• Our Friend the Faceclutcher
  • Conspiracy Media Group is a social research and communication strategy agency.

    We focus on finding insights amidst the noise and guide clients in how those insights can but used to move their business forward.

The Problem With Kimmel’s Twerk Fire Stunt

Somewhere along the way in the development of the recent stunt in which Jimmy Kimmel and his team staged a fake twerk scene somebody forgot to shoot down the idea and defend the voice of the show.

But wait, I thought it was the most brilliant fake video content of all time, right?  Wrong, because there can be no brilliant fake video content.  Why?  Because the wonderfulness of YouTube and all this consumer content is seeing real scenes of silliness or sorrow or hilarity or disaster.  The reveal that the video is a fake ALWAYS makes the content less than it was.  The video is awesome when it was real in our minds and less than awesome when it was revealed to be fake.  The job of the comedian is to make things more than they are not less.  Upon seeing the reveal we feel deflated not pumped.

Also, the ham-fisted reveal felt off-voice for Kimmel.  Dumber maybe?  Normally we’d expect Kimmel to have on the girl who caught on fire if the video was real and he’d help her get it right this time.  That I’d like to see.

Hollywood’s Obsession With The Blackwing 602

blackwing pencil

Love this story about the beauty, utility, demise and resurrection (sort of) of The Blackwing 602.

If you ever wondered if a story could help sell a product then I defy you to not want to pick up a box of these rare pencils after reading about Hollywood’s obsession and history of creation with The Blackwing 602.

Managing Editor VS Chief Listening Officer


Very much like the post from Josh Hallett about the “newsroom setup” model. Investing in the Managing Editor first feels like a sensible choice but I always get nervous when the singular motivation for social is finding ways to speak to customers and prospects as opposed to greater focus on listening to serve other purposes.

You can of course distinguish between listening via social to serve multiple purposes within a company and social marketing as it is likely being referenced here.

018-pee-wee-herman-listen-to-reasonDamn though I wish companies would first install Chief Listening Officers (worst title ever) in their groups who would intelligently manage the information available for all possible uses within a company.

Comedians In Cars with Chris Rock Episode


I’ve grown to enjoy the Sienfeld show and the Chris Rock episode is a good sample if you’re new to it.   Particularly like the part at the end where they’re pulled over and Rock talks about actually being a bit nervous around the cop.

Would like to think these kinds of shows might be the future but then this is the vanity project of a guy worth several hundred million so not sure how practical the whole thing is for the world at large. Do like the format and the guests. Much prefer it to most talk-show formats today.

Brazil Protests and the Future Of Video Ads

The explosion in Vine usage and :06 videos could teach video advertisers a thing or two.

Everyone seems to have the patience to view something from Vine whereas most of us typically bail on an online ad if we think it’s going to be :30 or even :15.

The future of online video is bifurcating between shorter and longer. Shorter to tease and longer to inform.  Marketers would do well to start thinking this way.

Call Of Duty Long Form

We’ve been on a rant the last few years pressing clients and prospects on producing long form video. Call Of Duty has produced a really nice new 2 1/2 minute piece with actor Peter Stormare (Fargo and Seinfeld) as The Replacer.

In a nice shift in tone Call Of Duty goes with funny as opposed to hyper-violent.

Again, we just don’t know why more aren’t building long-form when they seem to work so well.

The Beauty of Barbershops

I don’t know how any marketer can see this video and not feel inspired to make something long form about the craft of their products.

Interesting how we can know more about something like Barbering or the history of Johnnie Walker than how our 20-40k cars are made when we buy them.

Shame on any auto-marketer who isn’t crafting long-form to explain how they’re doing it differently.