A Refund That Puts A Recall On Parents’ Downtime

The Walt Disney Company is now offering a full refund on all the Baby Einstein videos that didn’t increase infant intellect, as reported by Tamar Lewin in the New York Times (10/23/09).

We know that too much TV for little ones is not healthy; the American Academy of Pediatrics has told us so. Yet for years, Baby Einstein, with their highly successful and profitable DVDs, has been giving parents permission to use the television as a “developmental tool” rather than as an electronic babysitter.

Did parents believe these videos were going to help their child get into the right preschool? I doubt it. But the company did hit upon a real Whole Truth, that parents wanted to feel less guilty about using the television as a way to steal a few moments away where they didn’t have to be solely responsible for their child’s development.

Even when the Disney Company eliminated the words “educational” from their marketing materials in 2006, the implications were still apparent and embraced by parents. (Note that these videos are still listed as Top Picks at Babies R Us.)

So, does this admission via a full refund by Disney leave parents feeling gypped beyond the $15.99?

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April 13, 2024
by Mary Lou Quinlan

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