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Contextual Fuckery Delivers Life Insurance Courtesy of Dead Soldiers

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Yesterday, seven soldiers died in Iraq. Not that this is the sort of news Adrants reports but it's nice to step outside our mostly meaningless business from time to time and digest something that actually has meaning and truly affects people in ways that make advertising comparably irrelevant. Oh, and if seven soldiers dying in Iraq weren't bad enough, courtesy of contextual advertising's unfailing fuckery, this CNN news story was accompanied by an ad for life insurance with the headline, "If you died today, who would fund your family's future?" Well, for the families of the seven who died, it's a bit late to buy life insurance but hey, there's plenty of time for the rest of the military to bulk up on insurance. So I guess it's a perfectly placed ad after all.

by Steve Hall    Sep-13-07    
Topic: Online, Worst



Arizona Launches Second Phase of Meth Campaign

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While not quite as powerful as the recent Montana Meth campaign which inspired us to write "watching these new Montana Meth spots makes one want to grab a gun, hunt down a drug dealer, stick the barrel of the gun in his mouth and blow his fucking head off," the second phase of the Arizona Meth Project delivers the same powerful message: don't do it even just once.

The eight spot campaign, along with radio, print, outdoor and online, takes two different approaches. The first features kids wishing they had experienced other horrific events such as a car crash or a beating as opposed to getting hooked on Meth. The second envisions what a person's life becomes once they get hooked on Meth. The spots are powerful for sure but one does wonder how effective the scare tactic approach is. Peer pressure and the desire to fit in are almost insurmountable obstacles to overcome but the effort is worthy.

There are some recognizable faces in the spots including The O.C.'s Willa Holland. All the spots and the rest of the creative can be viewed here.

by Steve Hall    Sep-13-07    
Topic: Celebrity, Commercials, Creative Commentary, Good



Deutsch Jacks Off, Squirts Out Adsturbation

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Combining the theme of masturbation with the ever-unavoidable flashturbation, Deutsch has erected (I know, so fuckin' lame) Adsturbation, a site on which you can pump yourself up (again...so lame...sorry) while listening to your client, creative director, account guy and supposed-to-be-hot-but-not intern heap praise on you in the form of wacky platitudes. Combine that with the introductory copy "You work in advertising. It's Advertising Week. What better time to pleasure yourself with superlative praise. Why? Because it feels good...There are a few people who'd like to stroke your ego in private," and you've got what amounts to either a witty take on our ego-driven, attention-whoring, self-esteem-challenged industry or a tired, lame, over done joke a fifth grader thinks is funny and can't stop telling over and over and over until you want to scream "shit the fuck up" but you don't because, you know, you're supposed to be the role model. So which is it? You decide.

by Steve Hall    Sep-13-07    
Topic: Agencies, Industry Events, Online



With HD Magic, Stardust Turns Pontiac into Dream Machine

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You know, this is probably the coolest ad ever to sport a Pontiac. It actually made us want to look at one.

Directed by Stardust for Pontiac, via Leo Burnett, Detroit.

by Angela Natividad    Sep-13-07    
Topic: Commercials, Television



Avnet Crashes Second Life in Time to Help Clean Up

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There's nothing like popping in late to a party that's dying down. Avnet has finally made it to Second Life, and it's erected a huge virtual museum to celebrate almost 100 years of its company and technological history in general.

See real museum here.

Good thing they had a back-up plan. Is a museum still a museum if no one is around to visit it?

by Angela Natividad    Sep-13-07    
Topic: Online



Wait a Sec - Wendy's is into Sports Now?!

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Wendy's and Takkle have launched a contest called My Wendy's High School Heisman Moment. High school kids (not 40-somethings seeking to relive that one awesome touchdown) upload their Heisman moments onto the Takkle website.

The first 250 to submit get a $10 gift card for Wendy's. Two grand prize winners get a trip to NYC for Heisman weekend in December, and a whoppin' $250 Wendy's gift card.

That's a whole lot of square-shaped patties. Hey, what happened to the dude with the zany wig?

by Angela Natividad    Sep-13-07    
Topic: Online, Promotions



Flat Buns Edited, Walmart Stops Smiling, GoDaddy Goes College

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- Hitwise reports Republican presidential candidate Fred Thompson's website, www.fred08.com, was the most visited website among all presidential candidates for the week ending September 8, 2007. Fred08.com received 34 percent of US visits amongst all the presidential candidate websites for that week.

- Cynopsis reports, "Coming from executive producers Marshall Herskovitz and Edward Zwick, the brilliant minds behind Thirtysomething and My So-Called Life, is the web-based advertiser-supported series Quarterlife that will "air" exclusively on MySpace.com, and will have its own social networking site at quarterlife.com."

- Walmart is dropping its smiley face and the tagline "Always Low Prices" for the new tagline, "Save Money. Live Better." A TV campaign will support the change.

- Disney's High School Musical 2 helped Disney.com pull in 23 million unique visitors in August, an increase of 24 percent over last year.

more »

by Steve Hall    Sep-13-07    
Topic: Brands, Research



TV Guide, ABC to Shoot Out Promotional Hospital Gowns

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ABC and TV Guide are mailing out a branded hospital gown alongside the September 24 issue of TV guide. This is so everyone will get all hyped about the season four premiere of Grey's Anatomy, which rolls back around on the 27th.

Hopefully nobody misinterprets the gesture as a cry for help on the Guide's part.

by Angela Natividad    Sep-12-07    
Topic: Brands, Direct



Brylcreem Does Honda Cog

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Who says Honda has a lock on the one-shot domino effect ad? Not London's WCRS who created this commercial for Brylcreem in which a guy seamlessly goes through his morning ritual...effortlessly, which is the tagline (tag word?) for the campaign. If only everything in life went that smoothly.

by Steve Hall    Sep-12-07    
Topic: Commercials, Good



Aap!Steps - Because People on the Move, But Not Moving, Need Something to Stare At

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Here's something we never thought of before. Aap!Steps - branded escalators!

It's not like you could make an escalator uglier, right?

by Angela Natividad    Sep-12-07    
Topic: Outdoor, Strange



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