So, does anyone have any thoughts on the legal and humanitarian implications of modifying one of those invisible perimeter pet fences for use by/with a toddler? Say, a toddler who seems gravitationally drawn towards daddy’s guitars? One whose hands are somehow permanently coated with melted cream cheese, even after a thorough scrubbing and a few hours in a hazmat tent? I’m asking for a friend.
My wife and I - I mean, our friend dealing with a set of circumstances that is wholly dissimilar to ours - don’t want to limit the kid’s freedom by creating forbidden zones, or to lie to him about the consequences of his blithe mess-making (“the happy clown gets mad when you tomahawk the TV”). But it’s approaching a point where the sanctity of literally tens of dollars worth of replaceable material goods are at immediate risk. You gotta draw the line somewhere.
I’ve advised our friend to traffic exclusively in kid-proofed products, and specifically the ones touted by impartial goodsmakers in their brand videos. To that end, I’ve pointed him towards “AT&T Official Unofficial Lab: Toddlers vs. Galaxy S5 Active,” the first in what I hope is a series of wear-and-tear exhibitions aimed at consumers who prioritize physical hardiness in their purchases.
The clip runs but 15 seconds long, which places it more in the pre-roll domain than in brand-video-ville. It’s worthy of mention, though, because it’s one of the very, very few instances of brand marketing I’ve come across that seems franchisable. Too, it makes great use of those 15 seconds, managing to brand the phone in question indelibly (the “tough” phone, as opposed to the swipeyest phone or the one that looks best when paired with a taffeta blouse and go-go boots). As a result, “Official Unofficial Lab” activated and engaged my imagination more deeply than most minutes-long clips have.
In this particular quick-hit lesson, we’re shown how a Samsung phone exclusive to the AT&T network withstands the hazards posed by a group of sugared-up toddlers with sunscreen-slicked hands. We see the tester wince - in a way that will be instantly recognizable to any sentient being who has spent more than a few seconds around children and portable electronics - when the phone is handled, or mishandled, in a manner antithetical to the intentions of its creators. In just a few short seconds, the clip creates a situation that’s familiar, exaggerating it just enough to mine it for all its inherent humor.
So what the hey - let’s spin this bit out even further. Take us back inside the Official Unofficial Lab to explore a range of similar kid-created menaces, perhaps involving edible inedible substances. Introduce us to the testers; give them just enough of a back story to invest us emotionally in their noble mission. Let us tag along on a field trip outside the lab, even; so much child-related destructicide occurs in natural habitats that it’d be a waste to confine the carnage to the comparatively staid lab environment.
Parents would watch these, both for the entertainment and informational value. Make it happen, AT&T and Samsung/other corporate handset partner-type entity.