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May, 2014

Germans Find Neo-nazism On Detergent Package

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It seemed like a good idea at the time.

Procter & Gamble had come up with a new, more concentrated formulation for its Ariel detergent that would give German hausfrauen more washes per box. So what could be more natural than to highlight that on the packaging? And to do it in a way that ties in with Germany’s most popular sport, soccer?

They apparently were unaware of what Consumerist.com calls “the finer details of neo-Nazi culture.” That unawareness caused a blitzkrieg of complaints on social media and made them scrap the packaging (along with the detergent it contained).

White clothes

Before the new formula, a box of Ariel detergent was good for 83 loads of laundry. The new formulation added five more, for a total of 88.

“We wanted to advertise for 83 plus 5, that is five extra washes beyond the 83 usually in this package size,” a P&G spokeswoman told German news agency DPA. Read more →

While Mozilla Talks About Online Privacy, European Court Of Justice Acts

KidsPrivacy

Just days after Mozilla posted a website and a video saying that internet privacy is good, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) actually did something to make online privacy better. Deciding a case that originated in Spain over the posting of some settled lawsuits, “Europe’s highest court said on Tuesday that people had the right to influence what the world could learn about them through online searches,” the New York Times reported May 13.

In creating a new “right to be forgotten” that lets people delete posted information about themselves, this ruling, according to the Times, “rejected long-established notions about the free flow of information on the Internet.” By giving “individuals the right to ask internet search engines to remove links to information about them that they do not want known,” it “raised the possibility that a Google search” and, yes, a Mozilla Firefox search “could become as cheery — and as one-sided — as a Facebook profile or an About.me page.” Read more →

Surprise! Cable-cutters Still Watch Television Shows

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Just because consumers cancel their cable service, they don’t stop watching broadcast and cable television programs. This should come as a surprise to no one, since a major consideration for most people who cut the cable is whether they can still see their favorite shows elsewhere. But apparently, it’s news to Experian Marketing Services, who released their latest survey results on the subject to Advertising Age May 8.

The survey shows which programs cable-cutters watch and where they watch them. But because of its literally mindless methodology – digital Big Data techniques – the results are less than dispositive.

Cooking the books?

For example, Experian counted viewership of only shows that people who have broadband but not cable, satellite or online website subscriptions can watch. This right away eliminates runaway online-only hits like the “House of Cards” remake, which requires a Netflix subscription. It also gave short clips of shows the same weight as complete programs. This inflated viewership numbers and rankings for shows such as “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” Some 4 million people subscribe to the YouTube channel where its clips are posted, and its “Worst Twerk Fail Ever” clip got more than 19 million views alone. Read more →

Infantile Man Replaces Flo (for Now) In New Progressive Insurance Campaign

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For everyone out there who’s ever found Flo, Progressive Insurance’s over-the-top, on-camera spokeswoman just a wee bit abrasive, there’s good news and bad news.

The good news is, “Progressive has sent Flo on a temporary vacation,” according to a May 7 MediaPost Marketing Daily report.

The bad news is, her “temporary” replacement will have you counting not only the days, but the hours, minutes and seconds till she’s back on the job.

A Facebook Premium Video Ad first

There’s also another piece of good news. If you’re fortunate enough to be neither Genertaion Y nor Millennial, you may never see the campaign; it’s not targeted to you.

The video campaign will be visible only on Progressive’s website, on YouTube, and on Facebook Premium Video Ads, where, Jonathan Beamer, Progressive’s marketing strategy and innovation business leader says, his company will be the first national brand to advertise. Read more →