Introduction The extent of the population’s exposure to tobacco imagery across all genres of regular TV programming and the contribution of each of these genres is unknown, except for UK broadcast channels. The objective of this study is to estimate the exposure of young people to tobacco imagery on Chilean prime-time television and the programme source contributing to such exposure.
Methods Programmes aired during 3 weeks in 2019 from the 15 highest audience channels in Chile were content-analysed for the occurrence of tobacco categorised as actual use, implied use, tobacco paraphernalia, tobacco brand appearances and whether they violated Chilean smoke-free law for each 1 min interval (92 639). The exposure of young people to tobacco content was estimated using media viewership figures.
Results Young people received 29, 11 and 4 million tobacco impressions of any type, explicit use and smoke-free violation, respectively, at a rate of 21.8, 8.0 and 2.1 thousand impressions per hour of TV viewing. The main sources of exposure to tobacco impressions were feature films and animated productions, which were almost entirely non-Chilean. Finally, young people were exposed to tobacco brand impressions primarily through films, effectively circumventing the advertising ban in Chile.
Discussion Television programming is a source of significant youth exposure to tobacco imagery, including branding impressions. To conform to the WHO FCTC, Chile should prohibit tobacco branding in any TV programme and require strong anti-tobacco advertisements prior to any TV programme portraying tobacco.
- advertising and promotion
- public policy
Data availability statement
Data are available on reasonable request. Data are available on request from the Centro de Epidemiología y Políticas de Salud of the Universidad del Desarrollo 3 years after the end of data collection (June 2019).
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Contributors AP designed the study. AP and JS led the writing of the manuscript. OU, XM, CC and IM supervised the survey design and implementation and contributed to data analysis and writing of the manuscript. ID and IM undertook the data analysis and contributed to the preparation of the manuscript. MH, AO, CG and XM contributed to the writing of the manuscript. All authors contributed to the revision of the manuscript.
Funding The National Research and Development Agency of Chile (ANID) funded this research under grant #SA18I0024.
Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
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