Case 4 - Case 4: The Body Shop International PLC...

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Case 4: The Body Shop International PLC (1998-2007) Has Anita Roddick betrayed her own philosophy about advertising by beginning to advertise in U.S. markets? Does this decision have ethical implications? Or, is it just a business decision? Anita Roddick stated, “We hated the cosmetic industry with a passion: Its run by men who create needs that don’t exist” (in case 2A). It is not easy to see how to interpret her turn to standard advertising practices in the U.S as anything other than a change in her previous advertising philosophy in light of practical business concerns. If it is unethical to manipulate consumers in order to “create needs that don’t exist” then her turn to standard advertising practices would be ethically wrong. However, this criticism would turn on whether the Body Shop’s advertising sought to create a need that their products would fill, or, if they simply raised the visibility of a product that fulfills an already existing need. 2.
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