On 4 March 2016, the European Commission (DG Connect) published the final report of the study on the exposure of minors to alcohol advertising on linear and non-linear audio-visual media services and other online services, including a content analysis. The research was conducted by the consortium partners Ecorys and the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) in close collaboration with the following subcontractors: CentERdata, GfK Belgium and individual experts in the field (Prof. Peter Anderson and Prof. David Jernigan).
The study found that approximately 7.3% of the total number of alcohol impacts on linear AV media services in 2013 were seen by minors. In absolute terms this means that, on average, a minor saw 200 alcohol impacts, while an adult saw over 450.
According to the report, online services and the alcohol industry try to ensure minimal exposure through the implementation of measures and self-regulation, however, minors surveyed perceived a substantial level of exposure, while self-reported exposure increased with age and online activity.
The study also found that the most common themes employed in alcohol advertisements include the association of alcohol with sociability and the depiction of drinking with humorous tones. Respectively, 87% and 63% of 90 analysed TV advertisements and 33 online alcohol advertisements contained at least one element that can be considered appealing to minors. In addition, it was found that 25% of the analysed advertisements reflect at least one of the criteria prohibited in the AVMSD.