The Principle of Consumer Protection

Consumer education and information cannot do the whole job of protecting consumers. The marketing system must also provide consumer protection. Modern products are so complex that even trained consumers cannot evaluate them with confidence. Consumers do not know whether a mobile phone gives off cancer-causing radiation, whether a new car has safety flaws, or whether a new dmg product has dangerous side-effeets. A government agency has to review and judge the safety levels of various foods, drugs, toys, appliances, fabrics, cars and housing. Similarly, it has to assess the integrity or professionalism of service providers like banks, insurance companies, doctors and police forces. Consumers may buy products but fail to understand the environmental consequences, so consumer protection also covers production and marketing activities that might harm the environment. Finally, consumer protection prevents deceptive practices and high-pressure selling techniques where consumers would be defenceless.

These seven principles are based on the assumption that marketing's goal is not just to maximize company profits or total consumption or consumer choice, but rather to balance that with maximization of life quality. Life quality means meeting basic needs, having available many good products, and enjoying the natural and cultural environment. Properly managed, the marketing system can help to create and deliver a higher quality of life to people around the world. The very implementation of the marketing philosophy can therefore be seen as a productive activity, not ;i destructive evil. Responsible marketing works.

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