Comments & Discussion

Boston University moderates comments to facilitate an informed, substantive, civil conversation. Abusive, profane, self-promotional, misleading, incoherent or off-topic comments will be rejected. Moderators are staffed during regular business hours (EST) and can only accept comments written in English. Statistics or facts must include a citation or a link to the citation.

There are 50 comments on New Study: Alcohol Brands Underage Drinkers Prefer

  1. I think that these companies have done a fabulous job in convincing America that if you are going to be young. glamorous and beautiful, and if you are going to be a great athlete and have a great life, then Bud Light is a must. I grew up at a time when everyone seemed to smoke and drug use was also ubiquitous. There has been a nearly 50 year avalanche of a campaign against those things, especially in the schools, making people who did those things seem like hopeless anti-social low-lifes, out to destroy themselves and society as well. Today, despite some success in reducing tobacco and drug use, one in five Americans still smoke. The rate of drug abuse in 18-25 year olds has shown a steady increase in recent years. To make all matters worse, C. Everett Coop died yesterday. This cause might need a new superhero to take the lead. It will take some innovative thinking and public policy to figure this one out.

    1. I disagree with the intent of the article and that there is some underlying secret to why the youth want to buy these products. The answer is very simple. THESE ARE THE CHEAPEST nationally known alcohols in the United States. I am surprised that Natty Ice or Svedka didn’t make the list, but I am sure they are up there, and the reason kids buy these brands is they are cheap and taste less bad to their under-developed taste buds. There is no secret, its just price for poor kids financially.

      1. I agree with you kyle. As a recent college graduate I could have rattled off the “most popular” drinks, having had most of them myself. When drinking with my friends the only factor that really came into play was the PRICE of the alcohol. When you are in debt from student loans you don’t want to pay extra for alcohol. As you get older and actually have a job you can afford to spend more money on better alcohols. It’s not rocket science, it’s logic.

      2. You nailed, it Kyle. Notice there is wine, or Scotch, or Cognac, because these kids just don’t know except what they see in the paper. The larger question is why would a university print such a report, if their concern is to prohibit underage drinking? I assume that the number one cocktail is a Long Island Ice Tea, so something else as ridiculous with lots of sweet/cheap alcohol and high buzz factor.

  2. What is it about these brands of Alcohol that don’t taste like alcohol that underage drinkers enjoy? I wonder…

    For a million dollar grant I’m sure I can decipher such a tough puzzel.

  3. Man,
    Kids these days sure are different. When I was underage I would get harpoon. Not because I liked their ads, “they don’t have any,” but because I just wanted to drink and I refuse to support large corporate businesses.

    1. I don’t think underage drinkers have too much of a choice. More kind of take what you can get. I would say its lack of advertising by many brands that simply pushes kids towards the names that they know with the biggest marketing budge.

    2. You won’t find Harpoon in cases, and you won’t find it in cans at your local liquor store. Because it is more expensive, it will be bought less. I believe the largest option at blanchard’s is a 12-pack of harpoon.

      Buy a 12 pack of harpoon for $14 or buy 36 cans of bud light for $15-20? If you have money the first option is fine. If you don’t, then you will go with efficiency.

    1. Exactly! This is almost as bad as the study that found that students who drink more report higher social happiness.

      Really? No wonder the idiots in Congress want to cut scientific funding. Because a bunch of it is getting wasted on stupid things like this.

  4. This just in, the world’s best selling beer is consumed by underage kids. Maybe next they’ll discover that kids “gasp!” smoke marijuana. It’s time to realize that prohibiting a substance serves only to make it more dangerous and stop producing studies that tell us what we already know: kids will drink whatever alcohol is most available.

  5. These are the drinks of choice because they are, in general, the cheapest. It’s not advertising or preference for a brand. It’s pricing and availability – cheap and convenient, and in bulk.

    1. exactly…availability, convenient. walk into most liquor or convenient stores and what do you see? stacks of bud light, bud, coors light, miller light 30 packs/cases. the majority of young drinkers don’t care, have the knowledge or tastebuds to seek out another option like a microbrew or specialty beer when the major brands are right in front of their face. it dose seem a bit much to spend $2.4 mil to figure this out…

  6. This study seems silly we (underage people) know we’re not drinking the best stuff out there and ads don’t make a difference in what we buy, students cheap beer and cheap hard stuff that we can mix with whatever and put in a water bottle

  7. This guy is making a ridiculous implication by implying that these brands are intentionally marketing to youth and that it is “Budweisers’ problem” that underage drinking exists. Talk about applying your own agenda to a study.
    It says not for under 21 on the bottle what else do you want from them! Go find another scapegoat or field a study on the failed alcohol enforcement policy of this country and put the blame where it belongs.

    1. My sentiments exactly. It appears as if the purpose of this study was to solve a problem that doesn’t exist, ie. alcohol companies marketing to minors. With all due respect, I find this statement incredibly naive and all too common amongst academics: “The companies implicated by this study as the leading culprits in the problem of underage drinking need to take immediate action to reduce the appeal of their products to youth.”

      These companies are not the leading culprits in the problem of underage drinking by a long shot. The reality is, underage drinking will happen for a multitude of reasons (peer pressure, experimentation, how about just being young?) so to pin the blame on Budweiser is frankly irresponsible. I think the lack of a developed palate and ease of access are easily defensible here, but then, what to spend the $2.4 million grant on but an expensive taste test?

    1. Price doesn’t seem to be the largest factor:
      Rank/Brand Use in past 30 days
      1. Bud Light 27.9%
      13. Blue Moon 8.2%
      16. Miller Lite 7.4%
      17. Grey Goose Vodkas 6.7%
      20. Keystone Light 6.0%
      21. Hennessy Cognac 5.6%

      The Northeast was underrepresented in the survey.
      Northeast 15.3%
      Midwest 27.7%
      South 32.5%
      West 24.5%

  8. Hey LOL. Kids these days are very cool very cool as well as in addition to people who drink good vohka. Like vodka orange joose, vodka cram-berry, and vodka goldshlager

  9. How about this…. Stop trying to enforce a “law” that says you are not “old enough”, or “adult enough” to drink yet can be tried for murder as an adult, buy tobacco, vote for president, and die for our country before you reach that age. This is just more nonsense about people trying to impose their moral judgements onto others. Live and let live. Instead of denying them alcohol let them have a drink once in awhile and the novelty will wear off quite quick.

  10. Man underage drinking has been reduced so much since the MBTA banned alcohol ads in the subway…NOT. They probably dropped natty ice and rubinoff from the study because it made their results statistically insignificant because they are consumed way more than bud or smirnoff, and its most consumed out of unmarked kegs or jungle juice so how the hell do these survey respondents know what they’re drinking anyway?

  11. Alcohol is not responsible for 4,700 deaths of underage people. Irresponsible drinking and our cultural norm in the area are. Maybe rather than blaming adult beverage companies for their advertising, we should make the drinking age 19 and allow young people to learn to drink socially…

  12. Americans need to accept the fact that college students drink. Prohibition of alcohol has never worked; it certainly isn’t working today. Now we’re trying to futher discourage underage drinking (which has been so successful!) by cracking down on marketing? Great way to spend $2.4 million. It would make a lot more sense to acknowledge the fact that underage kids are drinking and teach them how to drink socially and responsibly. The only thing that having a drinking age of 21 does is encourage binge drinking behind closed doors by college kids that don’t know any better. Other countries with more sensible liquor laws don’t seem to struggle with the same level of alcohol poisoning among young people as here in the U.S.

    1. This is so true. The drinking age should be 19, like Canada. Not 21. The US is one of seven countries in the world with a drinking age at 21. The others include Kazakhstan, Oman, Pakistan, and Indonesia, all deeply Muslim countries.

  13. You guys are totally right. This isn’t about advertising at all. You’re way too smart to be lured by advertising, which is why cigarette companies didn’t spend inordinate amounts of money targeting youth. Oh they did?

    And why after banning this advertising we didn’t see a decrease in smoking… Oh we did?

    Huh, maybe advertising works… I don’t know, let’s ask drug companies…

    1. No one is disputing that. More that this is a false logical argument. They are not the same thing. Alcohol is also not addictive in the same way that smoking is.

      1. wikipedia’s accuracy is based on its citations. My organic chemistry professor was all over wikipedia and even encouraged us to use wikipedia for various chemical properties, structures, and mechanisms.

  14. I wonder who they are referring to when they use the word “youths.” More and more I have heard the terms underage drinker and underage intermixed, and I’d like everyone to remember that an 18 year old is legally an adult… not a minor.

  15. Those brands are extremely cheap and readily available in every single liquor/grocery store. It’s not rocket science. The stupidity of this country amazes me sometimes.

  16. I also agree with the cheapness theory. I was in another country where it is legal to drink at 18, in spite of this many young people still bought “Perfect”, for those who have been unfortunate enough to try it, it’s pretty obvious that you get what you’ve paid for.
    That also being said I noticed a bunch of Araq at social gatherings there as well. . .
    So I don’t know if it’s totally an advertising thing, it’s also potentially a cultural one too. You get a) what’s cheap and b)what you’ve seen other people serve. My thoughts on why stuff you’ve seen elsewhere is because it’s familiar, nobody your serving will wonder what they’re drinking and the fact that you’ve probably tried it before means you feel better about spending your limited funds on that specific drink

  17. I would like to point out why America is broke. It is because we spend a 2.4mil grant on something the average layperson, could figure out in 5 seconds.

  18. This is a much greater issue than is being pointed out here its not merely marketing to blame, a culture of drinking among adolescents has been building for well over a decade the introduction of ‘ready to drink’ alcoholic beverages has spurned this culture of drinking amongst the younger generation this along with high profiled marketing campaigns accessible to the young via TV (at inappropriate times) and poster has now given strong foundations to this now established drinking culture among the young, but lets also not forget how pop culture has influenced this rise in drinking, glamorizing the effects of alcohol as something that is fun and social,encouraging excess and leading teenagers to alcohol abuse.

  19. The reason kids drink these types of liquors underage is because 1. they are cheap and 2. they are well known. I remember being underage and drinking and when my friends asked me what I wanted I didn’t know anything about alcohol so I said something easy like Captain Morgan or Bud Light because those were the types of alcohol that I knew of.

Post a comment.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *