It seems there might be some truth to James Vicary’s claims in 1957 that the human mind can work on a subliminal level. Researchers at the University College London have found the first physiological evidence in favor of the brains recognition of subliminal images. Dr. Bahador Bahrami, of the UCL Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience states, “What’s interesting here is that your brain does log things that you aren’t even aware of and can’t ever become aware of…I believe that it’s likely that subliminal advertising may affect our decisions — but that is just speculation at this point.”
I believe that subliminal advertising exists already in some forms. For example, consider the use of product placement, which exists in movies, TV shows, and even in space (special Coke cans were manufactured for astronauts to drink from while aboard the Space Shuttle). Many times, even though the products are clearly visible, the mind acknowledges them at an unconscious level, while fully concentrating on a plot or storyline. I know this isn’t always the case. There are times when consumers are fully aware of product placement, which is why if UCL can backup their speculations about subliminal advertising with scientific evidence, the idea of plugging a product would take on a new and very scary meaning.