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Cocooning the Cocoon

Bangkok: MRT

Bangkok’s Mass Rapid Transport includes a constant stream of in-your-face TV advertisements in the carriage and on the platform. For any given context the desire to block out incoming stimuli from other people: sights, sounds, smells, from conversations to eye-contact to advertising. The arsenal of tools with which to control the space: earbuds; a life-time’s worth of your personal content on stream, baby; a spray can; mobile phone jammers, a pocket EMPs?

In the augmented reality rich attention economy this is the battleground where advertising will need every ounce of creative nous to draw potential consumers out of their cocoon is going to include a wonderful re-invention of this space, with numerous mis-steps along the way. Who can forget the mass MRT stabbings of 2016? The result of a carriage full of trainee chefs on route to a carve-off and an advertiser trying out happy slapping in an AR game show format. Whoops.

Unless of course you own the pipe – big corps have been looking at the mainstreaming of near-to-eye displays and their equivalents for quite some time now, and from a price-point/user perspective the technology is slooowly reaching maturity.