Monday, March 31, 2008

Google Me, Baby

My head hurts. I wonder if there are any known cases of trauma caused by severe brow furrowing.

When I first heard Teyana Taylor's "Google Me," I thought I was having one of those post-snowboarding hallucinations driving down from upstate NY. But then I came across a press release sitting in my inbox a few days later. Yes, this is for real. And yes, this is the same poor little rich girl who had her lavish sweet 16 featured on MTV's hit show, Sweet 16.

Like it or not, lyrics like, "I'm certified on the internet than anybody" and, "Put it in your search engine / Teyana Princess of Harlem" are a testament to the internet's hold on pop culture. But that doesn't make it any less laughable. Next thing you know, "R-S-S my A-S-S" or "Friend Me on Facebook" will be hitting the airwaves.

And how about Google? Was Teyana's use of their trademark kosher? Referring to the Google Permissions guidelines, I would think that "Google Me, Baby" somehow violates their stipulations against incorporating, "Google Brand Features into your own product name, service names, trademarks, logos, or company names" or "[using] Google trademarks in a way that suggests a common, descriptive, or generic meaning." If, by some miracle, Teyana's album hits platinum, does she then owe the search giant some royalties?

I'm contacting Teyana's publicist to see if I can secure an interview with the internet star, before she's well out of my orbit.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

T&A: Web's Big Biz

You may have noticed the increased presence of T&A on my blog. Besides it being my childish attempt to draw more traffic, I'm sincerely intrigued by the way the basest content is often the most powerful force on the web. (Remember when NY Mag's site crashed when they released nude photos of Lindsay Lohan?)
Now, I'm no pervert. In fact, I made it my life's goal to banish a Girl of the Month section from one of my company's websites (see above). Every 4 weeks, we publish photos of the latest lucky gal--usually scantily clad, heavily siliconed and shamelessly airbrushed porn stars. Ugh.

Every month, I'd scream at my boss and coworkers, sending endless emails lobbying to get rid of this feature. I even went so far as to bash one of the more portly subjects in our own publication, calling her a "human sausage casing."

That is until I saw our Google analytics report

According those fancy numbers, the Girls of the Month was actually the sixth most popular landing page on our site. SIXTH! Namely because we have partnerships with other blogs and websites that have XML feeds from our homepage. But still, if that was enough to draw over 65,000 pageviews in one month, then I'm on board the T&A Express. At least for now...

How Is My Dancing Menstruating Man Not a Viral Video?

I may not be an expert in the absurd, but I know funny when I see it. How can this drag queen wearing a flashlight bra with crimson blood oozing down his/her leg NOT be a YouTube hit? His/her dance moves alone are worth cutting and pasting into a blog. Which I did:

I love it when crazy comes out to play. And on Halloween night, crazy took the form of a middle-aged white man with limited coordination at Susanne Bartsch’s Witches' Bordello party at Limelight. Sweaty and out of breath, he ran up to the velvet rope and started to assemble his costume OUTSIDE the club. First he strips naked, then he pulls out some fake blood from a Duane Reade bag which he pours down his inner thigh like period juice. Next up, he slaps 2 stick-on flashlights onto his chest, glues a red square on his crotch beforing running his bare bottom inside. And that’s not the end of it. Turns out my new hero grabbed front-n’-center on stage to show off his, well… look at the video and see...

Last October, when I took the above video, I was 100% sure I was going to be the next YouTube viral meme. What's a meme? According to Wikipedia, it's any unit of information that gets passed on from one mind to another--think of it as a cultural gene. Tay Zonday's Chocolate Rain was a meme, as was Miss Teen South Carolina's map/the Iraq/South Africa hiccup and the "Don't Tase Me Bro" kid. But what are the qualities that launch these videos into internet stardom? And why isn't my menstruating man cutting it?

If I go by YouTube viral video blogger Kevin Nalty's 10 Tips for a “Viral Video” Hail Mary, then I'd need at least $250,000. And boobs. And possibly MC Hammer. But Nalty's tips are geared towards marketers looking to mine the YouTube world to push a product/brand. I just want people to watch my video for fun. I'm not trying to manufacture a hit, I want success to come organically--that's much more satisfying.

In the next few weeks, I'll be carrying around my trusty camera to pick up any freakishly funny memes in the making. Be on the lookout.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Prediction: Spitzer's "Kristen" to Be the Next Paris Hilton

Ashley Dupre is well on her way to being the next icon of worthlessness. For years, all she ever wanted to do was be famous (albeit, as a singer); she'd be a dolt not to take the cheap opportunity in front of her. From boinking the governor, to dancing topless in a Girls Gone Wild video, Ashley has pelvic thrusted her way into infamy. All Paris had to do was, um, nothing really.

These are my predictions for Ms. Dupre's soon-to-be-shortlived media career:

1) Hosting Parties at Clubs
Move over Kim Kardashian and Kevin Federline--"Kristen" is the next nobody to hit the club circuit. Watch as she hosts Fourth of July at LAX Las Vegas or rings in the New Year 2009 as Mansion New York's "celebrity" guest. Wait, what am I saying? She's from the Jersey Shore! This summer will undoubtedly see a dozen Hamptons parties with her face splashed across flyers.

2) A Spread in Playboy
Despite the lack of silicone and platinum highlights, I'm sure Hef will pounce at the chance to feature Client #9's #1 in his magazine. If he considered Ginger Spice and, ugh, WWF's Chyna sex symbols, Ashley is a shoe-in.

3) Sex Tape Leak
If Joe Francis has one, I'm sure any one of Ashley's former boyfriends/lovers/Johns does, too. Here's a girl who's not shy in front of the cameras, has obvious daddy issues, and HAS HAD SEX FOR MONEY. To all the Vinnys, Tonys and Sals out in the Tri-State Area, please feel around under your mattress for that sticky homemade video and get this over with already.

4) Reality Dating Show
Flava Flav cornered the nasty hoodrat market, while Tila Tequila has all the desperate frat boys and lipstick lesbians on lock. But how about "Working Girls Need Love, Too?" Set in New York, the show whittles down Fortune 500 bachelors who are willing to shell out $4000 a day for their new lady love. Forget Washington DC, these barons will whisk Ms. Ashley away to Capri or Dubai for a weekend in an all-out battle for her hand.

5) Signature Fashion Line
I'm thinking a signature line of Uggs, bikinis or sunglasses. Or maybe even her own flip-open Motorola--they'll give anyone their own phone.

6) Recording Contract
Even if all the above fail, this is by far the most probable scenario. Scott Storch is going to snatch Ashley up, lay some over-synthed vocoder crap over her already crappy voice and make a hit even catchier than Paris' "Stars Are Blind" or Britney's "Piece of Me." As soon as I get my second turntable, I'll be the first to do the remix!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Spitz'er Swallows?

Gotta hand it to the ad community, and New Yorkers, for their lightning-fast funny bone reflexes during this whole Spitzer-banging-whores debacle. You can't blame them--there are far too many ingredients making this ripe for a hit sitcom. Forget the GEICO cavemen.

Even Virgin Mobile in Canada jumped at the chance to exploit the Gov of Love's "Client #9" John codename (see below).

The copy goes on to read:

"When you call us, we'll treat you like a person, not a client.
Whether you're #9 pr #900, you'll get hooked up with someone who'll finally
treat you just ow you want to be treated..."

Oooooh. Good one. [Via adrants]

But New York Shitty spotted some homegrown humor at the Brooklyn bar, Teddy's. Would you rather throw back a Spitzer Spritzer or Hypocrite's Delight?

But in the end, the best humor comes from real life:

Monday, March 3, 2008

3M Privacy at the Urinal

It always amazes me how ubiquitous advertising is in other countries. The British have no qualms about text-messaging numbers off billboards and Brazillians will gladly give up lingual real estate for a free piercing and 15 minutes of internet fame. Even urinals and restrooms are are longtime stomping grounds for advertisers looking for a captive audience. Urinal cakes will proudly display your logo, back-of-door posters deliver your message to seat dwellers, and there are even interactive games you can play with your pee!

No wonder why 3M in Turkey is now jumping on the bathroom bandwagon. To advertise laptop screen filters, they're using the actual material on ads placed in front of individual urinals. In doing so they demonstrate how neighbors next you can't see what's on your screen and vice versa. The message on the ad is as follows:

"This display is protected by 3M Privacy Filters. The person standing next
to you can't see what's written on here. Use 3M Privacy Filters to protect your
information from prying eyes."
Good idea. Bad copy. They should have given each screen its own quirky, slightly perverse message. It's advertising on a urinal, for God's sakes.

[Via Adverbox]

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Genius! Juice Salon Escalator Ad

A creative take on floor graphics, Juice Salon in India takes advantage of the escalator’s shuffling real estate to demonstrate the variety of haircuts they can deliver. The execution is simple: a static head at the bottom of the escalator meets a series of different hairstyles with every descending step, and each head-hair combination is a perfect match.

Advertising on escalators isn’t new by far. Heck, there’s companies dedicated to the job ( But for the most part, traditional escalator ads are the same graphic repeated over and over again—something consumers are used to channeling out. Juicy Salon's ad is a clever idea, conceived by Rediffusion DY&R of India, is hands down a genius one, but one that will have to undoubtedly be switched up and one-upped in later executions.

Seeing this now, I can totally see how marketers could use this existing medium for other projects. How about a cosmetic brand (same nose and mouth, different eye makeup looks), the ASPCA (same boy at bottom, different dogs and cats) or even a dating site (girl at bottom gets matched up with different guys on each step)? The possibilities are endless.

[Via Ads of the World]

Advertasting: Tongue Ring Ads in Brazil

It's one thing to say you like the taste of the new Coke Zero, it's another to brand that opinion on your tastebuds. According to Adrants, Coca-cola is pioneering the world of "advertasting," in other words, they're working with tattoo and piercing parlors in Brazil to give away free piercings to those who pose for the camera with Coke-Zero-branded tongue rings.

All the pics are then uploaded to a Google PicasaWeb gallery, directed from Interesting that Coke chose to upload their images to a Google gallery rather than host it off their own site, but it remains to be seen what the end purpose of these images will be. Still, I fail to see the effectiveness of this campaign apart from generating buzz. But wouldn't said buzz be built from the particpants agreeing to wear their Coke Zero piercings beyond their photo shoot?