The vlogs are a good Lenalidomide TNF-alpha inhibitor example of what appear to be authentic user-generated promotional videos. Even without tobacco industry involvement, all the vlogs in this sample mention (and often heavily promote) a specific ST product, essentially providing free marketing to various ST brands. Analysis of the vlogs reveals that there is a community of users who create what they commonly refer to as ��dip videos�� on YouTube in which they review and promote various products and comment on each other��s dip videos. These vlogs are particularly interesting because unlike most other ST videos, they create a real sense of community and interpersonal interaction between people who make and/or regularly watch these videos.
In this respect, YouTube��s influence on people��s attitudes and behaviors may be unique compared with other traditional media because it integrates elements of interpersonal interaction with a medium that allows a broad audience to have constant easy access to information. This hybrid interpersonal media platform and other social media websites could potentially be a highly influential source of ��information.�� These social networks transcend space and time, making it easy for this dipping community to spread their protobacco message to a vast audience. Further research should track these pro-ST vlogs over time and assess who is watching them and how they affect viewers�� attitudes and behaviors regarding ST. Since traditional regulations and restrictions on tobacco marketing are likely to have a limited effect on protobacco messages on YouTube and other user-generated Internet websites, it is important to consider other means of tobacco control.
Although YouTube bans videos that violate their ��community guidelines�� (such as underage smoking and copywritten materials; YouTube, 2010b), these policies are subjectively enforced and rely on users voluntarily flagging videos (YouTube, 2010b; Zeller, 2006). In addition, these guidelines do not apply to most of these ST videos because tobacco use in general (when not underage) is not banned from YouTube. When videos do not meet the standards for banning, YouTube can put age restrictions on videos that do not ��violate our community guidelines but may not be appropriate for everyone�� (YouTube, 2010b). To view these restricted videos, users must be signed into a YouTube account and be registered as 18 years or older.
Protobacco messaging could easily fall into this ��age restriction�� category, yet none of the protobacco videos in this sample, including tobacco advertisements, were restricted to 18+ users. Interestingly, the one video in the sample that was restricted to 18+ was the most highly viewed anti-ST PSA and was restricted because it contained graphic images of facial deformities Anacetrapib from ST use (Narconon PSA, 2008).