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Call Optimum, Because Michael Bolton Doesn’t Want to Talk to You

Michael Bolton also told me to tell you that, hey, you’re not the only one enraptured with the pop crooner due to his handsome face and sweet, sultry voice. Michael Bolton’s not going to just drop everything and dedicate his entire day to a phone conversation with you. Why would he? He’s rich, single, and famous. Michael Bolton has more important things to do than talk to one of his many fans about their boring lives. Just, don’t call him, okay? Seriously, back off. Consider this a fair warning.

From Mother NY comes a new campaign for Optimum, the phone, Internet and cable provider that changed their logo last year but reminded you that they weren’t in the logo business because they think you’re stupid. This time around, they’re asking you to call them. Not Michael Bolton. Get it? Because dialing the phone is hard. They think you’ve gotten stupider since your last encounter.

Another new spot from Optimum (above) reminds you that for an optimal TV viewing experience, you should move on your chair or other reclining device in front of the TV. Oh, and I would recommend calling Michael Bolton’s number even though Optimum told you not to. There’s a surprise on the other line. Credits for both spots after the jump.

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Here’s a Quick Statement from a Mother Founding Partner Regarding BK

By now, we’re sure you’re aware of Burger King shifting its lead ad duties to Mother, which has been working with the fast-food chain for over a year and rocked the boat just months after joining the roster with ads like this.

Anyhow, we received this statement straight from Mother founding partner Andrew Deitchman, who tells us, “Evolving our relationship with Burger King is very exciting and also something to which we’ve given a lot of thought. Mother is a company where the quality of our output is closely tied to our culture. If it changes too fast, nobody is going to be happy-  neither the Mother culture or the client who bought it. Luckily, we’ve got ourselves a client who recognizes this and who tasks us with the jobs we’re really good at.”


IKEA Looks Down Upon Your Hoarder Lifestyle, is Positive You Will Never Find True Love

From Mother London comes “Make Room for Your Life,” a new campaign for IKEA (you may remember the agency/client’s recent collab) that highlights the benefits of Swedish-designed home storage a reminds you what a ball of filth you’ve become.

The campaign’s first spot, “Living Together,” follows the musical romantic entanglements of a couple whose house is so dirty that they can only communicate to each other through a cover of the Bee Gees’ “Living Together” (performed by British band An Escape Plan). Inject some IKEA whimsy, and the couple unite in a beautiful new living space that would probably take the average person about 6 months to build. But, as this spot as quite an escape from reality, the IKEA storage units assemble themselves and the couple doesn’t fight at all. It’s a twee kid’s dream home.

Peter Wright, IKEA UK and Ireland marketing manager, says of the campaign, “’Make Room for Your Life’ demonstrates our understanding of everyday life at home and the problems that a lack of good storage gives everybody.” Yes, losing your spouse amidst piles of old shit has happened to all of us. So, buy some IKEA storage units or, you know, just throw that crap out or donate it to charity or something. Credits after the jump.

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What The Hell Did We Just Watch? Mother NY Edition

Mother New York, for whatever reason, decided to hype its music composer/mixer/sound designer Michael Coffman, who they affectionately dub “Ice.” Coffman, who has been with the agency for nearly two years, gets to show off his Zoolander/miming skills that make him look like a castoff from a Godard/Truffaut flick. You can read more about this “campaign” here, while we try to remember the lyrics to Wham’s “Careless Whisper.”

Optimum Gets a New Logo But is Still Not in Logo Business

From Mother NY comes a new re-branding campaign for Optimum, an Internet, phone and television company owned by cable giant Cablevision. Though most of us Midwesterners are pretty unfamiliar with the brand, Optimum predominantly serves markets on the East Coast (including Connecticut, New York and New Jersey) and out west (including Colorado, Montana, Utah and Montana).

For Optimum’s first TV branding campaign, Mother, which won the business in April, decided to start simple, with the above spot featuring only the brand’s new Collins-designed logo and four repetitions of of the words “TV, phone and Internet.” Though pretty dull, I’ve found its way of drilling its company’s services into your head is quite effective. Now, if someone asks me what Optimum is, I’ll simply respond, “Oh, they’re like Comcast for the East Coast. They have that logo, but they’re not a logo company.” See? It totally worked.

Also from Mother are a trio of slightly more colorful new spots, each of which argue that, “You, dear consumer, are too busy dealing with your tragically comedic life to have to care about your TV, phone, and/or Internet malfunction. Let us, Optimum take care of it so you don’t have to.” In the above spot, it’s all a bit depressing, that is until you see that little girl sprinting down the street away from her father and training bike. That was just adorable. Two more spots and credits follow after the jump.

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Mother NY Makes Some Cuts

Details are vague at this point (our apologies), but sources familiar with the matter have confirmed that Mother made some cuts in its New York office last night. From what we’re hearing, the number ranges from 5-10 percent of staff in NY. As for reasons, thus far we’ve been told that the cuts were due to both a need to restructure and to better serve client needs. Mother New York’s current client roster includes Virgin Mobile, Burger King (though the fast-food giant is now reportedly expanding/shaking up its agency roster) and eMusic.

We’ll keep you posted if and when we get more details about the staff situation.

A Day in the Life of a Summer Intern: Introducing the ‘Tactus’

Well, the outpouring has been great this week in terms of interns sharing their thoughts. Let’s yell TGIF and ring in the weekend with this installment from Mother NY interns Forde Kay and Emily Edelman. We’ve never heard of a “Tactus” before, but let’s find out more from the pair below (and in the video above).

We (Forde Kay and Emily Edelman) are a killer intern-partnership at Mother New York (if we do say so ourselves). We’re on the Experience team, so we spend all day brainstorming ways that clients can earn the media’s attention, rather than buy it through ad spots or billboards. Mother allows us to be creative, fun, clever, smart, beautiful, and crazy. We are also really good at finding things in the kitchen to make amazing snacks. I, Forde, eat anything that’s in front of me really fast, and I’m sure it’s gross to watch and I, Emily, love bread with Nutella spread on it.
When the two of us came to the Mother office, we were blown away by the inspiration the office and the people in the space offered. Yet, as clever and close to perfection as Mother New York is, there was one problem that we noticed.  All around the office are giant boards for tacking up work. This means that there are also tacks everywhere, which have been kept in cereal bowls that litter the floor like land mines. In fact, our research told us that on average, someone trips twice an hour, and there is an average of one hospital visit a day.
Taking action, we decided to fix this problem as a thank you to Mother for their internship opportunity (but mostly to look really good). After many-a-sketch, many-a-trip to Canal Plastics, and many-a-craft supply, Tactus was born.
Tactus is a tack-holding cactus. It is made using 90-degree PVC elbows, decoupaged cactus imagery, and a heavy duty magnet. Tactus turns the office’s I-beams into Suguaro-like Cacti and provides safe, off-the-ground storage for the office’s 3,256 (very accurate guesstimate) currently-unused tacks. The Tacti’s large magnet can also be held above a floor of spilt tacks, easily collecting them.
Not only did we design and produce the twenty Tacti, we also made a video to inform Mother of the office’s new key feature. When Mother employees filtered into work Monday morning, the Tacti were at home on their I-beam-poles, and the video was waiting in everyone’s inboxes.

Do you have a tack problem? Is your agency in trouble? Contact Forde and Emily at Mother New York, and we will provide you with a *sharp* solution.

As for what this internship has been like, we think we can safely say that it’s been the bomb.

Mother London Makes Vaguely Profane T-Shirt to Support Greece

If the London Olympics have been the only news you’ve been following over the last few months, it may surprise you to learn that Greece’s economy has now finally totally collapsed (I think). Yes, the very country that brought us Western philosophy, the yo-yo, and the concept of the Olympics has fallen on rough times what with the worldwide recession that’s been going on for the last few years. The country’s been barely surviving on a series of expansive bailouts from the EU, yet Greece’s pretty terrible government has been using these bailouts to plunge deeper and deeper into debt.

Greece’s fall has been hurting the entire EU of which it is (for now) a part of, as that whole idea of making the Euro most of the continent’s sole currency is looking pretty stupid about now. But, similar to the American repression we’re currently experiencing, most of Greece’s population had little to nothing to do with the mess they’re now a part of, which is terrifying when you consider the country’s healthcare system is also collapsing. So, Mother London has taken it upon themselves to show solidarity with their Grecian brethren by creating t-shirts that say, “Fuck This, I’m Off to Greece.” Well, they don’t quite say that, but it’s strongly implied in a similar way to most graphic tees you see at Urban Outfitters.

Proceeds from sales of the t-shirts from the campaign’s Facebook page will be donated to Doctors of the World, a free-clinic originally set up for migrants that is now “seeing over 80 percent of Greek people.” According to Wikipedia, that’s like 8 million people, which I find a little exaggerated but that’s what the press release is telling me. Also, the press release wants me to note that the clinic has been overwhelmed by parents who can’t afford their children’s booster shots, a phenomena usually only seen in third world countries.

T-shirts are on sale here for £15 ($23.52 ‘merican) from now until the end of the Paralympics in September.


Mother Loses Hershfield to SS+K

It took a few months, but New York/D.C. agency SS+K has finally round a replacement at the CCO position in Bobby Hershfield, who joins after spending the last five-and-a-half years at Mother NY. Hershfield succeeds Kash Sree, who parted ways with SS+K back in March. During his time at Mother, Hershfield served as creative director and eventually GCD on accounts including Target (such as the award-winning “Little Marina” effort), Tanqueray, Sweet ‘n Low and J&J.

In a statement, Hershfield  gushes about both his past and present employers, saying, “Mother is an incredible agency with incredible people, but this simply was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up. I’m so impressed with everything SS+K believes in and wants to accomplish, and in a strange way, I feel all roads just sort of led me right here.”

During his career, the now-SS+K CCO/partner spent time on the account side at Chiat\Day before moving over to the creative department and working at the likes W+K and Ogilvy. As for SS+K, the agency’s client roster includes GM, JCPenney, Pfizer and Kraft.

eMusic Turns Pitchfork Music Festival Goers Into Lab Rats

Last weekend, Chicago’s Union Park played host to Pitchfork Music Festival, a three-day concert curated by the venerable indie music publication that featured over 45 bands. Lady Gaga was totally there too for five seconds, but did not perform because she was there to watch music and not to appease the crowd, who in turn angrily demanded that she contribute in some way because you don’t just make surprise appearances at #P4k if you’re Lady Gaga and not follow through in some way like stage-diving during the AraabMuzik set or something.

Anyway, eMusic also made an appearance at the festival, though unlike Lady Gaga’s, Twitter wasn’t freaking out about it and I didn’t Instagram a photo of it. Setting up a giant pod near the dugout of one of Union Park’s fabulous softball fields, eMusic and Mother NY continued their digital “eMusic Investigates” campaign, in which the online music subscription service measures the impact that indie rock has on listeners and their environment.

While I saw the giant pod at the festival, I did not enter it because 1. I was frightened they were going to try to sell me something 2. I was busy watching bands and 3. I don’t enter dark booths without a compelling reason to. However, other festival goers didn’t share my reservations, and they heard bands like A$AP Rocky, Lower Dens and Beach House through headphones. They could have been hearing those bands without headphones during the bands’ sets, but then, how would they know what they’re feeling? eMusic’s study on music and emotion seemed pretty questionable, but the company concluded that basically “different people like things for different reasons.” Science!