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taken from an australian news website




X marks the spot of bother which makes cleaners cross


Word on the street ... the controversial Xbox graffiti ads greet pedestrians on the footpaths of Surry Hills. Photo: Peter Rae


By Andrew Hornery


Oops! You've just stepped in a Microsoft-sponsored "street spray" - one of hundreds of green crosses spreading like a virus on Sydney's footpaths.


Street spray is the nice way of saying corporate-sponsored graffiti - or cheap advertising - and there is a whole heap of it getting up the noses of Sydney councils.


South Sydney Council is planning to slap a $300 fine on the perpetrators to cover the cost of removing each logo in their area.


The fluorescent green crosses, with "TM" trademark logos, have cropped up on footpaths all over Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane over the past fortnight, promoting Microsoft's new games system, Xbox.


"It's a teaser campaign," said Xbox's general manager, Alan Bowman. The graffiti campaign was about getting its target audience talking, he said.


"The street campaign is about creating a bit of intrigue, and mystery.


"We have hired a third-party company to do the street sprays ... I can't remember who they are, but we have not sprayed the X in areas where the councils are known to be strict about these sort of things. I haven't heard of any councils being upset by the logos.''


Spin Communications, which has co-ordinated much of the campaign, including hiring the graffiti artists responsible for the crosses, was also unable to identify which company sprayed the logos. However, a Spin spokeswoman, Blair Earl, said the logos would wash off "after a while".


But South Sydney Council's spokesman, Damian Furlong, said the logos took six months to completely fade.


"We are absolutely outraged. We've got fairly new bluestone paving up around Taylor Square, and they've sprayed that.


"This is an orchestrated and expensive advertising campaign by Spin Communications, a company which holds itself up to be a pillar of fashionable respectability.


"We intend to injunct Spin Communications in the Land and Environment Court ... we are holding them responsible for the cost of removal at $300 an item."


Sydney City Council was equally unimpressed.


"Ratepayers and residents have already paid millions of dollars for new granite paving ... it's not there for commercial exploitation," said the council's spokesman, Craig Middleton.

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...im have ceased to be amazed at how fucking stupid ad agencies and companies can be...not only is that gag been done and redone countless times, including IBM, they are just asking for fucking trouble...and its just so god dam played out...for being so ahead of their time perhpas they should start refreshing their ad campaign...r

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