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Education

Felons Create Powerful Brand Campaigns and PSAs through ‘Concepting with Convicts’

A good idea can come from anywhere.

That was the revelation that led two interns at DigitasLBi in San Francisco to utilize the prison pen pal system to startConcepting with Convicts,” a project that helps convicted felons tap into their creativity by designing campaigns for major brands and PSAs.

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Inspired by powerful pieces of art made by felons, Ben Pfutzenreuter and Pat Davis, with the help Marcus Lof, sent hundreds of emails through prison pen pal websites seeking people who might be interested in the project. “We realized that if we could contact convicts themselves, maybe we could also show them that their creative talents can translate into a real career on the outside,” Davis told PSFK.

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Texas School Pays $77K for Kicking a Student’s Behind Out of the Closet to Her Mother

dont_mess_with_gay_texasIn 2009, a beatnik school district in east Texas committed a social faux-pas. In fact, the egregiousness of this redneck, knee-jerk, the-village-just-found-its-missing-idiot debacle cost Kilgore ISD more than $77,000. Why?

According to the Longview News-Journal, young softball player Skye Wyatt was confronted by two coaches and accused of a lesbian relationship. She denies it because she had a call from the united sisterhood of its none of their damn business. To wit, they called her mother to inform her that her daughter was gay.

Because that’s being a good teacher. Right? The following year, Skye files a lawsuit.

“It’s the worst bullying I’ve ever seen,” says attorney Paula Hinton, who represented Skye pro bono along with Jennifer Doan and the Texas Civil Rights Project. ”Not only has this girl been outed to her mother and thrown off the softball team where she was a great player, the school organizes this ‘mean girls style attack’ and submits these horrible affidavits.”

So, Kilgore ISD got its Lone Star behind handed to them. In addition to getting spanked for 77 LARGE, the district will institute training sessions for employees, as well as updating its handbooks to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation more clearly.

Still no word on the neck discoloration — all that red and stuff.

Sigma Alpha Epsilon Removes Hazing Because Death Hurts Rush Week

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Ironic this resembles a Mausoleum, no?

Sigma Alpha Epsilon has encounter a string of terrible PR in the form of hazing stories taking a turn for the morbid. In fact, since 2006 (as Bloomberg reports) it has killed more rush members than any other fraternity because of hazing and a slew of idiots at the helm.

I understand hazing. I’ve been hazed. However, not once, did I feel like I was going to die. And if I did, I’d would have endured with the mean mugs on campus. At least, I’m living to tell about it.

Given this horrible news at the hands of said fraternity, whose tagline is “Be True,” has decided to do just that. And so, they have banned hazing forever (supposedly).

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STUDY: People Can’t Use Twitter Without the Eff Bomb

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Birds of a feather @#$& together. 

WARNING: If you have a client interested in social media, you may want to turn your head. Better yet, turn your client’s head because twits can’t be trusted unless you are looking for the best George Carlin, Richard Pryor or Eddie Murphy impressions.

According to a recent study by Fast Co. Exist, one of out every 13 tweets involves a curse word. After examining a random one-month sample of 51 million English-language tweets from 14 million distinct user accounts, they came up with this conclusion: We curse a lot on Twitter, where our language is usually public, even more than we do in real life.

After the jump, we’ll offer some informative but NSFW charts, so if you’re the squeamish type then you might want to #$%* off.

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You Thought California Was Bad? Imagine Six of Them.

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Welcome to the Golden States?! 

The idea to slice and dice California is not a fleeting one. Instead, it’s more like the fart in the elevator — you know it stinks but you can’t detect the source. That’s this, except now, we have a face to the fart eh, idea.

Meet Tim Draper

He’s a Silicon Valley venture capitalist who invested in a few mediocre start-ups like Hotmail and Skype. So, if you need to bum a few bucks, he’s your huckleberry. While the idea to create six separate states out of California sounds asinine, to those living in the state, it may be an epiphany and a solution.

Here’s how…

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Goldman Sachs Brings Sexist Back at Women’s Coding Event

GS codingLast week, Harvard University (please say that with your nose in the air) held a conference for some pretty smart women of the world — Women Engineer Code. At said WECode event, Goldman Sachs stepped in for the key sponsorship.

Its savvy idea for swag would be a compact mirror and nail files. Keep it classy, GS.

According to the story in the New York TimesGoldman Sachs also provided these blossoming 13-year-old girls (I guess by the nature of the gift), T-shirts and key chains to hold earbuds. The event’s organizers “encouraged Goldman Sachs to bring goodies that would appeal to a female audience.”

And that was the selection. What misogynistic dinosaur made that decision?

“We are strong supporters of efforts to recruit and retain women in technology. We apologize if the gifts gave anyone offense,” a Goldman Sachs spokeswoman said in a statement to the Times.

Keep telling yourselves that, GS.

Agency Asks Aspiring Creatives for 10-Second Pitches via Snapchat: The Job Interview for the Twitter Generation?

The Snapchat PitchKids these days. All they do is take selfies and share ridiculous, self-made videos on Snapchat. How will they ever amount to anything?

Why, by sharing ridiculous self-made videos on Snapchat, of course!

DDB Oslo is inviting students from around the globe to share their creative genius (and penchant for brevity) with the agency’s “Snapchat Pitch” campaign. “Great ideas can be explained in a sentence,” says the contest’s website, which urges aspiring creatives to squeeze an epic idea into a ten-second masterpiece.

DDB Oslo’s creative department will then watch every single ten-second pitch (weed out the inevitable porn, pranks and pet videos), and select a grand prize winner, who will be flown to Oslo for an interview.

No need for an impressive portfolio and a multi-year struggle to become the next Peggy Olson! All you need is a rockin’ idea, a smartphone, and ten awesomeness-packed seconds (if that sounded like a gross pickup line, it wasn’t our intention). Read more

Disney Withdraws from Pro-Fracking Elementary School Tour

n-ROCKING-IN-OHIO-large570Upon hearing that Disney was bringing an educational program to Ohio elementary schools, a few possibilities of what the program might look like came to mind: Princesses preaching the power of love? Talking animals touting the importance of friendship? Nope; this was three representatives from Radio Disney explaining the importance and benefits of the controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing (fracking).

Last month, a program called Rocking in Ohio, which was led by three Radio Disney staffers and entirely funded by the Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program (a lobbying group paid for by oil and gas companies), performed a series of events at 26 elementary schools across the state, educating students about the process and benefits of fracking.

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School Named After KKK Leader Gets Expelled … Finally

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And yes, the school’s theme song was “Rebel Yell.” Classy.

In case you haven’t noticed your calendar in the last, say … century … it’s 2013.

A year known to many as high-tech and carefree, love for all mankind, accepting of just about anything. Back a couple of years ago, say … 153 of them … people were different. You see, there were these backward-ass country bumpkins who thought certain folk should be subservient to others based on how they looked.

It’s a long story but I’ll paraphrase: These inbred hicks revolted and caused a big stink. Many other more civil-thinking people fought for an end of this depraved mentality, and then this guy named Abe who sported this righteous beard told those innocent people to go find their own home. Something about a proclamation or some such. (See there, PBS? And you didn’t want to hire me to do voice-over work.)

So, why discuss the difference in years? Here’s whyRead more

STUDY: Abstaining from Alcohol Will Cause Premature Death

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Yeah, that’s what I thought as well.

I began searching for “paid by the same cats that brought you Jack Daniels distillery,” but what I found was enough to make a hobo stand up and shout “Amen!”

This study was conducted by psychologist Charles Holahan of the University of Texas at Austin. While that sounds impressive, a clinical psychologist smoking a fru-fru pipe standing in his white jacket and smart inscription “Charles Holahan, M.D.” I used my hack-turned-flack journalist Spidey Sense to ascertain something that was rather fishy.

The study 20 years in the making after the jump…

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