Parents versus Alcohol Ads

Two-thirds of parents believe that alcohol ads lead young people to drink, according to a recent report by the Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth.

Those parents are wrong. The only influence that has been shown to consistently make a difference on young peoples’ decision to drink or not is that of their parents. And surveys of young people support the scientific evidence. For example, the Roper Youth Report finds 71% of youth identify their parents as having the most influence on their decision whether to drink or not. Over the years, the Roper studies have found the proportion of youth who believe that alcohol ads have any influence over whether they drink or not has ranged from 2% to 5%.

To learn more about the effects of alcohol ads, visit Alcohol Advertising.

The goal of the Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth (CAMY) is, in its own words, to create “public outrage” against alcohol advertising. Not surprisingly, earlier reports by the activist group have been discredited by scholars for being both biased and methodologically erroneous. The Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth is funded by the anti-alcohol Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. For more about CAMY, visit Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth.

The Roper Youth Report is based on annual surveys of young peoples’ attitudes, opinions, beliefs and behaviors across a wide spectrum of their lives. It is issued by the impartial and respected Roper organization, a pioneer and leader in survey research.


  • New Survey Shows Parents Troubled by Underage Drinking and Alcohol Companies' Advertising Practices: Poll finds that parents of teens think alcohol ads have a serious effect on teen drinking habits. Center for Alcohol Marketing and Youth press release, 7-14-03;
  • Roper Youth Report, 1991, Roper Youth Report, 1997, Roper Youth Report, 2002.

Filed Under: Alcohol Advertising