Congressional meetings highlight leadership training
Aug 6, 2015
In the fight against tobacco, youth voices pack a powerful punch.
Last week, we welcomed 26 youth activists from 20 states to Washington, D.C., for our annual Youth Advocacy Symposium – a series of skill-building workshops on leadership, advocacy and communications. The youth activists lead the fight in their communities, encouraging their peers to stay tobacco-free, standing against the tobacco industry’s deceptive marketing and urging elected leaders to take action.
Continue reading Youth Activists Step Up Fight against Tobacco
Company has long history of deception, marketing to kids
Jun 29, 2015
When the Reynolds American tobacco company recently completed its purchase of Lorillard, Reynolds CEO Susan Cameron touted the deal as a return to the “old days” for the tobacco industry.
When it comes to Big Tobacco, the “old days” were a time when youth smoking rates were skyrocketing, the industry used cartoons and cowboys to target kids, and tobacco executives denied that smoking was addictive or caused disease.
Continue reading Reynolds CEO Pines for the “Old Days” – Does She Miss Joe Camel?
Old tactics help sell new products to kids
Jun 17, 2015
Teen use of electronic cigarettes has skyrocketed, with the most recent surveys showing that e-cigarette use now exceeds cigarette smoking among U.S. youth.
It's not surprising. E-cigarette manufacturers continue to use marketing tactics that come right out of Big Tobacco's playbook for promoting regular cigarettes to kids. Their tactics include slick magazine ads, sponsorship of concerts and auto races, celebrity endorsements and sweet, colorful flavors.
Continue reading E-Cigarette Marketing Continues to Mirror Cigarette Marketing
Youth-oriented “Be Marlboro” campaign continues to expand worldwide
Jun 10, 2015
The youth-oriented “Be Marlboro” marketing campaign from tobacco giant Philip Morris International continues to spread around the world. The latest stop: The country of Georgia.
Last month, a “Be Marlboro” promotional event was spotted in a high-end shopping mall in Tbilisi, Georgia. Located in a high traffic area, the “Be Marlboro” display featured two Ferrari race cars and a video game stand surrounded by bean bag chairs in the red and white Marlboro colors. Not surprisingly, the booth attracted the attention of children at the mall.
Continue reading Race Cars, Bean Bags and Video Games – But Philip Morris Claims It Doesn’t Market to Kids
Nov 24, 2014
A recent report by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and other public health organizations exposed how Philip Morris International is conducting a global marketing campaign — called Be Marlboro — that uses themes and images that appeal to youth.
Now Philip Morris has canceled a series of concerts in Bangladesh after health advocates protested that the concerts violated the country’s tobacco control laws and marketed cigarettes to kids.
Continue reading Protests Force Cancellation of Marlboro Concert Series in Bangladesh
Tobacco giant’s ad campaign has spread to over 50 countries
Aug 28, 2014
Philip Morris International's “Be Marlboro” campaign is coming under fire again for targeting youth. This time, the consumer protection agency from the Brazilian state of São Paulo has fined Philip Morris over $480,000.
The agency acted after a formal complaint was filed against Philip Morris by tobacco control activists who documented how its marketing tactics were aimed at youth. Paula Johns, Executive Director of the Brazilian advocacy organization ACT, calls the campaign "cynical", noting that “independence and autonomy are associated with a product that actually makes the person dependent."
Continue reading Philip Morris International Fined in Brazil for Targeting Youth with its “Be Marlboro” Ads
Marketing campaign has been found to target teens
Jul 15, 2014
Despite international media criticism and widespread calls from public health groups and government officials to end its "Be Marlboro" marketing campaign, Philip Morris International is doubling down and expanding its youth-oriented campaign around the globe.
A March 2014 report by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and other public health groups exposed how the campaign uses themes and images sure to appeal to youth. With the slogan "Don’t be a Maybe. Be Marlboro," the ads feature images of attractive young people falling in love, playing music, partying, and taking risks.
Continue reading Despite Outrage, Philip Morris International Expands Global “Be Marlboro” Campaign
Ad campaign has spread to more than 50 countries
Jun 16, 2014
A new documentary from the BBC calls out Philip Morris International for its global marketing campaign promoting Marlboro cigarettes that has been found to target youth. The BBC report finds the "Be Marlboro" ad campaign is "aimed unashamedly at young people."
A report released in March by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and other public health groups exposed how the "Be Marlboro" ads uses themes and images sure to appeal to youth. The ads have spread to more than 50 countries despite being banned by a German court for targeting teens.
Continue reading BBC Report: Philip Morris’ Be Marlboro Campaign “Aimed Unashamedly at Young People”
Nearly 13 percent of high school boys use smokeless
May 28, 2014
Cigarettes and electronic cigarettes aren’t the only tobacco products being heavily advertised in magazines with large youth readerships.
So are smokeless tobacco products, especially now that the Skoal brand is again advertising in magazines for the first time since February 2009, according to the Trinkets & Trash website, which tracks tobacco advertising.
Continue reading Skoal’s Return Ramps Up Smokeless Tobacco Ads in Magazines
Latest blu eCigs video seems awfully youth-oriented
May 21, 2014
Manufacturers of electronic cigarettes keep saying they don’t market to kids. They claim their target audience is current smokers. So how, exactly, does a video called “How to Twerk: A helpful how-to for would-be booty-shakers” fit into that strategy?
The latest addition to blu e-cigarettes’ YouTube page – and to their website – features entertainer Big Freedia teaching cheering young adults how to shake their stuff. The twerking dance craze became nationally notorious thanks to Miley Cyrus’ performance at the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards.
Continue reading Adult smokers love… twerking?
Philip Morris International ads found to target youth
Apr 21, 2014
Last month, the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and other public health groups issued a report exposing how Philip Morris International (PMI) is conducting a global marketing campaign for its best-selling Marlboro cigarettes that uses themes and images sure to appeal to youth.
The “Be Marlboro” campaign has spread to more than 50 countries despite being banned by a German court for targeting teens. The campaign associates “being Marlboro” with falling in love, playing music, partying, engaging in adventure sports and other activities popular with youth.
Continue reading Creative Outrage: Enter our Contest to Expose the Truth about the “Be Marlboro” Campaign
Is it an ad for Marlboro cigarettes or teen fashion? You decide
Mar 12, 2014
As revealed by a report issued today by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and other international public health groups, Philip Morris International (PMI) is conducting a global marketing campaign for its best-selling Marlboro cigarettes – called “Be Marlboro” – that uses themes and images sure to appeal to youth.
The campaign has spread to more than 50 countries despite being banned by a German court for targeting teens and generating similar complaints in other countries.
“Be Marlboro” ads feature attractive young people partying, falling in love, playing music and engaging in adventure sports such as snowboarding and surfing – in short, things youth around the world aspire to do.
Continue reading Take the Marlboro Teen Fashion Quiz
News stories expose industry’s marketing to kids
Jan 29, 2014
Indonesia and Africa are among Big Tobacco’s top targets as the industry increasingly targets low- and middle-income countries in its insatiable quest for profit, no matter the cost in lives and health.
Recent news stories document both the enormous challenges posed by the tobacco epidemic in these countries and regions – and the growing call for strong action to rein in the tobacco industry and save lives.
Continue reading Fighting Big Tobacco in Indonesia and Africa
Five- and six-year-olds can identify cigarette logos
Oct 7, 2013
Tobacco companies claim they don’t market to kids. But a new study conducted in six low- and middle-income countries provides fresh evidence that tobacco marketing and branding are highly effective at reaching kids.
In the six countries studied – Brazil, China, India, Nigeria, Pakistan and Russia – more than two-thirds of five- and six-year-olds surveyed were able to identify at least one cigarette logo. In China, where smoking rates are among the highest in the world, an alarming 86 percent of children surveyed could identify at least one logo.
Continue reading New Study: Global Tobacco Marketing Impacts Young Kids
(or 7 reasons FDA should quickly regulate e-cigarettes)
Oct 2, 2013
The CDC recently reported that rates of electronic cigarette use among U.S. youth more than doubled from 2011 to 2012, when 10 percent of high school students reported ever having used e-cigarettes.
These numbers are troubling but not surprising. There has been an explosion in e-cigarette marketing in recent years, and e-cigarette manufacturers are using the same slick tactics long used to market regular cigarettes to kids.
Continue reading 7 Ways E-Cigarette Companies Are Copying Big Tobacco’s Playbook
Growing concern about marketing that tempts kids
Sep 27, 2013
A growing chorus of elected officials at the state and federal level — 40 state attorneys general and a group of 10 U.S. senators and two U.S. House members — are demanding strong action to stop the marketing and sale of electronic cigarettes to kids.
The attorneys general wrote to FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg Tuesday, urging the FDA to swiftly regulate the e-cigarette industry and warning that e-cigarette manufacturers are tempting kids with sweet flavors, cartoon images and television advertising portraying e-cigarette use as attractive — in much the same way cigarette companies targeted children for decades.
Continue reading State AGs, Members of Congress Demand Regulation of E-Cigarettes
Big Tobacco is still after kids
Aug 13, 2013
Tobacco giant R.J. Reynolds claims it doesn’t market cigarettes to kids. But the company’s actions continue to show otherwise.
The August 2013 issue of Glamour magazine features the world’s most popular boy band, One Direction, on the cover. Inside the magazine, and placed just before the story and photos on the band, there’s a huge, three-page spread of ads for R.J. Reynolds’ Camel cigarettes.
Continue reading Boy Band on the Cover, Cigarette Ads Inside – Guess Who’s the Target?
A century of death and disease is nothing to celebrate
Jun 18, 2013
The death and disease caused by cigarettes is nothing to celebrate. But that’s not stopping R.J. Reynolds from celebrating the 100th birthday of its Camel cigarettes this year. Their Camel web site touts “A Century of Camel” and urges visitors to “Celebrate the original that sparked a tradition.”
Continue reading Wish Camel cigarettes an unhappy 100th birthday
Company’s actions contradict CEO’s claim
May 14, 2013
At last week’s annual meeting of Philip Morris International shareholders in New York City, CEO Louis Camilleri answered a question from a youth tobacco control advocate by denying that the company markets to kids, saying “That’s just not true. It’s a fable.”
Continue reading Really Philip Morris? You don’t market to kids?
Indonesia’s Java Jazz promotes cigarettes as much as music
Mar 22, 2013
When young fans attended the Java Jazz music festival in Jakarta, Indonesia, earlier this month, they had to walk through concert grounds plastered with advertising for Djarum Super Mild, the cigarette brand that sponsored the concert.
When performers such as Joss Stone took the stage, they performed under a cigarette logo.
And for weeks before the concert, Djarum promoted its deadly products using the images of music stars, in the process telling kids that smoking is fun and glamorous.
Continue reading Warning: This Concert Is Hazardous to Your Health
Learn about America’s most wanted tobacco villains
Mar 20, 2013
Today is the 18th Kick Butts Day, our annual celebration of youth leadership and activism in the fight against tobacco.
With more than 1,200 events happening across the country and on military bases around the world, this is the biggest Kick Butts Day yet. Today and throughout the week, thousands of kids are taking a stand against tobacco. Find Kick Butts Day events in your area.
Continue reading Today is Kick Butts Day!
Store marketing tells kids cigarettes are normal and appealing
Oct 19, 2012
Earlier this year, the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and our partners issued a report showing how tobacco companies have enlisted convenience stores as their most important partners in marketing cigarettes and other tobacco products – and in fighting policies to reduce tobacco use.
Continue reading Cigarettes and Slush Puppies
Protecting kids from the tobacco industry’s products and marketing
Sep 6, 2012
The backpacks have been aired out, the supplies purchased, pencils sharpened, and the kids are now back to school. With young people being away from home and parental supervision, however, moms and dads need to be vigilant.
Continue reading Back to School and Tobacco-Free
Tobacco companies manipulate products to attract kids
Sep 4, 2012
An editorial in The New York Times calls on elected officials and the Food and Drug Administration to close tax and regulatory loopholes that tobacco companies have exploited to keep some products cheap, flavored and appealing to kids.
"Give the tobacco industry credit for ingenuity," the Times wrote. "Just when it looked as if federal regulators could block their ability to addict children and young adults, several companies that make cigars and pipe tobacco have sidestepped the barriers by taking advantage of loopholes in federal law."
Continue reading NY Times Editorial: Close Loopholes in Tobacco Regulation
Video: Tobacco giant questioned on Marlboro-branded kiosk steps from school
Jul 11, 2012
In a new segment, ABC News Nightline returns to Indonesia, a playground for the tobacco industry where tobacco marketing is inescapable and kids can easily buy cigarettes right outside their schools.
Continue reading ABC’s Nightline Investigates Philip Morris International’s Marketing to Indonesian Youth
Tobacco industry spends over a million dollars an hour on marketing that hooks kids
Mar 8, 2012
Smoking among American youth is a “pediatric epidemic” that isn’t occurring by accident: It’s directly caused by tobacco industry marketing and promotion that entices teenagers to start smoking and encourages their progression to becoming regular smokers.
Continue reading Surgeon General’s Report Shows Youth Smoking is “Not an Accident”
Flavored cigars, free samples and hip-hop imagery target urban youth
Oct 21, 2011
A California-based company is promoting flavored cigars called "Hoodwraps" to inner-city youth, using names such as "Da Bomb Blueberry" and "Swag Berry," and even handing out free samples in downtown Indianapolis.
Trendsettah USA is marketing the cigars with "street teams" — inner-city youth recruited to give out the samples. The slogan for Hoodwraps: "So Hood. So Good." The aggressive promotion has angered local tobacco-control advocates, who note that urban youth in Indiana are more likely to begin smoking at an earlier age than the national average.
Continue reading ‘Hoodwraps’ Don’t Belong in the Neighborhood