Wine auction takes to cyberspace

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Cyberspace merchant Virtual Vineyards hosts what may be the first online wine auction on June 10 in conjunction with the Napa Valley Wine Auction. Internet users will be able to register and bid for eight selected lots of wine. The auction will be silent--shouting is bad netiquette, after all. Registrations begin June 6 at Virtual Vineyards' Web site.

game too popular
McDonald's Corp. this week ran out of game pieces for its Monopoly promotion, scheduled to run through the end of May. Big Mac is now airing TV spots from DDB Needham Worldwide, Chicago, offering customers free Super-Size beverages and fries to replace the game pieces. Since May 1 McDonald's has handed out roughly 500 million game pieces worth $50 million in prizes, including two $1 million grand prizes, cars, cruises and other cash rewards.

McDonald's will follow up with a "Batman Forever" promotion beginning June 1. It will feature a new Super Hero Burger and a set of Batman glass mugs. Backing includes a 60-second commercial from DDB Needham running in 7,000 movie theaters and on network TV.

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