Collaborations with overseas newspapers have been tried before, but we think The Observer's new weekly section of articles selected from The New York Times has potential. There's some fascinating stuff in there for the casual reader (the traffic jams of limos outside a New York nursery school and a profile of the Vogue editor, Anna Wintour, stand out), but this is clearly a reader benefit, as the first section carried no ads. However, the intention is to carry advertising in the future.
STAUFENBERGER'S MARKETING E-MAIL
In 2005, a comms planning agency called Staufenberger, Smith & Butte launched. The brainchild of the former Naked planner Yusuf Chuku and the ex-ZenithOptimedia man Patrick Syms, this week it sent out one of the most inspired marketing letters we've received. It takes the form of a letter from a dodgy sounding Nigerian businessman looking for partners in a venture that will pay out a huge sum to those who co-operate. The parody continues with a brilliantly constructed website - www.staufenberger-lagos.com.
ENGLAND (FINALLY) WINNING AGAINST AUSTRALIA
It may have taken two-and-a-half months, but it was great to see England finally win a cricket trophy in Australia after beating the Aussies three times in succession to lift the gigantic Commonwealth Bank Trophy. Obviously, we can't wait for the Cricket World Cup now, and wished we'd booked our tickets for the Caribbean months ago. But knowing Freddie and his boys, disappointment can't be far away.
THE ASA RULING AGAINST "DR" GILLIAN McKEITH
We've never liked Gillian McKeith and always found her claims, apparently backed by medical science, pompous and patronising. So we smiled this week when the ASA came to a provisional ruling that her use of the honorific "Dr" was potentially misleading and led to her agreeing to drop the title in advertising for book and health food spin-offs. Sadly, there are no signs as yet that Channel 4 intends to do the same with her show You Are What You Eat, now in its fourth series.
AND ONE THING WE DON'T ...
FORMER TV MEN "HELPING" THE GOVERNMENT
It was bad enough that Lord Birt, the former BBC director-general, was so ensconced in Tony Blair's unelected cronies, but this week we learnt that Charles Allen, the former ITV chief executive, is advising the home secretary, John Reid, on making his department "fit for purpose". Allen, alongside his fellow television executive Lord Alli, is said to be working for nothing, but even this may prove generous given the potential consequences for the electorate.