Cleve Francis
cardiologist, musician

Cleve Francis

Cardiologist; President, Mount Vernon Cardiology Associates, Alexandria, Va.; musician.

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No turning back

Q: Is it delightful or depressing that David DeVore has been able to turn a YouTube video of his woozy 7-year-old son into a six-figure business? Is this just another version of stage parenting or something more troubling? How do you think the marketing will affect DeVore's son when he gets older?

I don't think that the "David After Dentist" video will automatically have an adverse effect on this child. On the contrary, it could have a postive effect and the kid may himself learn at an early age how to deal with both fame and business. Based on the revenues from the video, it may even help pay for his college education. The new social networking outlets are now affording unimaginable opportunities. Welcome to the new cyber world.

For the common man, to this point, access to masses of people (potential cutomers) has been "controlled" by cost. Now, through technology, we have the capacity of reaching millions, essentially with the click of a mouse.

In this instance, it is the uploading of a video on YouTube and sharing it with millions in an instant. This is incredible when you think about it. What we have to say and sell when we do reach millions is the real question. The cleverness in using this technological advancement is how to attach a financial tag ( advertisement or having a product for sale) to the networking. This is exactly what David DeVore has accomplished.

As a public, with our fascination with reality shows such as "Big Brother," "Amazing Race" and the innovative, star-making "American Idol", we have opened the door to this type of marketing. There is no turning back. This reality is here to stay.

In this context, I do not see a moral dilemma with Mr. DeVore's video. My only precaution, if children are involved, is to recommend that the parents see to it that the exposure of their children is not overdone. At the same time, parents should also see to it that the educational process of the child is protected.

By Cleve Francis  |  April 12, 2010; 3:27 PM ET  | Category:  Parenting Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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