I hold that it is wrong to conduct newspapers by the aid of ...immortal advertisements, I do believe that if advertisements should be taken at all there should be a rigid censorship instituted by newspaper proprietors and editors themselves and that only healthy advertisements should be taken...The evil of immortal advertisements is overtaking even what are known as the most respectable newspapers and magazines. That evil has to be combated by refining the conscience of the newspaper proprietors and editors. That refinement can come not through the influence of an amateur editor like myself but it will come when their own conscience is roused to recognition of the growing evil or when it is super-imposed upon them by a government representing the people and caring for the people’s morals.
Young India. 25/3/1926

When advertisements are inserted by payments, it is well high impossible to control their manner or language. Of the various advertisements that have come under our notice, ninety nine per cent are totally useless. The advertisements that are most paying relate to medicine and it is our belief that deceitfulness and obscenity that are often found in such advertisements are harmful to the country. We know any friends who have contracted disease by using advertised medicines. Who has not been deceived by advertisements regarding other things? It is our mistaken belief that we get newspapers cheap because they take advertisements. It is forgotten that the things that are advertised are brought by the readers and it is the reader who have ultimately to pay for the advertising charges. The price of medicine does not lie in the drug so much as in the bottle, the cork and most of all in the advertisement. Hence, sometimes, we pay on rupee for a medicine worth a pice only. If there were no system of advertisements, we are sure to save at least half the price.

Young India  1919.

Mahatma Gandhi on Advertisements



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