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#LoveAlwaysWins Reimagines a Better, More Tolerant Sochi Olympics

From NYC-based All Out, this two-minute short film shows what it would look life if a gay Olympic medalist were able to celebrate with her partner in Sochi. Of course, it’s not that simple in Russia, where public displays of homosexuality are banned by the government, and systemic discrimination has prevented gay people from simply feeling like people in their own country. All Out is hoping to change that, at least legally, before the Sochi Games start in February 2014. The organization is asking that people share the video with #LoveAlwaysWins on social media. The goal, as the video shows, is to close the gap between what should be allowed and what is allowed. I wouldn’t bet on it, considering that the Olympics has always struggled to balance the messy mix of politics, human rights, and competition, but at least someone is trying. Credits after the jump.

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Good + Mustache = Goodstache, a TV Drinking Game

Goodstache may very well be the first ever drinking game for charity, although there isn’t a ton of peer-reviewed research on the topic. The rules of the game are easy: donate to the Prostate Cancer Foundation, print out a mustache certificate of your liking (i.e. Burt Reynolds, Ron Swanson, Salvador Dali), place that mustache anywhere on your television screen, and whenever the mustache lines up with a person’s face, take a drink. If you watch a Mad Men marathon, it sounds like a great way to connect with the characters and destroy your liver, all for a good cause.

The idea comes from SF creatives Nate Gagnon, and Stephen Hadinger, freelance copywriter and AKQA creative technologist, respectively, and the website uses a sleek design that would make the Most Interesting Man in the World proud. You can just donate to the cause without drinking, which is still recommended, or you can also just play the game to drink without donating, not recommended. Either way, check out the site and have a Happy Movember.

Adidas, Dwight Howard Go One-on-One with Manila for ‘Signature Shots’

After all of the recent Derrick Rose Basketball is Everything TV play, let’s not forget that Adidas’ slim basketball holdings do include the mercurial superstar-child, Dwight Howard. TBWA\Singapore and Dwight teamed for a new international spot way east of America, where 180LA handles domestic duty. The Phillipines is thoroughly obsessed with basketball, and Howard’s Houston Rockets recently traveled to Manila for some preseason play and NBA global brand-building. Adidas wisely used the setting for some brand-building of their own. And as a result, here is the one-and-a-half minute intro video for Signature Shots.

Instead of receiving handwritten autographs from Dwight, fans were able to play him one-on-one as a machine captured their movement on the court and translated that into a unique signature that could be printed onto merchandise. I’m all for the riff on standard sit-and-sign celebrity sessions, even if some of the signatures look like seismograph scribbles, but this spot just feels underwhelming. The clip starts off with some promising B-roll footage of Manila and it’s young hoopsters.

However, all of the vibrant colors and sounds of the city are soon replaced by action shots of machines printing the movement signatures and Dwight playing one-on-one. Rather than wash out all of the sensory details with some techno track, Adidas and TBWA would’ve been wiser to let Manila create its own soundtrack. Watching a printer spit out signed memorabilia is just time wasted. There was a missed opportunity here to create a commercial worthy of Manila’s love for basketball. There will be more opportunities in the future, but Adidas will have to wait. Credits after the jump.

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And Thus, Movember Has Begun


We’re figuring that this just the tip of the iceberg as it’s only day 1 of Movember, the month in which the fellas hide their razors and grow their facial hair in all shapes and sizes (and let’s not forget the ladies have had an increasing presence each year, too) in order to raise awareness (and money) for men’s health issues. We’re sure there will be plenty of agencies chiming in as part of the industry’s annual Movember fundraising competition, but first up to bat is Red Peak Branding, a unit of NYC-based Red Peak Group, whose CEO James Fox sent out a memo this morning regarding his agency’s guidelines for taking part. See below:

“Today is the start of Mo’vember which means the mustache contest is on….
Here is how it works. All competitors must be clean shaven today, or if not today first thing Monday. Joon will be taking pictures today of all the competitors so the judges have a clear before and after shot.
Competitors may grow a mustache, beard, half beard, goatee or whatever until Friday 29th [November] at which point they must convert into a mustache. All competitors must come to the event wearing an appropriate outfit to accompany their mustache (lumberjack, greaser, 1920’s Dandy etc)
All the women in the agency who wish to do so will be judges at a special event on the 29th [November]
Competitors will receive points on the following three attributes:
  1. Lustre – How bushy and lustrous is the mustache in question (5 points)
  2. Creativity – How creative is the mustache and outfit (Gentlemen see mustache chart attached for ideas) (5 Points)
  3. Effort – You don’t need a monstrous mustache to win this competition – points will go to the best before and after pics (5 Points)
All those that want to get involved, both judges and competitors will pay $5 on the 29th of [November] and the proceeds will go to the USA Men’s cancer charity”
Is this the standard protocol for all agencies taking part in the Movember battle? Whatever the case, feel free to send over more efforts and if you need grooming suggestions, you can check out a larger version of the top image after the jump.

It’s Almost That Time to Start Growing Your Movember ‘Stache

It’s that time of year again, the chill is in the air, leaves are falling from the trees, and it’s time to start thinking about what’s doing above your upper lip.

Yes, the month-long event that is Movember is once again almost upon us as participants (here are some agency examples from last year) will start the month clean-shaven and then spend November growing and grooming their moustache, while asking friends and families to donate to men’s health charities.

The above video shows Movember’s new “taking it to the streets” strategy, as well as a penchant for trying to make mustaches seem extreme. I’m not sure what that’s all about, to be honest. But I’m all for people growing mustaches that make them look like 1980s relief pitchers. Other changes involve referring to participants as “Mo Bros” and the coining of the term “Generation Moustache” (I’m pretty sure Generation Moustache already happened, starting in the seventies). Some new initiatives are MOVE, a global initiative to get people to be more physically active; Mo Rated Barbers, “a global network showcasing the best in class barbershops from around the world dedicated to fine grooming, fine moustaches and to changing the face of men’s health”; and the Movember Collection, “a range of limited edition merchandise created by Movember’s very own creative design team, for sale to the Mo community via”

If you’d like to register to participate in Movember, or just want to learn more, you can do so at the official website. I won’t be participating, since I look like I’m about twelve years old when clean-shaven and can’t imagine going a whole month without my beard. Plus I’d be terrified that someone might actually refer to me as a “Mo Bro.”

Yep, We Need to Throw a Party at Digital DUMBO’s New Outpost

We figured we’d wind things down with a little bit of eye candy courtesy of the folks behind the continuously growing collective that is Digital DUMBO. What started out four years as a way to gather the digital community in said Brooklyn neighborhood has grown into a brand with 13,000 members with new communities in Boston, Dallas, London and Valencia, Spain. Anyhow, in case you didn’t hear, a couple of weeks ago, the Digital DUMBO crew opened the doors to their new community/event space in their native turf dubbed dd:Outpost, which was built in collaboration with Bing and designed by Volvox Labs. Yes, a Cubes episode is certainly in order with this one. Here are some quick  specs for you tech/design folks out there:

  • 200″ projection screen allows for engaging presentations and visuals with a direct connection between the Windows 8 interface, Xbox and Airstream
  • Custom made touchscreen interface allows clients to control lighting, content of the AV system and view Instagram and Twitter feeds in real-time
  • Integrated technologies allow for content to be presented simultaneously across all screens with ease
  • 70 high powered LED strips react to human presence by triggering patterns and surround sound effects using the Kinect for Windows technology
  • Projection mapped wall creates a unique surface for showcasing design work, motion graphics, and the “back channel”

So what is this space being used for exactly? Well, first off, Digital DUMBO co-founder/CEO Andrew Zarick emphasizes that “the space is designed for our community and not a co-working space” although Outpost will “host co-working days.” You can read Zarick’s more detailed description of Outpost here (along with a recent interview here) and if you care to view, we posted a few images of the space after the jump.

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Young Hockey Players Can ‘Storm the Centre’ with Social Media, Skill

Screen shot 2013-10-11 at 2.04.53 PM

From the very Canadian, but not Canadien, news bureau: Red Tettemer O’Connell + Partners and Under Armour are launching a youth hockey contest tomorrow, October 12, called “Storm the Centre.” Two teams of skating youngsters will eventually win a chance to play at the Air Canada Centre, home of the Toronto Maple Leafs. I want to spell it center, but it’s for the kids, so I’ll keep it Canadian.

The contest consists of three stages – social media engagement, teamwork, and finally, hockey skills. These sort of pee-wee competitions happen all the time, but adding a social media component is a cool twist from RTO+P, especially in a hockey-crazed country, where presumably, families will claw for the chance to see their kids play on a pro rink. The details of the challenges haven’t been released yet, but you can check team eligibility and sign up here. To all the little Charlie Conways out there, have fun.

Credits after the jump.

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Tool, BBDO Bring a Fresh POV to Australian Tourism

Remote Control Tourist, the new interactive digital/video Tourism Victoria project from Clemenger BBDO , Exit Films, and Tool director Jason Zada, is kind of like The Sims without the gibberish language. You can control people from your computer, suggest they eat a certain food, walk a certain direction, enter a certain door. If you don’t want to suggest activities via social media, you can just watch the live streams. Voyeurism at its finest, or at least, voyeurism at its least creepiest.

The project is meant to promote Australian tourism by showing off the sights and sounds of Melbourne, and the live stream, which runs October 9-13 for about eight hours per day, adds a compelling dimension to tourism advertising. One man and one woman will travel around the city with head-mounted cameras, tailoring their movements to the social media suggestions. Hear’s to hoping people use the opportunity to be classy and find out more about a beautiful city, and not, you know, be dumb and inappropriate on the Internet, like most of the time. The broadcast officially kicked off, well, about now.

Red Bull Animates Top Instagramers to Document Cliff Diving World Series Event

September 14th saw the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series return to the Blue Lagoon on the scenic Pembrokeshire coastline in Wales. Red Bull decided to use a slightly different approach to capture the excitement of that day, including the dives from a 27 meter high platform.

They’ve released a stop-motion film, created using thousands of photos taken at the event by three top UK Instagramers: @danrubin, @jeera and @chaiwalla. The two minute video was stitched together out of photos taken over the course of just a few hours. It takes the viewer on a tour of all the action, capturing people’s reactions to the dives, divers climbing the ladder, the dives themselves, and (of course) the Red Bull stand. You get a nice mix of the excitement of the event, the natural beauty of the location, and  a quick glance at the kind of people making up the audience. Everything is put together so seamlessly, you might not even notice it’s stop-motion.


Drink Up, Open Brings Oktoberfest to Toronto

Biervent 3

For those of you who like beer and live reasonably close to Toronto, Open and Bier Markt have teamed up for a promotional campaign meant to make you all bubbly inside for the goodness of suds. Tall glasses brimming with foam, hangovers, and bad decisions. Oktoberfest is here.

To kick off the celebration, Bier Markt’s Facebook page has a Biervent (like advent, get it?) calendar, and for each day, there is a new billboard with a headline that might say, “Rock out with Your Sauerkraut” or “Get Schnitzel’d.” In addition to the social media, there will be events for all 32 days of Oktoberfest at Bier Markt, such as a Snout Sunday Roast and the aptly titled Bier and Lederhosen So In Right Now Event. Probably could’ve gotten more creative with that. It almost sounds like a bunch of people were sitting around a table, getting drunk, and they were like, “What should we call the event with beer and lederhosen?” Which is probably true. Credits after the jump.

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