'Generations', a 30 second Chevrolet ad by William Kirkley
Last week, we told you about Chevrolet's "Route 66" Super Bowl ad contest, which will give one lucky independent filmmaker 30 seconds of Super Bowl airtime. But there's a way for you to win, too: share your favorite video from among the 35 finalists, and you could walk away considerably richer.
The process is pretty simple:
1. Start by being a resident of the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, India, China, Germany, or France. Everyone else: you're stuck on the sidelines.
2. Visit ChevroletRout66.MSN.com. Be prepared: the site scrolls horizontally, and it's kind of bold and Helvetica and in-your-face. Your eyes will need a minute to acclimate.
3. In the upper right of the screen, you'll see a link that says "REGISTER TO WIN". Click it and fill in all the necessary contact info, or take a shortcut using Facebook Connect.
4. Write a short essay on the topic of "If you could drive to any destination in [YOUR COUNTRY HERE], where would you go?" When we say "short" we mean it: you're looking at 110 characters, max. Sounds primed for a tweet, no?
5. Agree to the contest rules.
6. Browse videos from the 35 finalists and pick your fave.
7. Share that video with your friends via Facebook and Twitter.
8. Repeat Step 7 as often as possible until 6:59pm EST on January 25, 2012.
Entrants will be scored on several factors -- the most important being how many of your friends and followers visit the Chevy website and view your shared video. You'll also be judged by the originality and passion behind your essay, so be prepared to give it a little thought.
Here's where things get a little weird, though. The site FAQ says that the person with the highest score at the end of the contest wins $10,000. Second- and third-place winners will receive $3,500 and $1,500, respectively.
However, if you're a real contest nerd (like us), and you read the official rules (PDF), the top prize appears to be a $13,000 Amazon gift card, with the second- and third-place prizes being a $4,550 and $1,950 Amazon gift card, respectively. (Or if you're in Brazil, a series of trips.)
Whatever the prizes turn out to be, the top three participants will walk away four figures richer, and we suppose that's all that matters.
One important thing to note, however: the contest won't actually determine which of the 35 videos airs during the big game. Chevy's making that decision all on its own -- which is exactly as it should be.