Food Maker's Self-Regulation Nothing More Than Foolish Fuckery


Proving there's no such thing as meaningful self-regulation in any for-profit industry, food manufacturers, following their recently introduced guidelines for advertising food with too much sugar to kids, have simply played games serving sizes to limit per-serving sugar content to the agreed upon 12 grams thereby loopoling their way past the very junk food guidelines they created for themselves.

As an example, the U.S. Food Policy blog took a look at the nutrition labels for Cocoa Puffs and Trix and determined Cocoa Puffs, the cereal with more sugar than Trix based on the government's standard 30g serving size, will be able to advertise while Trix will not. This is possible courtesy of the foolish fuckery food manufacturers deploy when it comes to serving size. At a serving size of 27g and 12g of sugar, Cocoa Puffs meets guidelines while Trix, with a 32g serving size and 13g of sugar does not.

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by Steve Hall    Jul-23-07    
Topic: Brands, Opinion, Policy, Worst

Nokia N95 Makes Computers Bite, Scratch and Otherwise Maim Owners


It may not be as cute as the iPhone, but the Nokia N95 - and its ad campaigns - might just be cleverer.

The premise behind is that the N95, which boasts music, GPS, camera, and video cam all in one (okay, really ugly) phone, may spark the jealousy of lesser-seeming technologies - like your laptop, for example. And along with footage of tech gone awry are flight attendant-type videos about protecting yourself from dangerous hardware, as well as camouflage tactics for the N95.

You might want to try the latter, even if you don't have a laptop raring to bite you. (Seriously. Look at it.)

by Angela Natividad    Jul-23-07    
Topic: Brands, Online, Packaging, Promotions, Strange

Rayban's 'Never Hide' Makes Us Do Bad Things


Here's some more would-be viral insanity for Rayban's Never Hide campaign.

This video requires a "don't try this at home" disclaimer. Because we actually did try this (we get very adventurous after our morning martinis), and hours later, we still have water up our noses.

That shit hurts, and it's not as easy as the guys make it seem to get Wayfarers around your head in a bucket of water.

But we're not the type of people who give up, so we had the interns keep trying until they got the process nailed. This is the kind of stuff college just doesn't prepare you for.

by Angela Natividad    Jul-23-07    
Topic: Brands, Online, Video

When Brand Equity Starts Running Low, Distract the Crowd in Technicolor


We can't shake the sense that there's something really dated - think late '90s - about these mod new Sony VAIO ads (1, 2, 3) by Ignited for Latin America.

Oh, wait. We just figured out why. 1998 was the year Apple came out with its snazzy pick-a-swatch gimmick for the clear and colorful new iMacs, starting with Bondi Blue. That was really hot for back then, but, oh, we need more than color these days to save a flailing brand.

But assuming the product actually were imaginative, the ads also leave something to be desired, and the slogan, "Like no other," was clearly not the result of a "Eureka!" moment.

by Angela Natividad    Jul-23-07    
Topic: Brands, Commercials, Television

In the End, a Chain is Just a Chain is Just a Chain


Starbucks Gossip pulls this quote from a BusinessWeek piece: "Once the undisputed king of premium brew, Starbucks is suddenly besieged by tough competitors" - the toughest of which is McDonald's.

McDonald's? That's a far cry from yuppie-ville. Just goes to show that no matter how much care you put into picking the best swatches and prettiest cafe art, in the end you've still got the Golden Arches to reckon with - the dowdy Wal-Mart of fast food.

What, did you think the world was a romantic place?

by Angela Natividad    Jul-20-07    
Topic: Brands, Trends and Culture

American Apparel Out of Racy Ad Ideas


According to Copyranter, American Apparel has run out of ideas. No longer toying with masturbation, foot fetishes or witty word play, the retailer is left with nothing but women bending over while wearing tights. Comparatively, this recent ad is so tame it could almost be mistaken for and American Airlines ad.

by Steve Hall    Jul-19-07    
Topic: Bad, Brands, Campaigns, Racy

Curbing Extremities, Y! Personals Oozes Casual Confidence


Imagine for a second that dating sites are people. There's something to be said about a dude that just seems comfortable in his own skin as opposed to one that's constantly changing tacks.

Ad text on this simple Yahoo! Personals piece reads, "If you're ready to settle down, but not ready to grow up ... then you're ready to meet someone on Yahoo! Personals."

Simple. No boob-tacularity or cock jokes. No cheesy love hook or douchey common interest talk (the ad equivalent of "Hey baby, what's your sign?").

And it works.

by Angela Natividad    Jul-19-07    
Topic: Brands, Online

Australian Virgin Mobile Campaign With Flickr Photos Stirs Debate


There's a storm brewing over Virgin Mobile's use of a Creative Commons-covered photographs from Flickr users in a recent Australian print campaign. While Virgin Mobile clearly notes in the ads, created by Glue Society, where the photographs came from, some are concerned the people in the ads should have been given the chance to sign a model release and the Flickr users and photographers should have at least been asked permission to use the photographs.

With everything just a right click away, the issue of fair use, attribution, copyright or whatever name you want to apply, is a slippery slope indeed. Three days ago, one Flickr user who, apparently, has legal connections says he's sent a cease and desist letter to Virgin Mobile but has not yet received any acknowledgment regarding the letter. Flickr users, including the older brother of one of the girls who appears in one of the photos, are debating the issue here.

We've contacted Glue Society for comment and will report any response we receive as soon as we receive it.

UPDATE: Following an avalanche of complaints, Virgin Mobile has canceled this campaign.

by Steve Hall    Jul-19-07    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Consumer Created, Policy, Social

Transparency Police Bludgeon Blu-ray Backers, Backers Relent


Oh how those faux blog-loving marketers will never learn (until, of course, they're pummeled by transparency police. Read on). Attention, marketers. Repeat after us: "The consumer is not an idiot. The consumer in not an idiot. The consumer is not..." OK? Good. Now that you're all cured, let's all revel in the glory of faux-lover supreme, our friends over at Sony who, along with several other movie studios and companies, has just launched Hollywood in Hi-Def, a site that praises the visual and aural deliciousness of high definition DVDs.

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by Steve Hall    Jul-16-07    
Topic: Bad, Brands, Weblogs

Sisley Ad Brings New Meaning to the Term, 'Coke White'


Animal New York pointed us to this new Sisley ad by Zoo Advertising, Shanghai. Across the bottom of the brand are the words "Fashioin Junkie."

Irritation over the misspelling of "Fashion," and consequent suspicion of the ad's legitimacy, aside, Sisley is typified for the poetic license it exercises to put women in compromising positions, examples here and here. We're clearly not in the same neighborhood as cause-toting sister label Benetton anymore.

But hey, this is no time to preach the message. Clever use of the credit card in the spot, considering the nicely-carved coke-white dress probably cost as much as a nicely carved couple ounces.

UPDATE: In the comments section, a note from Sisley states these images are not the approved work of the company. Um, right. Is that why it took them so long to make this comment?

by Angela Natividad    Jul-11-07    
Topic: Brands, Poster

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