Yelp Swears It Doesn’t Manipulate Reviews, Even Though It’s Allowed To

Yelp Swears It Doesn’t Manipulate Reviews, Even Though It’s Allowed To

Earlier this month, a federal appeals court held that Yelp is free to shuffle positive and negative reviews around at will, and can even use that freedom as a way to urge businesses to advertise on the site. But even in light of this ruling, Yelp maintains that buying ads on the site does not determine which reviews show up for your business. [More]

(Andrew McDaniel)

Walmart Mexico Investigated Over Promotional Cockfight

Walmart’s Mexican operations are being investigating by authorities in the city of Boca del Rio, where customers complained a Walmart store hosted a cockfight to promote a soft drink company. The retailer says it’s the customer gripes are overblown and that, while there were indeed roosters pecking at each other, no actual cockfighting took place. [More]

NFL.com Sinks To New Low: Forces You To Watch 5 Ads For 5 Mins. Of Video

NFL.com Sinks To New Low: Forces You To Watch 5 Ads For 5 Mins. Of Video

Regular visitors to NFL.com are probably familiar with the site’s love of auto-play video and video advertising in general. Not only do many NFL.com news stories include an auto-play video — one that is often, at best, tangentially related to the topic — but those clips are almost always preceded by pre-roll ads that you can not pause or mute (without muting your computer’s speakers). Yesterday, the site sunk to a new low, forcing fans of one regular NFL.com feature to sit through 5 separate GEICO ads just to watch a few minutes of video. [More]

If Facebook Is Going To Label Satirical Stories, It Should Be Calling Out Ads Posing As News Links

I'm mostly doing this story so I can repeatedly share my Facebook profile photo of an 18-year-old me with a glorious head of 1993 hair.

Facebook began labeling certain shared links as “satire,” as a bit of hand-holding for its less-savvy users who can’t tell the difference between an actual news headline and one written by the writers of The Onion. But what Facebook really needs to do is start labeling so-called “native” or sponsored stories on non-satire sites so that your idiot friends might think twice before sharing a story that is really just an ad for some juice company. [More]

Blurred because we have moms.

Esurance: No, Our Billboard Didn’t Actually Suggest You “Cover Your Home In A D**k”

Gather round to hear the tale we like to call, “Not Everything You See On The Internet Is Real.” It’s a story that has been heard round the world, and is ever-changing in its sneakiness. This installment of NEYSOTIIR, Esurance says a billboard reading “cover your home in a d**k” was Photoshopped, and didn’t actually suggest potential customers do such a silly and impractical thing. [More]

This LifeAlert Ad Is Creepier Than American Horror Story

This LifeAlert Ad Is Creepier Than American Horror Story

Fear can be a good motivator in marketing. It’s probably not such a good motivator when your ads freak everyone out so much that they leave the room or change the channel. What company has consumers so frightened that they’re begging the company to stop showing the ads? Life Alert. Yes, the people behind the often-mocked “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up” ads. [More]

(YouTube)

We’re Going To Be Humming The Awful/Genius Jingle From A Cheesy Mall Commercial All Day

Boots and pants… where can I buy some boots and pants? Or haircuts? What about haircuts? Denim! My needs to be addressed, simply and set to music. Good thing there’s an awkward/genius commercial for a mall in New Jersey to fulfill all my shopping and amusement needs. [More]

Creator Of Pop-Up Ads Apologizes For Doing His Part To Ruin The Internet

(Misfit Photographer)

Along with auto-play video and auto-refresh webpages, pop-up ads make up the unholy trinity of browsing the Internet. Now, the man who wrote the code for the first ever ad to come out of nowhere and spoil your reading experience is saying he’s sorry to the world. [More]

A recent Lands' End catalog on the left. The GQ that caused the uproar on the right.

Some Lands’ End Customers Unhappy About Receiving “Gift” Of GQ Mag With Racy Cover

We’re not quite sure why the people at Lands’ End — a catalog that sometimes makes LL Bean look like Victoria’s Secret — would ever think that its customers would want free copies of GQ magazine. The two brands don’t exactly scream synergy. This was made all the more evident this week when Lands’ End customers opened their mailboxes to find a copy of GQ featuring an oiled-up and undressed Emily Ratajkowski, topless but for a strategically placed lei, on the cover. [More]

Truly Depressing: 400K People Watched Arby’s “Brisket Channel” For Average Of 38 Minutes

Truly Depressing: 400K People Watched Arby’s “Brisket Channel” For Average Of 38 Minutes

Perhaps it was to satisfy an atavistic desire, connecting across the eons with our hunter/gatherer forebears by gazing in awe as a slab of animal meat cooks slowly, the fat rendering, collagen melting. Or perhaps we’ve reached another stage in the mind’s evolution, with some next-level humans able to divine meaning and narrative out of watching a brisket cook through the lens of a single fixed TV camera. Please let there be some sane, acceptable explanation why hundreds of thousands of people would tune in to watch an Arby’s marketing stunt, and why they would give it more attention than they would the average TV show. [More]

T-Mobile, Where Second Place = “Undisputed” Champ

T-Mobile, Where Second Place = “Undisputed” Champ

Yesterday, T-Mobile sent out a press release claiming that it is now the industry leader in prepaid wireless (we’ll get to that later). The statement from the magenta mobile provider also included the boast that T-Mobile “has maintained the undisputed title of America’s fastest nationwide 4G LTE network” and links to a recent test as evidence. Problem is, the results of that test don’t seem to back up T-Mobile’s horn-tooting. [More]

McDonald’s Mistakenly Thinks It Is Loved By Internet, Will Not Be Mercilessly Mocked On Instagram

McDonald’s Mistakenly Thinks It Is Loved By Internet, Will Not Be Mercilessly Mocked On Instagram

In spite of Instagram’s warm-and-fuzzy, heavily filtered appearance, its users are no less likely to rip others to shreds for their own amusement than anyone else on the Internet. This fact was lost on McDonald’s, which inexplicably thought it could unleash ads on Instagram without being subject to an acid-tongued backlash from users. [More]

Why Is Verizon Misleading Consumers With The Charts In These FiOS Ads?

Why Is Verizon Misleading Consumers With The Charts In These FiOS Ads?

If you live near one of the few areas in the country in which Verizon actually operates its FiOS network, you might have seen one of the ads where a Verizon FiOS shill asks “America” to look at a charts claiming to show customer satisfaction results for the nation’s largest Internet and pay-TV providers. Looking at those chart, it appears that Verizon is blowing the competition smithereens. The reality is not as dramatic, graphically speaking. [More]

Comcast Makes Money Off Everest University Ads, Even As Schools Are Being Sold Or Closed

Comcast Makes Money Off Everest University Ads, Even As Schools Are Being Sold Or Closed

Earlier this summer, facing lawsuits and investigations from multiple state and federal agencies, Corinthian Colleges Inc. struck a deal with the U.S. Dept. of Education to either sell off or wind-down most its schools, including Everest University, WyoTech, and Heald College. Yet Corinthian continues to plague the airways with ads, enticing potential students into enrolling in schools that may not exist in a few months. And guess who is making money off the ads? The folks at Comcast. [More]

Ronald McDonald Won’t Sell Burgers At Your Kids’ School, But He’ll Talk About Bike Safety

(stephanie santos)

Is it possible to separate a world-famous brand mascot from the products that mascot has spent decades shilling for? Can you look at Joe Camel and not associate him with Camel cigarettes, or stare deep into the terrifying unblinking eyes of second-tier human-baseball Mr. Met and not immediately think of the NY Mets? McDonald’s apparently thinks so, telling consumer advocates that Ronald McDonald isn’t pushing Big Macs and McNuggets on kids when he visits schools to talk about bike safety and other non-greasy topics. [More]

Movie Execs Realize Promo With Exploding Buildings And A Sept. 11 Release Date Doesn’t Go Over Well

Movie Execs Realize Promo With Exploding Buildings And A Sept. 11 Release Date Doesn’t Go Over Well

Paramount movie executives Down Under are learning a rough lesson about what kind of imagery doesn’t go over so well with the public: It’s not so much that people don’t like anthropomorphic turtles dressed like ninjas, but the fact that a recent promo poster for the Sept. 11 Australian release of the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie featured the reptiles escaping/falling from a burning building struck the wrong chord for some fans. [More]

(Facebook)

N.Y. Bar Changes “No Irish Drunks” Sign To “No Sensitive Drunks”

It’s time for us to make peace with our Irish brethren, America. A veritable war of words between our country and the Emerald Isle sprung up when a cafe in Ireland posted a sign telling “loud Americans” to stay away, a controversy that pulled in a New York establishment warning “NO IRISH DRUNKS” were allowed. The good news is we seem to have settled things and can all agree that anyone can be loud and drunk, we’re all humans, after all. [More]

Irish Cafe Tells “Loud American’s” & Other Tourists To Stay Away

(Twitter: @mauricecampbell)

Perhaps it’s a form of anti-publicity that the owners hope will turn them into the next Amy’s Baking Company, with people just coming by to see what all the hubbub is about, but a restaurant in Ireland has irked a good portion of its potential customer base with a sign telling tourist — and specifically American tourists — to get lost. [More]