Super Bowl advertisers use Net for end run around NFL, Fox

Super Bowl advertisers use Net for end run around NFL, Fox

Summary: Thanks in part to the a mention in the very popular Scobelizer blog from Microsoft's Robert Scoble, word is spreading 'round the net very quickly that, at the request of the NFL, Fox Television yanked the second scheduled run of GoDaddy.com's commercial based on its content.

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TOPICS: Censorship
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Thanks in part to the a mention in the very popular Scobelizer blog from Microsoft's Robert Scoble, word is spreading 'round the net very quickly that, at the request of the NFL, Fox Television yanked the second scheduled run of GoDaddy.com's commercial based on its content. Clearly, someone at the NFL has their priorities mixed up and I'll explain why in one second. This blog entry more about how advertisers are using network TV to create controversies that push viewers onto the Net (yes Fox and NFL, you've been Punk'd, just not by Ashton Kutcher).

The ad, which is a spoof on the so-called malfunction of Janet Jackson's wardrobe during last year's Super Bowl halftime show, features a scantily clad woman whose strap springs loose, putting her on the verge of her own wardrobe malfunction (which ultimately never happens).

As it turns out, Fox's mid-Super Bowl decision to comply with the NFL's request may be the best thing that happened to Go Daddy. For starters, I'm guessing it won't have to pay for the unaired commercial (saving the Go Daddy millions of dollars). Second, Go Daddy is apparently getting more publicity than it ever dreamed of as a result of the censorship. Not only has Go Daddy founder Bob Parsons posted the details in his personal blog which is so overloaded that people may have difficulty getting in (it took me several tries), once people get through, they can find their way to not one but two commercials: the one that was pulled at the NFL's request and another racier one that Fox completely rejected in January.

News of the censorship puts the spotlight on way that some companies are using network television's sensitivities, and the resulting controversies, to their advantage. Not only has Go Daddy successfully executed an end-run in driving people to its Web site (out of the reach of TV execs), but Budweiser has also created a made-for-the-Internet commercial broadcast that gives a behind-the-scenes look at how Jackson' original wardrobe malfunction may have come to be. Last week, the Internet-only ad received national attention as the subject of a report on National Public Radio.

What's not clear is whether the NFL is sensitive to the sexual nature of the content or having fun poked at it over last year's mishap (perhaps they're just a bit touchy?). Budweiser's ad is hardly sexual in nature but never aired. Either way, I think the NFL's censors have their priorities screwed up. Why? As my family -- including my three-year old who just started the nightmare phase that many three year olds do -- sat down to watch the Super Bowl, I found myself covering my toddler's eyes through commercials for War of the Worlds (which showed a little girl who was scared out of her daylights), XXX 2 (almost nothing but guns, fire, and violence), and Constantine (nothing but frightening scenes). The problem with commercials like these is that you have no idea that they're coming. One second, you're watching football (which the three-year old loves) an the next second, guns, violence, and fear. I'll take the spoof on the wardrobe malfunction any day.

Topic: Censorship

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6 comments
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  • the godaddy.com chick was hot

    godaddy chick gets a who's your daddy from me so what the janet jackson thing was great so people saw a tit big deal we all have them just some are bigger than others i say she should have showed us the other one for comparison ha ha anyway this years half time show sucked i say more janet jackson and godaddy.com chicks
    liskanich
  • It is getting sad in the US

    Censorship everywhere you turn now.

    If it doesn't get approved by the G.W.Bush Morality Enforcement Team it doesn't get aired.

    I can't believe this administration got voted back in.
    BitTwiddler
    • Get a grip...

      [b]Censorship everywhere you turn now.

      If it doesn't get approved by the G.W.Bush Morality Enforcement Team it doesn't get aired.

      I can't believe this administration got voted back in.[/b]

      This is hardly a sign of the times. The US has always been fairly uptight about sexual content on TV and in the movies. Geeze... How soon everyone forgets things like Lucy and Ricky having to sleep in separate beds on TV - and they were married on AND off the screen. Sexually charged material even in THIS day and age is relegated mostly to the late, late night hours and generally to cable networks - NOT broadcast TV, and ESPECIALLY NOT during prime time - or during a sporting event that draws bazillions of viewers like the Superbowl.

      I would tend to doubt that things would be all that much different had Kerry won the election. While he may or may not (depending on if he's flipping or flopping at the moment) be a prude, I doubt even he would have been able to change the FCC let alone the moral climate of the entire nation in the two weeks since the inauguration.
      Wolfie2K3
  • Maybe I'm a little old fashioned

    I have a 3 year old too and I do have a problem with the sex in the commercials. I had a real problem correcting her tendency to emulate a certain shirt lifting behavior after she accidentally saw a Girls Gone Wild video on one of the commercials. Maybe I'm just a little old fashioned, but I don't care to have my daughter going around flashing people or dressing up like a hooker.
    george_ou
    • Maybe..

      [b]I have a 3 year old too and I do have a problem with the sex in the commercials. I had a real problem correcting her tendency to emulate a certain shirt lifting behavior after she accidentally saw a Girls Gone Wild video on one of the commercials. Maybe I'm just a little old fashioned, but I don't care to have my daughter going around flashing people or dressing up like a hooker.[/b]

      Makes me wonder what your kidlet was doing up at 2 or 3 AM watching TV when the GGW vids are generally advertised.
      Wolfie2K3
      • Not for the west coast

        In the west coast, the GGW ads start at 11 PM I think and I was watching non-adult content. Since I'm a night owl who goes to bed very late and gets up late, my daughter is the same but she does get her 10 hours of sleep. She also goes to preschool starting in the afternoon so it isn?t a problem. When she starts kinder garden, we?ll adjust her sleeping habits. I just think of it as we?re on Hawaii Time. Anyways, I have my finger on the remote if I think there might be offensive content lurking around the corner. She?s well mannered and well educated and that?s all I care. Besides, I?m more or less in your corner so I don?t know what your beef is.
        george_ou