IELTS Writing Sample: Some of the methods used in advertising are unethical and unacceptable in today’s society. To what extent do you agree with this view? (Band 9)
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Nowadays there are many printed medical advertisements and television commercials promoting very questionable remedies. These drugs and/or chemicals are often not tested in the standard way and most of the ads say that users should first consult with their doctors before taking the drugs.
These ads have also managed to introduce a very old and time-tested ‘trick’, which is called small print. In a magazine, it is possible to use a magnifying glass to read the small print. But the advertisements on the television have tiny print that is intentionally displayed for only a few seconds. This is not only unethical but also very annoying. It’s even worse because the law requires them to state possible dangers of the drugs, and what they say out loud is certainly bad enough! The small print that we can’t see must be even worse. In other words, many of the drugs that are advertised — and other drugs that doctors prescribe without thinking about it too much — are very dangerous as we can clearly observe in terms of the opioid crisis.
Another less obvious example is the automobile manufacturing industry. In truth, a great deal of damage has been done by this industry since the introduction of automobiles only about a century ago. There is never any mention of the environmental destruction caused by increased car usage and modern road construction.
I think that these are two distinct types of unethical advertising that are very common on the television and other media forms in recent years. [253 words]