Feeds

Naked man with no product waggles his dotcom

Guardian 'experiment' revealed

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

A fictional brand that offers no product has managed to fool more than 1,500 people into responding to its ads.

The brand, called Joy, was advertised in the national press for six days, as well as on an advertising hoarding plastered on the back of a truck and driven around London.

The ad showed a naked man leaping around in a black rubber ring, surrounded by the words "sing, laugh, drive, sleep, eat, breathe, cry, but do it with joy".

Nothing else was offered by way of explanation as to what the company offered apart from a URL, www.withjoy.co.uk, and a phone number.

But this wasn't part of a dotcom scam, rather an "experiment" by UK newspaper The Guardian to demonstrate the scary power of branding.

"Are brands so powerful today that you could launch one without a product and still make a splash in the market?" today's Guardian asks.

It would appear so - a bit of nakedness and a few choice words was enough to get 1,562 people to ring the number or log onto the Web site and register their interest in Joy.

According to The Guardian: "We used to make money by selling things; today we make money by selling an emotional attachment to a brand."

And the 1,562 people who felt compelled to respond to Joy? The Guardian has kindly offered to send them all a limited edition Joy T-shirt.

Of course, if you were of a cynical turn of mind, you might wonder whether the scam didn't prove something entirely different that we all knew already. You blow shedloads of money (virtual, in this case, as they were house ads) on national newspaper publicity for a whole week. Then you get a crummy 1,500 people who might be vaguely interested in a dubious-looking consumer dotcom, but six months down the line it'll turn out they weren't. You probably heard that one before, somewhere... ®

Related Link

A hairy naked man in a rubber ring. Interested?

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Scrapping the Human Rights Act: What about privacy and freedom of expression?
Justice minister's attack to destroy ability to challenge state
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
Hey Brit taxpayers. You just spent £4m on Central London ‘innovation playground’
Catapult me a Mojito, I feel an Digital Innovation coming on
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
EU probes Google’s Android omerta again: Talk now, or else
Spill those Android secrets, or we’ll fine you
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.