Toys are a huge influence in a child´s formative years. Self-image, self-esteem, creativity, socialization, toys all influence how a person will grow up and what they will be like. Will they be innovative thinkers, or part of the pack? A trend-setter, or a trend-follower? Violent or peaceful? Toys have a huge influence over the children of the world.
Violence, toxicity, obesity, dangerous role-modeling: playthings are now being blamed for all these things and more. Where do the morals and ideology of selling to children stop and profits begin? Where does kid-friendly end and profit-hungry start? How can today’s manufacturers walk the line between social conscience and shareholder conscientiousness?
Some companies, like Mattel, pride themselves on their social responsibility. "We take very seriously the trust that parents put in us and our toys," explained Lisa Marie Bongiovanni, vice president of corporate communications for Mattel.
But is that enough? What happens when violence sells more than peace, and edgy sells more than family? Where are the lines, and where do the toy companies stand in the difficult tight-rope walk between accounting and accountability? TDmonthly Magazine will explore this issue in next’s month’s issue.