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Artist Makes First Ad Ever for Sex, but It Could Also Be for Office Supplies The old pencil sharpener metaphor

Sex sells everything—cars, hamburgers, even air fresheners. But what sells sex?

As it turns out, pencil sharpeners.

A Slovak artist who goes by the name of Matus the First claims to have created the world's first advertisement "purely to promote sex and for no other reason." (In other words, it's not for a pill or a product or anything else. It simply promotes the sex act.)

He tells Britain's Mirror: "When sex becomes a routine it is necessary to change something. Therefore this is not a product commercial, because you can't buy a solution to some things. ... I felt though that in some cases it might be important for people to change something in their minds, and this commercial is not only about sex but also about thinking."

We won't spoil the fun, but let's just say you might look at your desk a little differently after watching this. (Don't be confused by the Metropolitan Film Institute logo at the end; that's the production company that worked on the spot, not the advertiser.)

Fair warning: The spot might be a little unsafe for work, but it's less about the metaphor and innuendo than about the one carefully placed F-bomb. Take a look:

October 13, 2014, 1:57 PM EDT

Billy Eichner Rips Burger King for 'Stealing' His Act, and McDonald's Piles On Backed up by Seth Rogen and others

Billy Eichner's persona on his show Billy on the Street is so memorable that as soon as fans saw the Burger King ad below, they immediately thought of Eichner—and began lobbing insults at BK and calling the agency behind it lazy.

Man on the street characters are anything but new, but Eichner's scream-filled spin is a fresh take that has endeared fans and celebrities alike. The BK spot, with its own shrieking spokesman, might not hit exactly the same notes, but you can understand the grumbling.

Also, the BK spot just isn't that funny. Eichner's show isn't hilarious because of the format; it's hilarious because of Eichner himself. The BK spot isn't on YouTube. But of course, in the the Internet age, any imitation will be discovered—and ridiculed—eventually, whether it's a sketch show celebrating its 40-year run or a 15-second spot.

Burger King did not immediately respond to AdFreak's requests for comment. But as you can see, McDonald's has already weighed in.

Check out some of the other tweets below.

Click to Read More →

October 13, 2014, 12:18 PM EDT

How Girls Really Feel About Gender Roles and the Rise of Pro-Female Advertising SheKnows launches Hatch project

What do you get when you talk to a group of teen and tween girls about gender roles and stereotyping? A lot of surprisingly insightful opinions.

This past spring, in the midst of heated public debate surrounding Sheryl Sandberg's "Ban Bossy" campaign, women's lifestyle site SheKnows released a video asking 9-year-old girls what they think bossy means. It was fresh and inspiring, and became the impetus for SheKnows' latest project, called Hatch—a program that empowers kids to use media and technology in positive ways.

SheKnows just released the video below, featuring girls talking about gender roles and the pro-female advertising movement and what all of that means to them.

The video is fun and endearing, but also full of great little insights. They weigh in on everything from the Always #likeagirl campaign to the effects of media on girls to social mores. Among their notable remarks:

• "I think most toys are geared towards girls or towards boys. Girls plays with dolls, and for guys, it's like, building things."
• "Usually girls' dolls look a certain way. I don't think they consider that sometimes girls have short hair."
• "You don't have to have pink toys if you're a girl … That was the olden days. Now it's 2014. Catch up, people."

In an interview with AdFreak, Samantha Skey, chief revenue officer of SheKnows, explained the motive behind creating these kinds of videos. For one, SheKnows has a large readership of moms who are stressed about integrating tech into their kids' lives in a productive way. They want their children to be tech savvy, but they're concerned that the messages they're receiving aren't positive.

"We're focusing on digital storytelling and teaching kids to make a good video," Skey says. "Eight- and 9-year-olds are really contemplative about the topic when posed to them in this context. Kids can talk about social issues sometimes more easily when they're on camera. The girls were really willing to have these conversations, and the filming was a useful device for them to think about their points of view and articulate them clearly."

"Why do they think science is for boys? And why blue? And dragons?" asks a little girl on the video.

Girls are paying attention, their parents are spending the money, and they're willing to support brands that empower their children. "Catch up, people."

Check out some more Hatch videos below.

October 13, 2014, 10:12 AM EDT

Goat Sings '80s Rock Ballad 'Simply the Best' in Ridiculous Ad for Goat Cheese But he's no Tina Turner

Have you ever wondered how a goat would interpret '80s rock ballad "Simply the Best"? Of course you have.

The cute beast in this Norwegian commercial for goat cheese sticks pretty close to the classic version by Tina Turner, though it does change the line "You're simply the best" to "I'm simply the best." That's a bold creative statement. For a goat. And decidedly on brand.

Some silly billies at Try/Apt in Oslo devised the 30-second spot.

I kept expecting the wooly warbler to get even more anthropomorphized and maybe bust some moves, like Three's famous dancing pony. Alas, this goat isn't much of a hoofer. (I'm also surprised there's no horn section.)

That's one crazy kid, but way saner than Mountain Dew's Felicia, who, you may recall, got everybody's goat last year.

October 13, 2014, 9:18 AM EDT

Ashton Kutcher Milks a Goat, Paints a Beaver and Knits a Onesie for Lenovo Is there anything the guy can't do?

We've always known Ashton Kutcher to be a renaissance man of sorts. Actor, investor, father, model, ad guy. And now, Lenovo product engineer?

It appears that because of all of his engineering work, the Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 Pro has given him a ton of free time to hone some of his hobbies and enjoy the finer things in life—like knitting, getting massages from lucha libre wrestlers, milking a goat for his cereal and, umm, painting portraits of beavers. 

If all these things sound way outside the bounds of Mr. Kutcher's lifestyle, take a look below. Agency: DLKW Lowe.

Client: Lenovo
Agency: DLKW Lowe   
Executive Creative Directors: Dave Henderson, Richard Denney
Creative Team: Amber Casey, Lovisa Silburn
Planner: Lucian Trestler
Account Team: Ashana Richards, Sarah Gebhardt, Felicity Clarke 
Agency Producers: Nicholas Kurs (TV); Bel January, Rowena Houghton (Print)
Production Company: Outsider
Director: Dom & Nic
Producer: John Madsen
Director of Photography: Steve Chivers
Editing House: Final Cut
Editor: Ed Cheeseman
Postproduction: Framestore
Audio Postproduction: Wave Studios

October 10, 2014, 2:03 PM EDT

Century 21 Is Selling a Zombie Proofing Kit for Your Home on eBay Just in time for The Walking Dead's return

It's nothing fancy—just some particle boards and nails. But it ought to keep out those bloodthirsty zombies.

Yes, just in time for this weekend's return of The Walking Dead to AMC, Century 21 (with help from the little mad scientists at its social agency, Mullen) is auctioning off a "Home Zombie Proofing Kit" on eBay.

Here's part of the description on eBay.

• Strong enough to withstand hurricane force winds or prying dead fingers.
• Sealing prevents edge swell from liquid damage or tainted blood.
• Galvanization guaranteed to outlast even long-lasting outbreaks.
CAUTION: Loud noises caused by installation of Century 21 Zombie Proofing Kit may attract more zombies.

Bidding goes until next Wednesday, with all proceeds donated to Easter Seals.

October 10, 2014, 11:47 AM EDT

Are You Patient Enough to Sit Through the Longest Ad in the World? Probably not, and that's kind of the point

We've seen some lengthy ads in our time—notably, the five-hour spot with Adriana Lima waving a checkered flag for Kia.

But the ad below? Well, it tries your patience on a whole new level.

We won't spoil the plot, but see how much you can watch. And then click pause or stop to see what the ad is really all about.

And click here if you want to watch full-screen.

Via Creative Criminals.

October 10, 2014, 11:19 AM EDT

No More Mr. Nice Guy: PSA Campaign Reveals the Brutal Duplicity of Abusers When love quickly turns to its opposite

You'll want to wipe that smile off his face.

Lowe Campbell Ewald's chilling new public-service campaign for Haven, a Michigan nonprofit that assists victims of rape and domestic violence, strips away the "Mr. Nice Guy" veneer to reveal the threat lurking behind the disarming grins and sweet talk that abusers use to confuse and control their victims.

"I'll be really nice," begins a happy-faced dude in the spot, below directed by Oscar winner Angus Wall. But he turns out to be anything but. His mood swing is understated and utterly convincing, especially in the Ray Rice era, when heroes can be revealed as villains in the few seconds it takes for a surveillance camera to capture their shameful acts.

"This highly emotional approach will resonate with our audience," says agency creative chief Mark Simon. "Our hope is that it reaches those who are suffering and provides them with the knowledge that help is out there."

The tagline is "Live without fear," yet for a campaign all about escaping terror, there's plenty of it here. Still, the message—across all media—is powerful. One print ad entwines the phrase "I'm crazy about you" with "You crazy bitch," while a bus-shelter poster (perhaps the campaign's best execution) features the headline "I Love You"—which, upon closer inspection, is actually composed of hundreds of tiny threats like "You're gonna pay for this" and "If I can't have you, nobody can."

By focusing on the mind-set of perps, Haven puts the blame in the only place it belongs. "It is the choice and actions of the abuser that causes abuse," says Beth Morrison, the organization's CEO. "The victim is never at fault."

Client: Haven
Agency: Lowe Campbell Ewald
Chief Creative Officer: Mark Simon
Group Creative Director: David Bierman
Art Director: Kelly Warkentien
Copywriter: Nancy Wellinger
Producer: Mary Ellen Krawczyk
Account Executives: Joe Gaulzetti, Nicole Reincke, Alyssa DeYonker
Production Company: Elastic
Director: Angus Wall
Director of Photography: Eric Treml
Executive Producer: Jennifer Sofio Hall
Line Producer: Shanah Blevins
Editing House: Rock Paper Scissors
Editor: David Brodie
Audio Mix: Lime

October 10, 2014, 9:16 AM EDT

Shell Celebrates 30 Years in Alberta by Selling Gas at 1984 Prices A blast from the past

It was the best of times, it was the ... well, literally the best of times. Van Halen was the greatest band in the world. George Orwell was totally right about the future. And the Edmonton Oilers were the world champions of hockey.

It was 1984. And speaking of oil, that's the year Shell started refining in Alberta, Canada. To celebrate, eight Shell stations in the area reduced their prices on Wednesday to match their 1984 levels—39 cents per liter.

With gas costing way more than that nowadays, Canadians were surely happy to fill their gas-guzzling vehicles without hurting their wallets, even if just for one day.

Via Global News Canada.

October 9, 2014, 2:31 PM EDT

Norway's 12-Year-Old Bride Has a Secret: She's Not Actually Real But 39,000 other children are forced to marry daily

This Saturday was supposed to be a big day for 12-year-old Thea, as she finally walked down the aisle to marry her 37-year-old fiance. However, the festivities may be hampered by the fact that neither one of them actually exists.

Thea's disturbing union with a man 25 years her senior in Norway was a digital invention of Plan International, an advocacy group dedicated to lifting children out of poverty. Thea's wedding blog, packed with photos of her matrimonial preparations and confessions about feeling pressured into the union, reportedly sparked concerned calls to child welfare authorities and thousands of horrified conversations in social media.

The group says the stunt was created to highlight that more than 39,000 children in developing countries are forced into marriages every day. Plan International tells the Independent: "We believe that provocation is a powerful tool in order to demonstrate a reality that truly is very provoking. We hope people will mobilize against child marriage by being girl sponsors, so that most of the girls facing Thea's situation every day can escape their brutal fate."

Via BuzzFeed.

Click to Read More →

October 9, 2014, 11:11 AM EDT


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