The Jesuits, an order of Catholic priests founded in the 1500s, have decided to make Second Life their latest site of evangelical expansion.
"Second Life is not simply a 'closed' phenomenon," writes Father Spadaro of the Jesuits, who outlined a detailed plan on the benefits and hazards of the virtual world, as well as instructions on becoming a resident. "It is a real living environment that every day extends its frontiers and increases the number of residents. We cannot close our eyes to it."
After smut trades and regulation came barging through the doors, it was only a matter of time before religion came a-knocking gently.
We're not really sure what's happening in this ad for Amnesty International by Grey Thailand, which solemnly (in Courier, no less) intones, "Not all domestic violence is visible."
In the top right-hand corner there's a wee little gremlin man with his hand raised to strike. He looks like an antagonistic character from a children's novel, maybe something like Freak the Mighty - mean, granted, but only two feet tall.
Adverblog drew our eyes to this video for Banc de Sang (the Blood Bank), a Catalunya-based org.
While watching the video we got that tense "dude, what are we waiting for?" feeling, ever aware that the red time bar at bottom was elapsing rapidly. The ending was a nice surprise. Great demonstration of the medium being incorporated into the message.
The OLPC, an organization devoted to bringing open source laptops to children in Third World countries for less than $200 a pop, have discovered an awkward residual outcome in their well-meaning scheme.
The News Agency of Nigeria has reported some kids at an Abuja primary school "have gone awry as the pupils freely browse adult sites with explicit sexual materials."
Oops. The OLPC has since reported they'll be including porn filters in the newer models of the otherwise-durable computers.
I'm pretty fascinated by this campaign YouthNoise has been conducting alongside Virgin, which uses mobile in ways that are creative, considering its challenges.
To raise awareness about teen homelessness, the company put together a 46-part novella via text message. Every day an opt-in teen received a couple of texts a day that continued the story. And at the end of the campaign, the more emotionally involved got to make contributions to the ending.
Considering the subject matter, the novella was popular, but sort of a buzzkill. In retrospect, Ginger Thomson of YouthNoise said she wouldn't conduct that same campaign again with such a sad story.
Can you imagine throwing open a magazine full of bummed-out models that seem to hate life? Oh wait, most of them already look like that.
We thought we'd seen the last of the (oft spoofed) (red) campaign but on the streets of New York, the red plague remains alive and well.
It made its most recent appearance in this Converse ad at left, touting (red) products as weapons of change. For those who can't read the blurry photo, the ad says, "Buy (Product) Red stuff. Join the movement. The time is now. Do something."
For a bold headline like "Weapon of Change," that follow-up entreaty leaves much to be desired. The only thing we feel genuinely compelled to do is trash the copywriter who put that desperate string of sentences together.
Cummins & Partners, Melbourne put together this ad for Multiple Sclerosis in Australia, in which the various body parts of a naked model are stamped with blank expiration dates. The text reads, "When you have Multiple Sclerosis you never know what will expire next."
Way to adopt decadence to educate. Cummins & Partners is the same firm that in March put a coin-operated scientist on the street, also for MS. Clearly these are the guys to go to when you've got a disease that merits discourse.
We were screwing around on some foreign news site when we saw the banner at left and thought, "Hey, Smokey Bear! Can't believe that guy is still around."
Out of curiosity, we hit www.smokeybear.com and found a creepy video that involves a child singing some song about forest fires, coupled with imagery of a spark igniting stenciled animals and a forest.
Smokey's Vault is a feature that brings Smokey into 2007 with a bunch of hip little spigot-thingies. There we discovered that Smokey was an actual baby bear that in 1950 rolled charred (and orphaned) out of the forest after a (clearly unprevented) forest fire.
And that's way more about fire-shy Bear than we ever thought we'd know. Those spigots, or at least that Bambi-esque banner ad, are clearly very effective.
Let's be realistic. Artsy qualities aside, one of the biggest selling-points for European films in the US market are the sex scenes. The hot, steamy, sometimes seamy or wholly improbable sex scenes.
With that in mind, YouTube user EUTube released a montage called Film Lovers Will Love This!, in which a bunch of steamy moments from EU films (well, mainly Amelie) are knitted together to join in one harmonious slogan: "Let's come together."
Supporters call it a celebration of European cinema but British Conservative MEP Chris Heaton-Harris called it a "cobbling-together" of "44 seconds of soft porn" that wastes taxpayers' money and does nothing to solve the European film industry's "image problem."
We figure it's a little lopsided to glean quotes from a British publication when it's the Italians, Spaniards and French doing all the grunt work. After all, where do you find those racy PSAs we love so much? Not at the home of Big Ben.
For the Epilepsy Foundation of Minnesota, agency Carmichael Lynch Thorburn, Minneapolis put together this poster as part of an installment series for the foundation's annual art contest.
"An epileptic seizure has been described as a brainstorm, a source of immense creative energy," explained Bill Thornburn of Carmichael Lynch, bless his heart.
The artwork may very well trigger said source. Cocaine, 'shrooms and an episode of Pokemon have also been said to catalyze brainstorms.