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Show Your True Colors With Betabrand's Gay Jeans Clever use of materials, with diversity stitched right in

"It's proof that some denim really is just born that way," Steven B. Wheeler, lead designer at Betabrand, says in this promo for the fashion company's Gay Jeans.

What's cool about these pants is that when they are broken in, they reveal "brightly colored, rainbow hued yarns underneath."

While Betabrand's rainbow denim may not be the first in its class, it's certainly the most philanthopic. Ten percent of proceeds from the crowdfunded project will be donated to the San Francisco LGBT Center.

Dr. Ame Corwin, advanced materials researcher at Betabrand, says on the website: "We hope Gay Jeans will help end generations of exclusion and unfair treatment for atypical denim. All jeans deserve equal rights, regardless of color, creed, and fiber content."

If you'd like to order your very own pair of Gay Jeans, head over to the site and drop $88 for "Slim-Fit" (or $78 for the "Stretch-Skinny").

Are you straight? Don't worry. You can wear them, too. Gay Jeans won't make you gay any more than "driving a Toyota will make you Japanese," the brand says in its FAQ. "If you put on a pair of Gay Jeans and begin experiencing gayness, chances are it's because you are gay."

April 17, 2014, 2:07 PM EDT

Seattle's Best Tried to Take a Dig at Dunkin, but Taco Bell Stole Its Thunder Found guys named Duncan for coffee taste test

Imitation is the sincerest form of fla—rather, great minds think alike. 

Seattle's Best Coffee's new spot features various dudes who happen to be named Duncan proclaiming their love for the Starbucks-owned brand. 

What's interesting here is that this video was published two whole days before Taco Bell's somewhat viral "Real Ronald" ads featuring guys named Ronald McDonald. 

According to the coffee company's behind-the-scenes website, "The ad, which appeared before a fast-food chain launched a similar campaign, is part of a national taste test that found people preferred the new House Blend from Seattle’s Best Coffee over a competitor’s original blend coffee."

Given the close timing between these two, it's clear that neither brand was ripping off the other's idea. (As we've noted, it wasn't even a completely new idea in the first place.) Rather it reads as an uncanny coincidence fueled by the brand-obsessed zeitgeist. 

So, take a look at the two ads below and see the uncanny resemblance for yourself. 

Via Business Insider.

April 17, 2014, 11:53 AM EDT

Just Watching This Pedigree Ad With Adorable Dogs Helps Ones Who Aren't as Lucky YouTube ad revenue goes to charity

The Internet really is a boon for pet-food marketers clever enough to capitalize on animal-obsessed Web culture without seeming too mercenary.

Pedigree New Zealand gets extra brownie points for this video of cute dogs being cute, which attempts to leverage YouTube's revenue-sharing model to raise money for dog charity … as if you needed another reason to watch dachshunds eating hot dogs. (No, it's not cannibalism, though it might count as a sort of professional discourtesy.)

The concept is all the more impressive in the way it take two things that are usually annoying—seeing ads on other ads, and being asked to share ads—and makes them kind of feel-good (even if, given YouTube's meager ad rates, it's hard to imagine the campaign actually making significant money).

Regardless, the spot, by Colenso BBDO, is a knockout delight when measured against the high bar for misery-inducing commercials in the pet-adoption genre. Unlike the Sarah McLaughlin ASPCA sob fest that haunts an entire generation of U.S. TV viewers, this one doesn't hinge on making everyone feel awful about themselves.

Plus, the dogs are awesome to watch. Except for that winking puppy at the end, which clearly needs help for having confused itself with a cat. Only cats are supposed to be creepy.

Credits below.

Click to Read More →

April 17, 2014, 11:17 AM EDT

Skier Sets Off Avalanche and Records the Whole Terrifying Experience on His GoPro One to watch with headphones on

Considering its position as the No. 1 brand channel on YouTube, it's really of no surprise that this insane video comes from today's prime purveyors of adventuretime content, GoPro.

What appears to be a lovely day on the slopes turns into a pretty thrilling minute of footage as skiier Eric Hjorleifson documents his terrifying run with a head-mounted Hero 3+ camera. 

Unlike other recent videos that are totally and joyously fake, this one is for sure, very real.

Take a look below and be sure to watch this full-screen, with your headphones on. The skiier's breathing really completes this bone-chilling experience. Then you can go back and watch GoPro's even more terrifying 2011 avalanche video, which is one hopefully no one will try to top. 

April 17, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT

Here's Another Freaky Brand App That Shows How Much of Your Private Life Is Online Watch Dogs watches you

If you're anything like me, you might get a little freaked out by the Internet.

Whatever you put out there exists, in some capacity, forever! But that neurotic voice in your head is probably drowned out when you capture the perfect photo of your dog giving you the side-eye (it happens), or you need to chat about the BIG THING that happened on whichever show has a BIG THING that week, and somehow you've become pretty active on various social media platforms.

No big deal, right? Wrong, according to AKQA's latest digital campaign for Ubisoft's game Watch Dogs.

AKQA created a site, Digital Shadow, that allows you to log in with your Facebook profile and see what your digital imprint says about you. (For the record, mine says, "You display a bleak outlook that can be manipulated for future gain." OK, then.) It also estimates your net worth and where you might be spotted and guesses what your passwords could be.

"We know everything about you." Spooky.

April 17, 2014, 8:31 AM EDT

Mazda Takes One Awesome Road Trip Through 60 Instagram Posts in Grid View Fun innovation by JWT Canada

For brands, the road to standing out in social media can be a slippery slope. But Mazda and JWT Canada collaborated on a pretty interesting marketing journey on Instagram.

Over the course of three months, the carmaker posted images and videos that plotted the course of a Mazda vehicle. But not only was each post meticulously detailed and art directed, they all fit together like puzzle pieces to make a growing scene of a road when viewed as a grid layout on Mazda Canada's mobile Instagram page.

Three posts were added at a time, every week or so, adding one more layer to the three-column grid. The project began Dec. 17 and wrapped up March 28.

Throughout the car's "Long Drive Home," the brand includes mentions of followers, videos of sponsored events and references to cultural happenings like Mardi Gras and the Super Bowl. It was then capped off by giving a new Mazda to a fan.

Below, check out a recreation of the layout. (All the images and videos are clickable through to the brand's Instagram pages.) And below that, there's a case study describing the process.

Buckle up and click around. There's some cool stuff in there. 

Click to Read More →

April 16, 2014, 1:42 PM EDT

St. John Ambulance Hits the Pool for Its Latest Shocking First-Aid PSA Helpless once again

St. John Ambulance, the first-aid teaching and awareness organization, has put together some incredible, horrifying PSAs through the years.

We've covered many of BBH London's ads for the group. Last year, the agency won a silver Film Lion at Cannes for "Helpless," a two-minute film based around the statistic that first aid could prevent 140,000 deaths a year—the same number who die from cancer. BBH followed that up with the heartbreaking "Save the Boy" spot last fall.

Now, here's a new spot—for St. John Ambulance in Australia. Created by The Brand Agency in Perth, it's equally heart-wrenching and difficult to watch. And effective, at least in my case. After watching this, I found myself searching the Internet for local first aid courses.

Warning: The video below may be upsetting.

April 16, 2014, 10:47 AM EDT

Mini-Documentary Looks at Advertising's Most Unsung Artists Crafters of hand-painted outdoor signs

It's easy to forget that for every flashy, handpainted wall advertisement you see in a city, there are a handful of people who endure discomfort (and risk death) to put it there.

Online tabloid Vocativ made this mini-documentary about these painters, who call themselves "wall dogs," and it's a refreshingly straightforward and unglamorized piece of work. The painters mostly talk about how they prepare for a job where they spend most of the day hanging from a chain, at the mercy of the elements and unable to step back and get better perspective of their work until it's complete.

But there's no bitterness or false bravado in any of them. In fact, they all seem pretty happy with what they do, which isn't something a lot of us can say about our jobs. Watch this as an antidote to the other cynical garbage you read online in a given day.

April 16, 2014, 9:39 AM EDT

Don't Drink and Drive. In This Powerful Ad, It Really Does Sound Like a Broken Record Snippets of disaster

This is what it sounds like when you drink too much, then get behind the wheel. Surprise: It does not have a happy ending.

A new PSA by ad agency La Chose for French road safety organization Association Victimes et Citoyens uses a simple yet effective single shot of a vinyl record player to offer a fresh version of a familiar and important point.

Perhaps counterintuitively, the absence of any violent footage actually increases the power of the message. The literal realization of the casual "same old song" metaphor (translated from "la méme chanson" in French) risks coming off as a little off kilter or even off color, since there isn't actually a song, and the subject matter is so serious.

But the whole concept hinges on the idiom, and the ad does too good a job of illustrating the point to nitpick much. The skips in the audio easily build suspense, to the point where, sadly, anyone with half a brain will know where the storyline is going—but has to hear it out to be sure.

La Chose also made 300 12-inch vinyl records featuring the ad's soundtrack and sent them to journalists. That should be a hit at parties.

Via The Denver Egotist.

April 16, 2014, 9:05 AM EDT

Samsung Ad Introduces the Cutest, Pluckiest Smartphone Memory Card Ever Little robot is impervious and cool

A Samsung SD smartphone memory card morphs into a cute, miniature robot action hero in this engaging 45-second clip from Cheil Worldwide in Seoul and Museum Film. The ad, running exclusively online at present, targets smartphone users in the U.K., North America, Europe and Japan.

RoboCard's adventures, directed by J.M. Lee, illustrate product attributes. He soars with a jetpack (demonstrating speed), repels thumbtacks and paperclips (the card is impervious to magnets) and makes a splash by riding a tropical fish rodeo style (it's waterproof). The details are great fun. Note how his metal feet sprout tiny flippers for his fish-tank dive. The cat's miffed reaction as the bot bursts above the water's surface is a neat touch, too.

I also like how his antics take place in a typical home/office setting, infusing the everyday world with some high-tech panache—which, after all, is part of the product's appeal.

Best of all, MemBot is much too adorable to join a robo-rebellion and subjugate mankind ... I think. Still, I wouldn't cross the little guy. He's got a long memory. (Up to 64GB!)

April 16, 2014, 8:50 AM EDT

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AdFreak is your daily blog of the best and worst of creativity in advertising, media, marketing and design. Follow us as we celebrate (and skewer) the latest, greatest, quirkiest and freakiest commercials, promos, trailers, posters, billboards, logos and package designs around. Edited by Adweek's Tim Nudd. Updated every weekday, with a weekly recap on Saturdays.

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