iPodifying Museum Tours

"In the museum world, where the popularity of audio tours has grown tremendously over the last decade, the use of commercial MP3 players seems to be catching on. Officials at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis have discussed putting their new audio guide material on the Web for downloading to portable players. Last year, the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo lent viewers iPods to use as audio guides for one exhibition, and Apple Computer has helped the Château de Chenonceau in the Loire Valley of France do the same thing, using the sonorous voice of the actor Michael Lonsdale.

But the rise of podcasting is now enabling museumgoers not simply to enjoy audio guides on a sleeker-looking device but also to concoct their own guides and tours."
-- NY Times

Future of Workspace

Nice monitor from Siemens (found by Engadget).

Touchscreens Get Force Feedback

"Immersion Corporation is introducing its TouchSense technology for touchscreens. TouchSense technology supplies tactile cues, noticeably absent in current touchscreens, providing a more intuitive, personal, and natural experience. Instead of just feeling the hard, unresponsive touchscreen surface, users perceive that buttons depress and release, just as physical buttons and switches do. This realistic and engaging response restores the rich tactile information conveyed through physical controls, such as when clicking a computer mouse, pushing a button, or depressing a membrane switch. System designers can synchronize TouchSense tactile sensations with sound and on-screen graphical images for an even more powerful user experience."
-- press release

OMD To Develop Tech To Counter TV Ad Skipping

"The U.S. director of OMD, a Chicago-headquartered media shop, said that in the next few weeks the agency will begin testing a new type of media buy that will deliver an advertising message even when TV viewers are fast-forwarding through their TV commercials.

While he did not reveal specifics of the test, DeSocio implied they might be similar to some of the techniques TiVo is developing including options that run audio ad messages, superimpose billboard messages, or run commercials in picture-in-picture screens while consumers are fast-forwarding through conventional commercial advertising pods."

-- Media Post (free reg.)

Study Shows DVRs Lesser Threat Than Feared

"A study conducted between February and August 2004 by Horowitz Associates for ESPN, was designed to reveal what the impact of DVRs would be when given to "non-early adopters." The study was intended to determine how DVRs influence viewing behavior and exposure to advertising among the later adopters who were given DVRs as part of the test. As it turns out, many didn't even want the devices.

Of the 157 households that participated in the test, 90 returned their DVRs for a variety or reasons including: complaints about the installation process, the cost of DVRs, or the fact that the digital set-top devices clashed with or didn't fit into their home furnishings. Among those who opted to keep their DVRs, Gordon said there was an indication that they continued to view TV commercials, even during fast-forward mode. "

-- MediaPost (free reg.)

Forbes Weighs In On Game Ads

With all the recent media attention, in-game advertising is bound to become a hit, even if only as a self-fulfilling prophecy. In a recent article, Forbes chimed in:

"Lost in the talk this week of the new videogames from Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo is that these consoles will provide an ideal platform for advertisers. Advertising within videogames is not a huge business today--about $50 million to date by one estimate--but is expected to grow tenfold in the coming years."
-- Forbes

Federal Aviation Administration Against Space Ads

"The Federal Aviation Administration proposed on Thursday to amend its regulations to ensure that it can enforce a law that prohibits "obtrusive" advertising in zero gravity."
-- Reuters via Adjab

Advertising (in) Space for Sale

Interruptions in Posting Schedule

I've clocked in some 50 hours of travel by plane, train and bus this past week, which explains the recent lack of posts. I'm visiting my parents in southern Russia, and since they are remarkably un-wired (but the food is really good), I will be posting from a dingy Internet cafe nearby in the next few weeks. I'll try to get online at least twice a week and do the blog updates then, but I probably won't be able to post daily as I usually do. Please excuse this inconvenience. The blog should be back on its normal schedule by the end of June.

Advertising on Parking Tickets

"Disbelief at getting a ticket in a car park slowly turned to relief as shoppers who read on discovered the tickets were fake and simply an advert for a south London estate agent carrying the slogan 'If we've managed to get your attention, you should see how good we are at finding tenants and purchasers.'"
-- The Guardian via Adjab

Here's a patent for a parking-meter advertising device, and an earlier AdJab story on how parking meter ads failed in Buffalo

Advertising on Valet Parking Tickets

Durex To Advertise on Podcasts

"In an effort to reach young listeners with risque marketing messages at the same time it avoids FCC decency rules, condom maker Durex has purchased product placement advertising in podcasts. Durex condoms are being marketed with podcast product placements."
-- AdAge via Lost Remote

More on Times Square Billboards

Last week, AdAge ran a story (free reg.) on the behind-the-scenes action of Times Square advertising. "More than 100 million keepsake photos are taken in the area." How do you like the idea of turning advertising into a landmark? Here are some pictures of what this particular landmark looked like during the 2003 power outage.
-- via Brand Autopsy

Century Of Times Sq. Spectaculars

Who's Killing Whom, Part II

Influx has a post discussing a collapse of the old media, wondering what's coming to replace them. Here's an earlier article on the same subject.

Advertising Teletubbies-Style

"To promote HBO's "Entourage," FreeCar Media has built LCD screens — the kind used in laptop computers and other portable devices — into the front of T-shirts that will play clips from the show. (The battery-powered shirts project high-quality picture and sound, and weigh in at just 2.5 pounds.)"
-- NY Post (free registration)

Not terribly new. I remember seeing it done last year by a company called T-Shirt TV.

Bill Gates: Cellphone Will Beat iPod

"Bill Gates sees mobile phones overtaking MP3s as the top choice of portable music players, and views the raging popularity of Apple's iPod player as unsustainable, he told a German newspaper."
-- CNN

Google Moves Into Mobile Location Advertising?

"Google has acquired mobile social networking firm dodgeball.com in a move that could help the search player deliver location-based advertising on cell phones. Dodgeball.com uses SMS and MMS technology to allow consumers to connect with friends at nightspots in 22 U.S. cities. Because users text dodgeball to indicate their locations, the company can use that information to target ad messages to users within a specific geographic area. The company says it can also target by date and time, weather conditions, or by city."
-- ClickZ

Advertising in Alternate Reality

Gamasutra, the gaming industry's major publication, runs a feature article on the rise of alternate (or augmented) reality games and their potential for advertising. The most recent successful ARG was I Love Bees, created to promote the release of Microsoft's Halo 2 game.

In the article, Adrian Hon writes: "In terms of bang for buck, "I Love Bees" was exceptionally cost effective in gaining international media attention for Halo 2, and demonstrated perfectly how the viral nature of ARGs allows them to attract large audiences with comparatively small outlay, and just as importantly, create a rich and compelling "alternate reality" storyline. The fact that ARGs are entertainment themselves also gives them a way to appeal to communities that are otherwise very sensitive or neglected by traditional marketing campaigns. When EA spends over $100 million per quarter on marketing and even then finds it hard to penetrate some communities, using innovative techniques such as ARGs to appeal to large audiences can save potentially save millions. "

History of Pop-up and Movable Books

The University of North Texas library runs a fascinating exhibit and a history tour of movable and pop-up books. "The first movable books actually predate the print culture. The earliest known examples of such interactive mechanisms are by Ramón Llull (c.1235-1316) of Majorca, a Catalán mystic and poet. His works contain volvelles or revolving discs, which he used to illustrate his complex philosophical search for truth."
-- via Boing Boing

Flippies: Print in Motion
Interactive Print Through Structural Graphics

Error Messages on Digital Billboards

You already know about how your expensive digital billboard can easily be hacked into and defaced by pranksters or billboard liberators. I don't know what's more irritating: that or having an error message glowing over the entire town.
-- image from Engadget

Bookmarking Retailers

This has showed up on just about every blog on my RSS feed while I was laboring on my thesis proposal over the weekend (which explains the recent scarcity of posts here). A Japanese company TechFirm (in Japanese) offers technology that allows consumers to bookmark retailers by pointing their RFID-enabled phones (more about them here) at the RFID readers installed in stores.

Location-based bookmarking is not a new idea. Last year, UK-based Hypertag began offering billboards and posters that beam product-related information to cell phones using infra-red signals.

BMW Sp33ks L33t

Here's another way to do product placement online. Last week, Yahoo! Finance replaced all e's with 3's in its articl3 titl3s, linking them to the BMW site that promotes the new 3 Series. Bloggers wonder whether the campaign's gone too far (image: AdJab).

Study: Mobile TV Outlook

"Just when you thought the mobile handset contained every possible function and feature, along comes "the 75 year old killer-app": television. The cellular "ecosystem" is gearing up for this next innovation, and mobile TV will add a new set of players such as broadcasters, content providers, and advertising entities." A report from ABI Research discusses the general outlook for TV on cellphones, major obstacles on the way to wide adoption, and the technical issues surrounding mobile TV.
-- press release

Advertising Potential of In-Game Blogs

"With more videogames these days selling advertising through electronic billboards that dot the game's virtual landscape or by selling the right to play a band's song during game play, it's not too big of a leap to try and sell advertisements around an in-game blog. Charlene Li, an analyst who covers blogs for Forrester Research, believes that the first major game platform to incorporate blogs will be Microsoft's Xbox."
-- MIT Tech Review (reg. to access archives) via i4u.

Location Tracking With TV Signal

A tech start-up Rosum has figured out how to use television signals for location tracking. The technology complements the satellite-based global positioning system, which is weak in urban environments and can't reach inside buildings. One potential application of the technology is in audience measuring devices.
-- Silicon Valley

Vidsense: Contextual Video Ad Network

Vidsense matches the video clips in its database with participating publishers' website content and streams the appropriate clips along with shortvideo ads, paying publishers a percentage of ad revenues. In related news, ClickZ writes: "According to a recent Jupiter Research executive survey, 24 percent of online advertisers plan to use streaming video ads in 2005, nearly three times the percentage that ran them in 2004."

Commentary: Mass Media Meltdown

"It can't be a coincidence that the five major pillars of the American media — movies, television, radio, recorded music and newspapers — are all suffering at the same time. And it isn't. Something major has changed over the past year, as the availability of alternative sources of information and entertainment has finally reached critical mass."
-- NY Post

Flippies: Print in Motion

Flippies turn your 30" TV ads into eerie flip books; they also have a page on the history of the medium, if you ever wondered.

Concept: Bad Ads Should Cost More

"Mr. Berlin, who is also chairman of Berlin Cameron/Red Cell in New York, proposed a radical overhaul of advertising rates by adopting price flexibility so that good advertising would cost less and bad advertising would cost more. For instance, television commercials that viewers like or watch more often would be cheaper to run than those they zip past or zap."
-- NY Times

Concept: Last Ad Standing

Concept: Chair-Screen

"The Chair-Screen establishes a new conception of information based on pesonal communication; in practice, it is a telecommunicator. Life-size images of speakers will be recorded in and projected on the armchairs in order to give images a new dimension, to take them off the screen –the symbol of media indifference- in an attempt to achieve greater involvement, a communication-information based on personal interaction."
--Index 2005 via We Make Money Not Art

Immersive Videoconference

Blogging Nonrevolution

"There are too many people looking at blogs as being some magic bullet for every company's marketing problem, and they're not. It's Internet media. It's just the latest iteration of Internet media."
-- Nick Denton in NY Times

Advertising on Valet Parking Tickets

"The one time plain-looking valet parking ticket is serving as the backdrop for a new advertising medium, one that Houston companies are taking advantage of. Houston was the first city, in terms of valet partners, that was sold out of inventory from AdverTickets, a Dallas-based parking and transit advertising agency founded in 1998 by Chris Gilliam."
-- BizJournals

ATM Advertising

Study: Print Ad Practices Work Online

"What works in print ads often also works on the web - namely, powerful images that grab attention and point it toward a message, according to a study of online ads."
-- Marketing Vox

Study: Teens With Cellphones Are Heavy Users of Media

"Teen cell phone users are more likely than other teenagers, the survey by MindShare showed, to have media and technology items in their rooms, like TVs, computers and video games."
-- Media Week via Textually

Yahoo Working on Audio Search

"Yahoo is developing a search engine for finding downloadable songs and music data from across the Internet. Yahoo's search technology group has been developing the audio search engine for months, according to a source. The music engine will draw on Yahoo's search-marketing service to add related advertisements to music search results, according to this source."
-- CNet

Cool as the news may sound, it seems for now that there's no speech (or singing) recognition and indexing.

Commentary: Video Search Will Change Media

Ian Lipner at the Frontlines of PR wonders "why good search will change media forever". Here's why: "Good video search could actually wipe out the current paradigm in broadcasting- it could end the idea of TV schedules and lineups."

Nike Launches Interactive Billboard

"Nike launched an interactive billboard to coincide with a relaunch of its iD mass personalization Web site. The billboard lets people use their phones to design a shoe on the Reuters sign in Times Square."
-- ClickZ

Update: here's a picture of the billboard.

Loews To Publish Movie Showtimes Sans Ads

"Loews Cineplex Entertainment will begin advertising movie showtimes with a note saying most movies actually start 10 to 15 minutes later because of all those commercials, public service announcements and previews."
-- Chicago Tribune

In related news, it seems that product placement fever has spread from movies to movie trailers.

Retro Porn Flick To Come Out in Stereo

If the porn industry is any indicator of where the media technology is moving (online streaming , for example, was first embraced by "smut peddlers"), then expect the comeback of stereoscopic cinema. "The Stewardesses", a porn film wildly popular in the 1960s, is set for a theatrical rerun later this year in 3d, funky glasses and all. Then, of course, you have Lucas and Cameron pledging to do their next works in 3d, and the reports that Imax's business is on the rise. Anaglyph glasses are sold here.
-- via Fleshbot

Sharp Introduces New Stereoscopic 3D Laptop

The Next Big Thing: Sony PSP

"The current model of the PSP may not be the version that blows the doors off the competition—Sony may not be the company to execute on the idea successfully—but it includes several features that will redefine markets."
-- Red Herring Blogs via Cool Business Ideas

Ads Coming To PlayStation Portable

The Robotic Shopping Assistant

The Robotic Shopping Assistant, or as Engadget lovingly calls it, Roboshopper, was created at Utah State University to help blind people to shop. "The idea is that you simply come to the grocery store, grab the shopping assistant and it leads you to the different products. When you leave the store you leave it behind. The robot features a Braille interface and uses radio tags to find specific products."
-- BBC

More Advertising Robots
Advertising Robots, Part III
Advertising Robots, Part II
Advertising Robots
Fujitsu Launches U-Scan Shopping Cart
Evolution of Shopping Cart

Online Ad Spending To Reach $26B

"Online budgets are set to swell $26 billion, or 8 percent of total advertising and marketing spending, by 2010. That's according to a new five-year forecast by Forrester Research."
-- ClickZ

Online Ad Revenue Rivals Traditional Media's
IAB Releases Online Ad Revenue Report for 2004

Mirror with LED Messages

How's that for putting ads on user-generated content? This $400+ mirror has a scrolling LED display built in behind the glass and is capable of showing programmable time-triggered messages along with the reflections of whoever looks in it. The same mirror is available in a range of prices here ($425), here ($600+), or here ($700+).
-- via i4u

Ads Coming To PlayStation Portable

This was bound to happen. From today's New York Times: "Sony has given advertisers another venue to try: its PlayStation Portable, or PSP, a sleek hand-held game system that also plays movies and music. Heavy.com, a large Web host of short films and animation, has started making many of its clips available as free content specially formatted for the game system. The company hopes advertisers will support the free content by paying for quick commercials before or after the downloads, or by providing content in the form of branded entertainment." Uniliver has already signed up to promote Axe.

The big question the Times asks: is there enough audience for the mobile content?

More on PSP in last two months:

AtomFilms To Provide Content for PSP (reg)
ABC spreads news to new Sony portable
Variance Press releases Comics for the Sony PSP
Web Browsing on Your PSP
TiVoToGo on your PSP
Sony's PSP: What Marvelous Things It Can Do
20 Future Feature Requests for Sony PSP
Comcast CEO: PSP is the new DVR
HOW-TO: Get RSS feeds on your PSP
PSP hacks roundup

The Time Traveler Convention

What is a better way to find out about the future of advertising than talking to someone straight from the future?

The Time Traveler Convention
May 7, 2005, 10:00pm EDT (08 May 2005 02:00:00 UTC)
(event starts at 8:00pm)
East Campus Courtyard, MIT
42:21:36.025°N, 71:05:16.332°W
(42.360007,-071.087870 in decimal degrees)

The guys are trying to spread the news about the event so that it is well known enough for the future time travelers to consider it as a destination. Will it work? I don't see why not, and you can help by linking to their site, or pitching the story to your favorite news outlet. It's already on Slashdot, Boing Boing and NPR (the event is part of the Media in Transition conference at MIT).

Who knows, maybe the future generations will learn about the celebration from your blog, which of course by that time will have become an intergallactical media conglomerate.

Future: Product Placement in Dreams
Sony Patents Telepathy
Predictions for 2005, Part II
Predictions for 2005, Part I

Michigan Lottery To Sell Ad Space on Tickets

"Michigan government officials are preparing to award a first-of-its-kind contract to sell advertising on lottery tickets. The lottery wants a vendor to create and oversee a program to place ads on the back of terminal-based online games, play slips, and $10 and $20 instant-game tickets. Ad time will also be sold on Club Keno video monitors in bars and restaurants."
-- Lottery Post via AdJab

Magazines Go Beyond Traditional Ad Pages

"As the television networks get ready for their big "upfront" presentations next month, seeking to sell commercial time ahead of the start of the 2005-6 season, competitors from another medium, magazines, are intensifying efforts to attract advertisers - in many instances, the same ones the networks want to woo.

So just as the TV networks seek to entice marketers with sales packages that go beyond running 30-second spots in shows, publishers are also developing elaborate offers that involve more than just running ad pages or advertorial sections in their magazines."
-- NY Times

Magazines Campaign to Attract Advertisers
P&G to Put Sound Into Print Ads

Magazines Campaign to Attract Advertisers

Last week, I posted about the futuristic magazine covers, part of the campaign by the Magazine Publishers of America to attract advertising dollars back to the medium. Today, International Herald Tribune offers more details about the campaign.

South Korea Launches Cell Phone Video Satellite

"A South Korean company called TU Media fired up the first satellite DMB (digital multimedia broadcasting) service for cellphones today, offering subscribers seven channels of video and 20 channels of audio for about $13 a month."
-- Engadget

Advertising on Coins

Whether you want to set up a new country or decide to introduce an alternative monetary system, Coins For Anything will mint you some very pretty currency in a variety of metals and finishes - from antique silver to shiny gold. A coin with your head on it would make a very impressive business card, too, especially if your job title is "king" or "queen" instead of the plain boring CEO.

Advertising on Money

Advertising on CV

I'm in my final week of cold calling, frantic emailing and late-night writing collectively known as summer internship search. In case you or someone you know are looking for seasonal propaganda labor, I have put up answers to many FAQs and detailed specifications of the candidate.

I'm also sending out the last and largest batch of CVs - pdf and hard-copy - and thought it would be fun to put some ads on them. I'll probably put the offer up on eBay for the kicks, but here's your chance, dear reader, to lock in a one-time low price before Golden Palace scoops it up.

Update: two three five interviews lined up as of Friday Sunday.