Promoter to Run Racy Ads for Web Concert

Campaign Is for Ford-Backed Event on MSN Music

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A change has been made in this story. See below for details.

SAN FRANCISCO ( -- An entertainment company promoting a Ford Motor Co.-backed concert has come up with a new way to

Photos of the private parts of Paris Hilton, Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan are being use as a lure by promoters of an MSN web concert event Ford is sponsoring.

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Control Room Nixes Plans for Ads on Celeb Sites
Campaign for Ford-Backed MSN Concert Called 'Inappropriate'
tie its advertising into celebrity content: putting banner ads next to internet photos of the private parts of Lindsay Lohan, Britney Spears, Paris Hilton and others.

Denies connection
A Ford spokesman said, "Ford knew nothing about this. We would never be involved in this kind of activity and we are currently investigating the situation thoroughly to determine exactly what the facts are."

Control Room, formerly Network Live, produces and distributes live music concerts over the internet, radio, TV, mobile phones, and at retail stores and theatres. For a Dec. 19 concert airing on MSN Music, by Pink, an artist who posits herself as the opposite of the tabloid queens, Control Room will be placing ads next to content on websites showing photos that purportedly show flashes of celebrity genitalia, and any other content "where the message is appropriate," said Jonathan Anastas, Control Room's VP-marketing and creative director.

'See the real Pink'
The banners, which play off the title of Pink's single "U and UR Hand," will have headlines such as "Don't you and your hands have better places to be," and "See the real Pink."

Ford, which uses a "Bold Moves" ad theme line, is listed as presenting sponsor of the MSN Music concert, but is not involved in the celebrity campaign, Mr. Anastas noted.

A Ford spokesman earlier said he was unaware of the Control Live campaign and that the automaker had nothing to do with it. "We're a pants-on company."

A Ford spokeswoman earlier said the company is sponsoring the concert, but added: "We have nothing to do with" the Control Room's independent ad campaign. She said, "We are looking into it."

Control Room's ads will run on (not related to the artist Pink), and on gossipy, celebrity-driven websites that have published racy pics of Ms. Spears and Ms. Hilton such as, Perez Hilton and TMZ, he said. The concert will remain on the MSN site for six months, although the ad campaign will not last that long, said Mr. Anastas.

12- to 34-year-olds
Mr. Anastas said Pink "positions herself as the empowered alternative" to Ms. Lohan and the others but shares the same target audience. Control Room's target audience is 12- to 34-year-olds frequenting Internet music and video sites and blogs. The target group skews slightly female.

Mr. Anastas declined to detail the size of Control Room's audiences, but noted about 15 million per month visit MSN Music and as many as 100 million saw the Live Aid concert on AOL.

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EDITOR'S NOTE: An earlier version of this story ran a headline linking Ford Motor Co. to a promotion by Control Room. Ford has repeatedly stated it was unaware of the promoter's ad effort and had nothing to do with it.
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