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then and now







Brand Histories






About SRITA:

Stanford Research Into the Impact of Tobacco Advertising (SRITA) was formed in 2007 by Stanford professor Robert Jackler who serves as its principal investigator. Our purpose is to study the promotional activities of the tobacco industry. SRITA is an interdisciplinary research group which includes faculty and students from several Stanford University departments including Otolaryngology, Pediatrics, Medicine, Prevention Research, History and Anthropology. Our group has published numerous academic articles on various aspects of tobacco marketing, both historical and contemporary. Our web repository of tobacco advertising is intended to support scholarly research as well as to inform regulators and legislators about the promotional activities of the tobacco industry.

Research Priorities:

  • Advertising of combustible cigarettes, electronic cigarettes and other novel tobacco products
  • Use of medical and scientific themes to reassure a worried public about the health hazards of smoking
  • Harm reduction themes in marketing of tobacco and electronic cigarettes
  • Techniques used in targeting of specific populations including women, youth, and ethnic minorities
  • Endorsements by prominent movie and TV stars, athletes, and politicians.
  • Use of cultural icons such as music, art, religious symbols, patriotic imagery, landmarks, pets, and trusted professionals.
  • Advertising regulation
  • Methods used by the industry to escape from attempts to regulate tobacco advertising
  • Advertising channel use (eg. print, web, social media, point of sale)
  • Global tobacco marketing Effectiveness of anti-tobacco advertising campaigns

SRITA Website (tobacco.stanford.edu): Tobacco Advertisements Online

715,253 Unique users of website (2012 - 2020)

Online Advertisements as of August 12, 2020

23,853 Tobacco
14,504 Electronic cigarette
5,494 Pods
1,747 Disposables
5,197 Heated tobacco products
2,582 Anti-smoking
543 Tobacco and electronic cigarette videos
1,242 Advertising comparison sets
1,405 Marijuana
656 Chewing
1,244 Hookah
1,239 Pipes & Cigars
58,606 Total

Museum Exhibits:

While SRITA maintains a comprehensive digital database, the collection of over 50,000 original tobacco advertisements (19th, 20th, and 21 centuries) has been donated to the National Museum of American History (NMAH) of the Smithsonian Institution. In early 2019, a public exhibition will open in the NMAH. SRITA has also has supported thematic tobacco advertising exhibits in numerous museums including at University of California, San Francisco, Harvard Medical School, the New York Public Library, South Station in Boston, Philadelphia, McCallen Texas, Louisiana State University, Washington University in St. Louis, and Vanderbilt University and 3 major cities in Brazil.

How SRITA Collects Tobacco Advertising:

SRITA stresses collecting original advertisement to enable creation of high resolution archival digital files. Lower resolution versions are posted on our website as a resource. A large majority of the historical advertising collection was obtained by purchase of individual ads, collections of ads, and intact magazines or newspapers. In the case of electronic cigarettes, most of the advertising material was harvested from brand websites or their promotional channels including social media outlets.

Using SRITA Images:

Tobacco advertisements from the SRITA database are routinely made available to scholars, educators, regulators, and non-profit groups. With regard to copyright issues for tobacco advertisements, they have been reproduced with regularity in books, scholarly journals, popular magazines, and in numerous online venues for many years. Use of images for purposes of comment, criticism, or parody may be considered transformative and thus considered fair use. (http://fairuse.stanford.edu/overview/fair-use/what-is-fair-use/)