So you’re going to a Super Bowl party, but honestly you couldn’t care less about the teams, or even football; you’ll probably get caught more up in the artichoke dip than the broadcast. Or maybe you actually love football, and you use commercial breaks for their original God-given purpose, going to the bathroom. Or, you know, you have better things to do this Sunday.
Whatever your situation, you have a problem. You can’t participate in modern American society without having something to contribute to the conversations about Super Bowl ads.
But we’ve got you covered. Turns out, a special class of people are employed to upload and distribute every commercial to the web right after it airs. Here are links to those bounties:
NBC, which has the broadcast rights to the Super Bowl, is getting hip to the online strategy this year and has already announced it will post all the ads “almost immediately after they air” on NBC.com, Hulu and SuperBowl.com.
Voting on Super Bowl ads is practically a sport of its own. Hulu is hosting a vote this year, though its users might be a little biased because the site is also running its own Super Bowl ad during the TV broadcast. It can do that cause it’s part-owned by NBC. (Hulu, by the way, keeps telling us it will “finally reveal the secret behind [its] service” during the ad — hopefully it involves sock puppet slave labor.)
YouTube is also hosting all the ads and a viewer vote on its Super Bowl AdBlitz channel. (Hulu’s results will be announced on Tuesday; YouTube’s on Thursday.)
You could also use a video search engine like Mefeedia to get the top Super Bowl results from all the different video hosts it indexes.
MySpace has a page set up with an amusing teaser video, so it seems safe to say they’ll update the content for 2009 (right now it’s mostly last year’s stuff). Update: MySpace says the site will be “an interactive sports community where football fans can track the game as it happens, watch commercials aired during the game moments after they’ve been broadcast, view original content, and connect with both like-minded and rival fans during the broadcast of Super Bowl XLIII.”
Spike.com is all set up for its seventh-annual “Commercial Bowl.” If you’re looking for ads immediately after they air, this might be a good bet, since they’ve probably honed the process after all these years. Spike already has a sneak-preview up of some of this year’s ads.
There’s also a dedicated 12-year-old independent site called Superbowl-ads.com which posts all the ads and discussion around them. Want to get the on-demand experience of watching ads online on your big TV? This year Superbowl-ads.com partnered with GridNetworks to allow users to hook that up with their existing hardware.
Meanwhile, RealNetworks reminds us that if you really like a particular ad, you can use their plug-in to download it and save it forever.
And hey, if you do actually watch the game on TV, there’s one technological treat that just won’t be the same on the web. Last night Chris and I went to a media event for Intel and Dreamworks‘ Super Bowl ad stunt. Their 2.5-minute, 3D commercial pod will feature a 3-D trailer for the upcoming Monsters vs. Aliens movie. To see it in 3-D, you need to pick up one of 130 million pairs of 3-D glasses that are currently being distributed for free to consumers at 28,000 supermarkets and other retail locations across the country.