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GQ's Former Editor Art Cooper Dead

Art Cooper died Monday at Manhattan's New York Hospital. He was 65. He suffered a heart attack during a lunch at the four Seasons and did not recover.

Jim Brady takes a look back and remembers Art and his contributions to the world of publishing.


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by Steve Hall    Jun-10-03    




Mobile Phone Company Got You By The Balls?

That's what this Virgin Mobile spot asks as it promotes its "pay as you go plan". Also from this week's Ad Age TV Spots of the Week are a look at the spot that cost Taco Bell $30 million, a dog dancing for Kibble n' Bits, a look at how Brawny can "pump you up", a do-it-yourself lasagna kit from Kraft, and a new "Larry Lettuce" spot promoting the new chicken salad at Dairy Queen. Yes, Dairy Queen. Salad? Dairy Queen? There's definitely a brand disconnect with this one.
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by Steve Hall    Jun-10-03    




Redbook Fakes Cover Again

You'd think if a magazine was threatened once with a lawsuit for slapping together a cover photo from multiple photos without the consent of the person slapped together, they might think twice before doing it again. Well, apparently, Redbook is just plain dumb because they have done it again.

Julia Roberts is pissed off after the magazine reportedly pieced together a composite picture of the star to put on the cover of the magazine.

According to British newspaper the Daily Sport, Redbook apparently stuck the head of a recent picture of Roberts onto a four year old picture of the Pretty Woman star.

These women are beautiful. Why do publishers have to fuck around with their photos? I don't get it.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-10-03    




An Ad That Gets to the Truth of Battery Usage

It's refreshing to see and advertisement (corporately acknowledged or not) that doesn't hold back in its portrayal of how its product is used. Even if that usage is something the company would probobly not state in it annual report.

Sure, batteries are for electric cars, flashlights, phones, clocks, and toys. Yes, toys. But this spot demonstrates how using the right battery in the right toy can make you feel really, really good. [via TTR2]


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by Steve Hall    Jun- 8-03    




Wal-Mart Plans to Censor Covers of Four Magazines Aimed at Women

Following their move banning Maxim, Stuff and FHM from their newsstands, Walmart is partially concealing the covers of four women's magazines covering all but the title and the cover photo. The four magazines are Glamour, Redbook, Marie Claire, and Cosmopolitan.

I suppose you can't complain about this since it was initiated by Walmart customers who requested these moves, But, you know how these things are. The ones who have complaints, make them. The ones who don't, well, don't. So, therefore, these kind of moves are always in reaction to a small but vocal few. Granted, the covers of a lot of magazines do push the line when you consider they can be seen by a five year old but banning and blocking magazine covers just strikes me as the wrong way to go about it.


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by Steve Hall    Jun- 8-03    




The New Juice Toss

If you think windsurfing is fun, you should check out this "sport". Get kicked, fly, and do it all while bathing yourself in your favorite drink. Weird. Click the picture to view.

Courtesy of Apechild.


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by Steve Hall    Jun- 6-03    




A Billboard PETA Really Won't Like

Courtesy of Apechild
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by Steve Hall    Jun- 6-03    




Chimp Ad Draws Complaints

Seems the complaint meter is going up again in the U.K. This time, it's for an ad featuring chimpanzees for car and bike equipment chain, Halford's. Under the tagline, "because you pay peanuts, we give you monkeys", the chimps cavort around the store in track suits. The ad has receive 75 complaints so far and the Captive Animals Protection Society, U.K.'s version of PETA, is calling for a boycott.

Halfords refuses to pull the ad saying, " The ad was pre-approved by the broadcast advertisers clearance center, part of the ITC (Independent television Commission), and we are happy to run it. The marketing team did have some concerns about using chimps, but our advertising agency heavily researched the ad with audiences and it was well-received. All the rules and regulations in place for the protection of animals were adhered to and there were trainers and vets on site."

The ad is off the air but only because that was in the plan. It is scheduled to air again beginning in July.

The animal protection group, CAPS, does not want it to return to the air calling the ad "cruel" and "totally unacceptable" stating, "This ad is stepping back 20 years. It is not funny and doesn't give the products a good image. PG Tips (a previous advertiser who used chimps) stopped using chimps because they realized it was no longer acceptable."

Where has our sense of humor gone? View the ad here, although the link was broken at the time of publication.
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by Steve Hall    Jun- 6-03    




New York Times Scandal Not Likely to Affect Readers

"Remember that most of the criticism was coming from within the industry," stresses Robert Passikoff, founder and president of Brand Keys. "Did the guy on a Metro-North train reading the Times in the morning think any less of the paper? What happened was a black eye and it was embarrassing, but I can't remember the last time anyone died of a black eye or embarrassment."

That's the general feeling in the industry. What happened at the Times was very bad but like most "events" in America, we seem to have a very short term memory for these things.

"Most of the paper's readers aren't especially interested in the internal workings of the Times," says Charles Fountain, an associate professor at Northeastern University. "Sure, [the newspaper] is a little bit damaged right now, but it's mostly damaged within the industry, which tends to be a little bit insular and not really reflective of people who read the newspaper."

The long term affects of this for readers and advertisers is likely to be nil. [via Mediapost]
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by Steve Hall    Jun- 6-03    




Two Interesting Trends to Watch

TrendWatching, a newsletter that finds and names new trends has two new ones to consider. The fist, called Mass Class, refers to the group of people who have taken advantage of the democratization of luxury made possible by low cost luxury retailers such as H&M, EasyJet, Gap, Nokia, Virgin, and Zara. This group has been able to "step" in class and are now an entirely new audience to market to.

The second trend dubbed, Online Oxygen, refers to the 600 million consumers worldwide who crave online access. They will do anything to get it and cannot live without it. The growth of broadband and wireless access continues to grow at a healthy clip. Intel is making this shift even easier by adding its 'Centrino' chip to over half of all new laptops in the next quarter. The 'Centrino' chip has specific wireless abilities. Additionally, the number of "hot spots", or wireless access points will grow from 9,700 this year to an estimated (IDC) 118,000 by 2006.

Click on the links above to read more about each of these trends.
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by Steve Hall    Jun- 6-03    




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