The Curious Cases of Coincidental Creative – Part I

Thanks for dropping by. Today i’d like to tell a tale of coincidence in creativity, and ideas that just don’t make it. Here’s two that  have happened to me. The first took place a couple of years ago involving a Keep The Country Beautiful type charity. The latter, a present day road safety campaign.

You’re comfortable. Good. I shall begin.

Once upon a time a national Keep The Country Beautiful type charity had a problem. They felt the bawdy ‘don’t be a tosser’-esque billboards run by other organisations were not working. They were miss-targeted and tired.

After a little research, we rang our friend Captain Obvious. “It’s simple” he said, “this stereotypical demographic…”

…is harder to talk to about social consciousness and litter, than this:

The latter feels her local council doesn’t provide enough bins and is thus justifed in “tastefully” placing her rubbish in the corner of the bus stop or “carefully” next to her vehicle in the municipal car park.

So after a fashion my creative partner and I had an idea: What if you added the location of every bin in the country as a check in destination on Facebook mobile?

It felt good. We even had a catchy name: ‘Facebook Chuck In’. Funny if you’re from New Zealand right?

Ok, bad pun. Sorry.

Anyway, by doing this when ever you hit ‘check in’ on your fb mobile app it will not only show the pub/restaurant/strip joint you where about to broadcast your affiliation with, but the location of the bins in your local vicinity.

No matter where you were, no matter the reason for ‘checking in’ the app a bin will always show up on the check in list. In effect hacking the the FB check in map functionality.

So the next time you finish that banana, maybe, just maybe you’ll remember your facebook app not only knows the location of your nearest bin, you could also use the nav button to take you directly to it.

So we took it the client.

To work we went. Local governments gave us the database co-ordinates of  bins in their municipality, and Facebook made an exception to their check in terms of use. We were happy.

And then three weeks in to the build Coca Cola Isreal release pretty much the same idea.

At first we were…

All that hard work. Long nights and boring databases.

But then we were…

As if to add insult to injury Facebook subsequently changed their global t&c’s and ‘Chuck In’ never saw the light of day. That was that.

Coincidences happen. There’s plenty of smarter, quicker and better people than I and it happens. It’s not eery or spooky. In a world of 7 billion the probability of coincidence fast approaches 1.

However, when coincidences happen closer to home….

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