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Video: YouTube Crowns Its First 'Ad Of The Year' Winner

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There are a lot of commercials floating around the internet (and on TV, too, we suppose), and a number of international awards have sprung up to recognize excellence in the field of advertising. So far, Cannes has been the biggest of the bunch, but Cannes and other award-givers often focus on big-ticket, traditional-media marketing campaigns. What about all those great web clips that never make it to TV or billboards? Don't they deserve recognition, too? YouTube certainly thinks so.

YouTube recently partnered with British marketing publication Campaign Media on a contest for the "Ad of the Year". YouTube fans from around the globe submitted their favorite commercials -- some of which did come from major advertising campaigns, but others were purely YouTube creations. Users voted their hearts out until two finalists were revealed: Old Spice's "The Man Your Man Could Smell Like" and a stunning British ad for seatbelts done by a tiny firm called Alexander Commercials. And when the dust finally settled, the talented Mr. Isaiah Mustafa was toppled from his equally talented horse.

You've probably seen the winning clip. It launched earlier this year and became an overnight sensation, winning a bronze lion at the aforementioned Cannes festival. But just in case you need a refresher -- especially as we Americans head into a long holiday week full of wine and wassail -- here's the clip, called "Embrace Life: Always Wear Your Seatbelt". It was created for Sussex Safer Roads, and it shows just how far you can get with super-slow-mo, a kid in fairy wings, and some virtuoso violinists:

Buckle up, y'all.

P.S. Is it just us, or is it completely weird that Campaign Media embedded the winning YouTube video with code from YouTube competitor BrightCove? Just wondering.

[CampaignMedia]

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