TVNewser Show TVNewser TVSpy LostRemote SocialTimes AllFacebook FishbowlNY FishbowlDC PRNewser 10,000 Words GalleyCat UnBeige MediaJobsDaily

Political

Hey Kids, If You Don’t Vote, Don’t Complain, Says Chicago Agency

With the first presidential debate set to get underway tomorrow night in Denver, why not highlight this politically-themed ditty from the folks at Chicago-based “attention” agency Third Street. The group, whose leadership including CCO, Yahoo “Ad Land” cartoonist and 15-year FCB/Draftfcb vet David T. Jones, has released this PSA encouraging young voters to hit the polls on Nov. 6. While not quite as blunt as Diddy’s “Vote or Die” directive from previous elections, Third Street is hoping to inspire Election Day turnout by telling us that real voters in ‘Merica complain, which the agency says is one of the benefits of voting.

The rapid-fire VO from improv comic TJ Miller matches the frenetic pace of the video itself, though both at times work against the message being relayed. Whatever the case, Third Street’s heart is in the right place. So yeah, kids, you wanna gripe about the state of the nation? Why don’t you vote first, then we’ll talk.

Op-Ed: Obama Vs. Romney: Who Wins…In Terms of Websites, That Is

And so, our regular op-ed series continues, this time with a contribution from John Paolini, executive creative director at branding firm Sullivan. With Election Day coming shortly, why not take a look at the respective sites of the presidential nominees, from a designer’s POV that is. Take it away, sir. 

If you haven’t noticed, the official campaign websites for the presidential hopefuls look a lot different than they did six months ago.

Last spring, Barack Obama’s and Mitt Romney’s sites were hard to tell apart. Both employed many of the same structural and design elements: There was lots of dark blue in the banners that framed up and merchandised their very patriotic logos. The navigation was more decorative than substantive. The content, whether written or image-based, did little to engage, let alone persuade. The net result was two sites largely focused on packaging and not much on positioning.

Fast-forward to today and you have two very different online experiences. The most dramatic evolution has taken place on Mitt Romney’s site: whereas it once relied on graphic elements for emotional connection, it now has a sweeping invitation to “come fly with me.” And I can’t help feeling Romney is suggesting something more than a trip on his plane.

Romney’s language is clear: join him and succeed. His navigation also supports the idea of success. Where there was once a set of decorative buttons there is now a corporate-feeling tab structure driving you deeper. His donation module is clear and unapologetic in placement, and language such as “victory wallet” all point to a clear narrative. The gift shop is a call to “gear up!” Read: if you vote for Mitt, you are buying success! Romney’s story line is clear: get on board with Mitt and you will succeed.

The Obama site has evolved as well. While Mitt’s site is a super-charged product experience designed with a top-down perspective, the Obama site is equally rousing from the bottom up; it’s a grassroots rallying cry that focuses on “we”. The written and image-based content has taken on an intimate feeling, which manifests itself in the Instagram-style photography, suggesting a sense of historic record. The language is also simple and straightforward: “get the facts, get the latest, get involved.” As you move deeper into the site, the “we” narrative extends to all types of groups and issues: Obama herein shares his success with each of his supporters. At this level, the site design lets go of its graphic identity and allows the individual group pages to have unique graphic badges and image styles. On a subtler note, the notion of forward is amplified by the use of backwards as a device to call out Romney’s position on various issues.

Overall, what is fascinating is how the past and present websites illustrate and record the progression of this election. These websites have become more than a merchandised expression of the campaign. As digital platforms, they are the living embodiment of the candidates’ evolving positions and how the cultural narratives that surround Romney and Obama have driven them to respond instantly and iteratively to the changing conversation.

 

 

Blind Item: So, What This Person is Trying to Say Is…

Boy, someone sure needed to let off some steam, and we’re happy to allow the tips box to serve as a space for ranting, confessionals and catharsis when need be. All we know is this one’s targeted at you, US advertising industry. Why don’t you look in the mirror this weekend and think about what you’ve done? Anyways, here’s your end of the week anonymous rant.

“Hi US advertising industry! While we all suffer through the rest of this hyper-partisan election cycle, let’s remember not to assume that we all have the same political views simply because we happen to be advertising creatives. When you shout misogynist and religiously bigoted things about our preferred candidates and their wives, you’re being a jerk. When you spew the most derogatory invective you can think of about your political adversaries, just know that there could be someone sitting a few feet away from you who is trying very hard to keep his or her mouth shut. You may notice that lots of us don’t bring our politics to work. Perhaps you should try that, so as to facilitate a more tolerant and hospitable working environment. Also so as not to look like a boor. That is all.”

BooneOakley Interns Prepare for DNC with ‘Dining with Dems’ Site

With the Democratic National Convention currently bringing delegates, journalists, and fanboys from around the country to Charlotte for a fun-filled week of speeches, parties, and rampant self-congratulation, the interns at local agency BooneOakley are taking it upon themselves to provide an online welcome mat for those seeking the best eats in all of the Queen City.

At DiningwithDems.com, visitors can learn about the culinary-based dream dates of some of the Democratic Party’s most popular figures including FDR, JDK, LBJ, Andrew Jackson and Woodrow Wilson. As you can see, FDR “enjoys long wheelchair rides of the beach” (Polio joke!), martinis at Blue Restaurant and Bar and the cornmeal hash at Midnight diner. If you don’t trust the opinions of some of the country’s finest Dems, you can always search for local establishments by category be it bars, desserts, and general eats.

But, the best thing about Dining with Dems is the educational value. For example, Andrew Jackson is described as being “more than a man’s man. He was a man’s man’s man. But not in a gay way. In fact, don’t suggest that to Jackson unless you want a duel on your hands.” Learn more about what your history teacher didn’t want to tell you at Dining with Dem’s website, and while you’re at it, criticize your own interns for not thinking of this first.

LA Creatives Pit Romney Against Obama in Twitter Smackdown

With the Republican National Convention now underway in Tampa, we figured it’s rather timely and appropriate to shine a light on Twitter-centric effort dubbed “Smack a Candidate.” We’ve been told this hashtag-driven battle between Mitt Romney and President Obama is a little side project launched last week by L.A.-based creatives Michael Miller and Marcus Wesson, whose days jobs are at IPG shop, Dailey. Anyhow, as the trailer shows you above, “Smack a Candidate” encourages you to tweet #smackobama or #smackromney and let the presidential candidates (or amusing likenesses of them, at least) go at it. According to the “Smack” calendar on the site, today marks round 1 of 3 in honor of the RNC and goes down starting at 12pm PST. If only they punched harder, though…

Sarah Silverman Offers to ‘Scissor’ Romney’s Biggest Financial Supporter

With another election year upon us, comedienne Sarah Silverman has returned with a follow-up, we suppose, to her 2008 multi-award-winning, politically-themed collaboration with Droga5, “The Great Schlep.” We’re checking with the Droga camp to see if they are still involved, but in the meantime, here’s Silverman and the Schlep Labs’ “Scissor Sheldon,” in which the funny lady vows to “scissor” Mitt Romney‘s loaded, apparent #1 fan, Sheldon Adelson, if he switches his financial support to President Obama. If you don’t know what she means by scissoring, let Silverman explain. The “Scissor Sheldon” site also includes fun facts and news updates about the Vegas money man as well as a petition. And if you’re in the office, maybe throw some headphones on if you’re going to view the clip.

Update: Sources familiar with the matter tell us that Droga5 was NOT involved with this particular effort.

Update 2: This efforts heralds the launch of the aforementioned Schlep Labs, which was created for individuals to post their ideas for mobilizing Jewish voters on behalf of President Obama. The Labs comes with a Tumblr site and a not-so-Romney-friendly original song.

McKinney Takes a Stand Against Amendment One

It looks like North Carolina’s controversial Amendment One, which goes up for vote Tuesday, May 8 and is aimed at banning same-sex marriage, is provoking plenty of agency reaction in the “Old North State.” We already mentioned one Winston-Salem shop’s efforts to encourage NC residents to vote against the proposed amendment, and now The Pitch stars at Durham, NC’s McKinney are getting involved in the action by launching their own initiative called “Vote Against One.”

A few staffers including McKinney CCO Jonathan Cude and GCD Ellen Steinberg have launched the “Vote Against” campaign as part of the agency’s Ten Percent program, which encourages employees to devote 10 percent of their time on projects unrelated to client business. Anyhow, the folks involved came up with a series of printable images which reflect their view that Amendment One also “steals legal protection from children, seniors and victims of domestic violence.” You can check out credits and a few larger images after the jump to get an idea and visit the Vote Against One site if interested.

Read more

Portland Mayoral Candidate Releases ‘Portlandia’-Themed Political Ad

From Portland-based prodco Mmmmm Society comes “Put a Job On It,” a new political ad for Portland mayoral candidate, Eileen Brady.

As fans of IFC’s breakout hit Portlandia will note, the spot borrows heavily from the style and tone of the satirical TV show, with Brady walking optimistically down the streets of the Rose City accompanied by younger-looking facsimiles of comedic stars Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein. It seems that while the dream of the 90s may be alive in the hipster haven of the Northwest, young professionals who move to the city for its vegan-friendly, craft brewery heavy, bicycle-loving environs are being devastated by a difficult job market. Yes, there are only so many Fair Trade coffee houses in the city that need tattooed, Sleater-Kinney fanatic barisitas. So, the Brady campaign is focusing on job creation, borrowing its title from one of Portlandia’s most-beloved skits, “Put a Bird on It.”

According to a press release, the spot was produced as a donation in association with members of Portland’s thriving film and television industry. Of course it was. Brady says in a statement, “I’m honored to have been supported by the incredible talents of Mmmmm Society’s Michele Carnes Ellis and an amazing team…assembled on a collaboration with my campaign team. Their creativity was only matched by their professionalism, dedication and attention to detail.” Well, we’ll see what percentage of the bohemian vote she receives come election time, when Brady will face off against 22 other quirky, eccentric candidates. Seriously, Portland. What the hell. Credits after the jump.

Read more

And Now, Your Clint/Chrysler/Obama Mashup

Well, this probably won’t diffuse any anger felt by those who are accusing W+K, Clint Eastwood and Chrysler for sending out a pro-Obama message in their Super Bowl ad (which is now live again, by the way). But here’s a little clip that’s being dubbed as an “alternate version” of the official big game spot, the latter of which Eastwood has recently defended, claiming there’s no spin to be had in his “Halftime.” But as you’ll see, we can’t say the same for this quick mash-up, which makes its message loud and clear by the end. Did you think the original had an Obama bias or was it “apolitical” as Eastwood claims? Or should we just discontinue the conversation altogether and let the ad be?

SS+K, B-Reel Launch New AFL-CIO Site

Credit Stephen Colbert for bringing the term “Super PAC”  to the public’s attention during this election season. If you aren’t a regular viewer of the Colbert Report, see the work paid for by the Super PAC known as Americans for a Better Tomorrow Tomorrow by watching this political ad for Herman Cain, a man who’s such a Washington outsider that “he’s not even running for president.”

Of course, in reality (aka not the South Carolina Primary), big name Super PACs like the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) are in the midst of gussying themselves up for this election. As the AFL-CIO’s main focus is on workers’ rights, its new “Work Connects Us All” campaign from SS+K seeks to reach out to those in a variety industries where AFL-CIO’s work may not be readily apparent. For the slick new site, SS+K partnered with production co. B-Reel to make the project come to life, who’s NYC Executive Producer Max Ahlborn speaks favorably of AFL-CIO’s mission.

He says in a statement, “In Sweden, where I am from, unions have traditionally played a very prominent role building the society from ground up and are currently facing a lot of the same issues as unions of the 2000’s do in the US. They all are in need of changing the public perception of them from being just against policy to being for an equal, just, modern and progressive society. By adding some positivity and forward-thinking, this website is a strong step forward.”

Visit WorkConnectsUsAll.org, compare it to AFL-CIO’s current site for a laugh, and view credits after the jump.

Read more

<< PREVIOUS PAGENEXT PAGE >>