They should get some sort of medal for finding the creepiest, lamest ever way to use the internet to appeal to kids. If this works we're never trusting anyone under 18 again.
Desperate to appeal to teens with something other than pencils and backpacks during the crucial back-to-school season, Wal-Mart is launching a highly sanitized, controlled and rather unhip site at walmart.com/schoolyourway. Teens are invited to create their own page, "show it to the world and win some fab prizes," including a chance to have their videos appear in a Wal-Mart TV commercial. Wal-Mart's agency is GSD&M, Austin, Texas.
The opening page shows video of four teens -- a bubbly fashionista, a Texas football player, a quirky skateboarder and an aspiring R&B singer from New York -- who are clearly actors reading a script, although the videos are positioned to appear authentic. Within, there are pages such as "Beth's Backyard Club," where you find a picture of her in a strapless prom dress above the approved quote: "I'll school my way by looking hot in my Wal-Mart clothes to school to catch a cute boy's eye. ..."