TPACK commercial, UPS/Whiteboard version

Our ISTE Radio/Video show needed a few commercials to break the monotony – so we created a couple. Here is the first one, a take on the UPS / Whiteboard commercials. Watch and enjoy (director’s commentary provided below).


The idea for this video came from my wife, Smita. I was talking with her about possible commercials to spoof, and that we needed something that people would recognize right away. She suggested the UPS-whiteboard commercials and bingo! I knew this was the one. A bit of doodling on paper and watching some of the original commercials on YouTube later, the strong resemblance between the UPS logo and the intersection of the three circles (that make up TPACK) struck me. And, as they say, the rest just fell into place. One of the things nice about the UPS commercials is the manner in which the “long-haired guy” changes the image with little moves here and there. I think our version does the same, at two different levels. The first is the manner in which the seeming UPS logo is shown to really be the crucial meeting point of the three circles, and then, at the very end, how the color of the marker changes from green to red! Tiny touches but they make all the difference, if you ask me.

The star of the commercial is Mete Akcaoglu, a doctoral student in our program, selected for his hair (we needed someone with longer hair to correspond with the star of the actual commercials), his “cool” Turkish accent, and his acting ability. Essentially what happened was that Mete just happened to walk by my office and got immediately “volunteered” to be the star. Not that he had much choice :-) I do think he did a great job.

We checked out a variety of places with whiteboards (meeting rooms etc.) but all of them had some problem or the other (excessive glare, strange reflections, and inadequate lighting). Finally, Leigh Wolf was gracious enough to lend us her office (even though, I am sure, it was a huge distraction). The commercial was filmed with a Flip camera and edited with iMovie. Matt Koehler found us the right music – and 20 minutes later, we had a final version.

You can see the commercial in “context” by going directly to the ISTE10 TPACK radio/video show, but be prepared to spend 15 minutes on the entire program.


  1. I’m not sure what your creative commons rules are for your videos like this one. Can I upload this to my account in VIMEO? Youtube is blocked in our school, but vimeo isn’t. I wanted to ultimately include it an embeddr for my new teachers alongside a series of videos I’m showing them, inlcuding the Kaplan videos if they have the same rules as this video. Thanks.

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