Friday, 22 December 2006

SPAM Scare

This type of SPAM makes Fenton look behind him too much on the walk home, even though Kensington is a very safe place...

On a more serious note, what is the motivation behind this sort of thing? Is there one? Is someone actually trying to kill me?

Wednesday, 20 December 2006

Meat Pub (tube map)

I like anagram tube map from linked to me by Anthony Goh it's like, a totally cool subversion of the things in our everyday lives that we don't really notice, totally cool man. Yeah. Prussian Girdle babez.

Other tube map related stuff which I like a bit of is animals on the underground, it's amaaazing. Totally. Simeon Rose had one of these as his desktop when I first moved to London.

A geographical map from here. Probably via the guy below.

This is the best site on the internet. This dude has constructed maps indicating what's really underground, stations it's quicker to walk between, travel times, different names, toilets, the list goes on and really served to completely ZOMG me. ZOMG.

Slut Tube. That's gonna go a long way. But this fokker translated the tube map into German. Holy fuck.

Zehr gut. What you can see below from Asen T Tsvyatkov is something I thought about doing when I first saw the absolut ads as a kid (teenager?). It's obvious when you look at the map, but it's still a lovely thought. Whilst I was on the lookout for it i came across this site which is a repository for all of the ABSOLUT ads ever made. Whilst listening to an interview with Richard Huntingdon over at Russell Davies' blog, I heard them talking about 118 118, and how that's the absolute pinnacle of all our activity, from the economic side of it, investment in an agency led a totally homogenous market to have one brand with 40% market share (even though it was more expensive than the rest).

(apologies for the image size. I had to use google's cache of the image as the site I linked from is down.)

I think this campaign from ABSOLUT is on par with that creatively as they managed to take the UK flavoured vodka market (at least) by storm against much better established, cheaper brands. Especially brands like Stolichnya who have the most traditional product (they invented flavoured vodkas) but due to a lack of marketing communications they were left relatively skunnered by a mad band of drunk Svenskas.

Absolut Fenton.

Get raped

R is for racing at \"R\"osie\ A P E

Fenton's just seen something he quite likes. Not because he's a sexual deviant, just because it's something rather polemic, and he does rather like to verge on the flippant.

The latest thing for sale in Second Life is rape. There are several different types of rape to choose from and you can also select in what way you participate - "Rape victim," "Get raped," or "Hold victim". Fantastic. Have a look at the cyber-shot below.

I'll attempt to keep this apart from a diatribe about what I think of Second Life, especially what I think of the agencies/companies who are cluelessly piling onto the e-wagon. From a societal point of view, I think the people who've first linked this have put an unnecessarily negative slant on the purchase of virtual rape, or virtu-rape. It set me thinking about the purpose and possible benefits of such a thing existing.

Japan, home of certain types of animated porn which have been known to feature multiple devil docks piercing the internal organs pubescent schoolgirls* also has the lowest number of reported rape cases and the highest percentage of arrests and convictions in reported cases of any developed nation**. The obvious argument lies that the rape might be happening but not reported. Fair, but there is no evidence to support that. So I'll go with the fact that Japan is a saintly nation of non-rapists. Nice one lads.

What's my point? Well, essays and studies like the one quoted above are far from uncommon, people have looked at pornography versus sex crime incidence and the overwhelming link is an inverse one. More porn, less raping. Great.

The point I am driving at, in my opinion, it's an inescapable fact that most, if not all humans harbour certain taboo desires, that's fine, it's normal. I think there should be a chance to express these desires in a cybersex-arena (like Second Life) rather than IRL as with the growth of the internet, you can't help feel that the growth of virtual environments will be primarily driven by sex and sexuality. One of the first plug-ins written and sold in Second Life allowed you to buy varying types of wang and probably tits as well, I dunno.

Second Life is mankind's first real foray into any type of mass interactive virtual world and I don't think it's very good, to be honest - I'd rather expose myself to an infinite loop of hentai. That is however, more down to technological limitation rather than it being a bad idea. The idea of a widely available interconnected virtual world is there, it will just have to become a lot more accessible and interactive on a much deeper level (possibly some type of direct brain-neurone interface whenever the guys at IBM get round to plugging in someone's head to Big Blue and flicking the switch) before it becomes universally used.

Something that writing this article sparked me to think about was an article I saw last week related to the effect of virtual reality and interactivity on memory. And how in increasingly interactive digital communications are more effective in embedding themselves in your memory than their static counterparts, your head-brain gets all confused as to whether x really happened or not. The extension of this would be to say that virtual reality implants false memories (or are they?) into your memory.

* I haven't actually seen this.
** From here.

Monday, 18 December 2006


This is so fucking great. Why? because it demonstrates a two fairly abstract human constructs using three lines. I think communicating information succinctly and accessibly it's a greatly admirable skill.

This creative individual has the recipe for a book on their hands. A seemingly unending flow of clever ideas which have been very well represented. All of them inside a very cute, lo-fi, mechanic

I've long wished to make a website from drawing and writings, all scanned in. I think it's a nice departure from boring fonts, white space and flash. Typesetting and typography unaided by computer is an extremely attractive, ergonomic and soulful way of communicating.

I'd quite like to set up a lo-fi web dépôt as sort of an offset of modern hyper-graphics. Functionality and content could still delve into Web 2.0 and beyond, just that the interface would stray away from buttons which took 3 hours to make in Photoshop. Any lo-fi interface shrine would feature Lou Barlow , I've absolutely loved his site and it's just as effective and attractive in spite of his design method not changing since ~1999. How many 7 year old sites can you say that about?

It's kind of like this theme which I've just installed on my MacBook. Developed by Apple Japan in the 1990's and made to look like a Drawing Board. I think it's one way to make technology more friendly.

Monday, 11 December 2006

Saatchi & Saatchi - Desesperados

I'm at a total loss. Standing in M&C last week was probably the most sobering experience of my life. The characters, or to be more precise, caricatures that I saw there instantly answered many questions I'd had about the fate of the dinosaurs. Clichéd I know, but they're all working in big above the line agencies.

The Client Services Director, a classically educated T-Rex, and various other types of large (supposedly) extinct reptile could be seen at this universal ego nucleus. There was a nervous energy, far darker than the ceaseless sniffing of client pockets and thinly veiled inter-agency scoffing. It was the fact that they know that there's a large body of rock, heavy metal and ice diving toward them like a Zulu on a Kamikaze mission.

It was this energy that surely led Saatchi & Saatchi to write the advert which you can see above, (apologies for bisecting it). No, this isn't a cutting from the business pages of a 1970's NY newspaper, this is from The Sunday Times business pages, dated Sunday 10th December 2006.

If you've read it, you'll be crying. At this exact moment wishing for a return to critics binding their meaningless diatribes in Kleenex so you could dry your bliddies. Unfortunately, you'll have to use the rounded aluminium corner of your MacBook Pro.

Why are you crying? You're crying because an institution which probably led you in some convoluted way to reading this blog is on it's knees and all it can do is ask an overpaid longcopy writer to bail them out.

Do you think that telling me that you've changed is good enough?

Do you not have to prove it to me?

Wouldn't the best place to prove it to me be in this very piece of communications?

Is a long copy ad in The Sunday Times the best place to prove that you're ready for the 'Paradigm shift' and that your 'new competencies' are up to scratch?

Fenton isn't so sure. Fenton would prove himself with action (or possible an aimless blogotribe). Fenton would have told Saatchi to approach their current clients and anyone else who advertises like they were an infant agency desperate for business, desperate to prove themselves. A ground up re-work of their whole strategy which mirrors the fact that advertising isn't advertising anymore. It's just a bunch of people saying stuff and that our job is to find the various ways to best influence that.

I'd be interested to hear your (plural) thoughts.


P.S. Any clues on what the headline means?

Credit for scanning this ad goes to Charlie Kemball who's interning at glue at the moment.