This panel featured Steve Hall, Jeff Jarvis, Rebecca Lieb, and Charlotte Selles. Moderator Henry Copeland went down the line, letting the panelists nominate one ad or campaign that was either unethical or just plain crap from companies during 2007.
First nominee is Molson. They used their Facebook account to get people to send in phtos of them "using" their product, i.e. "Getting f-ed up," said Charlotte Selles, the panelist nominating Molson for the Suxorz award.
Second was nominated by Rebecca Lieb- the Carlton Beer "very big" ad. She mentioned that everyone online has seen it, but no one knew what it was advertising. "I've heard Carlson.. Carls... No one seems to know the actual name of the company," Lieb said.
"Pay per post is evil!" declared Jeff Jarvis. "It's a human spam blog." Jarvis cited a mom who wrote blog posts for Pay Per Post who had her kids smash an HP camera on video and then put it online.
Steve Hall introduced Wal-marting across America, a fake folksy blog about a couple who went across America visiting different Wal-Marts.
Selles introduced the famous Whole Foods' CEO John Mackey, who posted negative things on the message board of his competitor under "Rahodeb," a scramble of his wife, Deborah's, name.
Jarvis- CISCO and the "Human Network." They went into Wikipedia and wrote their own article promoting their own business, which is completely unethical. They showed a clip from a CISCO executive explaining that they "organically" suggested the Wikipedia article to consumers. "I love to be organically socialized!" said Jarvis.
Hall- Mentos and Diet Coke. People had already been combining Mentos and Diet Coke for the fun explosion effect, and originally the companies avoided the issue. However, once they realized they could cash in on consumers' interest in combining the two products, they did just that.
Lieb- Vespa Blog. Vespa found people who used Vespa and loved it and had them blog about it. Until one day when Vespa lost interest and stopped paying attention to their bloggers... and the bloggers started posting negative things about Vespa's level of service. The last post, blasting the company, actually stayed online for two years before being taken down by the company.
Winner... CISCO. 2 for 2 for Jarvis.
Lieb- Going to Work for Subway, by agency.com. Video of a creative director going to get a job at Subway... the ad agency lost employees and were made the laughing stock of the advertising world. The video actually disappeared from YouTube.
Hall- Target Rounders. Rounders was a clandestine project by Target... they had young consumers promote Target projects but told the participants not to talk about it with their friends or on their Facebook groups. "Keep it like a secret!!"
Jarvis- The Giuliani campaign. He created a MySpace page to try and get in touch with young voters. "Giuliani was defeated by his lack of savvy on the Internet," said Jarvis.
Selles- All I Want for Xmas is a PSP. A fake blog by a kid who supposedly really wanted a PSP for Christmas. Everyone found out it was fake and were extremely critical of the company's tactics.
Winner... Agency.com FTW! (or... FTL? depends on how you look at it)
(this next one was tossed in at the end)
MarieDigby, who recorded an acoustic version of Rihanna's "Umbrella" and posted it on YouTube... she got tons of hits and visitors and was sooo shocked at her popularity. Only... the filming was done by her record company trying to promote their artist. Previously she had said she didn't have a record company.
"To make up things and fake us out, it's just terrible!," said Jarvis. "How insulting is that to us? The truth is you can't buy us."
"It's not hard to tell the truth... it really isn't. It's a whole different world and they're still trying to figure out and it's just a matter of time. There's going to be enough screw ups that eventually we won't have any more screw ups," said Hall. He said that wouldn't be fun, because then we couldn't sit around and make fun of them.
The final result from all the "winners" is... HP! Good job, guys.