Are E-cigarette Adverts a Good Idea?

We aren’t used to seeing people smoking on TV nowadays, but some of you may have caught the new ‘vaping’ ad that began airing after the 9:00pm watershed this week. Having been the first example of ‘smoking’ on a TV advert since 1965, this ad has already received plenty of attention, and it certainly got a bit of backlash from the Loose Women team.

The Loose Women panel showed a still of the lady featured in the ad, who Ruth Langsford described as a “very provocative, very gorgeous-looking woman.”

When discussing the language used in the ad, Jane Moore is one of the first to voice her disapproval:

“Words fail me on that. I just think when people see it, they’ll be shocked by how dreadful it is. I think it’s appalling.”

For Jane, the advert is about selling a brand, rather than something intended to help people quit. She feels that anything related to smoking should not be shown on TV adverts.

“And especially that advert because it’s really sexualised” Coleen Nolan agreed.

“It’s semi-pornographic to be absolutely honest” Judy Finnigan said. “It’s meant to look deeply desirable and it makes her look very cool, very glamorous. And it’s a horrible ad actually, it’s really revolting.”

On the flip side, Judy acknowledged the way it has helped some of the people she knows to leave normal cigarettes behind.

Ruth noted that it wasn’t just the content and the way it’s sexualised that shocked her, but simply seeing someone ‘smoking’ on the TV again:

“It doesn’t seem that long ago that we could smoke in cinemas, in restaurants, on planes, on trains and now, if you see someone smoke in a public place it’s quite a shock…

“I know that they’ll say it’s trying to make people stop… but I still think it’s glamorising the physical act of smoking – putting something to your mouth and inhaling.”

Whether it’s intended to help people along the way or simply make the act of smoking seem ‘cool’, many of the Loose Women team felt that the act itself should not be shown at all:

“It’s not as bad for you as smoking but it’s not harmless either. You know, it has nicotine in it and surely the ideal should be to give up,” Jane said.

What are your thoughts surrounding the advertisement of e-cigarettes? Do you see the adverts as a vehicle to help people quit, or do you think they simply make vaping, and the act of smoking, look cool? Perhaps you don’t think that making vaping look cool has any impact on how we see smoking – maybe you feel they are very different? Whatever your thoughts, we want to hear them. Drop us a line in the comment box below.

Image credit:Nicoletta Ciunci / Flickr

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