Teens Against the Man

Growing up in the digital age, our generation wants immediate answers. We want the truth. And as teenagers, of course, we want to rebel.

The ideas of truth and rebellion are what Arnold used to capture the attention of youth around America. Arnold’s Truth campaign started in 2000 and has appealed to teenager’s rebellious nature to fight against “the man” aka the Big Tobacco Companies.

The campaign first exposed teenagers to the truth and dangers of smoking, but made it less of a campaign and more of a social movement. Arnold created t-shirts, encouraged word-of-mouth and persuaded teens to choose a side: The uncool corporate man side, or the young, rebellious, cool teen side.

The ironic thing is that Truth managed to reduce teen smoking for the same reason they started: it’s cool. The rebels are standing up against it instead of doing it.

Thanks to Truth, teen smokers have been reduced. They have been credited for 450,000 fewer youth smokers in 2004 and teen smoking is now an all time low. If that’s not results, I don’t know what is.


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