Report Synectics Problem Laboratory April 21, 22, 23 1976

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This article is part of the Tobacco portal on Sourcewatch funded from 2006 - 2009 by the American Legacy Foundation.

Report Synectics Problem Laboratory April 21, 22, 23 1976

These are notes from a "Problem Laboratory" (brainstorming) session held in April of 1976, attended by Lorillard Tobacco Company advertising department employees. Members of the group were encouraged to present their goals and wishes in the form of "How To" and "I wish" statements. Participants were instructed to come up with all kinds of ideas, even ones that were illegal, immoral or non-feasible. This makes the document particularly fascinating and insightful. With all need to appear decent and moral taken away, these cigarette company employees were able to express their truest, most sincere and ambitious wishes and desires for their products:

In Session #1 participants were asked to identify ways to give smokers more perceived value in their cigarettes. Ideas expressed by the group included (#38): "How to have a cigarette with MJ [marijuana] added to it", (#50): "How to make it so addictive: one cigarette and you've got him for life," (#51): "How to have a cigarette specifically for children (sparkler additive candy)."

In Session #2, participants were asked to make a wish list for ways to convey more economic value to cigarettes. Responses for this included #1: "How to make butts a collector's item," #12: "Put a flower seed in each butt," #17: "How to get an AMA [American Medical Association] endorsement," #48: "How to provide timed release nicotine," and #53: "How to put something in filter that would be perceived as being physically healthful (e.g. baking soda - reduce odor of stale butts)."

The question posed in Session 3A was "How to get longer lasting satisfaction [from a cigarette]?" Responses included a "wish" for long-acting nicotine. Under that is a question to the group about how to "prevent overdosing options." One responses was "Depend on getting sick to prevent O.D." and another was "Sell by prescription only."

Later wish-list items included "How to make cigarettes more like Linus' blanket," and "How to get physical characteristic that would make you feel it [smoking] was more a part of you and you, it." (Page 39), "How to dull the cough centers," "How to inhibit the formation of [dental] plaque," "How to make cigarette[s] make everything taste rotten (appetite depressant),"How to [use cigarettes to] deliver arthritic medicine," "How [to use cigarettes to] deliver birth control (for men)," "How to prevent pimples," "How to deliver a laxative," and, after all this, incredibly enough, "How to get credible 3rd party endorsement." (pp42-43).

Title: Report Synectics Problem Laboratory April 21, 22, 23 1976
Company: Lorillard Tobacco Company
Document Date: 21 Apr 1976
Length: 46 pages
Bates No. 80634792/4836