The True Price of Admission: Shades of Grey in Product Placement

Electron Gun's Librarian talks about what a world with more in-game advertising might look like, and whether that would really be such a bad thing.

"Advertising is rarely anyone’s favorite form of content. Noam Chomsky would tell us, after all, that “the main purpose of advertising is to undermine markets. If you go to graduate school and you take a course in economics, you learn that markets are systems in which informed consumers make rational choices.” Without wishing to quote the entire lecture, the basis of this conclusion is the notion that advertising is effort directed, at a fundamental level, toward inducing consumers to make something other than a perfectly rational choice. In the twenty-first century the American consuming public often seems to regard this position as being essentially correct; several decades of advertising tactics designed to take advantage of the brain’s tendency to create associations have rightly engendered a degree of suspicion and hostility to marketing. Similarly, the increasingly intrusive form of advertisements has contributed to the feeling that any ad at all represents an imposition."

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