Case in Point Blog: Product Placement

Ian Knechtle

Case in Point Blog



Product placement in television shows and movies can be very effective, but also very damaging. They can be effective by not taking away from the story, creating brand identity, and building a relationship with the consumer. It can be a very powerful form of advertising by really pulling at the consumers desire to want something. It can be dangerous for many reasons also. These risks include taking away from the story, standing out and being a distraction, creating negative identity, and being seen as too persuasive and over the top.

There are many strong benefits to product placement that advertisers have noticed and acted upon. Product placement in television shows and movies can develop a strong relationship and devotion from the fans of that program. The fans will be drawn even more to the certain product because it reminds them of their show or movie. This can be very powerful by pulling in the fans as new and devoted consumers. Also, putting these products in films and shows can create a very positive image. This image can be built by portraying the product as something very positive that benefits the people in the movie or show. The product should definitely not stand out too hard so that it’s clear that it’s product placement, that would take away from the story and bring negativity to the product.

The negative side of product placement in television shows and movies is quite clear and damaging. As mentioned earlier, if it takes away from the story or causes a distraction that can be very negative and hurt the product. Putting a product in television and movies can be a risk by having it in an environment that is up for interpretation and can lead to a negative portrayal. Having a product present in a negative scene in a movie or show can lead to the fans not liking the product and leaning away from it. Also, ethically product placement might not be the best form of advertising. Some people see it as too persuasive and disguised. It can truly pull at emotions and change desires when done correctly and powerfully, which can be dangerous. People have started to catch on to that which has given product placement some bad light. The risks of product placement are very present and dangerous.

Overall, after weighing the risks and rewards of product placement, I would agree with it and use it if I was in advertising. Of course it has to be carried out very delicately and precisely, but the rewards outweigh the risks I believe. Product placement has made it easier for advertisers to get their messages to the audience especially in today’s world where many people skip the commercials during a television show’s break (Tanner, 2014). This new opportunity has opened doors for advertisers to reach the audience and not worry about the audience never receiving the message. Product placement can do an amazing job at connecting the audience to a product in a powerful way that will make the audience loyal to that product.

Tanner, R. (2014, September 8). Synergy Or Interference? How Product Placement In TV Shows Affects The Commercial-Break Audience. Retrieved March 8, 2015, from

Blog Post 1: Ethics in Advertising

Ian Knechtle

Media Ethics

Blog 1 Taking Stock


Focusing on how advertising can bring concerns upon the American public is a large issue especially in today’s world with the increase of advertising and its aggressive tactics. Cooper points out in a study that media dishonesty, violent and sexual content, exaggeration, sensationalism, profanity, and rude, pushy, or obnoxious media behavior are all big concerns of the public. I believe that all of those issues are related to advertising in different ways. Personally, the issues of dishonesty and exaggeration are the two largest concerns in my eyes and they go hand-in-hand. Advertisements that are dishonest and exaggerated can be very damaging in more than one way. First, it can do harm to the consumer who has different expectations for the product. Second, it can really hurt the company because if they are accused of dishonest advertising, their reputation will be very damaged. Companies have had to pay millions for false advertising and claiming things that weren’t true. Customers, competitors, and other authorities watch out for these false advertisements and call out companies for their dishonest ways.

Four out of the five interviewees focused on discussing false advertisements and how they have damaged their image of certain companies. They focused on how they are all victims of false advertising and it can really hurt a reputation of a company. The fifth interviewee focused the most on advertising to minors and children and how that can be very unethical. He focused on how children are unable to fully comprehend advertisements and how they can be exaggerated so it is unethical for companies to practice it. This is definitely a huge issue when it comes to advertising and I totally agree with him. Children are usually unaware of what they are being persuaded to do and they just want to consume whatever they see without putting much thought into it. It can be very dangerous for a company to do this because it is unhealthy for children and it can get a company in a lot of trouble if they get caught doing it. All interviewees and I agreed that effective advertising can truly benefit a company on a large scale. There are risks and rewards that come with advertising and decisions that people make in advertising, but sticking to the truth and exaggerating maybe just a little at times can be okay. False and dishonest advertising can lead to customers being mislead and possibly hurt by a company’s product because they expected something different, and this false advertising can lead to the destruction of a company. There are many companies who have had to pay millions in fines and lawsuits because of their false advertising.

Sensationalism is also an issue in advertising because it can be misleading and inaccurate. It can try to persuade the public to buy products, goods, and services based off of exaggerated stories and language to get the public excited. This is obviously related to false and dishonest advertising. The exaggerated excitement about a product can persuade the public to buy whatever is being sold and this can lead to more damage.

Bhasin, K., & Weinmann, K. (2011, September 16). 14 False Advertising Scandals That Cost Brands Millions. Retrieved February 22, 2015, from

Cooper, T. (2008). Between the Summits: What Americans think about media ethics. Journal of Mass Media Ethics, 23. 15-27. DOI: 10.1080/08900520701753106

My Philosopher: John Stuart Mill

Ian Knechtle

Media and Ethics

My Philosopher



John Stuart Mill was born in 1806 in London and was the son of Scottish philosopher, historian and economist James Mill. John was strictly educated throughout his life by his father. His father did not allow him to interact with other children his age and taught him ferociously. At age three he was taught Greek, and by the time he was a young teenager he had read and studied multiple languages, understood and knew many philosophers of new and old, and was tremendous in science, math, economics, philosophy, and other issues. He held deep intellectual talks with famous economists and philosophers as well as teaching others what he knew. He was an incredible poet and had an incredible mind. He studied in France and England alongside connections with his father. His rigorous upbringing did lead to him having a nervous breakdown and other mental issues, but he eventually recovered. His wife died after only seven years of marriage but she was a very knowledgeable woman as well. John was a big promoter of women’s rights and was the first person in the history of Parliament to call for women to have the right to vote.

John was a big advocate and contributor to utilitarianism. He believed that the greatest good for the greatest amount of people is best. Specifically, John added the “qualitative separation of pleasure.” This new view to utilitarianism expressed that not all forms of pleasure are equal. Mill argued that intellectual and moral pleasures are superior to physical pleasures. The famous example he used for this was that it is “better to be Socrates dissatisfied than a fool satisfied.” Being unaware of what true and higher pleasure was due to lack of education and knowledge was something that John warned against. He pointed out that people who are unaware of these different forms of pleasure might only know the lower level of pleasure, which is physical. This physical form of pleasure might bring the greatest amount of good though, so that would be something that society should embrace. These beliefs lead to John wanting university graduates possessing more voting power. He wanted to ensure that the educated were given the loudest voice so that they could determine what was best for society. He pointed out that the uneducated most likely have not experienced higher and lower levels of pleasure, so they will most likely agree with what they are used to, which is lower level pleasures. These beliefs also tied into his background it seems. His father did not want him interacting with children who were not as educated and he wanted John to be incredibly educated so that he could make the best decisions.

John was also very involved in economic and political philosophy as well as justice and rights of equality. He held a high position at the University of St. Andrews, which allowed him to educate many. Looking deeper into John’s work would benefit anyone trying to understand ethics. Especially with his work in the greater good and utilitarianism, he has some very intellectual thoughts and examples.

Driver, J. (2009, March 27). The History of Utilitarianism. Retrieved February 12, 2015, from

Heydt, C. (n.d.). Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Retrieved February 12, 2015, from

John Stuart Mill. (n.d.). Retrieved February 11, 2015, from

Wilson, F. (2002, January 3). John Stuart Mill. Retrieved February 11, 2015, from