Boob Tube Rejects Booble: CBS Denies Porn Site's Super Bowl Ad

Advertisers buy Super Bowl spots for maximum visibility. But if they want attention, rejection may be the way to go.

For years, spending millions on the Super Bowl meant getting press for what went along with the campaign, including related contests, Web site extensions and the unusual or daring creative.

Now, an advertiser may get the same press mileage--by getting turned down.

An adult-content search Web site, Booble.com, seems to have picked up where GoDaddy left off. It said in a press release that CBS rejected its commercial. It didn't give a reason.

Bobble's claim was that its creative was "far tamer than the controversial GoDaddy" commercial, according to Bob Smart, the founder of Booble. The Booble.com commercial featured a woman catching her husband trying to secretly look at a few adult sites.

Some marketing executives wondered whether companies such as Bobble.com really intended to buy a Super Bowl spot. Booble did offer one seemingly outrageous proposal: "At one point, I offered $50 million," says Smart, in his press release. "The Eye never called us back."

Responding to emails, Smart said, in reference to the $50 million: "What I am/was looking for was a package from CBS, which would start with Super Bowl ads. I did think we'd have to pay a premium, maybe two or three times [the price] to convince them to take our ads--but not $50 million for a single ad. If we made Bobble a household word, though, that would be cheap."

A CBS spokesman said rejections aren't a big deal. CBS and other Super Bowl networks have rejected countless Super Bowl creative over the years. CBS wouldn't disclose how many commercials were rejected this year--or in previous years.

In other years, a number of small- to-medium-size TV marketers looked for big PR play in connection with the Super Bowl. These marketers included the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and GoDaddy.com.

The difference is that these companies ended up buying some TV inventory concerning the big game. For example, in past games, commercials by Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority had been rejected by the NFL, due to the city's strong association with gambling. Still, it didn't stop the LACVA from buying Super Bowl ads on that network's local TV stations.

GoDaddy.com, the Internet domain name-selling Web site, is now in its third year of doing Super Bowl spots. In previous years, it took pains--and possible delight--in its rejections. This year--as it had in the past--it issued a released saying how it showed CBS three versions of commercials before one was accepted. Last year, it offered up details as to why 14 different versions were nixed before ABC accepted one.

GoDaddy commercials consist of racy stuff. In one, a buxom model almost popped out of her very thin top in front of what appeared to be some sort of governmental committee. This year, GoDaddy.com will have three Super Bowl commercials.

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