Home opinion-and-analysis Whiskey Tango Foxtrot Panasonic's latest campaign: yes, the world really has gone totally, barking mad

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Panasonic has announced a marketing campaign for its new Blu-ray recorders.  They will prank an 'unwitting' Sydney man every day for a month.

Ah huh...


Generally, iTWire's emailbox is stuffed full of press releases ranging from the tediously boring through every shade of colour to the jumping up-and-down exciting.  When the material is of sufficient interest to our readers, one of us will write about it.

Just once in a while, something arrives in the inbox that can only be described as flying-fox guano (you know what I mean) crazy.

Thank you Panasonic for the best laugh all week.

Last Friday, the following tumbled gleefully out the end of the local broadband cable (note, edited for brevity and clarity):

Sydney, September 30, 2011 - Australian Internet users will be able to prank an unwitting Sydney man every day for almost a month, as part of a new marketing campaign for Panasonic Blu-ray Recorders.

Rommy Gulla, from Sydney's Northern Beaches, will undergo a new ordeal every day from Monday, October 3 until Monday, October 31.

Panasonic Facebook followers will have the opportunity to nominate their own pranks at www.facebook.com/panasonicaustralia - The best suggestions will be made a reality and can be watched in real-time through Facebook.  Fans will also have the opportunity to support Gulla, by giving him a virtual hug or becoming an official supporter.

The 26-year-old has already received a taste of things to come, with his car receiving a "makeover" - complete with an imaginative use of glitter - as part of pre-production filming for the campaign.

Gulla said he was starting to feel a little bit of trepidation about the coming month.

"It hasn't even really started but it's already feeling like the longest four weeks of my life.  The only thing I know is that the pranks can happen anywhere, anytime," Gulla said.

"I know it will be a lot of fun but to be honest I'm probably not going to get much sleep during the next few days.  My friends and family think I'm completely crazy."


[iTWire: Really?  Who'da thunk?]

There are also plenty of prizes up for grabs with a Grand prize to be drawn at the end of the promotion as well as Instant Encouragement prizes awarded to those fans who actively support Gulla during the campaign.

Sophie Barton, Group Marketing Manager - AV, Panasonic Australia, said the campaign highlighted the unique features of the Panasonic DMR-BWT800.

"We wanted to show Australian consumers that 28 days really is a long time - a long time to have to endure daily pranks and certainly an incredible amount of time for users to record all their favourite shows thanks to the one terabyte capacity," Barton said.


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David Heath

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David Heath has over 25 years experience in the IT industry, specializing particularly in customer support, security and computer networking. Heath has worked previously as head of IT for The Television Shopping Network, as the network and desktop manager for Armstrong Jones (a major funds management organization) and has consulted into various Australian federal government agencies (including the Department of Immigration and the Australian Bureau of Criminal Intelligence). He has also served on various state, national and international committees for Novell Users International; he was also the organising chairman for the 1994 Novell Users' Conference in Brisbane. Heath is currently employed as an Instructional Designer, building technical training courses for industrial process control systems.

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