Tom Clancy Too Dense? Cozy Up with a Twiller

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New York Times journalist Matt Richtel has invented a storytelling format called the Twiller. The idea is for Twitter users to follow fictional characters -- which some already do anyway -- as they progress though a plot.

It's not the worst idea ever, and when my friend Atif first explained it to me I thought, "Hey, that sounds sort of like Memento."

Except Twillers are a long-term commitment. Richtel's been developing his plot for the last two months. Follow @mrichtel, tweet by grueling tweet, as he works out the narrative kinks.

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by Angela Natividad    Sep- 1-08    
Topic: Consumer Created, Online, Strange, Trends and Culture



Don't Look Now, But I Think that Cow is Judging You.

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Some people have been known to buy the cheese endorsed by happy cows. Considering cheese is, like, the fruit of their loins, I guess that makes sense. But can cows also be trusted to select your next car?

Fiat thinks so. In the Dutch spot above, a cow moos off a VW Golf and a Ford Focus, but desperately bellows "Bravooo!" (listen closely!) when one happens to idle by. Tagline: "Uitgesproken," which means something like "distinct" or "pronounced."

Adverblog says the spot hasn't yet hit TVs; it's currently only circulating the 'net. I think it's goofy, and not in a good way. But once it hits TVs, maybe it'll prove a success by merit of its lean-in factor. (You know, when listeners lean in and go, "Wait, what?")

by Angela Natividad    Sep- 1-08    
Topic: Brands, Commercials, Online, Strange



Samsung Gets Weird With Beauty Queen, Penguin, Crownfish

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What do a penguin, a beauty queen and a crownfish have to do with each other? Nothing unless they are the main characters in a Samsung commercial in which a Penguin rescues the beauty queen who has just caught herself a Crownfish.

It's all very weird. Very noir. And it all points to Samsung's See the Whole Story website.

by Steve Hall    Aug-29-08    
Topic: Commercials, Good, Strange



Hot Blogger Calendar, 90210 Strip-Searched, Buffy Increases Church Abandonment

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- Because what the world needs now is a hot blogger calendar.

- The CW's decided to let advertisers see snippets of 90210's content after all. I guess this means the PTC will be throwing itself a self-congratulatory cocktail party.

- OMG, OMG, a Facebook movie? ...by the co-creator of West Wing? Does that mean there's a parity of significance between Mark Zuckerberg and the ruler of the free world?

- MySpace was the top display ad publisher in June; Microsoft the top display advertiser. Most of its ads were for Live Search.

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Illogical McDonald's Spot Still Funny

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Ever watch a horror movie and begin to scream at the screen because the bubble-headed, big-breasted, airhead insists on answering the phone or opening the closet door rather than just...um...just walking away? Or some other totally illogical idiocy? Of course you have.

You'll want to do it again when you watch this DDB Stockholm-created commercial for McDonald's. You will scream, "Just lift the fries up to your mouth, you idiot!"

Logic. Who needs it in advertising?

by Steve Hall    Aug-28-08    
Topic: Bad, Commercials, Good, Strange



Bonds Underwear Slams Ball Into Center Pocket

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We know there are a lot of soccer...uh...football stars out there who can manipulate the ball in ways you never thought a ball could be manipulated but we haven't yet seen a manipulator who can get all the balls in one pocket all at the same time. What we really want to know is: did that hurt?

There's always a new way to sell underwear, isn't there?

by Steve Hall    Aug-28-08    
Topic: Commercials, Good, Strange



Get Hitched in Paris and Las Vegas -- at the Same Time!

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You'd have the best of two depraved worlds: a gaudy lustfest and some seriously decadent cake. Kind of like the ad at left, which was ganked out of last month's Travel and Leisure magazine.

Tagline: "Everything's sexier in Paris Las Vegas." I don't know about sexy, but it's sort of pretty after a few Pernods, and David Hasselhoff makes the occasional cameo. Plus, who can beat rooms starting at $89? Okay, okay, besides Circus Circus.

by Angela Natividad    Aug-27-08    
Topic: Magazine, Promotions, Racy, Strange



Newsflash: iPhone Does Not Support ALL Parts of Internet

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You've probably seen the American version of this iPhone ad, and you've probably not thought twice about it, but the United Kingdom ain't having any.

The Advertising Standards Authority argues the ad suggests iPhone users have access to all the parts of the internet, which technically isn't true. Two viewers complained, and the ad's been pulled.

If Apple wants to run it, it'll have to give Mr. Voiceover something less, oh, all-encompassing to say.

In addition to protecting big spenders from Apple's appalling dishonesty, the ASA's also railed against mascara deception, erosion of religious values and unsafe car dancing. Unrealistic depictions of nipple elasticity are okay though, because bright citizens know better than be to duped by that.

Good to know there's a discerning body keeping the UK safe from uninhibited agency machinations.

by Angela Natividad    Aug-27-08    
Topic: Bad, Commercials, Strange, Television, Trends and Culture



Billboard Gives New Meaning to Life at Sea

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Some people look ad ads and see one thing. Others look and see quite another. That seems to be the case with a recent billboard for the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard in England. What could be seen as a perfectly representative image depicting life at sea back in the day when men were men and women had a raw deal, others see as representative of another form of life at sea. One which portrays a very different sort of relationship between a captain and his mates.

What's that saying? Oh yea. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Or something.

by Steve Hall    Aug-27-08    
Topic: Outdoor, Strange



CK Pushes Sweatsuits, IE8 Eats Cookies, Google Dinners Seized, Cho Gets Show

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- Calvin Klein hopes a new e-commerce subsite will help it unload some "white label" (that is, very expensive but still mostly nylon and cotton) sports gear.

- For marketers hoping to retain a healthy base of Internet Explorer users, IE8 might turn cookies into a sometimes friend. Its InPrivate feature blocks them and automatically clears users' browsing histories once they end a session. Some writers are fondly calling it "porn mode."

- Free din-din at Google: officially off-limits, unless you happen to be an engineer. Not to worry, less twitchy Googlers won't starve. Lunch and breakfast remain a perk.

- PhotoShelter is selling some of its photographers' work as limited-edition art. Check out the existential phone booth.

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by Angela Natividad    Aug-26-08    
Topic: Celebrity, Online, Political, Strange, Trends and Culture










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