Thinkmodo, the viral marketing company behind the Times Square video screen gag (really an ad for the bad action movie Limitless), is at it again. This time, they convinced a bunch of websites and publications that a group of people in New York City were sitting around naked playing video games with the above (obviously fake) video.
The clip was viewed more than 100,000 times (“naked” always succeeds online) and posted at outlets like Yahoo and The Sun, but as the Daily News reports today, it was all made up by James Percelay and Michael Krivicka of Thinkmodo, hired by the company Xtendplay.
Here’s how they did it: Thinkmodo hired 32 actors, including friends, Craigslist hires, and members of New York’s Young Naturists, who didn’t mind hanging out in their birthday suits while playing video games equipped with the Xtendplay video game accessory. The shoot lasted three hours and all the testimonials were scripted.
It’s all designed to get past your defenses.
“If it were a typical ad, you’d have this filter on and then you’d look at it a certain way,” says Percelay. “But if it’s content that’s seemingly un-sponsored, then people are fully engaged and then are really open to exploring it.”
Other sites were suspicious of the video all along, but posted it anyway, as we are, because it’s fun and because it includes naked people (with censors). And so far, that’s been the magic of the Thinkmodo projects. You want to be mad, but it’s actually entertaining.