Banned Xbox Commercial Flash Mob Homebrew

Giant behemoth Microsoft crushed the life out of a very creative ad for its Xbox 360, sitting on it and refusing to allow it to air. Fans, however, not only spread it around on the 'net, but actually reenacted it.


(From Banned Xbox flashmob ad)

Flashmobbers at the University of Florida were so taken with the ad that more than 100 of them stunned passersby by taking up their best first person shooter stance and having at it.

For those who have been wondering for the last several paragraphs, a "flash mob" is a group of people who suddenly turn up at a particular location with the exact same agenda. The first known flash mob appeared in Macy's department store in Manhattan. More than one hundred people converged on the rug department on the ninth floor, gathering around one particular rug. When asked by sales people, every flashmobber had the same story: they lived in a warehouse, they were shopping for a Love Rug, and they always made their purchases together.

It turns out that the name "flash mob" has at least some of its roots in science fiction. In the 1973 story Flash Crowd by Larry Niven. Niven's story explored some of the social consequences of teleportation.

However, in his classic 1956 novel The Stars My Destination, Alfred Bester wrote about the same phenomenon occuring when the ability to jaunte, or naturally teleport, could actually be taught to almost everyone. Cities had jaunte stages used by commuters jaunting to work in 10, 20, and 50 mile increments:

...the stage began to flicker with a sudden flurry of arrivals and departures. Figures appeared momentarily as they jaunted in, hesitated while they checked their surroundings and set new co-ordinates, and then disappeared as they jaunted off. At each disappearance there was a faint "Pop" as displaced air rushed into the space formerly occupied by a body.
(Read more about Alfred Bester's jaunte stages)

Take a look at the banned Xbox commercial and the all-volunteer flash mob recreation of the Xbox commercial. I think I found this one on digg.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 4/21/2006)

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