The last funny video about the Census was an old Christopher Walken sketch on SNL, but now, for 2010, we have Hitler’s take on the 2010 Census advertising campaign (not offensive and safe to watch at work, don’t worry):
Posts Tagged ‘advertising’
From the Seattle Times:
The U.S. Census has launched a unique way of urging people to be counted: Tsue Chong Co. of Seattle is inserting five different messages urging census participation into 2 million fortune cookies being shipped to restaurants and groceries across Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Montana.
Seattle Times staff reporter
The Census Bureau is partnering with Tsue Chong Co. to create fortune cookies with a message about the upcoming count.
Next time you crack open a fortune cookie, check the flip side. The federal government may have a message for you.
Tsue Chong Co., a fortune-cookie factory in Seattle’s Chinatown International District, is inserting five different census messages into 2 million cookies being shipped to restaurants and groceries across Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Montana.
Like the usual predictions of wealth, fame and long life you’ll find on one side, the census missives on the opposite side are a bit … well … banal.
“Put down your chopsticks and get involved in Census 2010,” reads one message. “Real Fortune is being heard,” reads another.
It’s all part of a broader effort by the Census Bureau to spread the word about the upcoming population count on April 1. The nation’s 112 million households will begin receiving forms in the mail beginning in late March.
The decennial count helps allocate more than $400 billion a year in federal funds to state and local governments for programs such as public housing, highways and schools.
Census results help determine political boundaries as well as the number of representatives each state will send to Congress. Because Washington’s population has steadily grown, the state could pick up a 10th congressional seat after this year’s count.
There’s great financial motivation: Each uncounted person means a loss of about $1,400 in federal money per year, according to the Census Bureau.
Bessie Fan, co-owner of the family-run cookie and noodle factory, Tsue Chong, called it a “great thrill to partner with the census for such an important effort.
Please comment here and enjoy the game!
Though we’re a staunchly non-partisan media outlet, yesterday we became a darling of the right, as Michelle Malkin sung our praises. Perhaps the best point in her article is that Christopher Guest’s “viral” video has fewer than 7,000 hits on YouTube, but maybe that will soon change with all of this (ahem, negative) exposure:
By Michelle Malkin • February 5, 2010 10:19 AM
My column looks at the bloated Census p.r. and education budget. GOP Sen. Johnny Isakson is asking questions. As well he should. History shows that the more the Census spends on advertising, the lower the response rate is. Best watchdog site for all the latest Census shenanigans: My Two Census.
The Super-Sized Census Boondoggle
by Michelle Malkin
If only the federal government were as responsible with our money as Pepsi is with theirs. The soda giant has been in the Super Bowl ad business for more than two decades. But this year, Pepsi determined it was economically unwise to pay $3 million for a 30-second spot. So, who’s foolish enough to pay for Super Bowl gold-plated airtime? You and me and Washington, D.C.
The U.S. Census Bureau will squander $2.5 million on a half-minute Super Bowl ad starring D-list celebrity Ed Begley, Jr., plus two pre-game blurbs and 12-second “vignettes” featuring Super Bowl anchor James Brown. It’s a drop in the Census boondoggle bucket (otherwise known as the tax-subsidized National Democrat Future Voter Outreach Drive). The Obama White House has allocated a total of $340 million on an “unprecedented” promotional blitz for the 2010 Census. That’s on top of $1 billion in stimulus money siphoned off for increased Census “public outreach” and staffing. In all, the Census will triple its total budget from 2000 to $15 billion.
Ads pimping the Census have already appeared during the Golden Globe awards and will broadcast during the Daytona 500 and NCAA Final Four championships. Some $80 million will be poured into multi-lingual ads in 28 languages from Arabic to Yiddish. Racial and ethnic groups have been squabbling over their share of the pie.
The U.S. census is a decennial census mandated by our constitution. Should Americans know about it? Sure. Should the p.r. budget become a bottomless slush fund in recessionary times? Surely not.
Yet, no matter how you translate it, the Census commercials to date have been an Ishtar-style flop. Global ad agency Draftfcb, based in (Obama’s hometown) Chicago and New York, nabbed a $200 million, four-year contract to oversee the Census Bureau’s direct marketing, online, and offline general market media strategies. The agency hired comedian Christopher Guest to produce “viral” spots. One of the supposedly “humor-driven” videos produced by Guest and commissioned by Draftfcb was uploaded to YouTube a few weeks ago. It has racked up a measly 6,880 views.
“For a once-a-decade project involving every living American, that’s a pretty crummy return on investment,” jeered AdFreak.com’s David Griner. “The video seems to be hampered by the same problem that plagues all campaigns meant to ‘go viral.—i.e., it’s simply not that funny…[T]he joke is a chuckler at best, and dragged out to three minutes, that chuckle gets spread pretty thin.” According to independent Census watchdog Stephen Morse, the feds conducted a total of 115 focus groups in 37 markets across the country before settling on the dud of an ad.
That’s a hell of a lot of focus-grouping to get people to pay a little extra attention to government head-count questionnaires that will be coming straight to their mailboxes, anyway.
Taxpayers are also footing the bill for the Mother of all Government Junkets – a three-month, $15 million road trip by lucky-ducky Census Bureau flacks traveling in 13 buses and cargo vans with trailers. They’ll be partying in New Orleans for Mardi Gras and at parades across the country. In case you were wondering about the anticipated Census Road Show carbon footprint, it’s an estimated 223 metric tons.
But not to worry: The eco-racketeers of an Al Gore-endorsed carbon offset firm called “Carbonfund.org” have become official government “partners” with the Census to offset all the vehicle emissions – and surf off the free publicity to garner more shady business.
As if overpriced TV ads, online videos no one watches, and indulgent, cross-country caravans weren’t enough, the Census Bureau is also enlisting 56 million schoolchildren to pester their parents and act as junior government enumerators. Educrats are spending several billions more on math and social studies lessons peddling the Census. Overzealous Census partners such as the National Association of Latino Elected Officials have distributed recruitment propaganda urging constituents to participate because “Joseph and Mary participated in the Census.” Goodness knows what kind of fear-mongering curricula the kids are being served in the name of counting heads – and shaping the electoral landscape.
“When times are tough, you tighten your belts,” President Obana lectured us. “You don’t blow a bunch of cash on Vegas.” Coincidentally, the Census Road Tour junketeers just wrapped up a visit in Vegas. Next stop? You guessed it: The Super Bowl in Miami. Taxpayers should start crying foul.
Though 90 percent of respondents said the census was very or somewhat important, the survey underscored the public’s lack of knowledge about the decennial count. Only 31 percent knew census participation is required by law. Answers about the census’ purpose fared somewhat better: 59 percent knew that the census is used to appropriate government funds and 64 percent knew the census determines congressional representation.
The first stage of the ad campaign will focus on awareness and the Bureau has spent much time touting its outreach efforts — with nonprofits, minority groups and others. But it’s now evident that awareness about the census isn’t enough (84 percent of survey participants had heard of the census, and a full 92 percent were familiar with it after hearing a description) — education must be a key part of the marketing plans.
Perhaps owing to this lack of education, the poll also found that 18 percent of those surveyed may not participate in the 2010 Census. Ten percent said they might not fill out the form, 6 percent said they definitely or probably would not and 2 percent said they were unsure. Top reasons for not participating included a lack of interest or knowledge and a distrust of government.
Readers, what do you think: What’s the best way to educate the public about the cenus?
We have a few of the advertising spots from the ad campaign for the 2010 Census.
Mail It Back:
Next 10 Years:
Let us know what you think in the comments, and we’ll have more ads and analysis over the next few weeks.
The Census Bureau is unveiling its $133-million advertising campaign tomorrow.
A Washington, D.C., event hosted by CBS sports broadcaster James Brown will kickoff the campaign, which includes television, radio, print, online and outdoor advertisements.
USA Today has a preview of what we’ll see from the Bureau’s ads in the coming weeks:
Today, the Census Bureau unveils a $133 million national advertising campaign that will debut at 9:15 p.m. ET Sunday during the Golden Globe Awards on NBC.
The money is part of $340 million the government is spending to promote the Census this year, including more than $70 million for ads targeting Hispanic, black, Asian and other ethnic markets.
The campaign chiefly targets the 84% of the U.S. population that consumes English-language media, but ads on billboards, radio and TV and in magazines and newspapers will circulate in 27 other languages.
The first of five TV ads directed by actor/writer Christopher Guest (This is Spinal Tap,Best in Show) showcases Guest’s signature style — using dry wit to showcase life’s absurdities.
In the first ad airing Sunday, a film director played by Ed Begley Jr. announces with dramatic flourish his latest ambitious project: Creating a portrait of “every man, woman and child in this beautiful country of ours.” The ad ends with two people whispering: “Isn’t that what the Census is doing?”
The campaign will feature different themes, says Jeff Tarakajian, executive vice president at Draftfcb, the lead ad agency, which is working with subcontractors who specialize in specific ethnic groups.
One theme is “10 questions, 10 minutes” to highlight the ease of filling out the form.
Another ad will have a crowd cheering as someone walks to a mailbox to send in the form.
The Economist reports that businesses plan to use census data to help them make decisions about where to open stores and what to stock. Target, for example, tells the magazine that it began offering more Spanish-language children’s books and hair products for African Americans after seeing data from the 2000 Census.
And due to the economy, more firms than ever are expected to utilize census data:
According to Zain Raj, the boss of Euro RSCG Discovery, a marketing firm, even more companies than normal will be poring over the census this year. The recession has made them reluctant to expand without good market data, he argues, yet it has also caused them to cut back on research, making the free census data all the more vital.
And some experts predict that this year’s data will lead more companies to push micro-targeted ad campaigns:
Peter Francese, a demographer at Ogilvy & Mather, an advertising agency, thinks the 2010 census will permanently change marketing. When companies analyse the census data, they will see that cities, and even some neighbourhoods, are so diverse now that broad advertising campaigns are no longer suitable. Mass-market advertising, he says, will become “extinct”. Marketers will instead have to focus on reaching specific households—just as the Census Bureau is preparing to do.
The Census Bureau has about 47,000 corporate partners that are helping to market the census, more than double the number in 2000, according to the Economist. It’s clear that the businesses, too, have a stake in the data.
Census forms won’t reach homes until March, but the Census Bureau is already publicizing a three-stage advertising campaign aimed, in part, at encouraging people to fill out their forms and cooperate with Census workers.
So, in which states should the Census Bureau concentrate its efforts?
Alaska had the lowest response rate in both 2000 (56 percent) and 1999 (52 percent). South Carolina had the next-worse response rate in both years, with 58 percent in 2000 and 56 percent in 1990. (Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory, had a response rate of just 53-percent in 2000).
At the other end, Iowa had the best response rate in 2000 with 76 percent, followed by Minnesota, Nebraska and Wisconsin at 75 percent. In 1990, Wisconsin topped the list with a 77-percent response rate. Iowa and Minnesota tied for second-best at 76 percent.
The national response rate was 67 percent in 2000 and 65 in 1990. The Census Bureau is predicting a drop in the response rate, to 64 percent, for the 2010 Census.
More areas with low response rates include Washington, D.C. (60 percent in 2000, 56 percent in 1990), Louisiana (60 percent in 2000, 58 percent in 1990), Hawaii (60 percent in 2000, 62 percent in 1990), Vermont (60 percent in 2000, 64 percent in 1990) and Maine (61 percent in 2000, 58 percent in 1990).
Other states with high response rates were South Dakota (74 percent in both years), Virginia (72 percent in 2000, 70 percent in 1990), North Dakota (72 percent both years) and Ohio (72 percent in 2000, 75 percent in 1990).
This county-by-county map shows a more detailed breakdown of response rates from the 2000 Census.
Some states are already striving to improve their performance from the last count. The Herald in Rock Hill, S.C., reported that the state will have heavier marketing and outreach efforts in the 10 or 12 counties that had the lowest response rates in 2000.
“Some people just don’t understand the importance of the census,” Michael Sponhour, spokesman for the State Budget and Control Board, told the paper.
There were some technical glitches during a media conference call last week with Census Bureau director Robert M. Groves about the status of the 2010 Census.
Stephen got dropped off the call, and we wrote an editorial criticizing the Bureau’s technical problems with the conference call and failure to make a transcript available.
Some highlights from the end of the call:
- In response to a question on the economy, Groves said the recession has led to a larger applicant pool for Census workers, but the vacancy rate (due to foreclosures) means forms will be sent to addresses where no one lives.
- According to Groves, self-identification questions (such as about ethnicity) change on almost every Census form. The Bureau wants people to write-in how they identify themselves if none of the provided options apply.
- And some upcoming key dates: Census road tour begins Jan. 4, media kickoff event in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 14, paid media ads start airing Jan. 18, Groves travels to Alaska for the first enumeration of a remote village on Jan. 25.
As part of that effort, the National Association of Latino Elected Officials is distributing Christmas posters to churches and clergy that depict Joseph and Mary on their way to Bethlehem, with a note that that Jesus was born when Joseph and Mary were traveling to participate in a census.
The article reports Latino groups are worried about their members being under counted because illegal immigrants may be unlikely to fill out a government form. It also describes why the Census is a milestone of sorts for many Latino leaders:
Latino political leaders see full participation in the census as the culmination of heightened activism that began in the spring of 2006, when hundreds of thousands of Latinos marched in the streets to protest legislation then in Congress that would have toughened laws against illegal immigration. In 2007 they held a nationwide campaign to have Latino immigrants become United States citizens. That was followed last year with a huge voter registration drive.
“We want to tap into that same spirit,” said Arturo Vargas, executive director of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials Educational Fund, known as Naleo, a bipartisan group that is a main organizer of the census drive. “We have to go back to everybody and say, ‘Just as you marched, just as you naturalized, just as you voted, now you have to be counted.’ ”
One strategy is to encourage Latino immigrants to return the census forms by mail, rather than waiting for a census taker’s knock on the door, which could frighten illegal immigrants wary of immigration agents.
After the Senate blocked an attempt to include a citizenship question on the Census form last month, it became clear that states with significant Latino populations have a lot to gain by full (or as close to full as possible) participation. And that will translate to more funds and congressional representation for the people in those states.
However, some evangelical leaders are arguing against the campaign, objecting to the use of images of Jesus to promote the Census — and even against Latino participation in the Census at all:
But the Rev. Miguel Angel Rivera, a New Jersey pastor who heads a smaller coalition of evangelical clergy, has called for a boycott of the census.
“We need to empower the undocumented immigrants by asking them not to participate,” Mr. Rivera said, “as a way to protest the lack of commitment from this Congress to do what is right and moral, which is comprehensive immigration reform.”
He is touring the country with his boycott call, and he has gained the support of some community leaders, including Nativo López, a Mexican-American activist in Los Angeles.
Any promotional effort that mixes the government and religion is bound to get a little dicey. As the posters are displayed in evangelical churches this week, we’re interested to see what kind of reception they get — and, more importantly, whether they’ll translate into Latino Census participation.
The Bureau is expected to spend more than $300 million on marketing this year, with a significant portion of that devoted to paid advertising.
The article explains why the Super Bowl ad is important for the Census Bureau:
The Feb. 7 game on CBS comes soon after the Census kicks off a $300 million-plus outreach campaign. And importantly, just a few weeks before the Bureau begins disseminating its questionnaires.
The Super Bowl offers a chance to swiftly reach a massive amount of the U.S. audience. Last year, 151.6 million people — about half of the U.S. population — watched at least a portion of the game. On average, the game was seen in 48 million homes and viewed by 98.7 million people.
The Bureau also ran a spot in the 2000 Super Bowl.
H/t to USA Today for the following:
Turbulent political and economic times roiling the nation are expected to diminish initial participation by households in next year’s Census despite a $326 million marketing blitz that far outspends previous Census campaigns.
Mounting mistrust of government, rising identity theft and record numbers of foreclosures could discourage people from mailing back Census forms next year, according to the Census Bureau.
A Census analysis shows that about 64% of households are likely to mail in their forms without additional prodding from Census workers — down from 67% in 2000. That could mean 4 million more doors to knock on.
CENSUS STRATEGY: Reaching hard-to-count residents
CENSUS NUMBERS: Interactive look at 2008 data
DONATED AD TERM
Feb. – Apr. ’10 (3 months)
COSTS TO PRINT
The ad space is donated to each participating organization.
Each participating organization is responsible for design of the artwork and the cost to print the ads.
Below is the cost to print for each market:
Market with 200 buses: $4,872 (retail value: $14,950 to $19,950, depending on the market).
Market with 100 buses: $3,872 (retail value: $12,950 to $17,950, depending on the market).
Market with 50 buses: $2,872 (retail value: $10,950 to $14,950, depending on the market).
All printing has to come through Blu Line Media, pursuant to contracts with the bus companies.
Artwork due date:
Dec. 21, 2009
Size: 27″ wide by 11″ high
Live area: 26″ wide by 10″ high
Format: High-res. PDF
Delivery: email to firstname.lastname@example.org
AVAILABLE NATIONWIDE MARKETS
(Parentheticals indicate the number of minimum buses to use in a market)
Little Rock (100)
Marin (incl. San Rafael) (50)
San Francisco (200)
East Bay (Contra Costa County, incl. Concord & Walnut Creek) (200)
East Bay (Alameda County, incl. Oakland) (200)
San Mateo County (incl. Redwood City) (200)
Santa Clara Valley (incl. San Jose & Silicon Valley) (200)
Santa Cruz (100)
Monterey (incl. Salinas) (100)
Ventura & Santa Barbara Counties (200)
Los Angeles County, North (incl. San Gabriel Valley and Pasadena) (200)
Los Angeles County, West (incl. Santa Monica) (200)
Los Angeles County, South and East (incl. downtown Los Angeles and Long Beach) (200)
Los Angeles County, South Bay (incl. Torrance & the Beach Cities) (200)
Los Angeles County, Suburban (San Fernando Valley) (200)
Coachella Valley (50)
Inland Empire (incl. San Bernardino & Riverside Counties) (200)
Orange County (200)
San Diego County, North (incl. Oceanside & Del Mar) (200)
San Diego County, Central, Eastern & Southern (200)
Aspen and surrounding communities (100)
Colorado Springs (50)
Fort Collins (50)
Mesa County (incl. Grand Junction) (50)
New Haven (incl. Wallingford) (100)
Waterbury (a/k/a Central Naugatuck Valley), New Britain, Bristol, and Meriden (50)
State of Delaware (200)
Broward County (incl. Fort Lauderdale) (200)
Daytona Beach (50)
Ft. Myers (Lee County) (50)
Manatee County (incl. Brandenton) (50)
Palm Beach (100)
Clearwater (incl. St Petersburg) (200)
Gwinnett County (incl. Lawrenceville) (50)
Island of Oahu (City of Honolulu routes) (200)
Island of Oahu (Rural routes) (200)
Chicago, Suburban (incl. Arlington Heights and Skokie) (200)
Madison County (incl. Granite City) (100)
Rock Island County (incl. Moline) (100)
St. Clair County (incl. E. St. Louis, IL) (200)
Fort Wayne (50)
South Bend (50)
Des Moines (100)
Northern Kentucky (incl. Ft. Wright) (100)
Baton Rouge (100)
New Orleans (100)
College Park (100)
Montgomery County (200)
Prince George County (100)
New Bedford – Fall River (100)
Springfield (incl. N. Hampton and Univ. of Mass.) (200)
Ann Arbor (100)
Detroit, City of (200)
Detroit, Suburban (200)
Grand Rapids (100)
Minneapolis-St. Paul (200)
St. Cloud (50)
Kansas City (200)
St. Louis (200)
Las Vegas (200)
Stateline (incl. Lake Tahoe) (50)
Gateway Region (200)
Skylands Region (200)
Shore Region (200)
Delaware River Region (200)
Greater Atlantic City Region (200)
Southern Shore Region (200)
Las Cruces (50)
Santa Fe (50)
Nassau County (Long Island) (200)
Suffolk County (Long Island) (200)
Westchester County (200)
New York City
Bronx, The (200)
Staten Island (200)
Chapel Hill (100)
Columbus (200) (call for availability)
Dayton (200) (call for availability)
Oklahoma City (50)
Cambria County (incl. Johnstown) (50)
Monroe County (50)
State College (incl. surrounding townships) (50)
San Juan (200)
Corpus Christi (100)
Fort Worth (200)
El Paso (200)
Denton County (incl. Lewisville) (50)
San Antonio (200)
Park City (50)
Salt Lake City (200)
Hampton-Norfolk-Virginia Beach (200)
Loudoun County (incl. Leesburg) (50)
Grays Harbor (50)
Seattle, North (200)
Seattle, Central (200)
Seattle, South (200)
Wenatchee (Chelan and Douglas Counties) (50)
Washington D.C. (200)
La Crosse (50)
Please call or write with questions. I’m happy to help.
Blu Line Media
Our friends at Draftfcb sent us the following info:
Aug 26, 2009 15:32 ET
Draftfcb Issues Call for Interested Media Properties Regarding 2010 Census Media Buy
NEW YORK, NY–(Marketwire – August 26, 2009) – Draftfcb announced background and further specifics today for all media properties interested in competing for a piece of the Census 2010 media buy. Draftfcb is the prime contractor for Census 2010 Integrated Communications Campaign.
All media vendors and properties have a fair opportunity to submit their company for consideration for the paid media campaign. Negotiations and commitments for the majority of the buy will not conclude until November 2009 and may continue into 2010. Any interested vendors, must submit their information at the following URL:
Draftfcb and its partner agencies are looking forward to full and complete competition for this historic campaign. Interested vendors can also find details such as paid media plan summary, campaign phases and media buying timelines at the designated link.
The 2010 Census paid media campaign will be one of the broadest and far-reaching communications efforts undertaken by the U.S. Government. It will include advertising in 28 languages and will employ media such as television, radio, print and digital across the nation, Puerto Rico and U.S. Island Areas. The paid media campaign is part of an overall integrated campaign that includes partnerships, web sites, a Census in Schools program and earned media.
Draftfcb is a modern agency model for clients seeking creative, accountable marketing programs that build business and deliver a high Return on Ideas(SM). With more than 136 years of combined expertise, the company has its roots in both consumer advertising and behavioral, data-driven direct marketing. The agency is the first global, behavior-based, holistic marketing communications organization to operate against a single P&L, and it places equal emphasis on creativity and accountability. The Draftfcb network spans 97 countries, with more than 9,600 employees worldwide, and is part of the Interpublic Group of Companies (NYSE: IPG). The agency’s global corporate leadership team includes Howard Draft, executive chairman; Laurence Boschetto, CEO and president; Jonathan Harries, vice chairman and worldwide chief creative officer; and Neil Miller, CFO. For more information, visit www.draftfcb.com.
Jack Martin of the Public Information Office sent me the following e-mail in my response to my “BS Awards” post:
There are several inacuracies in Mr. Morse’s post that we feel the need to rectify.
First, our communications plan contractor, draftFCB, had nothing to do with the creation of this video, or entry in the Telly Awards program. This video was produced internally by our Photo and Broadcast Services Division, a group of talented professionals who have also won many awards, including excellence awards from the Public Relations Society of America, the National Association of Government Communicators, a NY ADDY, an ARF David Ogilvy Award, and two CINE Golden Eagles.
Second, The Telly Awards have for the last 30 years recognized the creative efforts of thousands of people, and are very popular with thousands of organizations Their website cites “over 14,000 entries from all 50 states and 5 continents” for this year. Winning entries included commercials made for Wal-Mart and Chrysler, and other video projects for Discovery Channel, Disney, Verizon, ESPN, and AARP. The Telly Awards are popular with many who are “on the ground” creating the excellent work you see on commercial and public TV. The entries are judged by peers, and usually not by major agency advertising executives. A category may have several winners, or none. The excellence of the production is awarded.
We are proud of our communications program and the recognition our contractors are receiving for their work on the 2010 Census
Jack Martin | U.S. Census Bureau | Public Information Office |
Our response: As has been previously noted, conversations with advertising professionals about the Telly Awards reveal their lack of prestige. The logic behind entering awards competitions that are not prestigious is very simple: Advertising companies, individuals, and in this case the Census Bureau want to call their products “award-winning” as this helps with future/current business, or in this case government oversight. This is easy to achieve when entering competitions that have many, many, many winners. And finally, no mention was made of Draftfcb in this post, other than identifying that the company was also involved in advertising efforts.
Today, the Census Bureau released the following press release about how it won an armload of the least prestigious awards ever received, which are called Tellys. Calls to multiple New York-based ad/marketing executives were met with words like “never heard of them” and “I don’t even think they’re real.” Jim Edwards, a former managing editor of AdWeek, said, “The Tellys are not a high-profile award by any means. They recognize one of the more humble niches of the advertising world, and that means that most people in the business have never heard of them.” Here’s the latest episode that relates to the Draftfcb PR farce from Suitland:
WASHINGTON, July 20 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — A series of 2010 Census promotional videos have won several prestigious Telly Awards as well as a Videographer Award of Excellence — awards that honor the best in video production.
The videos were produced by the Public Information Office at the U.S. Census Bureau as part of a collaborative effort between headquarters, regional and contracting staff. They were submitted for consideration by contractors Therese Allen and Corey Petree.
The four- to seven-minute videos, titled “A New Portrait of America,” were produced to reach different segments of the population including the general, African-American, Asian, Hispanic, Native American/Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islanders, and Puerto Rican audiences.
In the nonbroadcast productions category, the videos received silver Tellys for use of music and editing, and a bronze Telly was awarded for government relations. In the Internet/online video category, a silver Telly was awarded for music and a bronze Telly was awarded for editing.
The videos also received the 2009 Videographer Award of Excellence in the government/federal and creativity/video/original music categories.
The “New Portrait of America” videos include diverse images from throughout the country as well as interviews with community leaders. They are used at activities and events to promote the 2010 Census and encourage everyone’s participation in next year’s national count.
The “New Portrait of America” videos may be viewed at the following link: http://2010.census.gov/2010census/multimedia/videos/013879.html.
The real humor in this is that after looking into the “Telly Awards,” it looks like there are hundreds upon hundreds thousands upon thousands of winners in each category. It seems like the creators of the Telly Awards just want an outlet for ad agencies to impress their clients by paying entry fees to become recipients of this everyone’s-a-winner competition.
UPDATE: MyTwoCensus has been informed that Jay Waite, deputy director of the US Census Bureau, was also involved in procuring these contracts. According to his biography, “Waite is the visionary and architect of the 2010 reengineered census. Using hand-held computers for data collection, a major expansion of technology, will dramatically change the way censuses will be conducted for decades to come.”
Well, what scandal have we stumbled upon this time?
Upon doing some further research into DraftFCB’s massive $200 million advertising/media contract with the Census Bureau, I learned that this firm’s parent company, Interpublic Group was forced to pay a $12 million fine to the SEC for accounting fraud in 2008 and also owns a 49% stake in GlobalHue, an ethnic media PR firm that has been assigned to do the Latino/African-American outreach for the 2010 Census. But back in March of this year, GlobalHue was accused of overbilling the Bermudan government by $1.8 million on a $13 million contract. The Bermudans claim that GlobalHue:
- Overbilled the account by $1.8 million.
- Prebilled the government in violation of its own rules.
- Didn’t keep invoices and billing records.
- Didn’t return discounts and credits to the client.
- Used a media buyer, Cornerstone, that charged commissions of up to 181 percent.
Have similar problems been going on in America with little oversight? Maybe the GAO and IG’s offices will soon let us know! (For now, click here to download the original accusations from Bermuda. H/t to Jim Edwards of BNET for providing these docs.)
An confidential source informed MyTwoCensus that New York Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney’s office had quite the hand in procuring this contract for DraftFCB/Interpublic Group/GlobalHue (ironically she accused the Bush administration of trying to sabotage the 2010 Census), so tomorrow we’re going to give them a call to learn more information. Additionally, Steven J. Jost, the Census Bureau’s new Communications Director (he also served in this role when Ken Prewitt ran the Census Bureau during the later Clinton years), has significant ties to Maloney’s office.
MyTwoCensus has a pending FOIA request to obtain the details of these contracts.
*As this is an ongoing investigation, MyTwoCensus asks for any individual with further information about this case to please come forward. We remind our readers that we maintain full confidentiality with our sources in all circumstances.