Coca-Cola, Ford, Starbucks et al Halt Ad Spending on ‘All’ Social Media Platforms

In 2018, Coca-Cola launched #RefreshtheFeed giving its social media accounts a complete factory reset. Coca-Cola’s new social strategy was “rooted in optimism, uplift, and connection.” Now the beverage icon is going to pause paid and organic posts on all social media platforms globally for at least 30 days, effective July 1. Chairman and CEO, James Quincey, […]

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More than 100 Companies Stop Advertising on Facebook (Sort Of)

Hit pause on hate. That’s the call-to-action issued on June 17, by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL. Their new Stop Hate for Profit campaign asks businesses to suspend advertising on Facebook’s services during July. The campaign’s partners, including Color of Change, Common Sense, Free Press, and Sleeping […]

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You Can Check In To Holiday Inn, But You Can Never Leave

Retirement doesn’t come cheap if it comes at all. Almost half of Americans — 49 percent — cite running out of money as their chief retirement concern, with another 44 percent citing declining health, according to a new report from the Aegon Center for Longevity, Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies and Instituto de Longevidade Mongeral […]

Twitter To World: Political Message Reach Should Be Earned, Not Bought

Jack Dorsey, co-founder and CEO of @Twitter, and founder and CEO of Square, made some interesting Tweets today to announce Twitter’s new policy that bans all political advertising from the platform. We’ve made the decision to stop all political advertising on Twitter globally. We believe political message reach should be earned, not bought. Why? A […]

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Mark Is Responsible. Mark Is Irresponsible.

Mark Zuckerberg testified, a.k.a. whined a lot, in front of Congress this week. U.S. Representative Katie Porter from California, a law professor and graduate of Harvard Law, cross-examined the witness. She asked Mark if he cares about privacy as he claims to do, why is he arguing in federal court that consumers can’t hold  Facebook […]

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Facebook’s Rogue Founder, Chris Hughes, Funds Anti-Monopoly Efforts

Do you know Mark? Mark knows you. Do you know who does know, Mark? Chris Hughes knows Mark. Hughes was there along with fellow Harvard undergrads Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, and Dustin Moskovitz when Facebook was founded in 2004. Incidentally, Adpulp was founded a few months later that same year. Because Hughes knows Mark, Hushes […]

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Facebook Blows Technicolor Chunks

Facebook blows technicolor chunks. Let’s count off a few of the leading reasons for the giant suck. Facebook lies about its traffic, inflating their numbers by 900% in some cases. Facebook allows politicians (and Russian agents) to run paid lies on its platform. Facebook is the world’s largest excuses factory. The San Jose Mercury News […]

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Volvo wants you to take a car selfie, for safety. #SelfieforSafety Wait, what?

You may think it’s a little weird that Volvo is asking to see your selfies. but they actually do have a plan. They design their cars around real people and real behaviour, so they need to see real people and real behaviour. Asking selfie-taking people to simply tag them when they are already taking a selfie while sitting in a (parked) car is a good way to learn how people are actually sitting in their cars, and how they are wearing their safety belts.

take a selfie when you are wearing your seatbelt and tag it #selfieforsafety on any social media platform

I suppose this is a new twist on the old “tag us on social media” ploy, which we have seen plenty of times before. This is market research under another name and with a bonafide Doctor at the helm of the research, we might see some interesting insight come out of the analysis. 

”The amount, the range and the diversity of data that we can gather via this approach is very difficult to replicate elsewhere.”

says Dr. Lotta Jakobsson, senior technical specialist at Volvo Cars Safety Centre.

 

“The Selfie For Safety initiative uses the selfie, but in an unselfish way. From The E.V.A. Initiative we saw that people wanted to join the conversation about safety and equality. We are now taking it a step further by inviting everyone to contribute. Once again it’s been possible thanks to our close relationship with Volvo Cars”, said Hampus Elfström, creative at the Forsman & Bodenfors office in Gothenburg, Sweden.
 

The final report from Volvo Cars is expected in late 2019. The results will be made publicly available for the whole automotive industry on the E.V.A. Initiative website.

Advertiser: Volvo Car Corporation
Client: Auste Skrupskyte, Dominique Amkell Client Supervisor:
Adress Client:
E-mail Client: auste.skrupskyte@volvocars.com, dominique.amkell@volvocars.com
Phone Client:
Year: 2019
Airdate: September 2, 2019

Agency: Forsman & Bodenfors
Art Directors: Karl Risenfors, Leo Dahl, Sophia Lindholm Copywriters: Hampus Elfstro?m,
Account Supervisor: Magnus Wretblad
Account Executive: Katarina Klofsten
Agency Producer:
Music Supervisor:
PR: Bjarne Darwall
Planner: Trine Keller-Andreasen
Digital Strategist: Sara Bjo?rnung
Web Design: F&B Inhouse
Artwork: Martin Joelsson, Christian Sunde?n

Media Agency: Mindshare

FILM:
Title: SelfieForSafety
Director: Marcus Ibanez
Producer: Dea Saracevic
Production Company: New Land
D.O.P: Jake Hunter
Executive Producer: Sophie Tamm Christensen Online: Chimney
Online Post-Producer: Moa Looft @ Chimney

STILLS:
Photographer: Therese O?hrvall

MUSIC

Composition: Pierre Riddez
Performed by: Pierre Riddez
Master rights owned by: Pierre Riddez Publishing rights controlled by: Pierre Riddez

car

Move over Vantablack, MIT scientists create the blackest material ever, by accident. And then they coated a $2M diamond with it.

I may have said this before, but great news for Art Directors, designers and typographers – we can now get an even blacker turtleneck! I did say I am wearing black until I find something darker, and finally, an MIT scientist team has actually found something darker. Eeeek, I’ve been using this joke since at least 04* when they discovered the blackest of blacks, and again when Vantablack appeared.

Like the moody perfectionist creative types, scientists seem to have a thing for black. Because light-absorption has other applications, of course. This time, however, the scientists weren’t even looking for this, they stumbled on it by happy accident. The material, which is 10 times blacker than anything ever before reported, is made from carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and cuts out over 99.99% of light.
Postdoc Kehang Cui, now a professor at Shanghai Jiao Tong University, and his team were experimenting with different ways to create CNTs. These are extremely thin tubes of carbon that are strong and excellent conductors of heat and electricity, very useful stuff, but they ran into a problem. They found that a layer of oxide would coat the aluminium as soon as it was exposed to air, and this layer stopped it from conducting heat and electricity thus making it useless. To remove the oxide layer, Wardle and colleagues used salt to dissolve the layer.

That’s when he noticed how dark it got;

“I remember noticing how black it was before growing carbon nanotubes on it, and then after growth, it looked even darker,” Cui recalls. “So I thought I should measure the optical reflectance of the sample.”

Now, in collaboration with Brian Wardle, professor of aeronautics and astronautics at MIT, and his group they looked into this more, to create something new.

“Our group does not usually focus on optical properties of materials, but this work was going on at the same time as our art-science collaborations with Diemut, so art influenced science in this case,” says Wardle.

Wardle and Cui, who have applied for a patent on the technology, are making the new CNT process freely available to any artist to use for a noncommercial art project. 

Diemut Strebe is an artist-in-residence at the MIT Center for Art, Science, and Technology, and with this black in collaboration with Wardle and Cui, they coated a diamond with it.

The yellow diamond before and after coating with carbon nano-tubes. Image by Diemut Strebe

Not just any diamond. This work of art a 16.78-carat natural yellow diamond from LJ West Diamonds, estimated to be worth $2 million, which the team coated with the new, ultrablack CNT material. The effect is mind-blowing. The gem, normally brilliantly faceted and obviously 3D, now appears as a flat, black void.

The cloak-like material as part of a new exhibit today at the New York Stock Exchange, titled “The Redemption of Vanity.”

“Any object covered with this CNT material loses all its plasticity and appears entirely flat, abbreviated/reduced to a black silhouette. In outright contradiction to this we see that a diamond, while made of the very same element (carbon) performs the most intense reflection of light on earth. Because of the extremely high light absorbtive qualities of the CNTs, any object, in this case a large diamond coated with CNT’s, becomes a kind of black hole absent of shadows,“ explains Strebe. “The unification of extreme opposites in one object and the particular aesthetic features of the CNTs caught my imagination for this art project.” “Strebe’s art-science collaboration caused us to look at the optical properties of our new CNT growth, and we discovered that these particular CNTs are blacker than all other reported materials by an order of magnitude across the visible spectrum”, says Wardle. The MIT team is offering the process for any artist to use. “We do not believe in exclusive ownership of any material or idea for any artwork and have opened our method to any artist,” say Strebe and Wardle. “The project explores material and immaterial value attached to objects and concepts in reference to luxury, society and to art. We are presenting the literal devaluation of a diamond, which is highly symbolic and of high economic value. It presents a challenge to art market mechanisms on the one hand, while expressing at the same time questions of the value of art in a broader way. In this sense it manifests an inquiry into the significance of the value of objects of art and the art market,” says Strebe. “We are honored to present this work at The New York Stock Exchange, which I belie

art

Esthero hacks Spotify to rail against the company's awful royalty payments

Canadian singer Esthero joins other musicians and groups like Vulfpek who have found a way (or at least tried) to circumvent Spotify’s notoriously low royalty payments to make a living wage. As the BBC points out,

“Fans streaming the new single by pop singer Esthero have discovered it’s been deliberately doctored to protest against Spotify’s royalty rates.

Ninety seconds into Gimme Some Time, the music dips, and Esthero explains the full version of the song will only be available on her website.

The money Spotify generates is “really not a liveable income,” she explains.

“I really hope you enjoy my music enough to actually go and support and buy the song from me.”

The BBC didn’t bother to add the part where Esthero directs you to her website to download the song, so I will add her link. And I will add it a second time, too.

This isn’t the first time an artist has shall we say intervened with the listener. Back in 2003 Madonna rightly knew that torrents and other sites would take a chunk out of her livelihood. So when she “leaked” American Life, it was actually a trolling message demanding to know “What the fuck do you think you’re doing,” which is why I will forever love her. But people didn’t listen then which is why Spotify appeared as the wolf in sheep’s clothing to dole out a pittance to musicians, masquerading as a legitimate business. A legitimate business who constantly has to settle lawsuits from the very people it depends on to keep its service going.

While Madge was typically on brand with her chutzpah, Esthero’s message was more refined and heartfelt about it,  explaining why it’s important to support artists. Most people have no idea that if they use Spotify’s free service very little money goes to the musicians they love, just as the majority of people have no idea that even if they use the paid service, it’s not a one-for-one payment system. So even if you support Esthero by listening to her stuff hundreds of times, that money is pooled to other artists. So it’s unfair on countless levels.

Meanwhile, as people finally wake up to the so-called gig economy only exiting to benefit the corporations (meet the new boss, worse than the old boss) more and more musicians are hopefully coming to the conclusion that playing a gig is one thing, but adding their songs to the gig economy is not paying. Good for Esthero for speaking out.

We’ll see how long Spotify takes before they pull the song for “violating their terms of service,” or whatever reason they make up. Because if it’s one thing Spotify is really bad at, it’s getting musicians and singers and bandmates on its side. No, not fake artists it invents so it doesn’t have to pay the real ones, but real ones.

big tech

big tech

Havas group pursues its expansion in India with its second digital acquisition this year: Langoor

Havas Group today announced the acquisition of one of India’s leading independent agencies – Langoor. A full-service digital agency led and driven by creative technologists, Langoor has grown steadily since being founded in 2010, and is now present across India, the Middle East and Australia.

Reading left to right: Venugopal Ganganna, Chief Executive Officer, Langoor, Ruchir Punjabi, Founder & Chair, Langoor, Vishnu Mohan, Chairman & CEO, Havas Group India & South East Asia, Bobby Pawar, Chairman & CCO, Havas Group India, Girisha Gowda, Chief Operations Officer, Langoor, Kishore Karumbaiah, Chief Creative Officer, Langoor and Rana Barua, Group CEO, Havas Group India

Its team of 170 specialists provide meaningful digital experiences and connections to MNCs, local brands and start-ups across strategy, online marketing, website planning and development, data analytics, marketing automation, e-commerce and SEO.

Langoor will be rebranded as Langoor Havas and be led by its co-founder – Venugopal Ganganna – who will take on the newly-created position of Chief Digital Officer, Havas Group India, reporting to Rana Barua – Group CEO, Havas Group India.

Langoor Havas will have three key focus areas – health, business and vernacular – and will expand their services to markets outside of India in the coming months.

Yannick Bolloré, Chairman and CEO Havas Group comments: “Digital business is booming in India and bringing Langoor on board is an important new step to further strengthening our digital skills locally. Through their unique blend of data, creativity and technology, Langoor enables brands to engage their customers meaningfully and drive growth. Earlier this year, we acquired the leader in user experience and digital design in India, Think Design, making Langoor our second acquisition in the country in 2019. The combined expertise of Think Design and Langoor boost Havas’ digital offer in one of the world’s fastest growing ad markets. India continues to be a priority for the Group, we aim to triple our presence there by the end of 2019 and have put in place a solid new management team to lead this expansion.”

Vishnu Mohan, Chairman & CEO, Havas Group India & South East Asia adds: “In the current, rapidly changing marketing landscape, a technology-based solution needs to be intuitive, interactive and extremely customer-centric. Langoor has emerged as an unmissable player in the digital transformation space in India due to its ability to deliver outstanding, innovative results, leveraging creativity and technology. The acquisition will reinforce our integrated offering and digital expertise in India and complement our existing capabilities. I am delighted to welcome Langoor to the Havas family.

We pride ourselves in having created an agency focused on digital brand thinking – which is the future. The integration within Havas Group will add scale to the depth of our services and help us to grow even further. This acquisition is an incredible opportunity for Langoor and the team and we are excited to be part of this new journey towards further success,” said Ruchir Punjabi & Venu Ganganna, co-founders of Langoor in a joint statement.

announcement

announcement

Jessica Hartley joins The Humblebrag – to drive creativity as a force for good

Jessica Hartley, a creative PR and advertising expert with several Cannes seasons under her belt, is teaming up with New Zealander Lucy von Sturmer, a sustainability and thought leadership expert – who is also an outspoken environmental activist. This partnership brings something new to the market. 

Lucy, who founded The Humblebrag in 2017, has a background working in NGOs and sustainability, while Jessica has deep roots in the creative industries, having instigated the PR strategy for some of Amsterdam’s most thought provoking and awarded campaigns such as The Next Rembrandt and School for Justice. 

Von Sturmer on the left, and Hartley on the right.

After six years as an independent consultant, Jessica is now joining The Humblebrag as Managing Partner, bringing two decades of experience in advertising, marketing and PR as well as numerous clients with her. 

 

Jessica Hartley, Managing Partner The Humblebrag:

“I have spent many years as an independent consultant working with some of the best creative talent on campaigns I’m very proud of.  However the reason I am joining Lucy at the Humblebrag is to continue working on the best creative work, but with a strong mission to create positive impact. Lucy and I have the same vision which is to deploy business as a force for good. This is why The Humblebrag is much more than a commercial communications agency. We are investing time, resources and capital into social, environmental and cultural projects that align with our mission. The most urgent topic being the climate crisis.”

 

Hartley moved to Amsterdam from the UK in 2006 when she joined 180 Amsterdam as head of PR and awards, working extensively on adidas campaigns such as Impossible is Nothing, +10 and numerous World Cup and Olympic campaigns. During Hartley’s five years at 180 Amsterdam, the agency grew incrementally and won numerous awards and accolades. Originally from London, Hartley was first trained in film production in Soho in the 1990’s, then moved into advertising to work with Trevor Robinson’s progressive agency, Quiet Storm. Settling permanently in the Netherlands, after her stint at 180 Amsterdam, Hartley gained extensive brand marketing and consumer PR experience by working at brands such as TomTom and Bugaboo. 

Most recently she has been working as an independent consultant on award-winning campaigns with agencies such as J. Walter Thompson Amsterdam, DDB Unlimited, HERC the agency, HEIMAT Berlin, &Co Copenhagen and many more. An advocate for creativity and the importance of different and diverse voices within it, Hartley was this year’s Amsterdam ambassador for the inaugural Gerety Awards, a creative benchmark for advertising – judged only by women. 

Lucy von Sturmer, Founder & Managing Partner, The Humblebrag:

“As any entrepreneur will know, finding the right partner is a key. Jess is strategic, forward-thinking and very passionate, but most importantly on a day-to-day level, she’s really fun to work with. Having Jess on board gives me the confidence to take our mission to the next level – already we have an amazing client roster who are striving to create social impact, and I’m excited to see what we can do next.”

 

Lucy is also the Founder of The Amsterdam Creative Entrepreneurs (ACE) Collective, a community of 400+ creative entrepreneurs in Amsterdam for which she hosts a range of seminars, events and networking opportunities and she is the podcast host for B Building Business. 

 

The Humblebrag is a strategic communication and thought leadership agency, dedicated to amplifying the voices of innovators, forward-thinkers and industry disruptors who are driving positive change. Working with a mix of brands, NGOs, creative agencies, sustainable fashion and digital disruptors – the agency is setting the agenda for a new breed of fearless business leaders. While deploying time and resources to agenda-setting initiatives on the climate – and building communities around topics like diversity, social inclusion and creative entrepreneurship. 

 

Hartley adds:

“The direction I hope to take with The Humblebrag is to instigate wider change within the creative industry, moving away from a ‘brief and respond’ way of working to a place where we are setting the agenda and pushing back on commissions that don’t align with our values – and the needs of our planet. This is hard, and it’s an imperfect process, but I feel strongly that this needs to happen.”

announcement

announcement

PR

McDonald’s’ restaurants are home to the night owls – print, France

I have to say, I love the retro / Outrun sort of look these ads have, with the nod to Miami Vics neon signs and foggy empty streets. McDonald’s, France, is here to remind you that they are open late. Like after that last laser game, late.  Or after you danced yourself plenty hungry at that old school night club, late. After the last movie, late. In short, McDonald’s’ restaurants are home to the night owls.

Client : McDonald’s™ France

 

Agency : TBWAParis

Advertising Managers : Xavier ROYAUX, José JACINTO, Benoit KOLB, Charles GOURMELON

Agency Managers : Jonathan SEROG, Julie MONTAGNÉ, Marine LETOURNEUR, Alisson PLACHIER-JUHEL

Executive Creative Directors : Benjamin MARCHAL & Faustin CLAVERIE

Art Directors : Julia DESHAYES et Lena MONCEAU

Art Buyer : Carine GALLUFFO

Photographer : Aurélien CHAUVAUD

Studio image : Magenta 95

Canada is Sorry

Canada apologizes for not living up to its land conservation promises
 

New campaign from Outside Thinkers points out that Canada is falling behind other UN countries on its commitment to protect 17% of its land by 2020

Canada is doing what it does best—apologizing—in an awareness campaign for the non-profit collaborative Outside Thinkers that acknowledges the country’s continued failure to honour its global commitment to critical environmental protection. 

The ads take the form of an apology from the fictitious Gord Burton, the self-appointed Deputy of the Canadian Bureau of Foreign Apologies. They acknowledge Canada’s failure to uphold its promise to permanently protect 17% of its land by 2020 as part of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets.

Approximately 10.6% of Canada’s land was already protected when it became one of 195 countries around the world to make the commitment to the Aichi Targets in 2010, but that number has risen to barely 11% in the nine years since then. Canada ranks a lowly 124th among countries that signed the initial agreement, and is last among the G7 nations.

 

Outside Thinkers wanted to call out Canada’s foot-dragging on this key issue and urge Canadians to push for further action. The campaign is led by a 90-second video showing Burton seated at his desk, outlining the original promise and pointing to some of the more than 100 countries that have exceeded Canada’s achievements.

“I want to personally apologize to every country in the world because we are letting them down,” he says, before urging Canadians to take action quickly because he’s already booked what will likely be an expensive Uber trip to Equatorial Guinea.

 

The campaign also features a series of videos apologizing to countries that have done a better job than Canada of preserving their biodiversity, such as Andorra, Brazil, Chad and Hungary. In addition, a series of influencer videos direct apologies to notable environmental advocates, such as noted Swedish climate change activist Greta Thunberg.

The second phase arrives just days after the annual G7 Summit in France, which included climate change as one of its key areas of focus. It also follows the Canadian government’s pledge of $175 million towards 67 conservation initiatives in every province and territory, as part of Canada’s Nature Legacy initiative.

Outside Thinkers is encouraging people to spread the messages via social media and visit the website for the Canadian Bureau of Foreign Apologies (cbofa.ca) to send a letter to their local provincial politicians.

Also, here is the campaign video, launched earlier this year.

Here’s another video, from Autumn Peltier, Chief Water Commissioner of the Anishinabek Nation

Naomi Klein, Canadian author, social activist, and filmmaker weighs in too.

Greta Thunberg, Swedish student who is credited with raising global awareness of the risks posed by climate change.

Client: Outside Thinkers (outsidethinkers.ca), a working collaborative of foundations including: Woodcock Foundation, Voilà Foundation, National Environment Treasure

Media Agency: Empathy Inc.
President: Mo Dezyanian
Strategist: Vittoria Natarelli
PR: Erin Richards, Hype PR

 

Production Company: Someplace Nice

Director: Shaun McBride

Editorial: Saints 

Editor: Aaron Dark

Sound and Audio: Vapor Music

Director: Karen Goore

Sound Technician: Ryan Chalmers

Transfer and Online: The Vanity

LEGO – Rebuild The World #ReBuildtheWorld (2019) 1:40 (France)

It all begins in the savanna… Somewhere in Africa? Where the hunter is hunting white rabbit with his typical Safari hat and giant plastic bow and arrow… Wait what is happening here?  It’s LEGO. rebuilding the world, and the white rabbit takes us on a chase through anything you can think up. There are even easter eggs in this ad, the license plate of a pink car is CS60138, which is Legos “High-speed Chase” set and there’s JM60047 on the VW bus, which is the Police Station set, so that’s a bit of a foreshadowing. The chase even has a guesting dragon appear, and he spits flames onto peoples clothes like it’s 1999 and Guy Fieri is stylish. There’s even a life-sized replica of the Lego House in Billund, Denmark, and soe of the characters you see are classic toys like the wooden duck.

 

It’s fun, it’s exciting, it’s extremely well-executed and it owes its roots to the original Lego ad where a clever mouse turned into a fire engine to fight a dragon created by TBWA, London, back in 1980. 

This video is currently being processed. Please wait.

The work was directed by Traktor through Stink and the soundtrack was composed by electro-musicians and composers Flavien Berger and Jacques. Mikros MPC did the special effects, while the creative was done by BETC Paris and The Lego Agency. Naturally there are simple posters to go with the campaign.

Ad agency: BETC
Directed by Traktor through Stink

Soundtrack: Flavien Berger and Jacques

 

Turns out, there are laws when you’re drinking Claws.

Turns out that there are actual laws, still, even when you are drinking White Claw. Despite their attitude-filled tagline, as comedy writer and Director Deanna Director discovered the hard way (pun intented) and tweeted about today.

But… But! Officer, that’s not what the product’s tagline implies, sir! Now all that remains is testing this in court. Deanna promises to bring this shirt. We should all show up in the same shirts, with a can of White Claw in either hand. Judge might have to join us.  (As an aside, is it any good? I need to try this drink now, can White Claw hook us up?)

advertising jokes

advertising jokes

Grolsch is embarking on a not-so-trivial pursuit of Toronto’s film fans.

Grolsch, the beer brand, is celebrating its eighth year as the official brew of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) with an integrated campaign that extends its presence into the bars and restaurants surrounding festival venues.

In addition to out-of-home and social elements, the campaign from Toronto’s Smaller Agency also includes the “Sip & Social”—a TIFF-based card game designed to act as a social lubricant. Participating bars are distributing the game along with popcorn and instructions. The game consists of cards in four categories; Yup or Nope, Would You Rather, Opener, Unfinished Business, and 4 Pack. Samples for each are below.

Yup or Nope: TIFF was originally named The Festival of Festivals.

 

Would You Rather: Would you rather be John Wick or Tony Stark. Why him?

 

Opener: If you could be any movie character for one day, who would you choose?

 

Unfinished Business:  Complete this line by Vin Diesel’s character Dom Toretto in the film Fast and Furious (2001). “I live my life one _____  __ _ ____.”

 

4 Pack: Which actor turned down the part of Michael Corleone in The Godfather?

A Robert Redford

B Jack Nicholson

C Dustin Hoffman

D all of the above
 

According to Smaller Agency’s founder Noah Barlow, people are increasingly looking to participate in activities when they are out together. “This places Grolsch at the centre of the activity and gives people fun film knowledge that they can share with each other through a social game,” says Barlow.

The creative elements show Grolsch’s iconic green bottle, including its instantly recognizable “swing top,” in film-related environments such as the hair and makeup chair, in front of a green screen and on the film’s set.

In keeping with TIFF’s core idea of letting visuals do most of the talking, the ads are light on copy, relying only on a single film-related expression, such as “Bold,” “Character,” and “Distinctive.”

As the lead creative agency for the Grolsch and TIFF partnership, Smaller Agency also developed all bar-related communications, including posters, coasters, tent cards and sell sheets.

Client: Grolsch
Project: Grolsch x TIFF Partnership
Agency: Smaller Agency (website coming soon) 
 

Creative Director: Noah Barlow
Art Director & Designer: Amber Hsu
Copywriter: Susanne Weinber

S-Type – Waiting (official music video) (2019) 2:47 (Germany)

The grey brutalist apartment ghettos we in Sweden call the “million programme”, familiar to anyone who has lived in Northern or Eastern Europe, or in the Deutsche Demokratische Republik itself, are not pretty places. They tend to feel isolating, overbearing, inhuman and soulless, and these areas tend to eventually house the rough boys, the gangs. Shot in Marzahn-Berlin, this video is based on the photo series “Loose Ends” by award-winning photographer Si Wachsmann. “It follows a group of boys on an adventure in the rough neighbourhood, as they escape their harsh reality to a place where boys can be boys.”  The rough boys are Sebastian, Alex, and Kuba, who smoke and fight and blow off steam. They look like Polish supermodels to me, so when the eventual fight begins, I start worrying about their pretty faces. 

Director Adi Halfin wanted to continue the narrative that Wachsmann, her frequent collaborator and real-life partner, had established with “Loose Ends” and Lief joined forces with record label LuckyMe to add S-Type’s first single from his upcoming album ‘S-Type-Beat’ as the score for this story. 

Despite the ghetto surroundings, it looks a little surreal and dreamy, with a sweeping aesthetic that feels almost fragile, and somewhat homoerotic. The close-up portraits deliver glimpses of their emotional world. They are frustrated, they are angry, they feel hopelessness, they feel dejected. Sentiments that generations who grew up in concrete jungles like these have felt.

Halfin felt the desire to film ‘boys being boys’ due to her tendency to express extreme emotions in her work;
 

“I like things that come from the gut and not from the head. And there’s something about this period of adolescence that I find fascinating, especially when it comes to boys. The borders of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ are not always clear and you constantly want to test your limits and the limits of your environment. Every emotion is magnified, and a small game can easily turn into something extremely violent. There’s something fearless and careless about this age and it connects to primeval feelings – jealousy, anger, love, sexual attraction – it’s all out there, with no filters.”

CREDITS ‘Waiting’

 

A project by Si Wachsmann & Adi Halfn

Cast: Alexander Lukowski, Sebastian Dabkowski, Jakub Werra

Production Company: Lief
Music: ‘Waiting’ S-Type via LuckyMe

Record Label Founder: Dominic Flannigan

 

Production Company (Berlin): True Motion Pictures

Director: Adi Halfin 

DoP: Si Wachsmann 

Producer: Margo Mars

Producer: Alexander Papastawrou

Production Manager: Miriam Henri 

Editor: Shahar Amarilio

Colour Grading: Maria Carretero, Framestore

Colour Grading Producer: Rachel Cohen, Framestore

Hair & Makeup: Claudia Fischer 

Art Director: Shira Wachsmann 

AC: Lisa Dutschmann 

Lighting Assistant: Julian Hemelberg 

Production Assistants: Svenja Nagel, Alex Moore, Jakob Wiechsmann

Location: FELiX Wohngenossenschaft eG (Frau Lüttke)

House Manager: Uwe Illert 
 

Special thanks: Max Zimmermann, Peggy Geibig, Maya Lu, Yaro Blo, Kalle Kallovsky, JMP Agency

Camera and lenses kindly supplied by Canon.

 

About LuckyMe
LuckyMe is a record label and design studio specialising in the release of new electronic, hip-hop, pop, rock and underground dance music. Referred to as ‘one of the most innovative and prolific independent record labels of the decade’ and acclaimed for ‘distinctive visual arts projects and collaborations’.

California Governor sides with big unions, signs employment bill tending tech disruption

California Governor Gavin Newsom is nothing if not inconsistent. He recently passed a bill making it illegal to suspend disruptive students from kindergarten to eighth grade, thereby ensuring disruption keeps putting the state in the lower ranks in terms of overall education.

Now comes the news that Newsom is poised to end disruption when it comes to the gig economy that has produced millions of jobs. According to the L.A, Times: “The 6,700-word bill is one of the most controversial of the year. It could upend the relationship between workers and bosses across businesses as varied as ride-hailing tech giantsconstruction, healthcare, truckingjanitorial servicesnail salonsadult entertainment, commercial fishing and newspapers.”

While advertising is not specifically mentioned here, I know for a fact similar measures are already impacting freelancers in California. Some of my freelance friends are now being offered “benefits,” they don’t want such as a 401K after a few months of employment as well as health care and worker’s comp. (Has anyone in advertising ever used worker’s comp?) These and other such benefits come with a price: a much lower day rate. And I suspect although I don’t know for certain, shorter contracts that prevent one from taking advantage of most of the benefits that don’t kick in right away. 

I can’t say whether this is happening around the country or if it’s only in California, but some friends who used to make 1500-1800 a day as senior-level and above freelancers now make closer to 1000 a day. Is it worth the chance to throw a portion of your paycheck into a 401K for one or two months? Or is it worth paying 1,000 a month for “adequate,” healthcare for a job that might not last that long?

The bill is being touted by supporters as standing up for employers rights, and ensuring contractor and employer alike get the same benefits such as sick time, paid leave, workers comp and unemployment,  others see this move as destroying the gig economy and California’s entrepreneurial spirit. Many of these companies are pumping millions of dollars into lobbying against the bill.

As the Times points out, “…enforcing the law against multibillion-dollar app-based technology behemoths, with a California workforce estimated at some 400,000 full- and part-timers, could involve protracted battles.”

Even the employees have mixed reactions. Some are concerned that by becoming employees as opposed to contractors, they’ll have to commit to one company (Uber over Lyft) rather than having the option and the freedom to work for both.

Discard the heartfelt speeches and what this is really a battle between three corporations, each pretending to care about the employees, who all have a financial interest at stake. The government wants more taxes, the unions want more union members (and their dues) and the corporations want to keep as much money as possible.

Like everything the government of California does, the law is messy, ineffective and already corrupt. There are plenty of exemptions to this law, which one assemblywoman said apply to “the trade groups with the best lobbyists.”

It is too soon to say how much this will affect California’s economy, or whether the result will be positive or calamitous. When Seattle raised its minimum wage to $15 an hour,  the number of new people entering the workforce dropped.  Wages went up, but the number of people entering the workforce dropped and hours were cut, ..so much so that low-wage workers ended up poorer to the equivalent of about $74 per person, per month. A follow-up study found this pain was mainly shouldered by workers without prior experience, who found it harder to get hired,” according to a study reported by NPR.

The number of low-wage workers in Seattle is small, and a minimum wage hike is not the same thing is changing the employment status of a million people in California. But Seattle has still affected whether most people noticed or not. It would be foolish to think California won’t feel seismic repercussions across the state. Whether they will be good for workers remains to be seen. But generally, whether it’s a traditional corporation, a government wanting more taxes or unions wanting more dues, it’s a safe bet the ones who will get screwed will be the employer, or contractor or whatever their designation will be.

FCB Is Crazy About the Odds in Its First Campaign for Unibet

FCB New York, in partnership with Unibet – a premium online gambling operator – today announced that it has launched a new campaign entitled “Crazy About the Odds.” The work is the first by the agency since Unibet selected FCB New York as its U.S. Agency of Record in December 2018.

 

The new campaign, which launches Unibet Online Sportsbook in the United States, reflects the universal truth that when you have money on the line, the experience is intensified to a rather absurd degree.

 

“We’re winking at bettors, acknowledging that when you have skin in the game, you may be reacting in ways that are perceived as odd by less-invested fans,” said Gary Resch, FCB New York EVP, Executive Creative Director. “For instance, why are you on the edge of your seat when it’s 49-3 while everyone else is filing out? Well, you took the over at 52, so the result is still in the balance.”

 

In Europe, Unibet has earned the trust of serious bettors, demonstrating for over 20 years an understanding of what players need in order to make informed bets and amplify their sports-watching experience. They seek to begin earning that trust in the U.S. by celebrating their kindred spirit with these bettors.

 

“We wanted the campaign to be an inside joke between Unibet and the savvy sports bettor. Not everyone will understand the dynamic portrayed in the ads, but the ones who do will know in an instant that we’re the brand that gets them,” said Arnas Janickas, Head of U.S. Marketing at Unibet. “They have a lot of choices out there, so we want to prove that Unibet is the one they want to be watching the games at the pub with.”

 

In this vein, the new campaign focuses on the raw emotion underlying sports betting moments. With different vignettes for different sports, the campaign will be relevant in every season.

 

For instance, two hockey fanatics have oddly been converted to tennis fanatics because of a simple bet. Two other bettors make a scene just seconds into a basketball game because they had money on who wins the tip-off. A gentleman pulls his own hammy celebrating a winning bet of a stolen base. While onlookers may think it pretty strange, FCB and Unibet understand that having a bet on a game amplifies the experience to the extent that exhibiting odd behavior is absolutely normal. Thus, the campaign rallying cry, “It’s not odd, it’s the odds.”

 

Unibet, which offers online sports betting, casino games, poker and bingo in 20 different languages for over 25 million customers throughout the UK, Europe and Australia, announced that it would expand into the U.S. in 2019, and tapped FCB as its key launch partner for the Unibet brand. Unibet is live in New Jersey, and looking to roll out in Pennsylvania later this year.

 

As legislation enabling online sports betting expands into states across the U.S., Unibet aims to deepen its authentic connection with its target audience while broadening the appeal to more casual sports fans who want some more “hell-yeah” moments.

 

“Crazy About the Odds” consists of online videos, digital radio spots, geotargeted paid social assets, as well as out-of-home and OTT video ads.

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FCB New York:

Ari Halper – Chief Creative Officer

Gary Resch – Executive Creative Director

Hernan Ibanez – Associate Creative Director

Justin Batten – Art Director

Nick Romano – Copywriter

Jon Gruber – Copywriter

Todd Sussman – Chief Strategy Officer

Adam Isidore – Director of Integrated Production

Henna Kathiya – Senior Integrated Producer

Jesse Morris – Project Manager

Janice Katz – Business Affairs Manager

Jared Shell – Account Director

Miles Brickley – Account Executive

 

Unibet US:

Arnas Janickas – Head of Marketing, US

Manuel Stan – SVP Kindred, US

Mateusz Samolyk – Brand Manager, Global

 

Director:

Adam Goldstein

 

Circle:

Chris Bowles – Executive Producer

Chuck Ryant – Executive Producer

Steve Schofield – Executive Producer

Kevin Johnston – Executive Producer

Vanessa Lenarduzzi – Producer

Production Manager – Chelsea Ruckle

 

Lost Planet:

Krystn Wagenberg – Executive Producer

Casey Cayko – Senior Producer

Charlie Johnston – Editor

Rachel Butler & Kenji Yamauchi – Assistant Editors

 

Black Hole – Finishing/GFX:

Felix Cabrera – Finishing Producer

Reginald Butler & Andre Sam – Animators

Tim Farrell – Flame Artist

Isabel Gomez – Flame Assistant

 

Honey Mix:

Mary Tomasiewicz – Owner/Executive Producer

Eric Thompson – Sound Mixer

 

Photography:

John Keatley – Photographer

Sean Frith – Producer

 

The Mill:

Fergus McCall – Colorist

Rochelle Brown – Producer