Disney Offers Parents Refunds on Baby Einstein Videos

Disney Offers Refunds on Baby Einstein Videos

Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood’s ongoing campaign to stop the false and deceptive marketing of baby videos has had an important success. We’ve persuaded the Walt Disney Company to offer a full refund to anyone who purchased a Baby Einstein DVD in the last five years. The refund is only available for a limited time, so please help us spread the word now.

Read more atwww.commercialfreechildhood.org.

2 Comments on “Disney Offers Parents Refunds on Baby Einstein Videos

  1. Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood writes:

    After ten incredibly successful years, the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood has been forced to leave Judge Baker Children’s Center (JBCC), a Harvard-affiliated children’s mental health center in Boston. CCFC now has a wonderful new home at Third Sector New England, an organization devoted to promoting a more just and democratic society.

    We’re pleased to have landed in such a great place. But we feel that it is important for you to know why JBCC severed our affiliation at a time when our work on behalf of children and families was being heralded worldwide.

    As described in today’s New York Times, last fall’s successful campaign to get Disney to offer refunds on Baby Einstein videos came at a price. At the height of the media flurry about the refunds, representatives from Disney contacted JBCC, and our relationship with the Center was changed irrevocably. We were pressured to stop talking to the press about Baby Einstein. Questions were raised about whether CCFC’s mission was appropriate for a JBCC program. Finally, in January, we were told that we had to leave – quickly. And, for our remaining time under JBCC’s auspices, we were forbidden from conducting any advocacy aimed at a specific corporation or product. You may have noticed that you haven’t heard from us in a while.

    It is chilling that any corporation, particularly one marketing itself as family friendly, would lean on a children’s mental health center. We have great admiration for the Center’s staff, and the work they do for children. At the same time, we are deeply saddened that the institution ceded its ground and stopped supporting CCFC and our efforts to challenge powerful interests in order to protect children and support parents.

    The sudden loss of the home where we flourished was a tremendous blow. Our move was unexpected and expensive. We know that Disney – and Nickelodeon, McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, Scholastic and all of the companies whose profits are threatened when we stand up for children – would love to see CCFC go away. But we are more determined than ever to continue our important work. Here’s what you can do to help:

    * Spread the word about CCFC and its unbending commitment to children.
    * Share this story with friends, colleagues and family. Blog about it, tweet about it.
    * And please consider a donation to CCFC to help us through this costly transition.

    The outpouring of support has already been amazing. An anonymous donor has pledged an extra $10,000 if we can raise $40,000 in the next few weeks. We’re already halfway there. Your tax-deductible donation will ensure that the voices of people like you, who care about children more than the bottom line, will continue to be heard.

    Thanks for all you do for children,
    Susan Linn Josh Golin
    Director, CCFC Associate Director, CCFC

  2. One of best articles on the Baby Einstein refunds features CCFC’s Dr. Nancy Carlsson-Paige. Nancy draws on her vast knowledge of child development to explain why mimicking baby videos isn’t the same as learning for infants and offers tips for entertaining and educating young children without a screen. http://commercialfreechildhood.org//news/2009/12/noesinteins.html.

    Speaking of CCFC and Baby Einstein: In today’s Philadelphia Inquirer, Maxwell King-director of the Fred Rogers Center for Early Learning and Children’s Media-calls on Disney to engage in an honest debate about the role of media in children’s lives, rather than attacking the messenger. http://www.philly.com/philly/opinion/20091222_Is_Baby_Einstein_so_smart_.html.

    Last month we told you about The Possibility Shop, Disney’s first branded online series designed to promote Clorox. Sara Grimes, one of our favorite bloggers, watched the first episode and writes in “The Possibility to Clean and Buy Stuff Shop” that there are significant reasons for concern:

    First, there’s the blatant and clearly over-reaching commercialization, which surely pushes (I would say exceeds) the limits of existing regulations around advertising to kids. But second, and no less disturbing, are the archaic gender discourses that arise from a craft show, most likely targeted to girls and already explicitly targeted to women (“moms”), that is not only sponsored by cleaning products but “commonly” features cleaning as a key theme of the show itself. Read more here: http://gamineexpedition.blogspot.com/2009/12/possibility-to-clean-and-buy-stuff-shop.html

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