Pfizer Defends Merits of Dead Rat with (Over)Informative Making-Of

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A few months ago Pfizer released an ad meant to discourage people from buying prescription drugs from unregulated sources like the 'net.

In the moralistic, painfully allegorical tone cause spots sometimes adopt, it featured a man checking his mail, popping a pill and bemusedly pulling a dead rat out of his throat.

The ad naturally generated flak for the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), which regulates ads in the UK and has, based on X number of adamant letters, banned ads for a wide variety of reasons -- from claims to increase eyelash length to, well, heresy.

The ASA ultimately decided Pfizer's counterfeit medicine ad didn't breach code, which means it can still run in the UK. But in some warped knee-jerk effort to clear the public mind of any wrongdoing on its part, the pharma decided to produce a making-of.

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by Angela Natividad    Apr-28-09    
Topic: Brands, Cause, Video



Students Urged to Take Action For Darfur

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JWT Toronto has created a new commercial for STAND (Students Take Action Now Darfur) which follows a boy and his family as his village is attacked and the boy is killed while his brother looks on. The commercial closes with the boy stating his name and the tags, "Every death has a name. Every name has a story."

The spot points to Stand For the Dead where visitors can be "assigned an individual who has been killed in the genocide and carry on their fight now they are no longer able."

The commercial is oddly soothing for something that's supposed to call attention to a horrific situation. However, it's accessible as opposed to an in-your-face live action commercial that would just come off like some action movie with no meaning. This commercial draws you in and gives personality to the issue.

by Steve Hall    Apr-28-09    
Topic: Cause, Commercials



Cool Tobacco Peeps Publish Nikoteen For Young Hipsters

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Kelliher Samets Volk has launched Nikoteen, an online magazine to help the Vermont Department of Health expose the apparently deceptive marketing practices of tobacco companies. Nikoteen mimics popular youth-oriented Web sites for music, celebrities, sports and horoscopes.

The Nikoteen site is accessible via the Web site for Our Voices Xposed. The OVX site includes information on tobacco companies as well as the opportunity to enter OVX Studios where visitors can cast actors, choose scenes and select products to place in their own movies. OVX is a youth-led, youth-run movement in Vermont that is focused on exposing the truth about the deceptive marketing practices of tobacco companies.

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by Steve Hall    Apr-28-09    
Topic: Cause



You Can Never Have Enough White Space.

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ANIMAL New York's Bucky Turco and crew decided to take back some of the space taken over by NPA, a wild posting kinda firm. (Pics and full story of the day's whitewashing activites here.) NYC's Department of Building Sign Enforcement has laws against ads on certain spaces, but according to the notice left by the group, NPA and building owners don't seem to be following those laws. Artists then came in and made things all perty. [ Post-jump ]

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by Bill Green    Apr-27-09    




Stephen Cowbert's Product Placement.

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Let's just call it what it is: Product placement. Branded entertainment? Documercials? Infotainment? Whatever. It's still product placement, just handled a little more deftly these days, (but not always). Last night, Colbert does his usual straight act on steroids routine and plugged away as Heifer International West African program director Elizabeth Bintliff took it in stride. Can't find fault with it though because it's for a good cause. Heifer is the latest to get some brand love outside of a commercial, even though they've been around since 1944.

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by Bill Green    Apr-24-09    
Topic: Announcements, Cause



Beards, Not Bears.

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Bears not your thing? Try growing one for the team. If, your team is the Boston Bruins. Sorry Ranger fans. More info on this Cenergy work at Beardathon.com/bruins and in the clip below.

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by Bill Green    Apr-22-09    




Because Watching Kids Cry Just Never Gets Old

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Your tax dollars at work. Hey, pushing a kid to emotional breaking-point is small potatoes compared to all that guilt equity! the New York State Health Department will raise among smokers for the 5.5 minutes they could be spending with a cancer stick.

Contemplate the moral dilemma with fellow creatives-in-arms, and then ask yourself, just ask -- are a few seconds of anxiety worth it? It's not like smokers don't know about the health consequences, or that their priorities are mildly screwed up (I always feel a little guilty lighting up in front of tots); does one sappy spot a quitter make?

This emo thinkpiece brought to you by Quit Victoria.

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by Angela Natividad    Apr-16-09    
Topic: Cause, Commercials, Television



Norwegian Parkinson's Association Pokes Fun at, Uh, Parkinson's.

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Rather than focus on fractured families and the slow, tragic waltz toward death, the Norwegian Parkinson's Association (Norges Parkinsonforbund) decided to add a little jazz to its disease awareness campaign.

And by "jazz" we mean you'll probably release an involuntary smirk, then put on your Serious Creative Face and soberly acknowledge the work's incendiary nature, the poor taste, etc etc.

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by Angela Natividad    Apr-14-09    
Topic: Campaigns, Cause, Commercials, Television



We Just Don't Understand Anti-Gay Marriage Logic

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So let's get this straight. In America we are free to choose the religion we practice, express the opinions we care to share, join the people with whom we wish to assemble, enjoy the right to bear arms, live a life of privacy and to vote for whom we deem worthy.

But when it comes to selecting who we wish to marry, it's as if America forgot the reason America became America. Supposedly, we are the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Sadly, some prefer we become the land of the handcuffed and the home of the terrified.

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by Steve Hall    Apr- 9-09    
Topic: Cause, Commercials, Opinion



There's No PMS in Fairy Tales!

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While we don't speak Spanish and can't understand all the words in this California Milk Processor Board commercial, the message is clear: a glass of milk can cheer you up on a bad day. We could use a gallon right about now.

In this commercial, created by Grupo Gallegos and animated by Psyop, a prince saves the day as a Princess' mood reeks havoc across her world. It's a grand gesture and one that's best experience without actually understanding the words. Because if you did, you'd realize the whole thing is a metaphor for the Princess' PMS and how milk lessens that monthly blow.

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by Steve Hall    Apr- 7-09    
Topic: Bad, Campaigns, Cause, Commercials, Good, Strange










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