People wipe their bottoms online

Today’s online banality from Think with Google was the final straw that didn’t quite break the camel’s back but did make it want to howl with derision.  See if you can spot the flaw in this:

Political decisions are made online, before voters even hit the booth. Political consultants Julie Hootkin of Global Strategy Group and Frank Luntz of Luntz Global Partners discuss new voter behavior data and what it means for political and brand marketers.

Other recent email alerts inform me:  Consumers watch TV online.  Your customers buy their groceries online.  We are becoming a nation of gourmets online.  We now learn about illnesses – online.  People read the newspaper online.  Who knew?  I don’t want to hear any more about the new and unlikely things people are doing online.  Why?  Because it’s bloody obvious.  Stop Press.  The Internet exists. So people do lots of things they used to do offline, online.  No shit?

I also don’t want to hear about the increasing share of advertising revenue which is going….online.  Or the proportion of time my children are spending….online.

Yes.  I get it.  Now just leave me alone.  And before you say it – yes, I know, the irony of writing this content in this particular medium is not lost on me.

A shadowy elite who rule the world

According to a recent YouGov poll, 13% of UK adults believe that… “Regardless of who is officially in charge, there is a single group of people who secretly control events and rule the world together.”

The more you think about this, the more difficult this is to dismiss.  Surely this many conspiracy theories can’t be wrong. And all the evidence does point to a small group of like-minded individuals who  have massive influence on the life and culture of the UK.

They have weird identifiers, which mean little to outsiders but allow them to recognise each other like a kind of macabre modern-day masonic handshake.

  • Furiosa
  • MadamDeathStare
  • Kidnapped
  • StealthPolarBear
  • FuzzyOwl
  • FoxesSitOnBoxes
  • TheCountessOfFitzdotterel
  • EatShitDerek
  • TiggerYouBastard
  • AndTakeYourPenguinWithYou

Who are these threatening sounding characters?  It’s not SPECTRE – they used numbers to identify each other.  Rosa Klebb was ‘Number Two’. How much more scary though would it have been  if she was known only as EmilyBrontesCorset?  Mwah hah hah.

But it’s worse than that.  Today Britain is secretly governed by an unelected, unaccountable elite known to the cognoscenti as Mumsnet. They see everything and their tentacles are everywhere.  Be very afraid.

If this blog is gone tomorrow, you’ll know why.  Don’t get involved.  Don’t call the police.  Save yourself.




Be more…… patient?


I see the telecoms network O2 is changing its brand campaign form ‘Be more dog’ to ‘Be more You’.  They say it’s an evolution – look the first two words remain the same – but I’m not buying it.

The new work is exactly what you’d expect from a big corporate giant in a commodity business.  It’s big and faceless and it could equally have been applied to any player in the market.  It does nothing exceptional. There’s an ad about the unremarkable loyalty scheme.  There are others assigned to different elements of )2’s offer.  As a piece of campaign architecture, it all makes perfect sense.  It’s just a bit, well, predictable.

Which is a shame, because ‘Be more Dog’ was one of the few real advertising ideas at the heart of a big campaign in recent years.

The literal rationale is a bit tenuous admittedly – cats are sleepy and placid whereas dogs are playful and curious so,as the digital asset in your pocket can do more and more stuff, you should embrace your inner dogginess to make more of it.

It was a bit polarising – the Creative Director of a competitor’s agency said to me “I don’t really get it, the jury’s out” – but that’s the point.  It provokes a response.  You could have an opinion about it.  The jury might actually bother to come back in and deliver a verdict.

Ultimately it boils down to results – but I seem to recall this campaign had won effectiveness awards not so long ago.  (Does that make me sound a bit naive?)

I’m sad the doggy has died.  And, whatever O2 might say, it’s not an evolution – if it were, it would have learned to speak and walk on its hind legs.