Incidental depiction of cigarettes and smoking in Australian magazines, 1990-1993.

Australian journal of public health

PubMedID: 7626684

Chapman S, Jones Q, Bauman A, Palin M. Incidental depiction of cigarettes and smoking in Australian magazines, 1990-1993. Aust J Public Health. 1995;19(3):313-5.
The study aimed to assess evidence of any increase in apparently incidental photographic depictions of cigarettes or smoking in Australian magazines following the ban on tobacco advertising in the print media introduced in January 1991. We examined 27,704 pages in 20 Australian magazines popular among young people or aimed at low socioeconomic groups during three sample periods in 1990 (before the ban), 1991 and 1993 (after the ban). All photographs showing cigarettes or smoking were counted and a smoking rate per page was calculated. When all 20 magazines were combined, there was a 75 per cent increase in the rate of photographs of smoking per page from 1990 (six months before the ban) to 1991 (six months after the ban). However, there was a reduction of 36 per cent in the rate of smoking photographs per page between 1991 and 1993 (18 months after the ban) and a nonsignificant increase of 12 per cent across the three sample periods. Photographs of smoking are infrequent in Australian magazines (mean: 1:147 pages, range: 1:17 pages to zero). There appears to be a commendable constraint by many Australian magazine editors in limiting the publication of photographs that show smoking or cigarettes. Some magazines never show smoking, indicating that a goal of total absence of photographs of smoking is achievable. Some magazines have room for improvement.