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Posted by Willy Franzen on December 30, 2012. Positions below updated every five minutes.
I remember a lot of the commercials from my childhood better than the shows that they were aired on. That’s probably because the commercials were designed to ensure that I remember them, while the shows were more about entertaining me in the moment. I’ve been bombarded with commercial messages since I was born, and I don’t necessarily think that’s a bad thing. I’ve learned a lot from commercials–how marketing works and how not to be a sucker for example. I’ve even learned about some great products. My opinion is probably not shared by the folks at Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood, a Boston, MA based non-profit that is working “to reclaim childhood from corporate marketers.”
While I don’t think I’d ever be a proponent for a completely commercial-free childhood, I do recognize that there is a “rapidly escalating problem of commercialism encroaching on the lives of children.” If you look at Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood’s history and highlights, you’ll see that they’re often targeting some of the most egregious behavior. They petitioned the FTC to charge the marketers of a product called “Your Baby Can Read” with false advertising, stopped Hasbro “from producing a line of dolls for six-year-old girls based on the Pussy Cat Dolls, a burlesque troupe turned singing group know for its sexualized songs and dances,” and have prevented on school bus marketing from becoming “a thing.” If you’d like to be part of their next success, take a look at Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood jobs on Idealist. Right now they’re looking for a Research and Communications Assistant. It’s a part-time position, but maybe it’s something that you can grow into.
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What do you think of the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood?