“The Man” Online: China Shuts down Foursquare, BP’s SEM

The U.K.’s Telegraph paper is reporting that “according to some sources” access to Foursquare has been shut down in mainland China. The reasons behind the censorship haven’t been explained, but it’s pretty typical behavior from a government that has regularly closed access to online services when they permit users to behave in unapproved manners–Twitter and Facebook have been targets, and the recent spat over Google‘s censorship is now the stuff of media legend.


BP buying “oil spill” and other terms on Google
As consumers turn online for information regarding the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, BP is looking to do some damage control by buying search ads on relevant keywords, and by broadcasting its cleanup initiatives on a dedicated YouTube channel. BP is said to be putting between $600,000 and $1 million into its paid search ad effort and $50 million more on TV ads.

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Sponsor Logos: Marlboro v F1, Liverpool turns Chinese

How a Barcode Could Make F-1 Racing Illegal on UK TV
In the UK it is illegal to show tobacco advertisements on certain television programs, like sporting events. Today, a bar code painted on the spine of a Formula-1 race car is causing problems for Marlboro and the Ferrari F1 cars sponsored by the cigarette maker. This story is worth reading if for this quote alone: “The bar code looks like the bottom half of a packet of Marlboro cigarettes. I was stunned when I saw it. This is pushing at the limits. If you look at how the bar code has evolved over the last four years, it looks like creeping branding.” -prominent English physician John Britton.

Carlsberg is bidding to increase its brand awareness in China with a novel one-off marketing ploy which will see its logo on Liverpool football kit written in Chinese. The specially designed kit will appear in Liverpool’s match against Chelsea on 2 May and marks the first time the logo on the kit has changed in 18 years. The lager brand is using the shirt sponsorship to capitalise on the interest of football fans in China. The move also ties in with the brewer’s role as partner of the Danish Pavilion at the World Expo 2010 event in Shanghai.

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Recession Zeitgeist: Office Politics, Upcoming Talent Wars … Ad CEOs Think its over … the Economist Doesn’t

Recession Ups Backstabbing and Sucking Up
More than four in 10 US employees say they are encountering increased workplace backstabbing, “sucking up” and politicking as co-workers take desperate measures to stay employed amid widespread fears of layoffs during the recession, according to a study conducted by Professor Wayne Hochwarter out of Florida State University.

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many employers, you may soon be facing a “resume tsumani” when valued workers who have been with you through the recession start flooding the market with CVs as the economy improves. Planning for post-recession turnover may determine whether you’re among the talent winners or losers when the economy improves.
Global ad Omnicom Group Inc. and Publicis Groupe SA reported significant declines in revenue and profit but indicated a bottom may be at hand in the global advertising downturn. “We don’t see a recovery, but we feel we’ve hit the troughs,” said John Wren, chief executive of Omnicom. He added that it will take a couple of quarters to cycle through the current downturn, and a couple more before growth comes. “We believe the worst is behind us,” said Publicis Chief Executive Maurice Lévy. “All figures should be less in decline in the third quarter than in the second quarter.”
The global slump has reached its trough. Asia’s economies are looking rosier, buoyed by a spectacular rebound in China, where output grew at an annualised rate of some 16% between April and June. Even in America and the euro area, GDP is likely to stop shrinking during the summer. Trade, having fallen precipitately, is levelling off (see article). And, as firms rebuild their stocks, global growth over the next few months could be surprisingly robust. That is a welcome prospect. But it is not the all-clear. For this “recovery” has fragile foundations
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Social Media: Married on MySpace, Online Video

“What’s most interesting about “Married on MySpace” is the way it integrates brands and products. Arguably “Married” is the first reality series in some time, offline or on, that eases commercial content into its flow in a way that feels both natural for viewers and worthwhile for marketers.”
married on myspace

How People Share Online Video
“A few short years ago, the term “online video” was wishful thinking. Clips could only be slowly downloaded. They had to be viewed in tiny windows on the computer screen. Sound and graphics were primitive. Video was hardly a killer app. But then, in a rush came—sometime between 2005 and 2006—YouTube in the US, Dailymotion in Europe and Tudou in China.”

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Women Prefer Apple, Young People Prefer Microsoft?

Does rather beg the question “what about young women then?” That said: we read that:
“Apple ranks as the top technology brand among women in the US, who were asked which tech brand or company they admired most, according to a study from Solutions Research Group (SRG). Apple was followed by Sony, Microsoft, Dell and Hewlett-Packard (HP).”
“The Laptop Hunters commercial campaign that Microsoft is pushing seems to be working. Young people in the 18-34 demographic see a laptop running Microsoft Windows as a better value for the money than an Apple laptop running OSX. Apple had dominated consumer mindshare in the winter, but has since fallen behind Microsoft.”
microsoft v apple
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PS I am still fascinated by the The Apple Tablet. “More evidence of the Apple Tablet surfaced today. We first wrote about the device at the end of last year when OEMs in China started hearing about the device. Details are still thin, although probably not because of a lack of leaks. Rather, Apple may still be locking down important specs like screen size.”
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Crispin, Twitdoc, Chinese Ugly Betty, 3D

Crispin Intern Auction Gets $17,65
From Alex Bogusky (bogusky) on Twitter: “Intern Auction ended. Winning bid was $17,655. Congrats to the winner and the interns. Stand by for more info on the winning client.”

crispin interns

Twitter isn’t only for sharing links and news – with TwitDoc users can now share documents, from PDFs to Microsoft Office docs. Simply enter your account and choose the document or photo you want to send, attach text and blast the document into Twitterverse.
As it goes into its third season as a smash TV hit across the mainland, the Chinese version of “Ugly Betty” is also pioneering new levels of product-placement clutter. The show is set in an advertising agency rather than a fashion magazine, which enables the program to focus on all manner of products and their attributes. Mateo Eaton, who heads the branded-content division of Mindshare North Asia, acknowledged that the dense placements are a bit over the top, but advertisers — and the TV producers they’re paying — aren’t complaining at all.
Artist John Pugh creates fantastic trompe l’oeil murals on the sides of buildings that look as if they are exposing a 3D fantasy world inside. Mail Online has a gallery of his work.
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Spontaneity, Muziic, Thwarted Coke, Shrinking Languages

The Spontaneity Strategy
Some deathless prose from my old mate Erik Hanson. “In today’s dynamic media landscape, people are living their lives at the speed of real time. News is expected to be up to the second, friends keep up with each others’ lives online, step by step and hour by hour, and the latest and greatest can change every time you “refresh the page.”

Built by a clever 15-year-old web developer, this program allows users to stream any of the hundreds of thousands of songs available on YouTube directly to PCs (without fiddling with videos), where they can then be organized into an iTunes-like interface. Check it out now before it’s gone, as the site has yet to receive the blessing of Google, record companies, or the various rights holders to the songs.

Chinese Government blocks Coca-Cola’s billion dollar bid
The Chinese government has dealt a blow to Coca-Cola’s ambitions by blocking its $2.5bn (£1.8bn) purchase of drinks company China Huiyuan Juice Group on anti-monopoly grounds. In China, Huiyuan accounts for about 42% of the domestic pure juice market. In a statement the Chinese Ministry of Commerce said the deal would “restrict competition in the drinks market, force consumers to accept products with higher prices and reduce the types of products available”.

AROUND a quarter of the world’s population speaks just three languages: Mandarin, English and Spanish. But out of the 6,700 of the world’s identified languages, nearly 2,500 are deemed at risk according to UNESCO, the UN’s cultural body. The imposition of a colonial language long ago in big countries such as Brazil and America is still endangering the diversity of native tongues. In America, 53 languages have become extinct since 1950, more than in any other country.
languages4gd
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