Is it awful or wonderful that Slate launched its business website The Big Money the same day three large Wall Street institutions were in various stages of freefall? Characteristically, Slate takes the contrarian view: It's wonderful! Tons of news to cover! They'll "tap into people's... anxiety about the economy!" The joys of financial fearmongering aside, the implosion of financial services does tend to call into question how many more ads the site can sell to the likes of American Express. Also, two words: Portfolio magazine. Editor James Ledbetter (recently of CNNMoney.com) still isn't daunted:
Former wooden President-elect of the United States Al Gore was on 60 Minutes last night, being frumpy and endearing, as is his wont. His new project is promoting a huge $300 million ad campaign by the Alliance for Climate Protection, which is based on the (correct) theory that we Americans are such lazy, brainwashed zombies that we need a shiny, consumer-friendly ad campaign to convince us to stop choking ourselves with carbon dioxide. The 60 Minutes segment showed Gore visiting the ad agency, and even showed a clip of the ad, which is great free media exposure. Too bad its benefit was canceled out by the bitter taste left by the subsequent mutterings of Andy Rooney. Well, let's all hope this ad thing works so we don't die! After the jump, the first ad, which is Gore-like in its earnestness.
Microsoft has finally figured out that, despite being one of the world's most powerful corporations, it is getting its ass handed to it in the advertising arena. As annoying as those "Mac vs. PC" ads are, it's pretty amusing that the richest man in the world is having his company's consumer credibility shredded by the cultivated stubble and shrugs of Justin Long, who isn't even funny or anything. Now, Microsoft has struck back by handing a $300 million consumer advertising account to Crispin Porter & Bogusky, the HOT and HIP young Miami agency that brought us campaigns like the Miller Lite "Man Laws" and Burger King's scary, big-headed "King" figure. Things are about to get weird. A guide to what to expect, after the jump.