Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Next Month’s Super Bowl Ads, Today

godaddy super bowl adOld Super Bowl cliche: Lots of people watch it just to see the ads — they don’t care about football at all!

New Super Bowl cliche: You don’t have to wait for the Super Bowl to see the Super Bowl ads — just check YouTube!

Neither one of those are completely truthful, of course. For instance, the most talked-about ad of last year’s game was Chrysler’s, which featured a pre-Obama-chair Clint Eastwood. And that one didn’t run early on the Web.

Still, it’s easier than ever to watch a lot of Super Bowl ads without watching the game, and to watch them before the game airs. Last year’s good example: Honda’s Ferris Bueller mom-wagon ad, which “accidentally leaked” onto YouTube. And increasingly we’re seeing brands simply putting out their in-game ads without any pretense at all.

Here, via Ad Age, is one of the GoDaddy spots the registrar will show off during the game. Of course, as Nat Ives points out, the ad is also an ad for other GoDaddy SuperBowl ads, so it works both ways. Ditto for a Coke teaser campaign.

Note that if you’re one of those weird people who wants to watch the Super Bowl on a browser instead of a TV, and you’re one of the people who wants to see the ads (smallish Venn overlap there, methinks), you’ll be in luck this year. CBS, which is streaming the game on the Web, says that it will also stream the broadcast ads on the Web — something that NBC didn’t do when it streamed last year’s game.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work