A weekly spin on the Web
Dot-Goner Mike Daisey had a bone to pick with Amazon.com. So the former customer-service rep recently used his expired credentials to get into CEO Jeff Bezos’ corporate headquarters and make the film Rear Entry: An Unauthorized Expedition Into Amazon.com (http://www.mikedaisey.com). In it, you’ll see cube farms once occupied by laid-off dotcommers and learn the company’s unofficial motto (”Work hard, make history, and keep your damn mouth shut!”). The three-minute short is also a promo for Daisey’s one-man show about the effects of deferring your life in exchange for $3 million in stock options — which never seem to materialize. ”It feels like I had a full career,” Daisey, 28, says of his two years at the company. ”I don’t know why I’m not getting a pension.”
Showered with Smooches Yahoo! and eBay are coincidentally holding competing charity auctions of celeb-autographed lip prints this month. Memorabilia bargain-hunters take note: Charlize Theron’s buss is up for grabs at both.
Jailhouse Rock It doesn’t have the buzz of The Matrix or Star Wars, but 3,000 Miles to Graceland does have online prequels. Kevin Costner and Christian Slater are among the stars who lend their voices to three animated featurettes appearing on the Net (3kmtg.com), each of which sets up the plot about con men who pose as Elvis impersonators to rob casinos. The ‘toons were written and created for the Web by the film’s director, Demian Lichtenstein, who spent three years as the resident filmmaker at the soon-to-be-resuscitated entertainment site Pseudo.com. ”I knew from the get-go that I wanted to design a website that had really interesting content,” says Lichtenstein. And with a bunch of Elvis impersonators to work with, how could he go wrong?
Archeology, Dig? The authors of NetSlaves: True Tales of Working the Web, the Y2K book that championed the digital proletariat, have exhumed more than 100 dead homepages from the dot-com graveyard — some dating back to 1996 — and put them on display in the Museum of E-Failure (netslaves.com). You’ll be amazed by (but probably won’t miss) all the familiar names, like DEN.net and Thirsty.com.
Captain’s Log Although his contract isn’t up until next October, it looks like William Shatner has been beamed back to Planet Forgotten: Priceline.com uses Sex and the City vixen Sarah Jessica Parker’s voice in its TV ad campaign and doesn’t plan on returning Kirk to the captain’s chair anytime soon. But Bill’s not gone yet: He’ll reprise his role from the movie Miss Congeniality by hosting the Miss USA Pageant in Gary, Ind., in March.
The End Zone Budweiser’s ”What Are You Doing?” commercial, a spoof of its own ”Whassup!” campaign, appears to have crushed most other contenders in AdCritic.com’s Super Bowl-advertising popularity contest. But the site’s founder, Peter Beckman, says this year’s crop was disappointing compared with last year’s. One problem, says Beckman, is that ”a lot of people misunderstood the ads this year.” In particular, he’s been hearing complaints from viewers who mistakenly thought that Cingular Wireless was making fun of the disabled painter in its commercial featuring cerebral-palsy sufferer Dan Keplinger, star of the Academy Award-winning documentary short King Gimp (hbo.com/kinggimp).