Oct. 5, 2012 at 7:37 PM ET
A high-concept ad from Facebook resulted in widespread mockery on the Internet after its debut Thursday. In comparing Facebook to chairs, bridges, doorbells and the universe, the ad might have overshot the mark a bit.
Scale and cost were clearly no object for the project, which was undertaken for Facebook by Wieden & Kennedy, a well-known ad agency based in Portland, Oregon. It was directed by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, who did the acclaimed movies "Amores Perros" and "21 Grams"; the music is by atmospheric rock specialists Explosions in the Sky; no expense was spared, as it appears to have been shot in at least a dozen separate locations.
But despite the artful execution, many commenters and bloggers immediately criticized the ad as being pretentious and over-sentimental. It also prompted the creation of a few parodies, like this Tumblr page comparing random items to Facebook.
It's not the first abstract or high-concept ad to be panned by its audience. Microsoft has often been accused of being overambitious with its advertising — Zune's "Welcome to the social" and the infamous Seinfeld TV spots in particular. And Palm unnerved audiences with "Ms. Hope" and her creepy direct stare.
The project began some time ago, but was launched this week to commemorate the historic billion-user mark crossed by the social network. Ad Age has additional information about "The Things That Connect Us," as well as some quotes from its creators that may offer some insight into this noble but perhaps overreaching campaign.
DevinColdewey is a contributing writer for NBC NewsDigital. His personal website is coldewey.cc.