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Advertise on a stamp?

Last May, the US Postal Service began allowing custom stamps with noncommercial photos and images. This week they have decided to allow companies to put logos and other commercial images on them as well.

"Every single day, we get orders that we have to reject because of this restriction," said Robert Beaver, chief executive of Zazzle, which prints custom stamps. "Lots of people are really interested in getting their message out on mail."

Only the Postal Service can issue stamps, but they allow other companies to sell what are basically postage labels, with the uploaded image in the center. So, technically they aren't stamps but they are valid postage.

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Oxfam wants to know if you're in

Oxfam is continuing on the efforts from the G8 and Make Poverty History campaigns of last summer. A viral campaign Bit Unfair demonstrates how rich get more breaks than those who are poor.

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Bloody is now bloody OK for OZ

The British restriction on the Australian tourism ad "Where the bloody hell are you?" which was not allowed to run in its original form because of the use of "bloody" has been reversed. The Australian Tourism Minister, Fran Bailey, flew to London in the hopes of saving the campaign.

"I am pleased that common sense prevailed and the regulators realised the campaign was intended to be cheeky, friendly and very Australian," Bailey told reporters.

I doubt the Australians are that upset though since the TV ban provided a ton of free publicity for Tourism Australia, which said it had created "an on-line traffic jam" around the A$180 million campaign.

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NO!SPEC crusade on a roll

After getting fed up with growing spec requests (unethical design contests, working on spec, free pitching), on the 25 of February a committee of 20 passionate designers was formed to develop the NO!SPEC crusade. Some offered to research, others to write copy and submit articles, some got together to brainstorm the design angle, others to design no-spec.com.

Design organisations are now getting involved - RGD (Association of Registered Graphic Designers of Ontario), GDC (Society of Graphic Designers of Canada), AIGA (the professional association for design), and Icograda (International Council of Graphic Design Associations).

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The Netherland's Anti-Tourism Ad

Most state and country-produced videos promote tourism (like that great Australian one). This new one from the Netherlands, which is required watching for potential new immigrants just does the opposite.

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Very Successful Brand Manager

The recently launched VerySuccessfulBrandManager.comwas created by and for a "Very Successful Advertising Agency", StrawberryFrog. The site is filled with tips on enlarging your logo/ego, using old English, being brown nosed and much more.

Screenshot inside.

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Asia Pacific AdFest 2006

Last weekend the Asia Pacific Advertising Festival was held in Pattaya, Thailand. This year more than 4,000 pieces of creative work from over 400 advertising agencies in 39 cities around the region were entered.

Best in Films went to The Love Story series for Smooth E Baby Face Foam by JEH United LTD, Bangkok. Best in Print went to BBDO Bangkok for their Maglite Campaign. Dentsu took home the Best of Outdoor for NTT-Resonant Internet Portal Site "goo". And the Worst Boyfriend campaign for NZgirl by DDB New Zealand won Best Direct Marketing.

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Apple releases new iPod spot

Yet another ad for Apple's iPod + iTunes that doesn't feature the iconic shadow dancers. Album covers stack up to create a city, which then falls into a vortex that streams them straight into the iPod. Check the ad out here.

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