PRNewser FishbowlNY FishbowlDC GalleyCat TVNewser TVSpy LostRemote SocialTimes

Political

The Electoral Process Now Comes Down to Chewing Gum

For those of you who are somehow still undecided on who to vote for this Election Day, perhaps Stefan Haverkamp can make things easier for you. The New York-based Miami Ad School teacher and JWT/MRM alum, who’s given us everything from webcam stalker films to 9/11 memorials over the years, is back with another installment of “Gum Election.”

The video above should give you the gist of the street art project, which Haverkamp initially launched in 2008 as a way of not only encouraging people to vote, but making the streets cleaner in the process. Hell, with less than two weeks  left before we determine our 45th president, perhaps a stick of Juicy Fruit, Big Red or whatever it is you chew is the best way of proving that democracy really can work.

Credits:

Stefan Haverkamp: Creator/ Creative
James Cooper: Creator/ Creative
Hedvig Astrom: Creative

‘Beard-Selling’ Creative Offers Dating Services for Liberals, Conservatives

While JetBlue is capitalizing on the Election Day hype with its “Election Protection” program, which awards free flights depending on which candidate wins, JD Beebe is doing his part on a, shall we say, more intimate scale via two dating sites. Beebe, who you may remember from his beard-selling venture or “Grab Some Goodby” effort, has launched both RedStateDate.com and BlueStateDate.com, which perhaps go to show that someone’s politics do play a big role in determining whether they’re right for you.

Yes, folks, these are legit dating sites, and Beebe and his team are currently offering an election special: sign up for a premium account on your preferred site before Election Day and if your candidate, you get the next four years free. That should give you plenty of time to find your perfect political soulmate or switch parties, whatever works. Even if you don’t care to take part, the exaggerated promo clips above and below to promote the sites might give you a few chuckles.

Florida Art Director Can’t Decide Who to Vote For, Solicits Twitter Help

Hey, after the 2000 election calamity and being a native Floridian myself, this is not the worst idea we’ve seen. Folks, meet Jordan Rich, a Miami-based art director–sorry, “art director for hire”–who’s served as an art directing intern at the likes of Jung von Matt and Ogilvy. Anyhow, Rich is in a bit of a pickle as he can’t decide who to vote for this year. So, in this day and age, where else does one turn to for guidance? You guessed it: Twitter. We’re not sure this is the best way of proving one’s not taking their vote lightly, but the indecisive chap is turning to tweeters worldwide anyhow to hit up @voteforjordan, tell him why he should vote one way or the other and then hashtag it #jordanvoteromney or #jordanvoteobama.

Surprisingly, Rich’s fairly ridiculous effort has received a fair amount of feedback (hey, it got our attention). Anyhow, the day before the election, Rich will check his absentee ballot whichever way social media tells him to. For all those who fought for “one man, one vote” over the years, our sincere apologies.

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

<< PREVIOUS PAGENEXT PAGE >>