PRNewser FishbowlNY FishbowlDC GalleyCat TVNewser TVSpy LostRemote SocialTimes

Archives: October 2009

Friday Odds and Ends

-Axe now sponsors NYC street musicians. link

-Razorfish appointed Barbara Ward Thall as MD, Media and Marketing, Domenic Venuto as MD, Client Solutions and Missy Foristall as MD, Experience and Platforms in its flagship NYC office. link

-Hill & Knowlton was selected as the official media sponsor for the UN Conference on Climate Change. link

-DDB Sydney snagged Publicis Mojo alums Steve Wakelam and Grant McAloon for group creative head roles. link

-Brooklyn-based interactive agency Huge named Initiative alum Tom Siebert as director of communications, while Tessa Barrera was named media strategist. link

-Yahoo and Microsoft missed their Oct. 27th deal deadline. link

-WPP’s Mediaedge:cia won Agency of the Year honors at the Media Week Awards. link

-Billy Mays tops the list of brand spokesman costumes for Halloween. Chris Farley apparently wasn’t in the running. link

-What are the 50 hottest brands on Twitter? link

-Lexus will sponsor in-flight WiFi on American Airlines during the first week of November. link

-Happy Halloween, folks!

More: “Thursday Odds and Ends

Mediabistro Course

Copywriting: Creative Ad Writing

Copywriting: Creative Ad WritingWork with a freelance copywriter to build your advertising portfolio and land more copywriting jobs! Starting January 12, Kim Taylor will teach you how to make a complete ad using graphics and photos, write strong headlines and body copy for various advertising media, work from a creative brief, and jumpstart your ad portfolio. Register now!

Royito’s in Miniature


Remember how GSD&M’s Roy Spence is opening a taco air stream, and plans to call it Royito’s? Some GSD&M staffers made this pumpkin to commemorate the…thing. Thanks, agency people.

More:Guacamole, Salsa, Diesel & Mas (Salsa): GSD&M’s Gettin’ a Taco Truck

Utah McDonald’s Calls Cops on for Teens Rapping Their Order

AdFreak found a story about a Utah McDonald’s that called the police after teens rapped their order (impressive!) just like they do in them commercials. Apparently, the McDonald’s employee was unnerved by the teens’ behavior, and they were subsequently cited with disorderly conduct. Um, yeah.

Via AdFreak

More:McDonald’s Loses Trademark Case Against Small Malaysian Restaurant

Storm Trooper Practical Pranks

It’s nearly Halloween, and Minneapolis’ Pinnacle Services played a prank on some staffers. Send us your fun stuff at agencyspy at mediabistro dot com.

OpEd: Esquire’s Augmented Reality Misses the Point


Yesterday, the Wall Street Journal published a story about Esquire magazine’s use of Augmented Reality on the cover and within ad pages. California based Zugara is a company that during the last few months has modified part of its business to include Augmented Reality (with a purpose) in its offerings. Here, Zugara’s Jack Benoff, digs into the issue.

What’s the buzzword du jour?

It’s the buzzword of the day…

Mmmmmm that does sound good. I think I’ll have that.

So, as most of you are aware, the buzzword du jour is actually Facebook Apps Twitter “Augmented Reality” (AR). And this week, a Wall Street Journal article regarding Esquire Magazine’s use of AR in an upcoming issue was getting passed around. In essence, they are taking what Popular Science and GE did this past summer and attempting to turn it up a notch by integrating several interactive videos as well as an ad from Lexus.

I applaud Esquire for the effort, for getting their hands dirty. It’s no secret that the print industry (like the music and movie industries) is getting absolutely turned on its head thanks to the digital landscape and consumer media consumption habits. They have to try something to garner interest and maintain revenues. I don’t think that this is going to help out their January sales, but maybe December’s will see a bump. And to be honest, their execution and the subsequent WSJ article is for the most part par for the course if you follow the AR space. But there are two elements of this article that I felt compelled to weigh in on, here’s the first: “It is a gimmick, but we’re an entertainment medium,” says editor-in-chief David Granger.

Now, this is a first. Someone had the stones to admit that their execution is gimmicky, let alone be proud of it. So kudos for that but let me say this: AR doesn’t have to be a gimmick. In fact, it shouldn’t be. Your executions should be providing real value to the people that read your magazines and buy your goods your consumers. Now, I’m not saying that the “value” provided can’t be entertainment in nature, but I am saying that it should provide value outside of what a person can already do in their browser. Otherwise, why put the barrier of needing a webcam between a person and your content/offering? All you’re really doing is giving people a more complicated user interface.

Of course it’s easy to sit here and rip on someone else’s work without providing any real value, so here’s an idea: what if Esquire’s “fashion spread” allowed people to overlay images of an article of clothing on themselves ( for example ties) so that they could match (or in my case, learn how to match) them with their existing wardrobe. Editorial content could provide tips, tricks and insights. Now, that might provide some real value to consumers looking to make a purchase (not to mention the brands that sell those articles of clothing) and would be an execution that could be updated and utilized all year long (that is, Esquire could sell the space to various retailers each and every season).

Now, on to the second item that I wanted to address:

“Mr. Nordstrom says that Lexus could do AR ads in other places but that consumers have to download a piece of software to make the technology work.”

People do not like downloads. It’s just another barrier between them and your content, and people will drop off. Now, I don’t want to get too techy, but if you are advising a client to do an online AR execution you should seriously consider building it in Flash (at the very least, you should have a compelling reason why Flash is not the proper solution). Flash 10 has a 93.5% penetration rate (Flash 9 is at 99.6%) in mature markets, and Flash development is relatively fast and cheap.When you throw on the consumer benefit of no downloads, it becomes a pretty compelling solution. Now, the counterargument may be that Flash does not allow for the sort of rich 3-D image modeling that a proprietary plug-in will allow for (I’d argue that it doesn’t matter how beautiful the image/asset is if people aren’t seeing it, but that’s just one man’s opinion). Well, that’s all about to change in 2010 when Flash 10.1 hits the streets.

So, what do you think (note to trolls: please keep the ripping of my grammar and spelling to a minimum)? What are some of your favorite AR executions? How do you wish the technology was being used? Would you be willing to download a proprietary plug-in to experience an AR execution you’ve never seen before?

If you want to take this conversation to twitter, you can find me at

Lee Clow’s “Not Going Anywhere”


Our previous post about Duncan Milner‘s promotion to CCO at TBWA\Media Arts Lab led some commenters to surmise that Lee Clow was “stepping down” or “quietly stepping away.”

As a result, Clow sent a letter to staffers which we’ve obtained where he says he’s “not going anywhere”, adding “look at how the blogosphere decided to make it a conversation about me.” First off, we didn’t make it about him; we believe we reported a story accurately that focused on Milner. Second, we don’t speak for our commenters and vice versa, so let’s keep it at that. Anyways, if you care to read his brief internal opus, it’s after the jump.

More: “We Hear: Lee Clow’s Had Enough

Read more

Just Because We Can, Werewolf Bar Mitzvah

EMBED-Werewolf Bar Mitzvah Full Video – Watch more free videos

Mazel tov everyone. Tomorrow you’ll don your finest slutty-garments/ball-forming-pants in hopes of getting some fright-night action. May we recommend the bumble bee costume at Abracadabra on West 21st &#151 you won’t regret it (unless you regret it). Meantime, get in the spirit with this classic Tracy Jordan mashup, “Werewolf Bar Mitzvah”, which has words like “Frankenstein” and “zombie” in it, but is in no way related to advertising. Sue me.

More:Submit Your Halloween Crap

United Song Guy Still Can’t Catch a Break

The ballad of David Carroll strums on as the Canadian musician’s tussle with United Airlines, which resulted in his “United Breaks Guitars” YouTube smash, is still biting him in the ass.

The New York Times offered a little follow-up on Carroll’s life these days, and from the looks of it, history’s repeating itself. Carroll tells the NYT that the airline lost his bag on Sunday, in turn telling him to wait over an hour at Denver International Airport so he could be present when the “delayed” luggage came down the conveyor belt. And as you guessed, the bag was MIA, causing yet another United apology. “We will fully investigate what regretfully happened,” a spokeswoman said.

Though he was finally reunited with bag on Wednesday, why does Carroll keep taking United? Songwriting inspiration perhaps? Free rides? Whatever the case, we’ll likely have United opus #3 to look forward to.

More: “United Airlines’ Favorite Customer to Release Follow-Up Tune

Reebok Gets in on the Butt Game

Shoes that make your butt look great are like elephants that eat gadflies in July. Awesome. In this ad, the gadflies zip around so fast, men get erections.

I don’t even know what I’m saying anymore.

Via AdFreak

More:Reebok Drops McGarryBowen for DDB Worldwide

Friday’s Illegal Ad: It’s Getting Hot in Herrre

It’s good to know our supermodels are willing to show us their benevolent side and uh, other sides as well to encourage climate action. The striptease above is part of a campaign spearheaded by, an activist group that launched an International Day of Climate Action on October 24th. Their goal is to push world leaders to come to an agreement on a carbon emissions treaty when they meet at the UN Climate talks in Copenhagen in December.

The 350 name comes from what scientists say is the safe upper limit for carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Right now, we’re at 390, so hopefully some decrease in clothing translates into some decrease in co2. Got it.


More: “Swine Flu is Also Sex-Mittable