985 this is expected to increase to $237 - a lot of money to persuade people to buy goods and services. There's no reason to be- lieve the figures are much different for Canada. Let's bring the finances of advertising a little closer to home. The June 1975 edition of Maclean's contained 108 pages including tb.e covers. Nezrly 57 pages, or 52 percent of the magazine, were taken up with ads. Ads for beer, wine and liquor accounted for over 20 percent of the magazine's content, Assuming all the ads appeared in national editions and assuming no discounts for quantity advertising, the space the ads occupied had a value of $617,135. Advertising space for alcoholic beverages was valued at $257,510, or nearly 42 percent of Maclean's adves- tising revenue, (These figures were computed from information in the June 1975 edition of Canadian Ad- vertising Rates & Data,) Let's look at

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