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Is the Demand for Bottled Water "Manufactured"?

The jokers at Bottled Water Matters have another one of their YouTube videos up defending the industry. This one deals with the criticism that the bottled water business subsists on "manufactured demand." It's got all the amateurish animation and none of the humor of an early Trey Parker and Matt Stone short.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hwV2JpFnxWM


This is ridiculous. This anthropomorphized bottle is arguing that because people buy bottled water voluntarily, they want it, and therefore the demand isn't manufactured. But whether people want it isn't the relevant question. We should be asking why they want it, and whether their reasons are any good.

Some people might want bottled water because it fills a need that they don't really have. One might be under the misapprehension that his life would be better if he drinks water from Fiji. Others might want bottled water because they think it's the only way to fill a real need, even though it isn't. Some people think bottled water is the only safe, clean option and they're wrong.

In those cases, the question of whether the demand is "manufactured" by advertising or just driven by misinformation is beside the point. These people are just making bad choices as consumers. But this spokesbottle would rather confuse people about the semantics of "manufactured demand" than disabuse people of their bad reasons for buying bottled water because it works for the bottled water industry.

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