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Associations Between Cigarette Print Advertising and Smoking Initiation Among African Americans.

  • Author(s): Trinidad, Dennis R
  • Blanco, Lyzette
  • Emery, Sherry L
  • Fagan, Pebbles
  • White, Martha M
  • Reed, Mark B
  • et al.
Abstract

OBJECTIVES:The objective of this study was to examine changes in the annual number of cigarette advertisements in magazines with a predominantly African-American audience following the broadcast ban on tobacco, and whether fluctuations in cigarette print advertising targeting African Americans during the late-1970s until the mid-1980s were associated with declines in smoking initiation. DESIGN:We tabulated the annual number of cigarette advertisements from magazines with large African-American readerships (Ebony, Essence, and Jet) from 1960 to 1990. Advertisements were coded depending on whether they featured African-American models. We calculated the incidence rate of regular smoking initiation from 1975 to 1990 for African-American 14-25 years old using data from the 1992-1993, 1995-1996, 1998-1999, and 2001-2002 Tobacco Use Supplements of the Current Population Survey. We examined whether trends in smoking initiation coincided with trends in cigarette advertising practices among African Americans. RESULTS:The annual aggregated number of printed cigarette advertisements in Ebony, Essence, and Jet magazines increased at least five-fold starting in 1971, following the broadcast ban on cigarette advertising. A decrease in the percentage of ads by Brown & Williamson that showed African-American models was positively correlated (r = 0.30) with declines in the incidence rate of smoking initiation among African Americans from the late-1970s to the mid-1980s. CONCLUSION:The tobacco industry adapted quickly following the broadcast ban on cigarettes by increasing print advertising in African-American magazines. However, changes in print advertising practices by were associated with declines in smoking initiation among African Americans from the late-1970s to mid-1980s.

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