Allstate ad called misleading

Texans aren't happy with one of Allstate's latest ads. They claim the commercial is using fear tactics to get people to buy more car insurance or else risk losing their homes.

Tom Kelley, a spokesman for Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, said the office may order Allstate to pull the plug on the ad, which started airing Aug. 22 nationwide.

Allstate officials said the commercial is meant only to alert homeowners to serious consequences that can result from inadequate auto insurance coverage.

"The ad is not intended to communicate that a forced sale of the home occurred," Allstate spokeswoman Kim Whitaker said in an e-mail response to the criticisms.

Texas law prohibits misleading advertising. The state attorney general's office is considering sending Allstate a letter with the ultimatium to make the spot more accurate by including Texas Homestead Law or pull it off air.


Ron Jeremy warns that "too much sex can be a bad thing"

Whats new pussycat? Ron Jeremy lends his likeness to PETA and appears in a PetaTV ad where he frolics in his natural environment (nude, in a bed) and the tagline informs us cheekily that : "Too much sex can be a bad thing. Help end overpopulation - spay and neuter your dogs and cats."

There's a 'racy' newspaper ad to go with the commercial, read more to see it in full.


Tired of cliches and stereotypes in advertising

Cliches in advertising have gotten under the skin of writer John Camm.

"It's tiresome to see male characters in adverts who don't resemble anyone you know," he says. "But what's perhaps worse is the absolute reliance of advertising on its own regurgitated cliches."

Camm has created a list of 26 "unwritten rules" which he thinks might as well be the Ad Bible.
(read on...there's more)


Motorola iPod phone ads use Madonna, Iggy Pop and others

BrandRepublic reports that ads for the new the Motorola Rokr, due to be revealed next week, will feature artists from every generation. Little Richard, Bootsy Collins, Lil' John, The White Stripes, Sleater-Kinney, Sum 41, Mya, Pussycat Dolls and Billie Joe from Green Day and look-a-likes of Beethoven, Jimi Hendrix and Biggie Smalls will be featured.


Ad Council launches disaster relief PSAs for Red Cross

A national series of PSAs in response to the devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina, are being launched by The Advertising Council has joined forces with the American Red Cross. Television, radio and internet ads direct Americans to visit where they can make a donation and aid in the disaster relief. The pro bono ads were created pro bono by Austin-based ad agency GSD&M in less than two days.

GSD&M is also creating PSAs to generate support for the victims of Hurricane Katrina, designed to provide information about where to go for resources and support. These ads will launch in a few weeks.

Radio PSAs will be distributed nationwide today and the television spots and Web banners will be sent out tomorrow. FastChannel Network is donating services for the TV and radio distribution. In addition, media trade associations including the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA) and the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) have also come forward to offer their support for the PSAs by engaging their members and helping with distribution.


Sprint ad blitz begins

Today, Sprint is launching a massive advertising blitz around the idea of "choice". A $600 million plus campaign follows the merger between Sprint and Nextel.

From the press release:

Heralding the arrival of the new Sprint is an aggressive, innovative brand advertising campaign expected to saturate the market over the next several weeks. From strategic print and broadcast placements, to dynamic outdoor buys, to direct and online elements, Sprint will be hard to miss in September and into the fourth quarter. Unveiling its new tag line to the public for the first time, the company will begin to make pervasive the answer "Yes you can."


Norton Internet Security kills entire websites, but fails to hide actual ads.

Dramatic enough headline for ya? Good, because I want your attention on this matter. I've never been a fan of Norton Internet Snakeoil, Symantec's crap better known as NIS, as it's rather expensive and to me, utterly useless. The bad part of NIS is that it removes any and all URL's based on word and letter combinations within the URL rather than actual content of website. "Ad" is one of those letter combinations, killing innocent sites like this one. The even worse part is that some clear advertising content URL's are whitelisted by default, perhaps because these companies paid Norton off.

In plain English, NIS kills this website. Then the people who are using NIS email me, helpfully letting me know that "your website is broken, mate, it's like all white or sumthin', no links work." Well, it's not my fault, it's your Norton. This past week I've helped 17 (!!) people sort out their Norton issues, Symantec should fucking pay me. A lot.

One of the people who had trouble was fellow advertising gossip blogger George Parker with the sharp pen. Even his blog, located at "" has plenty of items blocked by default by Norton Internet Security, and George thinks he has a pretty good idea as to why Norton behaves this way. He insists that there is a Peter Norton/Charles Saatchi conspiracy theory! He might be right! (read more for it)


Not so sweet returns for The Richmond Times-Dispatch

Photo District News Online tells the story of twin magazine cover shots and headlines which ends sadly in one photographer getting canned. The two covers shows a stack of three candy pieces against a white background - a photographic solution so tried and true that Clinique made entire campaigns out of the "style". What is odder, in my humble opinion, is the similarities of headlines - the Style Weekly headline was "Sweet return," while the Times-Dispatch headline was "A Sweet Return." Brainsync!


Guess which one of these things doesn't belong?

The ever creative crew of Coudal are currently chuckling at this strange phenomena in the Alexa ad agency listings.. One of these things is not quite like the others....


Viral gives new meaning to "be the ball" reports that a viral ad by Newhaven Agency for UK Powerleague, which hosts five-a-side tournaments for companies like Bank of Scotland, 3i, and Punch Pubs, isn't being banned by the ASA after one person complained.

The viral features a woman playing with her hamster in a hamster ball, only to be interrupted by her boyfriend coming home, flicking it up to his knees and his neck, then volleying it out a fifth floor window. Once on the ground outside another man sees it and, as he prepares for a kick, the hamster squeaks. A subtitle reads: "bugger". The ad ends with the line: "Get your kicks at Powerleague."

The complaintant told the ASA "the ad was irresponsible because it condoned and could encourage animal cruelty". The ASA ruled that most people would see it as light-hearted and fanciful.

See the ad here.

As the site says "No hamsters were harmed in the making of the film, but the lead actor did stub his toe on a coffee table."