In order to help our children understand the influences that are connected to a digital world, we need to ensure that we are aware of how advertisers try to get our attention. Talking to our children about this will help them to identify misleading content.
https://parentzone.org.uk offer advice on how to tackle this, and other internet related issues:
‘Because the internet gives us access to so much information, it’s especially important to help our children to think critically about what they see. It’s hard enough for adults to recognise advertising and resist ridiculous rumours online, but it can be even more complicated for young people.
Have you ever looked at a spread in a magazine, only to realise all the clothes are from the same brand and the feature is actually an advertisement?
Internet advertising can be even more confusing. From sponsored search results to advertorials, in the age of ad blockers (which you can download to stop seeing ads on the websites you visit) brands are getting more creative about pushing their products online.
The law says that paid-for content must be indicated, so often the words ‘sponsored by’, ‘ad’ or ‘advertising promotion’ will be written somewhere, but these aren’t always easy to spot.
Internet celebrities like vloggers often advertise products and again, it’s not always easy to tell. A YouTuber who posts a video showing off her new mascara might be genuinely excited about her make-up, but she might also get paid to promote it. These videos should be labelled as ads if they’ve been paid for their endorsement, but it’s easy to miss these warnings if you’re not looking out for them.’