Passive viral marketing?
April 2, 2003 4:27 PM   Subscribe

Meet Judd Arthur and Kristen Claire, two attractive singles with eerily similar design sensibilities who just need a date. Maybe their sites are so similar because this past February, Judd and Kristen apparently contracted their mutual friend Chris to register domains for them(in his name, for some reason) and he farmed designing it out to someone he knows in the design group at his job. To get the word out about their datelessness, flyers are being posted on bulleting boards in public places. Have you seen Judd or Kristen, and where? I'm curious how much they get around. I'm in Chicago.
posted by Su (22 comments total)
I love the FPP that turns out to be an ad for something with no warning. There should be a noun describing that sort of trojan surprise.
posted by jonson at 4:43 PM on April 2, 2003

Odd to advertise a dating service by acknowledging that people spout crap in their personal ads.
posted by jack_mo at 4:49 PM on April 2, 2003

Yah, um, isn't this just an ad? And the people mentioned don't exist? If you're actually making this point in a subtle way, you may want to be a little less subtle lest you be accused of (hopefully unknowingly) promulgating viral astroturf vibrating overlord marketing.
posted by freebird at 5:13 PM on April 2, 2003

Judd Arthur and Kristen Claire also each have two first names. Coincidence? I think not...

What I want to know: has anyone ever gotten a date off of their website/blog?
posted by namespan at 5:14 PM on April 2, 2003

This is just a blatant ad posted to MeFi. It should be pulled, soon.
posted by BlueScreen at 5:29 PM on April 2, 2003

Aren't the commercials supposed to go over there?

posted by herc at 5:33 PM on April 2, 2003

I agree that it's fishy, but what makes everyone so sure it's a blatant ad instead of something Su noticed and wanted to explore? Yeah, I know, that's going to be the astroturfer's defense mantra before too long... but we could get to the bottom of this one. The afforementioned Chris's email and phone # are in the NS record Su referenced, and Su's got an email.

(But she oughta come back in here and defend herself, too... and how did she know Chris worked for udate?)
posted by namespan at 5:45 PM on April 2, 2003

Christ. I'm consistently amazed at how willfully dense people can be.
I refuse to defend or explain this. If you seriously think this is me spamming MeFi with advertising, then go right ahead. I guess I'm busted. Ironic, no?
posted by Su at 5:55 PM on April 2, 2003

On reflection, I'm sure Su DID realize that this was an ad (the TITLE tag gives it away), and was just being slyly clever. Still, enough with the slyly clever, if it's an ad, just say so, and we can skip it.
posted by jonson at 5:55 PM on April 2, 2003

Su = man.

So these disgustingly good-looking people don't exist (as Judd and Kristen), and they're just set-ups (beards, if you will) to lure people to Udate. How very Suddenly Last Summer!

How did you first learn about this, Su?
posted by iconomy at 6:03 PM on April 2, 2003

Right, noone thinks it's a willfull spamming. At least they shouldn't. But without some context and warning, the difference in effect is so subtle as to be nonexistant. What makes this more than an just more propagation? For example, I'd be interested to know how these admittedly kinda funny ads came to folks' attention, and where else they've shown up. I think this is probably the same thing that Su was interested in...
posted by freebird at 6:07 PM on April 2, 2003

This is an add for a British based company that was aquired by USA Interactive a few months ago, USAI is the parent company of -- the industry is consolidateing (dateing.. ugh).
posted by stbalbach at 6:08 PM on April 2, 2003

"...cook...clean...but for who?"

For whom, Kristen, not who. No wonder you can't get a date. Men like women with good grammar skills.
posted by Shane at 6:35 PM on April 2, 2003

"Men like women with good grammar skills."

And a huge rack.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 7:24 PM on April 2, 2003

i'm gonna try and clear this up, for those of you who seem to have completely suspended your sense of humor.

1) su is not connected with udate.

2) he posted this because it was a particularly weird piece of marketing. it was a simple pink US-letter flier posted in a mailboxes etc. near our house with a picture of "judd" playing with a dolphin (no copy at all) and a bunch of tear-offs at the bottom with only the URL. it was too weird to pass up, so we grabbed one.

3) not only do judd and kirsten not exist, if anyone would have paid attention to the video pieces, they would have noticed that several different models portray them. it's obvious stock photo.

4) upon the most cursory glance at su's posting history, you'd see that spamming MeFi is probably not his intent.

5) quit calling su "she." as his're freaking me.
posted by patricking at 7:39 PM on April 2, 2003

And they say this place is a boyzone! Broads, I'll never understand 'em.
posted by jonson at 7:39 PM on April 2, 2003

What I want to know: has anyone ever gotten a date off of their website/blog?

i got me a fiance.
posted by sugarfish at 7:42 PM on April 2, 2003

What I want to know: has anyone ever gotten a date off of their website/blog?

su and i met via our websites (and this one).
posted by patricking at 7:58 PM on April 2, 2003

This is anti-advertising, really. I don't think an ad has ever made me desire a product less than this does. It's so much of a self-parody, I can't help wonder if someone (perhaps competitors?) are involved in some culture-jamming here.
posted by 4easypayments at 8:37 PM on April 2, 2003

It's good fun - maybe none of you noticed it, but the ad is teeming with irony and parody. Of course it's an advert, but it doesn't stop it being good comedy.
posted by skylar at 1:14 AM on April 3, 2003

Clearly the ads are intended to poke a certain bit of fun at "finding the perfect someone". What I would like to see is a similar narrative put together with the same model, but in all of those wacky scenarios models find themselves.
posted by Dick Paris at 2:36 AM on April 3, 2003

What I want to know: has anyone ever gotten a date off of their website/blog?

posted by dobbs at 10:31 AM on April 3, 2003

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