Try as you might, you can’t look anywhere in our city without seeing some sort of ad for Microsoft’s new operating system, Windows Vista. Alongside an unusually aggressive advertising campaign through more traditional methods, the company also went all out and paid for an elaborate ice house in Dundas Square. As the corporation should have expected, the backlash towards the over-the-top promotion began almost right away: there were the obvious jokes about “freezing”; impromptu dance parties organized inside the house; even some analysis of Microsoft’s method of disposing the house — letting it melt below the Gardiner.
And then the dissenters took it underground.
A little over a week ago, one user of the tribe.ca forums found the word “LINUX” carved out of a huge Vista ad at Finch Station. A few days after that, photoblogger Photendo found an Apple logo carved out of the “o” in “Wow” for a similar Vista promo at Queen Station, and now, at King Station by the Melinda Street exit, someone has done the same thing to the same ad, and (someone else?) has added “Wow That’s expensive” below the knife job in green ink. Touché.
While Apple is arguably just as bad as Microsoft when it comes to advertising — having blanketed much of the city and many TTC stations and subway cars with their ads before — we’ll forgive the perps for not realizing the irony in their hack, since it’s always nice to see ugly ads turned into interactive public art (though we’ve got to say that this “apple” looks more like Alfalfa’s silhouette than anything else). Do any Microsoft geeks have their box-cutters ready for the next invasive iPod ads? Anyone?
Thanks to Dominic for tipping us off and for the pics!