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The Effects of Antismoking and Cigarette Advertising on Young Adolescents' Perceptions of Peers Who Smoke.



Prior research suggests that young adolescents' perceptions of smokers are strongly associated with smoking initiation. Thus, we experimentally investigated the effects of antismoking and cigarette advertising on nonsmoking youths' perceptions (evaluative judgments) of a peer who smokes. Results suggest that exposure to the antismoking ads made salience our seventh-grade subjects' pre-existing beliefs that smokers foolishly endanger their health, which resulted in even less favorable evaluations of the smoker's common sense and personal appeal. Further, unlike subjects who saw unrelated (control) ads, those who saw the antismoking ads judge the smoker to be relatively immature and unglamorous. Exposure to the cigarette ads did not significantly affect scale ratings of, but resulted in more favorable thoughts about, the smoker. Copyright 1994 by the University of Chicago.

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