The Ad Guy

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Deconstructing Advertising is a weekly podcast from CBC Radio's Ad Guy, Bruce Chambers. To subscribe, visit iTunes.

Manipulation in ads.
Some ads, like the beer commercial at the top of this page, use chimpanzees to make us laugh. Even though capturing chimpanzees for this purpose has been condemned by primate protection organizations and several ad agencies, some marketers persist in exploiting chimpanzees because they’re proven attention-getters.      

     Sure, ads look glamorous and fun. But hidden below the surface is something much more sinister.
     CBC Radio’s Ad Guy, Bruce Chambers, has been exposing the manipulation behind the ads since 2003. Each week, Bruce deconstructs current advertising campaigns, explains how they modify our behaviour, and uncovers the hypocrisy and half-truths.
     By seeing ads for what they really are, you can become less susceptible, make better choices, save money, gain self-esteem and live more sustainably.
     In addition to listening to The Ad Guy on radio, use the resources on this site as thought starters and discussion topics with friends, family or students:

Resource for Teachers.
McGraw-Hill's non-fiction anthology iLit: Truth Perceived includes an article by Bruce Chambers. "Behind the Mask" explains how marketers manipulate teens' behaviour and self-esteem.
iLit lets you create your own print or digital collection with content and cover customized for your school or classroom. Choose from over 300 articles including "Behind the Mask”, or have iLit build a collection for you based on your criteria.
To order "Behind the Mask” including learning activities, or to customize your own collection, visit

Behind the Mask