Have you heard about the so-called "one-second" commercial that will be showing on the Super Bowl? I first heard about it while watching the Tonight Show. The star of the commercial was a guest on the show, and they showed a number of one-second commercials that were shot plus the one that will be aired.
You can read all about it at http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2009/01/19/daily17.html among lots of other news articles posted about the commercial.
Locally, here in Seattle, the one-second commercial barely gets any notice because there will be a half-second commercial by Ivar's. You can read about that commercial at http://seattle.bizjournals.com/seattle/stories/2009/01/26/daily35.html.
But here's the thing--they're scams. These aren't really "one-second" or "half-second" commercials. They're gimmicks that get enormous amounts of press and talk. I haven't heard much about any of the other commercials that will be airing as I have about those one-second and half-second commercials. They get more free air time in the news, which I think should count towards the total real "time" of the commercial.
Frankly, it's brilliant marketing. These people are smart--they only have to buy one (and one-half) seconds of airtime, and they wind up with hours of free publicity it generates.
Only a sucker would pay full price for a 30-second commercial and wind up with less press as a result.
So anyhow, I'm calling the one-second and half-second commercials a scam. It doesn't count in my book if the people who make them expect lots of free publicity because of it.