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Lycos the Dog, the Web portal's fetching mascot, appears to be a black Labrador. The truth: It's a dye job. "Lycos the Dog is a golden lab we dyed with vegetable oil," fesses up VP-Mktg. Jan Horsall. It seems Lycos and agency Bozell/NY couldn't find a well-trained black lab for its commercials, so it went with a blond. More truth: Lycos the Dog is really Lycos the dogs, as the company has hired several labs to perform its stunts. It's a good gig for the latest lucky dog. "We had to pay for a month's worth of the dog's time," Horsall says, "because it takes a month for the black dye to wear off." Lycos the Dog is in training for new spots. "You'll see him reacting to e-mail and chat," Horsall says. "We're going to start to broaden him out."

Reinhard ad libs ads

Cannes is the premiere global ad event, but it's never been renowned for the quality of the show itself. Last Tuesday night's press and poster awards event was no exception. The computer system that projected the ads repeatedly broke down, leaving the screen blank. As desperate host Andrew

Daddo repeatedly introduced ads that weren't there, he urged the audience, "Everyone, let's cross our fingers." In response to mixed signals he was getting from offstage, Daddo announced plans to skip the silver awards and go on to the Gold Lions, but then resumed showing silvers as hecklers shouted, "Use a Mac" and "Go to the golds." Daddo finally invited help from Keith Reinhard, DDB boss and Cannes jury prez: "Keith, you've a micro-phone. Tell us about that ad." Reinhard gamely rattled off accurate descriptions of several ads that should have filled the blank screens.

3Com pilots Palm palette, IPO?

3Com, maker of Palm and less trendy wares, is preparing for its first TV brand campaign, with TV and a big outdoor campaign set to break this winter. FCB/SF is the agency. 3Com, eyeing the success of colored iMacs, also is working up a palette of Palms, currently sold in Silicon Valley gray. "Yum, yum, we'll have the colors, too," says Janice Roberts, sr. VP-business development. Roberts hints at a corporate restructuring to raise Palm's visibility and value. One logical bet: a Palm IPO.

Mike clicks Mouse . . . sh*t

Michael Eisner sent an e-mail to some 68,000 Disney employees, the first of a series of missives updating the "Mouseketeers" on the state of Disney land. "Some months ago, as our company was forging ahead with its Internet initiatives, it occurred to me that I should start using e-mail to communicate directly with each of you," Eisner wrote. A historic day: Michael Eisner discovers e-mail on June 16, 1999. . . . There's a scene in "Austin Powers" where the shaggy spy mixes up a cup of coffee and cup of excrement, taking a sip of the latter. Quipped Roger Ebert at the recent Promax confab: "So I guess PG-13 is a movie where you can't say shit but you can drink it.". . .

McCann-Erickson/A&L/SF is just jumping in on its first Microsoft TV work, but creative chief Adam Kaufman is not new to that game: Kaufman worked on

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