Five technology commercials that missed the mark


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A good commercial can make an emotional connection between the viewer and the product. On the other hand, a bad commercial can be pretty hilarious.

Trying to pitch a technology offering in 30 seconds can be hit or miss; here are five ads that were very much miss.

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Five technology commercials that missed the mark

  1. 1. Five technology commercialsthat missed the markA good commercial can make anemotional connection between the viewerand the product.On the other hand, a bad commercial canbe darned pretty hilarious.Trying to pitch a technology offering in 30seconds can be hit or miss; here are fiveads that were very much miss.By Jeff JedrasImage courtesy of digitalart at
  2. 2. Commercials were often longer inthe 1980s, and Atari’s ad for itsiconic Poll Position car racing gamewas 90 seconds long.The game was a classic; thecommercial – not so much. Althoughthe narrator calling a man taking hisfamily for a Sunday drive “a real jerk”was fun, before inserting them intoan explosive road race.To quote the ad, it “will bust yourcrack and leave skidmarks on yoursoul.”Atari “Pole Position” – 1980s
  3. 3. While Apple’s 1984-inspired commercialfor the Macintosh was inspired, its follow-up for Macintosh Office was less so.To a creepy rendition of It’s off to work wego, blindfolded office workers mindlesslyfollow each other in a line, walking off acliff, until one finally takes his blindfold offand sees that Apple offers a better way.And 30 years later, who are the lemmingsnow?Apple Macintosh Office“Lemmings” – 1985
  4. 4. While Apple’s Lemmings ad of thissame year depicted other computersas mindless tedium, this spot for theCommodore 64 showed how fun theycan be.From the kid writing code to theteacher showing a poor graphicalrepresentation of Saturn to herstudents, they’re all having fun, and allgiving the “Commodore salute.”They’d later double the fun with theCommodore 64C – if that’s evenpossible.Commodore “Keeping up withCommodore” -- 1985
  5. 5. Microsoft released a series of cloudcomputing-themed ads to promoteWindows 7, and they all deserve anhonourable mention, but our winner isset at an airport.After a delayed flight, our protagonistdeclares “to the cloud!” and accesses hishome desktop remotely to watch savedTV programming. Nice feature, but notcloud computing.“Yeah, cloud!” his wife exclaims. Yeah,again, not really.Microsoft “To the cloud” – 2010
  6. 6. While 90 second ads areuncommon these days, Facebookwent all-out with their 2012Superbowl commercial.Unfortunately, they really only hadenough concept for a 15 secondspot. So we get a slow, ploddingmonologue about how chairs arefor sitting, and about how doorbells and airplanes and basketballare like Facebook or something.So much money wasted. Sorry,Facebook IPO investors.Facebook “The Things ThatConnect Us” -- 2012