The CDC has recently begun a $54 million anti-smoking ad campaign. It is disgusting. The hope is that these graphic ads will pressure people into quitting, and they appear to be working: Since the ad started airing, calls to 1-800-QUIT-NOW have doubled, and visits to the government’s anti-smoking website have tripled.
For New Yorkers, these types of ads are nothing new: New York (and, I assume, some other states as well) has been running ads of this variety for years. And while quitting smoking is a worthwhile goal, these ads are very disturbing for a number of reasons.
First of all, they are very disturbing. I mean, they are horrific to look at. Continue reading
This is probably the worst commercial I have ever seen. It is perfectly designed to make someone never want to use Ancestry.com.
To recap: This commercial introduces us to Scott Krinsky, a regular guy who has a cute little story about where his ancestors came from: “The story was that my grandfather was born on the boat on the way over here. In school they had us put a tack on the map where our grandparents were born: Mine was in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.” You can even hear the happiness in his voice as he tells the story. Then he goes on Ancestry.com and finds out… no, that’s not what happened. His grandfather was born in Poland, like tens of millions of other people. Continue reading
What we read while almost leading the Bears’ fourth-quarter comeback…
Pabst Blue Ribbon has undergone a catastrophically successful rebranding over the last decade. What was once a heartland, working-class beer, brewed in Wisconsin and enjoyed by the Walt Kowalskis and Frank Booths of the world, has now become the beer of choice among hipster 20-somethings. In fact, the change has been so successful that the charitable organization that owns the Pabst Brewing Company is looking to sell it (since a charity cannot own a for-profit company and retain nonprofit status) for $300 million, despite the fact that the brewing company doesn’t actually brew anything. The Pabst Brewing Company mainly operates as a marketing company for the beers it sells, specifically PBR, which has significantly upped its sales figures recently.
Now, I suppose the company deserves credit for PBR’s recent success, but I’m reluctant to credit people for simply knowing how irrational American consumers are, particularly the brand of consumers commonly known as “hipsters.”
I’m reluctant to criticize hipsters because they are an ill-defined, much-maligned breed; like “racists” and “partisans,” “hipsters” are almost universally condemned, even though nobody can agree on what exactly makes one a hipster (although it probably involves skinny jeans).
With that said, we all know who drinks PBR, and it’s not people who like how it tastes. These are people who are trying to send one of the following cool, but factually incorrect signals to those seeing them drinking it (and the fact that PBR is rarely on tap means people generally will know what you are drinking): Continue reading
I don’t know if anyone has heard about Colgate Wisp, but it’s all the rage now (actually, I just heard of it about fifteen minutes ago, I have no evidence that anyone even owns one).
Now, for those of you who don’t know what it is and don’t have time to investigate the website as thoroughly as I did, the Wisp is a portable, disposable miniature toothbrush. It has a “freshening bead” so there is no need for toothpaste or water. You can get a four-pack for about $3 or 16 for $8. It promises fresh breath, anytime. Continue reading