Internet as Network? Goo-Tube is Leading the Pack

The advent of the DVR has turned those hard-earned advertising dollars into mush as target customers easily zip past commercials to get to their favorite shows. And while YouTube, GoogleVideo, and other easy-upload sites have been hosting bootlegged-and-previously televised commercials since their inception, only recently has the advertising industry stopped using their legal muscle to take down these rogue postings and adopted a if-you-can’t-beat-’em-join-’em attitude.

Indeed, actually getting consumers to affirmatively seek out commercials seems to be the new craze. And it’s working. In fact, many companies, like Burger King, are using YouTube and other social networking sites, to launch full-scale campaigns. The grainy, slightly do-it-yourself style of the ads is actually adding to their appeal. In some cases, it’s unclear whether the ads are corporate sponsored or created by individuals, another attractive component for the Gen-X-Zers whose mantra seems to be “don’t hard-sell me.”

This ad recently appeared on YouTube, to the delight of consumers. The controversy it sparked is only adding to the commercial’s viewership. Moreover, Smirnoff likely didn’t have to make a million-plus ad buy as it would have for television.

If your spidey senses are tingling because you’re wondering about alcohol beverage control laws, misleading advertising claims, CARU challenges and the like, stay tuned. Ad law is getting interesting again.

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