Nothing warms the heart like the sight of a kid schooling his parents on the importance of travel insurance.
Also see Did you have a nightmare?: "Dents are easy to fix, but liability's the nightmare! Ah, don't get up. I'll tuck myself in." I kinda want to hug him. Or buy him a graphing calculator.
You know what would be awesome? If this kid and the Umpqua lemonaire got together and built the ultimate risk-free lemonade stand, equipped with biodegradable paper cups (to appease the environmentalists) and curved corners for child safety.
- Can your manly-man hair pass the caress test?
- If a chaste mermaid won't save Starbucks, maybe frozen bananas will. (Ugh, dude.)
- Some celebrities educate the public on the Burma situation; John Cusack tallies similarities between McCain and Bush. MoveOn, as usual, is helping raise money to get the ad on air.
- Apparently the Copyright Nazis are after more than just pirates these days. In the UK, you can be prosecuted for playing music too loud or playing it for callers on hold without a license. From now on, let's just keep all music secret and see how the record industry fares.
- Baseball and the Tour de France aren't the only sports to disillusion one-time fans; almost half of Advertising Age readers believe the NBA rigs its games. I fondly await the day Canadians lose faith in hockey. Oh wait, many - already - have.
- A Microsoft Xbox Live group banned a player because he used "gay" in his gamer tag, "RichardGaywood." Upon discovering that was the guy's name, they BANNED IT ANYWAY. Microsoft, you charmers, you.
Some storks bring you babies. But watch out for the one with the glasses; he's got nothing but pickles.
Publicis & Hal Riney/SF is helping to
reposition reinvigorate pickle company Vlasic and its 34-year-old stork icon. The stork's personality was modeled off Groucho Marx and appears in current TV ads* as a quirky friend of the family. Vlasic's tagline was also changed to "That's the tastiest crunch I ever heard."
Yahoo to Microsoft: no, you can't have the company, and no, you can't buy our search, either. This follows FOUR MONTHS of hardcore media drama between the two of them. Here's a word from stock market angryman Carl Icahn (who, btw, is trying to oust Y!'s board):
In my opinion it will be extremely difficult for Microsoft or any other companies to trust, work with and negotiate with a company that would go to these lengths [to scuffle a deal].
- Global marketing guy Jeff Bell is leaving Microsoft. He's held his post since 2006.
- a52, which produced the visual effects for that Monster.com spot with the people on the rails, won some love at the Association of Independent Commercial Producer's 17th Annual Show. This is the 11th year its work was recognized by the AICP. To celebrate, it created a YouTube chronology of all the a52 spots that have been honored by the Show. Watch them.
- Obama for America has launched an online news site to fight the smears against his name.
- Make the Logo Bigger created guidelines for the ideal PR. If you don't meet 'em, you're not just getting trashed; you'll be marked as SPAM.
- Not ad-related, but hey: here is a rhinoplasty tutorial. After a few slides, even YOU could do it! Well, maybe she could.
- Speaking of tattooing tots, here are some tattoos for tots. Prepare them early on for their future as this guy. (That tribal-inspired tattoo actually contains the coordinates for $50K and keys to a Volvo.)
Hmm. Nothing like a good tube of Crest to gloss over the travesty of modernization at the cost of childhood play. Yes, Crest can, in fact, make even the destruction of a playground in favor of a power plant seem, well, pleasant.
Here's another. This one makes even lice seem like a good thing.
To promote its MSN toolbar -- "Jet fuel for procrastinators!" -- Microsoft launched Start Procrastinating. You can either upload videos of yourself, flicking rubber bands around while putting off your creative brief, or watch three really stupid videos of a couple of dudes surf balling, folding shirts and sharpshooting.
Actually, the surf balling video's all right.
Start Procrastinating's no Clearification, which was appealing but a promotional flop for Microsoft. And avid procrastinators download StumbleUpon, not MSN. Sorry, champs.
Speaking of StumbleUpon, look what it found me! Free range workers. Yum.
Oh look. You can do the virtual wave courtesy of Panasonic as if you were going to be at the Beijing Olympics this summer. Called the World Wide Wave, the site (accessed by clicking World Wide Wave on the lower left hand corner of the Panasonic site) lets people upload their image and become part of a virtual crowd wave.
It's consumer-generated media, you know, according to Hisato Tsugita from Panasonic's corporate communications department. Yea. CGM. It's sweeping the globe like an Al Gore-sensationalized ozone layer hole. Who knew?
Apparently a thing called the Mac Monkey needs freeing. (He's "starved of creative stimulation." Guess he hasn't discovered his own poo yet. Also, why does he have people fingers?)
Intended to increase subscriptions to Creative Review Magazine, Free the Mac Monkey was conceived by London-based STEEL, which sought to distract us from calling foul ("SUBSERVIENT CHICKEN RIP-OFF!") with the tasteful inclusion of early Steve Jobs wall art. And they almost succeeded. Well ... no, not really.
- For client McDonald's, Leo Burnett/Chicago grew a lettuce garden spelling "FRESH SALADS" on a Wrigleyville billboard. Watch the garden grow. The effort won a Gold at New York Festivals' Innovative Advertising Awards. See other winners.
- Ritz-Carlton and AmEx caught the film bug. These three promotional movies "subtly weave exceptional and unique guest experiences into their story lines, demonstrating how The Ritz-Carlton has been able to elevate service to an art form." There's nothing subtle about the movies. But if PR were an art form, that sentence would be the template.
- It's a disappearing car door! Think De Lorean but without the retro wing action.
- Michelina's Mama gets a Facebook. Digging her profile photo. One commenter asks, "What would Mama think of 2 girls 1 cup?" Horrors.