Thursday, July 29, 2021

The Vape Industry Can’t Advertise to Kids, But Anti-Tobacco Crusaders Are Doing It For Them

Anti-tobacco crusaders have for three years been blaming e-cigarette manufacturers and retailers for increased teen vaping, which the CDC, citing National Youth Tobacco Survey results, dramatically terms an epidemic. 

The vape industry is accused of enticing youth with kid-friendly flavors, cartoons and images, however, it may not be industry advertising that’s driving young vapers. Anti-vape organizations are running pervasive information campaigns that inundate youth with cartoons and other hip images, photos of kids vaping, and attractive illustrations of vape flavors. Anti-tobacco forces are actually encouraging kids to try e-cigarettes by underscoring how easy it is to use the products, the array of available flavors, and the enticing nicotine buzz that accompanies their use. 

Charles Gardner provides an impressive collection of prohibitionists’ unintended pro-vaping images and advertisements in this twitter thread. I’ve organized the images into three groups – Kids Vaping, Cartoons and Flavor Advertisements – with notes on who funded them. 


Last year, Clive Bates ridiculed the FDA’s poorly crafted vaping epidemic ad campaign, which basically invited kids to experiment. Here are more images:




You probably noticed that at least five of the previous ads highlighted a pod device that looks a lot like a JUUL, and one even mentions the brand. Here’s another JUUL ad that the company didn’t pay for: