Since many people associate Coke with popularizing Santa's brand image, it's only appropriate that they release a special holiday package design of the world's most popular sugary brown juice.
These Coke ornaments/CokeBalls are holidalicious.
I really hope that Coke took full advantage here, and produced the obvious point of purchase device - trees adorned with Coke "ornaments." What would be totally awesome would be a giant fridge, next to the register - with a rotating tree INSIDE, adorned with perfectly chilled Coke bombs. And of course, there should be a site where people could decorate their entire homes with empty CokeBall bottles, and upload pics for all to see...oh, the possibilities.
Here's a nice project for your house. A project that's not done when the wallpaper is hung. A project that your friends and guests can enjoy every time they visit.
Wallpaper that you color in yourself could be a load of fun in the right room. Of course, when it's all colored in, you're kind of stuck with it. Or maybe you could just add another layer...
Like everyone's totally buzzing all over the internet about the I'm Just Saying Show. It's like totally like awesome and amazing like.
Hipster girls talking about whatever, like. This will keep you entertained for hours. Or annoyed. You decide. (If the F word isn't welcome in your workplace, you might want to watch it at home, or with headphones.)
Ummm...this is just utterly amazing. Insert ads - or any kind of content that you want - into any surface in any existing video. The possibilities are beyond ridiculously exciting.
Watch the clip above to be blown away by the technology as well as the dude's cool accent where he says 'advertisments' in a totally awesome way.
You've read all of the productivity books, and subscribed to the work efficiency theories. So you know it's a bad idea to let your inbox control your every moment of every day. And yet it's got a hold of you, like heroin. Or a good chocolate chip cookie.
Thankfully, you can let go. Because Jared and his team of super geniuses have created a wonderful new tool. AwayFind. The video above explains exactly how it works better than I could ever write in a sentence here.
We met Jared at SXSW last year, and were immediately impressed. We just hope that he remembers us when Google buys his new product for 86 katrillion dollars.
Here's a fun concept for Canon that expertly captures the moment of frustration where you want to smash your stupid printer with a baseball bat and then light it on fire and throw it out the window so that you can run it over with your car.
What...you've never had that feeling before?
If you've been buried in news or opinions or stress over the automaker bailout, here's a perspective from the other side. Social media rock star Scott Monty, who came in from outside of the auto industry - and from Boston - now works at Ford Motors. He's a one man social media department at an age old automotive brand.
He's posted a really insightful piece reflecting his perspective, some advice and some great links related to the bailout that everyone's talking about.
(And when they begin handing out free cars to the citizens that support the bailout, I'll be driving a Ford Flex - pictured above. Or maybe a Ford Airstream. That would rock.)
Sure, the economy has you worried. Worried about whether or not the big box retailers are going to have a good fourth quarter. And worried what would happen if they don't.
Ever wonder what an empty big box retailer could be used for? Coudal points to a nice post that shows what some communities have done with abandoned super massive retail stores.
The photo above is a library, made from an old Kmart. Yeah, a library. Ironic, isn't it?
Ok, even the Obama fans are tired of Obama news. But here's a nice piece on the team that created the most famous "O" in history. A great look back on a now iconic identity design, and how they put the "oh" into "O". Thanks, Eliza!
Boston College has realized that students don't even want a school email address anymore. They've already had an email since they day they were born, and have no need to switch to a college email address.
Instead, Boston college students will get their communications forwarded to an address of their choice. That they probably won't check too often. ;)
Here's what happened this week at the greatest agency in all of the land:
We started the week in Orlando, where Plaidsters from the CT office met to discuss our plans for 2009. Loads and loads of really great ideas and schemes to change the world.
While engrossed in a meeting at a park in Orlando, (no, really - we did work there), we were absolutely totally punk'd by none other than JetPacks Dave. Keep in mind that while we've worked with Dave, and read his blog religiously, we had no idea what he looked like. He got us good. See the entire episode unfold in the video above. Hilarious.
Later in the same day we made way to the Magic Kingdom, where we met up with long time internet friend Casey Paquet and his girlie girl Summer. After showing us all of the Disney secrets and treating us to the best fireworks show from the roof of the Contemporary hotel, Casey introduced us to a super fun brain game (he'll be launching a site soon that explains it all). A game so good that it completely kills all conversation. Here's a video clip of Plaidsters trying their best to think hard.
We jumped into the week with loads of work, a couple of photo shoots, a couple of video shoots, and plenty of creative goodness.
This weekend will bring some long sleeping nights and loads of rest as Plaid employees prepare for the hellacious project finishing 2.5 work day week ahead. (It's too cold here to do anything else.)
Super nice guy/boy genius - Brian Shaler has been working on a pretty awesome project.
BitGravity just released the killerest video application that allows up to six different synchronized high definition video streams at once. Viewers can switch between views, and the audio is synchronized.
Ohhhhh, the possibilities. We could produce magnificently creative wonder productions that will make you look at your tv and laugh out loud, saying "one screen?? Puhleeze."
Watch a demo here. We're chomping at the bit to produce for this, and can't wait to see it in action.
I thought that the king wore tights. And everyone knows that tights don't have pockets. But apparently the King does have a wallet. And he's been lurking around various cities, dropping it on the ground.
All in good, flame broiled fun, for Burger King.
Rubber Republic has just released a beautious set of promotional games, animated by the world famous Aardman. And that's not even the good part. The games can be enjoyed by people blessed with sight AND the visually impaired.
Didn't think that was possible? Take your eyesight for granted? Here's a fantastic window into how a web-based game can work for either audience. It's pretty cool to see how everything from loading bars to leader boards can be navigated with just audio and a keyboard. Sweet.
All of the cool kids are dancing to chip music. That 8 bit low-fi music made popular by the early generation video games.
Now there's a Blip Festival coming to NYC in December. The festival will feature music, art and pop culture associated with the glorious 8 bit revolution. This is a must do for any computer/game/designer/creative nerds. From Boing Boing.
How many times have you been annoyed by your stupid friends who IM you with ridiculous questions that they could answer themselves if they just Googled it?
Well today's the day you can point out their ridiculousness. Thanks to the Let Me Google That For You tool. You do the search, and then send them a link where the search animates in front of their eyes. And they'll learn how to use Google, in the process!
This may be the best thing ever invented. So hot. So awesome. You could use it daily.
You're probably thinking that you die just a little inside, every time you're forced to watch the Toyota "Saved by Zero" ad. You're not alone. There's online protests, Facebook groups and plenty of fuel fired to take the annoying ad off the air.
Now, there's proof that the spot will kill you. If you see it again, just turn it off. Immediately.
Uniqlo had a fun stunt in Times Square yesterday. A ginormous vending machine filled with human robots. To give away samples of their new super-duper-keep-you-warm t-shirts.
Watch the poorly shot video at Gizmodo. Thanks, Devon!
So there's a team of artists that go by the name of Kuildoosh, who are working on the latest and greatest street art thing that involves...inflatable sausage. What's not to love?
Not certain about all of the details, but we're sure that Gothamist will keep you posted on the sausage's arrival. Mmmmmm. Sausage.
Did you think that shopping malls were dead? Replaced by "lifestyle centers"?
Labelscar, (an awesome blog devoted to nothing but mall history) reports that some retail brands are struggling based on their strategy to expand only in lifestyle centers versus traditional malls.
Yech. And then, can we stop referring to them as lifestyle centers?? "Honey, I'm heading down to the lifestyle center. Can I get you anything?"
How Magazine points to some new signs/posters/artwork that will look really sweet in your cube. Or in your shop window. Or on your front door. So many signs, so many possibilities. We're sorry.
Here's a fun new tool to spend your valuable time with.
Tag Galaxy helps you locate all of the photographs tagged with any keyword of your choice, conveniently organized like a system of planets. Hey - why not? From Brideyrae, at Cow.
Thanks to YouTube's new geolocation feature, you can now search videos by the location from where they were uploaded. Curious about what the next door neighbor is doing on video?
There's a rough demo of the technology (you'll need to install Google Gears), and it works pretty well.
This creates some really fun promotional opportunities. Contests, treasure hunts, the possibilities are endless. (And snooping on your neighbors is always cool, too.) Thanks Giuli!!
An artist in San Francisco who lost her eye a few years ago has put out a call to engineers to help design a new camera eye replacement. She's working with her doctor, and has some pretty aggressive specs/requirements for the camera eye.
Soon, everyone will have them, and will be streaming live. Maybe your coworkers already have them. Or that lady at Starbucks this morning. They're watching. Recording. And blogging.
If It's Hip It's Here has a ton of pics and details on an apartment at Gramercy Park, NYC that was decked out all Dexter style, to promote the hit Showtime show.
The promotion was a partnership with a group of designers and Showtime that took place over the summer. Now you can buy a lot of the items from the scene. What a wonderful way to surprise your mother-in-law on Thanksgiving Day!
If you're participating in the Twitterverse, you understand that there's a language to accompany the experience. You post tweets on Twitter, for the benefit of the twitterverse. Maybe you even become a Twitdict.
How do you keep up with the language of Twitter? By following the TwitDictionary. On Twitter, of course.
Sprint just launched a super festival of widget goodness for your enjoyment. If that wasn't enough fun, they added super-future girl voice soundtrack so that you might feel that you're actually on the dashboard of a spaceship.
Dashboards rock. Girls from the future rock. And this Sprint mega-future-dashboard-of-widgets-from-the-future definitely rocks.
On Friday, Motrin launched a new campaign geared toward mommies, that referred to "baby wearing" as a trend that could could cause them personal pain. Lots of mommies disagree. And they started talking about it. And tweeting about it. And blogging about it. You could say that this weekend was Motrin-mommy-fest in the social media world.
There's a video devoted to the distaste for the campaign. A collection of tweets and links related to the distaste for the campaign. And countless blog posts. And as of the writing of this post - THEIR SITE IS DOWN, likely because it wasn't prepared to handle the onslaught of traffic.
So what did Motrin do wrong? They launched a creative execution that pissed some moms off. And they weren't listening to the internet over the weekend.
Realistically, no person's life is at stake here. This is not a 'stop the organization' emergency. But it's going to be very important to listen. And to respond.
Parents tell their teens that "the internet is permanent. Be careful of what you post there." Here's just one list of negative blog posts about Motrin. That's a permanently recorded negative response from a very large crowd of moms. Yikes. It will be quite interesting to see how Motrin deals with this, during the week.
In the end, what people will likely remember is how they handled it. Not the campaign itself, or the fact that they didn't have their Twitter ears on over a weekend.
What can you learn from this?
+ Be active in social media. Or have an agency that is monitoring it for you.
+ Social media doesn't stop at 5pm on Friday.
+ Have an emergency plan, or the ability to respond quickly to an audience. A blog is nice for this.
+ Mommies really enjoy 'wearing' babies.
Not a lot of posts today, as Plaid heads to Orlando for our annual planning meetings. Each year we take a long weekend, go somewhere fun, and reinvent our company. We look at every process, procedure, success, failure, goals and desires and ask ourselves how we can do better.
We've held these meetings for years, and with great success. Each year we get better, grow faster and evolve our brand. We highly recommend the same for any small agency, business or even divisions from larger companies.
We bring the core team from our CT office, and it's a blast. Yes - there's hours of meetings to be had, but they're done by the pool, at the bar, or anywhere where the sun shines or cocktails are served.
We'll also get some free time to visit DisneyWorld. A few of the Plaid crew have never been there, which should be a gas. We're already talking about which Disney characters we need to get pics with. I'm on a quest to find the love of my life, Snow White.
Plaid (and BrandFlakes) will be back in action on Monday morning, with mouse ears on.
There was a fake New York Times distributed across NYC yesterday. And it only featured dreamy, good news. If you're feeling sad, you can even check out the website. Nothing but good news, all the time.
Gawker gets to the bottom of the stunt, which was pulled off by notorious pranksters the Yes Men. Even the NY Times likes it. Good news, all around.
Worried that layoffs, bailouts and the stock market will keep people from buying your products this holiday season? Market to teens. Retail Design Diva points to a new survey by Junior Achievement about teens and their retail confidence.
76 percent of them plan to spend way more this year than they did in 2007.
(The Magnum PI photo reflects only my laziness in looking for an appropriate teen shopping photo. And I wanted you to be dazzled by the magic of the Magnum PI mustache.)
Shipping containers have long been the source of creative projects for architects, artist and urban renewal efforts. Now there's a portion of the show devoted to them at Tokyo Design Week.
(See more pics from Design Week on Flickr.)
What a cool idea on a few fronts. First, as proof that alternative space can be cool AND cheap. But also a great idea for conferences and trade shows. Or pop up stores. What a rocking idea for an instant mall.
What if you took 50 containers and put them in an empty parking lot to create a temporary artists/crafter village for the holidays? What if your next trade show featured a section of them for smaller businesses that couldn't afford floor space on the main trade show floor? So many possibilities, so many containers.
Good mobile promotions are hard to find. Most suck, don't get adoption, and don't provide real value for the participants. But Cow Africa has done something awesome.
Cow created Mobikasi - the first ever geo-tagged documentary. It's a 25 minute documentary - but realizing that no human on earth has a 25 minute attention span anymore - they've made the film available in 25 individual downloads.
And here's where it gets good. Each minute of the documentary is based on a different topic relevant to the youth in Soweto, and it's geo-tagged to the location where it was shot. They feature cool stuff like the street fashion crew Smarteez, pictured above. So kids can experience the production, and then go check out the area where it was shot. Genius.
(And how do I start my own street fashion crew?? Anyone want to join?)
McDonalds is doing some weird stuff in Japan. They've opened two new stores - called Quarter Pounder. No golden arches. No McDonalds name.
There are two things on the menu: A quarter pounder and a double quarter pounder. The stores were opened with some attempted fanfare, a fake secret service type security guard and "Top Secret" signs.
The store design looks beautiful, and the graphics and package design are equally well designed - a departure from the poor/cheap/please everyone design that MCD's is known for elsewhere.
New micro retail concept? Marketing stunt? Only that freaky red headed clown knows for sure.
Apparently there are still stores filled with paper-based books. And at least one publisher has a cool idea on motivating people to purchase the versions that don't go into your iPod.
What are they doing? Awesome cover design. Redesigns. That's right - design is the differentiation, here. Orange Elements Insights points to White’s Books - who has redesigned the covers of some classic literary works by authors such as Charles Dickens, William Shakespeare, Charlotte Bronte and Robert Louis Stevenson.
Now you can buy them again, fall in love with them again, give them as gifts or even READ them for the first time. And you can do so looking all stylish with the sweet new cover designs.
(You, sitting on the train, looking at the passenger next to you, and pointing to his iPod: "They still make those things? Pffft.")
Here's a cool fun tool to check up on twitter, blog and news chatter about...anything you want. It's called Perspctv. Not the easiest word to say out loud, but I predict you'll like it, nonetheless.
Oh - and just like TweetDeck, it's got a nice black design scheme. Because black is the new hot on the internet. From Cassondra, via Twitter.
Volkswagen has launched a new campaign, and the accompanying site will tell you all about some sweet new features in the latest models.
By far the best technology ever invented has to be Lane Assist. Some Volkswagen magic that keeps your car on the road and in the proper lane. So now you can finally catch up on that much needed sleep time, while heading home after a long day. From Adverblog.
This ad campaign may teach you a couple of things.
1. Britney Spears is proof that blues does indeed exist today. Or needs to exist.
2. There's a National Blues Foundation. (To help more fortunate kids find their way to the blues??)
The campaign features some fun and beautifully designed print work and of course a campaign site where you can download posters and learn about the blues.
I especially liked learning what music would be like without the blues. (But Daft Punk would still exist, right?)
Our former intern Parker is out making the world a better place. Not content with staying in her comfy dorm and living on Facebook like most college students, Parker is planning a quest to India.
As a school project, they created an information design system to help communities in India understand the basics and importance of clean water. Now they actually want to go to India, implement the campaign and drill a well. Or something like that.
I'm all for college students getting their hands dirty and appreciating the slacker keyboarding jobs they'll enjoy after graduation. But it costs big money to send students to India. So Parker needs your help. Make a donation of $10 trillion dollars. Or whatever you might be able to afford. (BE SURE to choose the "other gift destination" in the giving form, and indicate that it be allocated to VCD India Project).
In the process, you'll be helping a community in India, and getting some art students dirty and tired. Always good.
Just in case you were about to head to the company bathroom and juice up on some sweet meth - you might want to give that another thought.
MakeTheLogoBigger points to yet another gross out campaign showing the implications of meth use. Attractive.
Ann Handley from Marketing Profs has a beautious blog post about some of the fantastic stuff that happens in life, that many of us take for granted. But that's not even the great part.
As in most of Ann's posts - the community is deep and the comments are insightful. There's a treasure in one particular comment from Mike Volpe at HubSpot. (Go here - and scroll down to his comment.)
Mike works in a company where they value their culture and work environment. They have fun goofing on and pranking their coworkers. (One prank even has it's own website, for germaphobe Jonah.) And they've setup a private COMPANY WIKI to document the company's culture.
This is GENIUS. Forget employee manuals. What new employees really need to know are the inside jokes, the internal lingo, and the history behind these important items. Like at our firm - why the corner bodega is called "triple B" instead of it's given name. Or where the Harry Dick building is (pictured above). Or the trillion other little things that make up a company's culture.
A wiki will also serve as a historical reference for those that have left the company. Wouldn't you love to have that for some of the places in your past?
Awesome goodness from a wonderful post. Thanks, Ann and Mike!
Street with a View is billed as the first ever artist collaboration with Google's Street View team. Google came to Pittsburgh, and artists Robin Hewlett and Ben Kinsley set up an art installation along Sampsonia Way.
The view includes a marching band, a fake marathon road race, a garage band, and yes, a sword fight.
There's a even a video documentation of the event taking place. Pretty cool if you've ever wondered what a Google Street View photo capturing session looks like. From swissmiss.
If you haven't visited a Starbucks in the last couple of weeks, then maybe you didn't know that they now have a gold card. Not just a rewards cards that gets you a free cup after you purchase a kabillion of cups - but actual benefits. Like 10% off most purchases, a free cup of coffee on your birthday, and 2 hours of FREE WIFI every day.
This is a great idea. Charge a $25 annual expense to your super fans (adding an entirely new revenue stream), and then give them some benefits to make them feel special at every visit. And give them things like wifi that work as incentive to visit more frequently.
What can you do for your super users?
When the cat head people come to town to take revenge for the negative stereotyping we've perpetuated with Cats on Broadway, they may arrive in Toyota Corollas.
If the "Saved By Zero" rage inducing ads didn't turn you off to the Toyota brand, perhaps fighting kitten head zombies will.
Buzz Logic and Jupiter Research have teamed together for a study and discovered that people really trust blogs.
Specifically, they learned that:
+ 40 percent of blog readers have taken action as a result of viewing an ad on a blog;
+ 50 percent of frequent blog readers say this is the case.
So blogs are important. They can impact buying decisions. Or behavior. They should be a part of every brand and marketing campaign.
Oh yeah - and the longer that you look at that hypno wheel, the more you become under the control of BrandFlakes. Before you know it, you'll be buying me sneakers, gummi snacks and cookies. And sending your friends here. Soon, we will control the world.
PSFK is running a series of breakfast discussions in NYC, every few days up until the holidays.
They've put together an interesting schedule of topics and are looking for people to join in on the conversation. The first ten minutes will feature a "thought starter" and then the floor is open for discussion and collaboration. Cool.
Get all the details you need at GoodIdeas2009.com. From Damien Basile via Twitter.
You know the drill. Buy a new product. Something like a memory card, that's about 1.5 inches square. And it's sent to you in a plastic security box that's about three feet wide, requiring the use of a kitchen butcher knife, a screwdriver and a reciprocating saw to open. (Or maybe that's just my house.)
Anyway, Amazon has solved the problem, with Frustration-Free packaging. Not only does it open without an OJ knife - they've completely eliminated all excess packaging. And it's recyclable. Reason to love Amazon just a little more today. From RMI Today.
This is so incredible. The more you play with it, the more you'll be impressed. Spend 15 minutes exploring this search, video viewing, internet surfing tool/experience thingamajig that I can only explain as addicting. They call it Navigaya.
Maybe it's the hypnotic music mix. Maybe it's the beautimungus video background. Maybe it's the portal to everythingness. Navigaya is here to solve all of the world's problems. Perhaps Obama made it. Or perhaps Navigaya created Obama. Whatever - rest easy, because Navigaya is here. From Hip Young Thing.
Looking for an excuse not to shave this morning? Have the desire for a hairy chin strap but need a good reason? Today's your lucky day. Thanks to 10 Very Good Reasons Why You Should Grow a Giant Beard.
And this isn't just a public service for all of bearded mankind. Nope. It's an entertaining way to promote the best free dating site on the web, Mingle2.
Here's an excellent example of reaching out to a demographic, raising awareness, and not spending a kabillion and a half dollars on ad placement. (Shave your heart out, eHarmony.) From AdRants.
There's something that's been the topic of every conversation in every workplace the last couple of days. Something that millions of people watched live on Tuesday night. Of course, we're talking about the holographic reporters on CNN.
If you didn't see them, imagine that Star Wars technology exists. And that Wolf Blitzer is Luke Skywalker. (And if that's true, then Larry King is definitely Darth Vader.)
Anyway, Wired has an excellent rundown on all of the amazing television political graphics witnessed during Election 2008, and the technology that makes them possible.
To many, a 5000 foot maze in the middle of a warehouse in NYC just reads "fire trap." But since everything they do over at Eyebeam generally rocks, we trust that the Underground Mixer this weekend will be a safe, fun place to meet cool people and see some great art/performance/technology. All in one friendly place.
We try to keep self promotion to a minimum on BrandFlakes, but we've been a part of something that we're super proud of.
We've produced a pre-release site for the new Umphrey's McGee record, Mantis. What's the big deal? Umphrey's are doing something absolutely and totally legendary.
The music business is imploding. Artists and labels for the most part haven't given fans any good reason to buy a compact disc. While the rest of the industry is weeping, suing their fans, and pointing fingers - Umphrey's McGee decided to do something. Mavericky.
If you pre-order their new release Mantis, you'll not only receive the CD - but loads and loads of bonus content. And we're not talking about a free extra track. Alternate studio recordings. Never before released historic recordings. Remixes. Experiments.
Even better - the more fans that buy the release, the more bonus content Umphrey's will unleash. Everyone who buys gets EVERYTHING that's been unlocked on release day. If that weren't enough, the CD will also unlock additional material throughout 2009, when placed in your computer.
So pay attention, music industry...here's how Umphrey's has reinvented the business:
+ They've provided content (a product) that fans can't get or download elsewhere.
+ They've motivated their fans to promote the product, because the more product sold, the better it gets for everyone.
+ They've listened to their fans and created a product, an experience and a place where they want to be.
Results? Sales are through the roof. Fans are raving, complimenting and thanking the band.
So HOORAY for Umphrey's McGee. (And the best creative agency in all of the land that helped make it all possible.)
Just in case you slept through it, can't believe it, or just want to double check....there's a site where you can see for sure...Is Obama President?
Or, check the other side of the fence, with the handy tool: Is McCain President?
What if every city had giant party pinatas filled with candy, dancing in the streets? Why not? Maybe our new president could make that happen.
In the meantime, there's the Carnival Cruise Lines promotion, featuring a ginormous pinata filled with 8000 pounds of sugary delicious goodness. About a week ago, they produced the world's largest beach balls, and now they're cracking open the world's largest pinata, all over the streets of Philadelphia.
(We should send these to countries in need of aid. Giant food pinatas, filled with essentials like Mary Janes, Milk Duds and Pixie Stix. We'll air drop them, like pinata bombs.)
Here's some behind the scenes footage of the Philly pinata being built. Sounds like a giant party, which I guess is the point.
Twitter buddy Brad Ward is speaking to a bunch of college PR students. So naturally, he sent a tweet asking:
"HEY!!!! If you had 133 characters to tell a class of PR college students something, what would it be? Tag it #jr342. Thanks!! And retweet."
The results are pretty amazing. Tweets from across the globe came in within a matter of hours, with wise advice that couldn't possibly be duplicated in any textbook, professor's lecture or general internet search. Students: bookmark this, and refer back to it, often.
Marketers, pay attention: harnessing the power of the internet does not mean a YouTube video contest. (Well, it did a few years ago, but we're all over that now.) It IS about utilizing existing tools, creators and audiences and allowing them to do what they do best.
Here's a sweeet example: CommonCraft (maybe you've seen their explanations of Twitter, or the electoral process) produces a video showing exactly how Ford Sync works. And guess what? Without overtly "selling", they've shown product benefits and created desire. Bravo, Ford. And Common Craft. And all who use the internet for goodness.
From GeekMommy, via Twitter
Mads Norgaard has some pretty sweet apparel that we probably can't afford. Except the underwear. You should definitely wear these undies to the voting booth today.
Not an Obama man? No worries. Wear them on your head. You'll freak out the other voters in line, scare people away and end up helping the McCain campaign. ;)