Via @Wikibruce on Twitter: (Jun 15 6:05pm)
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This weekend, a momentous discovery was made: The hidden fortune of Grayson Ozias IV was found. After almost two months of hints, puzzles, research and anticipation, Levi’s “G.O. IV Fortune” campaign has come to a close.
Two months ago, the campaign for Grayson’s fortune began with the revelation of the discovery of wax cylinders – audio recordings from the late 1800s. About “GoForth”, The Inspiration Room said: “Levi Strauss has launched a new advertising campaign, ‘Go Forth’, presenting an optimistic tone in a time of pessimism in the United States. The online (goforth.levi.com), print and television elements borrow words and concepts from American poet Walt Whitman to establish a pioneering tone for the ‘New Americans’.”
Levi’s new “G.O. IV Fortune” campaign included the promise that along with the discovery of Grayson’s buried $100,000 prize, the organization would donate an equal sum of $100,000 to a charity of choice. The campaign prompted players to learn about American history and solve puzzles based on clues revealed in old wax cylinder recordings of Grayson Ozias IV. The introduction to this long-buried treasure hunt can be heard from G.O. himself here.
I left my home and all I knew because I feared the complacency that was growing in me. I feared that I would be content to never experience anything of America beyond the city in which I was born. But after hearing Whitman, this complacency became unthinkable, and my comfort became my greatest burden.
This great man’s portrait of our land emboldened me to conquer fear and go forth, and I have never regretted it, even now. Which is why it is my hope that these words may in turn inspire another to conquer fear, and abandon comfort, and seek their unknown.
Therefore, I commit the fortune I have made in my travels back to the earth from whence it came. I leave all I have to America, so that America might set out and find it.
Yours most sincerely,
Grayzon Ozias IV
“In September of 2009, Levi’s verified the existence of $100,000 that Grayson Ozias IV buried.
He left it there for you.
And so did we.
Shortly after the hunt began, Wikibruce among other websites received a package from Grayson, which is documented here in the article and video “It’s never too late IV a rabbithole“.
After almost two months of clues and thought-provoking quotes from Walt Whitman by G.O. IV on Twitter, players who persevered were presented with the final clue, a final puzzle that would reveal the location of Grayson’s buried $100,000 fortune. On November 21st, 2009, Laura Hall was the GoForth participant who successfully made the trek to the boonies of southern Utah to recover Grayson’s buried fortune.
Laura wasn’t the only winner though. The chosen charity to receive an equal donation of $100,000 from Levi Strauss is charity: water. “Bringing clean, safe drinking water to people in developing nations. 100% of the money raised goes to direct project costs—funding sustainable clean water solutions in the areas of greatest need.”
In the planned final trip to the secret location, she recorded her progress and adventure, tweeting about it, and ensuring others could follow along.
Laura has also begun a website to document, relive, and share her GoForth experience at goforthandbeyond.com.
To check out the progress of the entire game, you can visit the community wiki at goforth.wikibruce.com, or read about other people’s adventures in recovering clues around the United States and from other related events at whereisthemaninthehat.tumblr.com.
Congratulations to Laura Hall and Charity: Water, and an enormous thanks to Grayson Ozias IV and Levi Strauss for their positive, exciting, and memorable campaign through America’s history.
Download (Click to play)
As “hach1r0k1d03″ shared near the end of the campaign, We’re all winners because we have gone forth & followed Grayson’s journey. His story is worth so much more than $100,000.
About the time of Levi’s launch of their new “Go Forth” campaign, reports began popping up of nifty packages being delivered from the Levi Strauss and Co. Archives in San Francisco. Days after I reported the press release, another package arrived! Unfortunately this time, there was no charcoal briquette goodness used as packaging.
There was, however, a red bandanna marked with a very good question: “Who was Grayson Ozias the IVth, and where is his treasure?” So I had a creative urge and decided to share the opening of Grayson’s mail…
You can join the game and help solve the mystery by starting at goforth.levi.com
Then go and bookmark the community wiki here at goforth.wikibruce.com for help and answers (and please contribute if you want!).
You can also join a community discussion at Unfiction.
Now get II it and Go IVth!
Celebrities are a hot target for ransoms and blackmail. So is it any surprise that Seth Green of Idle Hands and Austin Powers fame has now had to likewise suffer a life-altering, catastrophic tragedy? If you don’t know what I’m referring to, check out these videos:
Almost 1 million views in 10 days. What exactly happened? Someone (maybe marketers?) stole his lucky vintage Butterfinger bar. As Seth testifies on his blog, “So last Friday I was on my cell during a break while shooting a Butterfinger spot. I’m in the parking lot, getting some junk outta my car, when two guys jumped me. These guys took my wallet, keys, bag…and the most important thing ever: my lucky vintage 1928 Butterfinger.”
While the videos stirred up the viral pipeline hornet’s nest and caused some heated debating over hoax videos, Seth and Nestle were busy setting up a central web hub called DudeWheresMyBar.com (get it? It’s a play on “Dude, Where My Car?” got it? ok, moving on) in preparation for a campaign to help Seth get re-acquainted with his precious Butterfinger bar; because no one lays a finger on his Butterfinger bar. Well, except that someone already did. In typical ransom style, the goofy perpetrator also then mailed him a letter-clipped ransom note. Seriously?
Seth outlines his dilemma in the following video, which has also apparently been hacked by the mysterious goofy perpetrator with no face.
Apparently the perpetrator also really knows his flash programming, because part of the ultimatum given to Seth is to that he must play games at his expense to reveal, in a very Joker-like fashion, a secret message which must be solved by midnight on October 31st or the bar will be destroyed o noes!
But ho! Seth has decided to team with Nestle and recruit the help of his throbbing mobs of fans to play these five games as they are magically made available and earn the high scores to unlock the gameboard message! And of course, as a thank you, Seth is prepared to reward the most successful player with a golden Butterfinger Bar valued at $10,000, and a trip to L.A. to be rewarded by Seth in person! Eh-oh!
Unfortunately to some, it seems the mystery may go deeper than the surface. This ‘mystery man’ has been leaving video messages, and surely there will be clues hidden throughout this evil-kidnapper-of-evilnesses tricks. As he describes his game: “It is an enigma, wrapped in a riddle, smothered in secret sauce”
It appears though that Seth only likes the U.S. So, if you live in Canada, you’re not eligible for his reward according to the official rules. Boo-urns.
Turn that frown upside down though, because you can still play the games! And you can still feed the gears of virality by sharing and spamming the brand-ridden cry for help with friends who embrace any of over 85 social networking tools! (even those who don’t who at least have email)
All that said, if you still want to help Seth (and who wouldn’t want to help those teary puppy-dog eyes), go log in, and start playing the Tap-Tap Revenge Remix That Rant game and shoot for as high a score as you can – but don’t forget to collect the clues along the way.
ARG? “Lite” ARG? Uh… Contest style marketing viral banking on celebrity pseudo-reality? That’s a little closer. And you know it’s viral when you’re told about it by the development team, who were inspired by the ARG community. Enh — not very ARGish. But who cares, I like Seth. And I chuckled. Here’s hoping Seth will make some personal phone calls… or Mars and Hershey will crowd-source a covert corporate takedown of Nestle via a public blog. Perhaps they’ll spread rumors of government conspiracies, or introduce an AI from the future, or a corrupt pharmaceutical company, or sharks with frickin’ laser beams attached to their foreheads!
- Dude, Where’s My Bar?
- Seth’s Backstory
- Official Rules (and details about the games, sweepstakes, and rewards)
- Official Press Release
- Game #1: Remix That Rant!
- Game #2: Will be available beginning Monday Oct 19th
Other media coverage:
Levi’s is stepping up. Check out this Press Release about a new game and contest with a $100,000 prize, and the chance to choose any non-profit charity for which Levi’s will match an additional $100,000 donation. Relevant links following the release.
LEVI’S® BRAND BURIES $100,000 SOMEWHERE IN AMERICA WITH THE CHALLENGE TO PIONEERS TO “GO FORTH”
The Denim Leader will match the $100,000 fortune for a philanthropic chance to change the future.
SAN FRANCISCO (October 5, 2009) The Levi’s® brand challenges today’s pioneers to uncover a $100,000 fortune buried somewhere in America by solving the question “Who was Grayson Ozias IV and where is his fortune?”
Launching October 5, 2009, at levi.com/goforth, this interactive challenge invites participants to solve mysteries as they unfold, keep up with other players or go for the gold themselves with the final cipher. It is a mystery, wrapped in a puzzle and an adventure across our country.
“The question we asked ourselves was ‘how do we bring the spirit of Go Forth to life out there in the world? How do we bring the unique history and rich legacy of the Levi’s® brand to life in a fun and compelling way?’ The story of Grayson Ozias’s lost fortune seemed like a mystery just waiting to be solved,” says Doug Sweeny, Vice President of Levi’s® Brand Marketing.
Grayson Ozias IV Fortune
The narrative behind the challenge follows Grayson Ozias IV, a fictional character based on the Levi’s® brand’s pioneering and innovative spirit, on his adventures across America until his 1896 disappearance into the wilderness, after hiding his considerable fortune. Grayson Ozias IV was a friend of Levi Strauss’s nephew Nathan, so the story goes, who recorded newly discovered details about Grayson’s journey that hint at the final hiding place of his fortune. These newly discovered recordings and the story they tell will lead participants on a new adventure of discovery.
The story of Grayson’s 1890s adventure exploring America will guide our modern-day event. The game’s scavenger hunt leads to many cities and towns across America, each a part of Grayson’s journey, encourages players to step out from behind their computers and will lead some lucky player into the real world directly to the buried treasure. Each task triggers the next clue in the challenge.
The ongoing puzzle, an elaborate cryptogram, requires a combination of knowledge, skill and determination. The players will be receiving clues and pieces of the puzzle from launch to finish. The first player to crack the final puzzle and send it to the Levi’s® game team will win Grayson Ozias’s buried fortune. Players can also win other great prizes throughout the journey.
The Levi’s® brand is not only awarding the Grayson Ozias IV challenge winner with $100,000, the participants of the challenge will be given the opportunity to nominate and vote for a U.S.-based non-profit organization to receive an additional $100,000 gift from the blue-jean-inventing icon. Sweeny adds, “This is the legacy of Levi Strauss who himself donated a robust portion of his first earnings to a local orphanage that the company still supports today. This began the company’s tradition of sharing its prosperity with the community.”
The hidden fortune is the third expedition from Levi’s® Go Forth campaign, first launched July 1, 2009. The campaign will be supported heavily in digital social media (Facebook, Twitter), online via rich media and offline (ESPN The Magazine). The first two expeditions—the New Declaration and the New Americans—were an homage to today’s America.
About Levi Strauss & Co.
The Levi’s® brand epitomizes classic American style and effortless cool. Since their invention by Levi Strauss in 1873, Levi’s® jeans have become the most recognizable and imitated clothing in the world capturing the imagination and loyalty of people for generations. Today, the Levi’s® brand portfolio continues to evolve through a relentless pioneering and innovative spirit that is unparalleled in the apparel industry. Our range of leading jeanswear and accessories are available in more than 110 countries, allowing individuals around the world to express their personal style. For more information about the Levi’s® brand, its products and stores, please visit http://levi.com.
While the contest itself is open only to the United States, anyone can participate and enjoy the game. And in case you hadn’t noticed: “G“rayson “O“zias “IV“(th) ;)
- Grayson Ozias IV on Facebook
- Grayson Ozias IV on Twitter
- GoForth discussion at Unfiction