Monday, February 27, 2012

Writers! Time to judge a "clever" long copy ad.

(click, via)
This ad for book and films shop Papercut was written by DDB Stockholm copywriter Magnus Jakobsson. He writes all the Papercut ads, and he writes them in this...breaking the 4th wall (or is it the 3rd or 5th wall?) style. I've mocked two of his previous Papercut ads (here and here). Unlike me, Magnus is thick-skinned and good-natured, and took my mostly fake-harsh words well. (here's his reply.) So: what do you wordsmithies think?

20 Comments:

Anonymous Chris Sanislo said...

I kinda liked it. (That said, being a long copy ad, I wanted to like it, too.)

Might be pretty visually intimidating for most to bother, though.

10:21 AM  
Anonymous Dan Fugate said...

I think I fell asleep reading this ad. I don't think it had much rhythm. I believe it had far too many words. I wouldn't have read it if you hadn't asked. Sometimes, putting a lot of words in an ad is a good idea. This was not one of those times.

10:22 AM  
Blogger J.J. Gittes said...

I'm a fan of the ad, but it's too early in the day to be reminded of my own life's failures. Thanks the fuck much.

10:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wrong ending. it should read, "The band gets back together." Technically it never "broke up"!

10:50 AM  
Anonymous Laura said...

I feel that it could've stood to be somewhat shorter. After the first million "You ________" we get it - I also get that the whole point of the "You _________"s is to mimic the tediousness of real life, but it could've spared a few lines.

(And this is coming from someone who constantly gets told "woman, this is a 20' commercial, not the Lord of the Rings, MAKE IT SHORTER!" day in and day out.)

11:28 AM  
Blogger rotreg said...

I got the end and had to ask my self what paper cut was. The answer was I didn't care.

Boring as fuck.

11:53 AM  
Anonymous cath said...

I hate this repetitive, choppy style of writing that seems to be (perhaps ironically) in vogue. Nor am I a fan of this self-referential, fourth-wall-breaking nonsense.

Moreover, I don't get the point of this ad AT ALL. The protagonist (the author?) has apparently had a boring life so far, despite having done an awful lot of different things. Now he works for a magazine or an ad agency or something (I seriously don't know), where he writes boring (auto-)biographies instead of whatever it is he's supposed to be writing, because he's a self-pitying, post-modern, narcissistic hipster. I don't know whether it's supposed to make me want to buy the product or apply to or work there, but it does neither. The product is shitty and the employees are awful.

12:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So it may be that I haven't had coffee yet, or that my computer has malfunctioned, or that this is one of those spot-the-differences puzzles, but isn't this the same ad as your December 7, 2010 post? (Papercut.jpg)

~Harry from Edmonton

P.S. I drew a little penis on this ad with a magic marker, but now it's on everything I look at. Any of you IT folks know how to get rid of this, in Windows XP?

12:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

JESUS FUCKING CHRIST IT'S BAD

1:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Writing is fine. Rhythm is good!

But what's the point? With that much copy, you'd expect a good insight. Or a hair-raising punchline?

1:46 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

You start a rhythm. You keep it going. You get the reader going. You fuck it all up by throwing a bunch of overblown and boring adjectives in around the part where you talk about Papercut.

You don't fix it.

You run the ad anyway.

2:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was enjoying the ride but I did expect the end to tie back into the product in some way.

2:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's face it...this is better than 99% of the advertising bullshit out there. And at least you don't have to look at some photoshopped piece of crap that an art director has had an orgasm over. Personally, I like it. I'm usually in the "less is more" camp when it comes to copy in an ad, but in this case it works. You have to think about the audience, too. This is not intended for morons who will fall asleep reading it. Nor would it be visually intimidating for the target audience. Some of the other commenters are reading WAY too much into this ad. JC people, take it for what it is.

3:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Copy should be as long as necessary and as short as possible. Don't think this hits it.

12:03 AM  
Blogger Brent said...

wll I rad it all and as you can see i can't write

4:22 AM  
Blogger Andrei Tuch said...

Is it clever? Sure.

Is it effective?

Well. If I see the sign for the shop next time I'm in Stockholm, I'll probably go in and check it out.

5:39 AM  
Blogger sahit anand said...

I love this ad. If this was in the paper, I would read it. Well written. The question is, was I reading till the end? Yes I was.

7:18 AM  
Blogger Ted said...

I need movies, magazines and literature that are just the way my life isn't? Who said that, the copywriter?
I disagree.

10:05 AM  
Anonymous Lili said...

I like it.

3:04 AM  
Blogger Eli Stonberg said...

reminded me of Atwood's "Happy Endings" http://users.ipfw.edu/ruflethe/endings.htm

3:35 PM  

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