This blog covers everything except sports and gardening, unless we find a really good link about using dead professional bowlers for mulch. The author is a StarTribune columnist, has been passing off fiction and hyperbole as insight since 1997, has run his own website since the Jurassic era of AOL, and was online when today’s college sophomores were a year away from being born. So get off his lawn.

Superbowl Ad Outrage Season starts early

Posted by: James Lileks under Outstate, Praise, Technology Updated: February 1, 2013 - 12:20 PM

As one marketing exec said of VW’s new ad:

"It's pretty horrific," says Ricki Fairley-Brown, president of the multicultural marketing agency Dove Marketing. "Why do they have a white guy from Minnesota faking a Jamaican accent?".

Here it is. Brace yourselves.

 

 

VW scoffs:

VW insists it will broadcast the ad during Sunday's game on CBS. "There is no thought to pulling it," says Tim Mahoney, chief product and marketing office at Volkswagen of America. It began showing online Monday and since then, has been a social-media buzz saw — with most folks liking it, but some critics totally trashing it.

The minister of tourism for Jamaica likes it, but what does he know. Then there’s the Coke commercial controversy. If you don’t know what the objections are, watch it and figure out who’s unhappy with it.

 

 

 

 

Everyone should be unhappy with it. That’s all-around awful. But you can vote for your favorite! “Meteor striking everyone involved” is not an option. You can follow the various contestants on Twitter, too, for that utterly fictional sense of "social connectivity" companies are so desperate to attain.

As long as we’re on the subject of Coke and the Middle East: here’s a late-40s ad for Coke, show in Egyptian theaters.

 

 

 

 

It’s as no one knew what to do with the bottle until the singer told them. Don’t sit there looking miserable! Drink it!

 

WANT A BURGER? NEIGH Don’t worry. It’s not like American Burger Kings use horsemeat. Daily Mail:

Burger King has tonight admitted that it has been selling burgers and Whoppers containing horsemeat despite two weeks of denials.

 

The fast food chain, which has more than 500 UK outlets, had earlier given a series of ‘absolute assurances’ that its products were not involved.However, new tests have revealed these guarantees were incorrect in a revelation that threatens to destroy the trust of customers.

Asked how many executives at the company faced dismissal over the scandal, a Burger King spokesman stomped his foot four times.

 

FROM HERE TO THERE Should you be working at all today, or should you be spending the day Gambian Style? BBC says:

In the tiny African nation of The Gambia, public sector workers will now clock in at 8am and clock out at 6pm, Monday to Thursday. They'll still do a 40-hour week but have the luxury of Friday off.

 

President Jammeh wants the extra rest day to "allow Gambians to devote more time to prayers, social activities and agriculture".

You can debate the wisdom of this if you like; that’s not why I bring it up.

 

The Gambia? Are there others claiming to be A Gambia, and they want to be clear who's the true Gambia?

 

TECH Using metaphors to familiarize people with new technology: sometimes it’s a bad idea. This piece brought back the heady days when tablet computing would eliminate the PC as we knew it. Really! The Newton, General Magic’s products. A reminder:

Start up the Magic Cap OS, which debuted on Sony and Motorola tablets in 1994, and you were faced with an actual desk, complete with images of a touchtone phone and rolodex. To access other apps, you clicked out of the “office,” walked down the “hallway,” and poked into any number of “rooms.” The internet browser was a further trek: out of the office building, down the main street to the town square, and into a diner, where the web was was finally accessible by clicking on a poster.

He’s not kidding.

 

 

 

It would take years before tablets caught on, and these guys wouldn't be there to see it. General Magic didn't survive the tech crash / post 9/11 economy; it closed in 2002. But one of its projects is still in use: OnStar, the thing in your car where you shout "help, I turned over and I'in a ditch and wolves are circling the vehicle," and they send someone to help you. General Magic developed it for . . . General Motors. That's satisfying, somehow. 

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