July 17, 2009

Only In California

PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) thinks we would treat fish more kindly if instead of calling them "fish" we started calling them "sea kittens." This is not a joke.

Because of the budget deficit in California the state is planning to close a bunch of state parks including one called Pescadero State Beach. Pescadero means "place to go fishing."

PETA have offered to pay to keep the beach open if the state will agree to change the name from "Pescadero State Beach" to "Sea Kitten State Park."

You simply cannot make this shit up.

Seth Nails It

Ever wonder why big corporations keep hiring the same agencies over and over?

Seth Godin nails it in this short but insightful post.

There is a pattern to life in large corporations. It's not a pattern specific to a particular large corporation, but to all of them.

If you deal with them long enough, you get to recognize the language, the values, the legends, and the rituals.

You also get to recognize the types of people who work at these places and how they tick.

There are ad agencies that are specialists at this. They have learned how to talk the talk and walk the walk. They are very successful.

They may not be very good at creating ads, but they are brilliant at writing presentations that get MBAs to nod their heads.

Not So "Free" After All

Chris Anderson, author of The Long Tail and editor in chief of Wired, has a new book called Free.

The point of the book seems to be, I don't know, some baloney about "we should not fear free." I've only read reviews of the book but the point seems to be that if you give away stuff for free, it will lead inexorably to money-making opportunities.

I'm not sure how, but I believe that this is related to the idiotic argument made by web maniacs that everyone is entitled to everything free on the web. Why should all intellectual property be free? Um ... because ... um ... "information wants to be free"... or some such childish nonsense.

Anyway, I'm not about to review a book I haven't read so you can discount everything I've said above. The real subject of this post is this: To prove his point, Anderson is giving his book away free. "I felt it was important to walk the walk," said Anderson.


He's not giving away anything for free. If you want to read the book, you have to read it on line (you can't download it) and you only have a few days to do it before the hard copy of the book is released, then no more.

That's not called "free", that's called "sampling" and it's a marketing technique that's been around almost as long as authors working a PR hustle.

Read This Post

TAC has previously posted about the stupidity of marketers who have a knee-jerk reaction about targeting young people (see Aiming Low.)

Another great take on this subject, by Brent Bouchez, is found here.

A Good Start To The Weekend

A brilliantly written, wonderfully acted comedy scene -- Mary Richards meets Lou Grant for the first time.

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