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Brad Fitzpatrick

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What's your target audience? [Dec. 27th, 2007|07:58 pm]
Brad Fitzpatrick

I saw this ad at SFO:

If you can't read it, it says:
As fast as you can push the buttons. Send messages at, like, the speed of light. LOL. That's texting at SprintSpeed.
I will now kindly ask that any of my readers with Sprint service please call and cancel your service, paying any early contract cancellation penalties and moving on to a less stupid provider. Thanks.

Edit: I was going to stop with that, but I have to start enumerating the stupidness of the ad:
  • Graffiti-style handwriting. Does the phone do handwriting recognition perhaps? No, I guess not, because it says "As fast as you can push the buttons."
  • "like". Just to be 13-year-old-girly, or does it not really travel at the speed of light? But like, almost? Like, maybe?
  • "LOL". What's funny?
  • Speed of light. Wow. Fast. I think the rate limiter here will be how fast I can push the buttons then, huh? How are you going to help me with that?
  • Varying font sizes for no reason?
  • "That's texting at SprintSpeed."? What? What does this $20 phone do differently that makes it oh-so-fast SprintSpeed?

[User Picture]From: linearb
2007-12-28 04:07 am (UTC)

So, does your cell phone work in russia? If so, tell me who.
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[User Picture]From: brad
2007-12-28 04:11 am (UTC)
My Treo and Blackberry (both quadband) did, but the iPhone requires finding a place to make your a $25 hacked SIM card, cloning a pre-pay SIM you buy from Beeline/MTS/Megafone onto a looks-like-AT&T SIM. I didn't do that, though, just used a basic Nokia phone with a pre-pay. (everything's pre-pay in Russia, as far as I can tell... refill at ATM machines...)
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[User Picture]From: brad
2007-12-28 04:19 am (UTC)
Hah, I didn't even notice that bit of stupidity.
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[User Picture]From: mechanyx
2007-12-28 04:29 am (UTC)
Yeah, that was my favorite part.

I left Sprint recently so I could get a Nokia E70 and SSH from my phone (I don't have to carry my laptop for emergencies anymore) and I have to admit, my reception was better with Sprint despite working in and around numerous ATT buildings in NY/NJ.
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[User Picture]From: robflynn
2007-12-28 06:26 am (UTC)
hahaha, what the hell?
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[User Picture]From: caladri
2007-12-28 04:16 am (UTC)
I suppose the 'light' thing is because the letters were written with a light pen. I see what they did there. There was a kiosk at our local mall the other day called "LOL SHIRTS". I died a little on the inside.
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[User Picture]From: salacious_pop
2007-12-28 04:31 am (UTC)
Yea, I was going to comment that the writing style is not "graffiti", it was done by someone waving their hands in that shape w/ a light pen and a slow camera exposure. I see what they did there.


The "like" and "LOL" really just makes me want to take a shower and rock back and forth in a dark room.

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From: msirub
2007-12-28 04:51 am (UTC)
at my mall there is a store called "SO KOOL".
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From: (Anonymous)
2007-12-28 07:14 am (UTC)
The gift shop at San Jose airport used to be called "www . . com", like they knew they wanted to call it "www dot something dot com" and never figured out the something. maybe it's still called that...haven't been there in a while, but every time i saw it i felt stupider.
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[User Picture]From: brad
2007-12-28 07:34 am (UTC)
Those still exist ... I think it's a chain. Or the one at SFO is called something like "www.gifts@airport.sfo", which isn't even a proper TLD... not sure what it's supposed to be.

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[User Picture]From: mart
2007-12-28 11:50 am (UTC)

I have a duvet cover which has "sleep@bedtime.zzz" on it. It was a present. I think it's cute. :)

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[User Picture]From: saltdawg
2007-12-28 04:20 am (UTC)
who do you suggest for a wireless provider?
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[User Picture]From: jwz
2007-12-28 04:51 am (UTC)
Also, does this phone squirt orangina from its nipples? If not then I'm not interested.
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[User Picture]From: robflynn
2007-12-28 06:27 am (UTC)
That's $10 more, but does come with free seedless watermelon flavored lubricant.

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[User Picture]From: mcfnord
2007-12-28 04:51 am (UTC)
apparently a rate of 299,792,458 meters per second is funny to them.
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From: tom
2007-12-28 05:00 am (UTC)
As stupid as it is...fuck that, I pay 30.00 a month for unlimited everything except 500 any time minutes, 7pm/nights/weekends=free, unlimited data/web/text=free. No other service can top that, so I had to take an hour of my time to get such a plan/deal, but hey, it worked.
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[User Picture]From: xlerb
2007-12-28 05:02 am (UTC)
I am on Sprint's network, but I use it through an MVNO, not them directly.

(OTOH, that MVNO is, uh, more than a little teenagerized. But it does what I want (i.e., is inexpensive for light usage), and I only rarely need look at the garishness.)

Anyway, look on the, uh, bright side: this ad can be seen as promoting the use of SMS, and the more teenagers (and ex-teenagers) who use SMS, the fewer there are discussing their preference for garlic sauce loudly enough that the entire train car can hear. For example.
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[User Picture]From: chasethestars
2007-12-28 05:12 am (UTC)
What's with the lowercase i? Did someone make a typo and no one caught it?

Here's another Sprint ad with the "light writing". The fine print at the bottom reads:
*Don't ask how the magic works. You need an advanced electrical engineering degree to endure our lengthy technical explanation covering the benefits of our network technology. That said, if you'd like to learn more about SprintSpeed and find out why Sprint's network is so fast, we've set up a toll-free electrical engineering [3 letter word I can't make out, might be "fan"] hotline. Call 1-877-236-2945. **Only Sprint provides this magic. Companies, for example, with supposedly antiquated words like "telegraph" in their name do not provide SprintSpeed.

If I had an advanced electrical engineering degree, I'd call that number very angry and offended.
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[User Picture]From: burr86
2007-12-28 08:25 am (UTC)
I think that's even more lame than the one Brad posted. Because you could boil it down to, "See! Wow! Science!" ;P
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[User Picture]From: wcu
2007-12-28 05:54 am (UTC)
i think text messaging as a whole is associated with vapid teens, acronyms, and valley-girl-teenaged-talk. so, i kind of take it as sprint attempting to be witty and laughing at it (but, like, ultimately failing)
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[User Picture]From: chris
2007-12-28 06:33 am (UTC)
yeah sounds like they are trying to hit their target market. one of my coworkers recently was commenting about how his daughter sends like 60 texts a day or some number that I am probably lowballing
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[User Picture]From: terrajen
2007-12-28 08:11 am (UTC)
jesus, brad. like, lighten up, lol
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[User Picture]From: imgreen
2007-12-31 12:50 pm (UTC)
Part of me is happy that the advertising industry tries so hard and fails so horribly, another part of me knows this ad will work.
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