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Cisco Human Network identity campaign

by Critical Commons Manager

Cisco Systems' $100 million "Human Network" advertising campaign launched in 2008 with the goal of making the previously largely unknown internet equipment manufacturer a household name. Because the company focuses on manufacturing of high-end infrastructure, the focus of the campaign is on the idea of internet technologies bringing people together in technologically enabled social network.

What is interesting about these ads is the unself-conscious echoing of the utopian ideologies of a previous generation of technofetishistic advertising during the early 1990s, including Microsoft's "Where do you want to go?" and AT&T's "You Will" campaigns.

Like this previous generation of ads, the Cisco campaign focuses on a future in which ubiquitous, high-speed internet access (enabled by Cisco backend technology) has transformed people's everyday practices of shopping, communicating and healthcare. This vision of the future also replicates the current fascination with gestural and tangible interfaces for human computer interactions, predating the commercial release of Microsoft's Kinect system by over a year.

Perhaps in an attempt to freshen up their message of a networked utopia, Cisco's advertising agency Neo@Ogilvy, a unit of Ogilvy & Mather, crowd-sourced the narrative contents of the ads, tapping technocultural luminaries to contribute ideas  via a collective authoring space on Wikia.

Cisco Future of Health Care

Doctors who can afford gestural interfaces and borderless networks also covet luxury cars

from Cisco Future of Health Care (2008)
Creator: Neo@Ogilvy
Posted by Critical Commons Manager