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Riney Gets Inventive

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LOS ANGELES Publicis & Hal Riney this week breaks its first effort for inventnow.org, an initiative designed to encourage 'tweens to be inventive.

In one 30-second spot, a brother and sister are watching TV when a robot sidles up to the boy, who asks what the contraption is. "I don't know," says the girl, feigning ignorance. "Something I kinda made." Another ad shows a young man who searches for his stray cat with a "cat magnet." That latter theme is also used in outdoor executions.

The tagline is, "Anything's possible. Keep thinking."

The pro-bono campaign was launched through the Ad Council for the U.S. Department of Commerce.

"Talking to the children in researching the campaign at camps and schools, we encountered an interesting problem," said Jon Soto, ecd at Riney in San Francisco. "Kids think of inventors as Alexander Graham Bell or Albert Einstein as historical figures. They don't think of inventing things as something they can do."

The campaign is intended to drive viewers to a Web site where 'tweens can learn about patents, use message boards, post ideas for inventions and "have a little fun," he said. "We're hoping it becomes a place for all those silly things they think about and write down in their notebooks, but never take further."