Oh the horror! AdPunch points to recent news Zara Phillips, the granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth II, has appeared in a Land Rover ad wearing a white gown covered in mud with the headline, "Beautifully Poised." Nice ad but it's apparently against royal protocol. Her appearance is part of sponsorship deal with Land Rover which sponsored her during her recent competition in the World Equestrian Games where she won a gold.
While the Queen might be angry, many other are just fine with her land Rover appearance. Labour Glascow East MP Ian Davison said, "Miss Phillips is to be commended for making her own way in the world. If she is cashing in on her success as a sporting star as other people do, then she is making something of herself."
Is this the end of royalty as we know it? Or is this just the natural way of things? Those in the U.K., please enlighten us.
Writing on his Micro Persuasion blog, Steve Rubel concisely explains why the online metric mainstay, the page view, is becoming useless and predicts its death in 2010. Citing the rise of navigate-within-page technologies such as Ajax, Flash and widgets which negate the need to leave a particular URL to experience new content, Rubel says the media community will need to face the music very soon and stop the chest beating about the importance of page views. While there doesn't seem to be a replacement metric on the horizon, aside from already existing Time Spent and Unique Visitors, the industry may need to come up with one very soon lest the usefulness of online metrics become as useless as traffic count for billboards.
Formed in early October by NightAgency, the adverband RockDotRock is now out with their new video that promotes Norton Confidential for the agency's clint Symantec. We're no music expert so we're going to leave this wide open for you readers to comment on. Is this good? Is it bad? Are Adverbands the wave of the futer? Is is marketing gone crazy? Do tell.
CMM News points to a Sydney Morning Herald article which calls to our attention the odd proliferation of videos on YouTube that show women smoking. Now that wouldn't be so weird except for the fact that in many of the videos, that's all they're doing: glamming on the cam while puffing away seductively. Sydney University School of Public Health Professor Simon Chapman viewed many of the 27,000 smoking-related videos on YouTube and while he acknowledges the videos could simply be an innocent social phenomenon, Chapman also wonders whether it's a clandestine effort by tobacco companies to promote smoking's cool quotient.
While tobacco advertising in America has been severely limited, it's been completely outlawed in Australia since 1992. Whether or not any tobacco company is behind this is likely to remain a mystery. A Philip Morris rep neither confirmed or denied involvement in with the video and said the company adheres to local laws and Internet advertising to minors should be banned. YouTube declined to comment for the story. While we find it hard to believe tobacco companies have any involvement in this and there's plenty of not-so-glamorous smoking videos to back up that belief, stranger things have certainly happened regarding this industry's marketing efforts.
AIGA launched the Polling Place Photo Project, which seeks to further citizen democracy by encouraging people to snap photos of voters in action.
We're not really sure what this will show us unless somebody can snap a picture of maybe some machines miscounting votes or some naked cheerleaders voting in the snow. But they did land some interesting and occasionally heartfelt candids of people that some politician will probably use in a humanizing re-election campaign in the near future. Cheers. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
With some hyper-prevalent advertising, that is. Eric Schmidt, CEO, tells Reuters that even if mobile phones aren't entirely free in the near future, costs will definitely go down.
Which is something we're definitely not opposed to. We're quite used to living side by side with advertising in all other aspects of our lives. And hey, if they want to make money, the ads have to at least be helpful, yeah? Maybe one day we'll be able to order directly from our "Call" buttons and have the costs added to our wireless bills. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
Perhaps everyone has seen this already but in yet another confirmation the new idea bucket is empty, Scamp unearths this ten year old clip from Dave Letterman which shows colored balls being unleashed down a steep hill. Oh, and there's watermelons too. As Scamp correctly points out, using a previous idea is not necessarily stealing. After all, all sorts of things have been "re-gifted" and passed off as new. It doesn't make the creation bad or the creators stealers. If each successive reincarnation serves its own purpose then it's more a good thing than bad. And the 'Balls' ad was a very good thing. Creativity comes, in part, through inspiration. Inspiration comes from the appreciation of something that profoundly influences. Influential work comes from...well, you get the point. It's a cycle. Hopefully as the cycle continues, value and relevance are a part of the deal.
Today Jim Donald, CEO of Starbucks, rang the NASDAQ opening bell. This marks the company's 35th anniversary and the start of holiday festivities at all stores, which will be decorated in big-bright red.
Awesome. Now is there any way we can talk them out of that naked 35th anniversary mermaid that got teachers all pissed off? We're not prudes or anything but it's seriously not cute. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
Reporters without Borders released its 2006 list of "internet enemies," comprised of countries that stifle free speech. Placeholders include China, which reigns supreme in 'net surveillance and censorship and blocks "subversive word strings."
Cuba was also a mainstay. Private internet connections are banned. To get online Cubans visit public cafes, universities and computer clubs. These networks trigger the police when subversive keywords are spidered.
Egypt was a new inclusion for 2006. While they don't do much censoring, several bloggers were recently arrested for rallying for democratic reform. Other bloggers are regularly harassed and websites can be closed if they're suspected of threatening national security.
And apparently the US ranks 53rd in terms of press liberty in general. Finland is #1. But do the Finns actually have anything interesting to report? They're not really big "conflict" people. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
Rimm-Kaufman Group released a study about the difference between pay-per-click ads proffered by both sides of the election. Some findings are below. Oh, and we're going to call the Republicans and Democrats Elephants and Donkeys because the animal names are funnier than the euphemisms:
- Political advertisers prefer Google to Yahoo. (We always thought that was just a universal preference)
- Elephant and anti-Donkey ads outnumber pro-Donkey and anti-Elephant two-to-one
- Donkey ads are three times more likely to be negative than red ads
- No campaigns reference Bush
- Donkey ads are longer than Elephant ads
- Donkey ads are more likely to include exclamations; Elephants favour provocative questions
We'd conclude this political digression with something trite but meaningful like, "God, can't wait until this day is over," except we'll probably just drink ourselves to oblivion like any other night. Cheers and may the best heels win. - Contributed by Angela Natividad