I did not expect that post to stir up so much interest! Apparently I hit a nerve with many people. Hopefully enough people will become outraged over false advertising that they will complain (e-mail is great for that!) and business and advertising professionals will become more honest in promoting their products.
I have a colleague (who I also count as a friend) who teaches marketing/advertising (both, I think). I know him to be a man of integrity who teaches his students to be honest. What I fear is that once they get out into the business pressures on them will force them to compromise what he taught them.
It’s similar with pastors. Often they get taught good theology at seminary and then cast it aside under pressure from their congregants. (E.g., They are taught about the promise of the resurrection in seminary but swith to emphasize immortality of the soul [without mention of resurrection] in their pulpits especially at funerals.)
My colleagues/friend has a book coming out next month entitled Shiny Objects where he critiques American consumerism and seductive advertising. I can’t wait to read it. I’ll blog about it here as soon as it is published.
I do think a Christian can work in the advertising industry, but I think he or she will face enormous pressures to compromise truth. I just hope and pray they will be able to withstand those pressures and put out quality advertising that isn’t manipulative or dishonest.