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MODIFYING SMOKING BEHAVIOR THROUGH PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENTS AND CIGARETTE PACKAGE WARNING LABELS: A COMPARISON OF CANADA AND THE UNITED STATES.

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1811/329

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Title: MODIFYING SMOKING BEHAVIOR THROUGH PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENTS AND CIGARETTE PACKAGE WARNING LABELS: A COMPARISON OF CANADA AND THE UNITED STATES.
Creators: Goodall, Catherine E.
Advisor: Appiah, Osei
Issue Date: 2005-06
Abstract: This project investigates the use of cigarette package warning labels and public service announcements in Canada and the United States to prevent and reduce cigarette use. The purpose of doing so is to evaluate which country’s approach is more successful and to discover how to improve upon the current strategies. When cigarette warning labels and public service announcements share common themes and images, they have the potential to be more powerful in reducing and preventing cigarette use. Canada has successfully used an integrated approach in these areas of health communication. Further, in 2000, Canada took major steps in tobacco control by introducing 16 full-color graphic warning labels. These unique warnings consist of graphic images and use fear appeals. Research in Canada has suggested that the warnings are successfully encouraging smoking cessation among adults. However, there has been limited research addressing the effects these fear appeals may be having on adolescents. Interestingly, research on message framing and prospect theory has suggested that when dealing with the issues of smoking cessation and prevention, anti-smoking messages should actually be more successful if they are framed in terms of gains rather than losses. In order to test this theory on adolescents, the opinions of 210 American high school students were measured regarding the message framing of warning labels. Although theory and previous research suggested that gain-framed messages would more effectively influence adolescents’ smoking related attitudes and behaviors toward that of prevention and cessation, one of the loss-framed messages currently being used in Canada was perceived as more effective, resulted in more favorable opinions of the warnings and led to stronger intentions to not smoke than the gain-framed warnings. By using two actual Canadian warning labels, this study gained some important insight on the effectiveness of the fear appeals among young people. This research is also valuable because no researcher has compared the use of gain-framed or loss-framed warning labels on adolescents. Additionally, this project addresses an important political issue. Since 1985, the U.S. has been using the same four text-based warning labels. These labels are worn out and have likely lost their intended effect. The U.S. has clearly fallen behind in this area of tobacco control.
Series/Report no.: The Ohio State University. Department of Communication Honors Theses;2005
Keywords: Smoking
Adolescents
Cigarette Warning Labels
Message Framing
Canada
loss-framed
gain-framed
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1811/329
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