The Madeleine Brand Show |

Fill In The Blank Advertising

Get ready to be sucked down the rabbit hole in 3... 2... 1.

Hunter Shoots a Bear. See you in half an hour.

Back now? This video got us talking this morning. Not only does it warp the bounds of a YouTube page, it responds to your suggestions. It's a lot like the most recent Arcade Fire video where you enter the street you grew up on and the video proceeds to show a dude and some birds trekking through the neighborhood of your wonder years. Of course earlier this summer, the Old Spice Guy tried something similar.

Customized content is becoming the norm, and it seems harmless enough. For now the ads can only respond to information we offer up. But folks like W. Russell Pensyl of Northwestern University are already developing technology that will read your face for suggestions. Imagine walking into a store and seeing an ad pop up for acne medication or anti-wrinkle cream!

"The system can also detect whether the person is wearing glasses and if the person is smiling, and Pensyl hopes to develop the software to analyze other attributes, such as fashion sense and hairstyle."

Suddenly these interactive ads don't seem quite as charming. Welcome to the future.