Kidults and Controversy

Jon Gertner's story in The New York Times magazine yesterday about the Geppetto Group, an advertising agency that exclusively works on kid-oriented campagins, didn't really offer the new insight into the marketing-to-kids debate that I expected. Chief Creative Officer Chris McKee, formerly of Saatchi & Saatchi, talks about marketing to "kidults" (those over-thirtysomethings who thrive on Harry Potter and Monsters, Inc.) and the need to market responsibly and fairly to kids. Indeed, the story focused more on the innovative restaurant concept Ozon, a kid-friendly eatery in Staten Island, N.Y. that uses a sandwich press to create concoctions like the "Wafflo" and the "Macocheese," than the responsible kid-marketing struggle. (I must admit, however, that I was interested to hear more about the firm's anthropological research on the "eight kinds of fun." There's only eight?) Who do you know that's doing innovative, responsible work when it comes to youth marketing? Where do you stand on the debate?

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