Millions of viewers who watched Super Bowl XLIII Sunday were surprised to find the majority commercial air time filled with ads for Super Bowl XLIV.
The unprecedented move by the American Broadcast System, which has aired the NFL Super Bowl since 2004, came about when the network realized they had yet to sell most of the ad time a week before the event.
"No one wanted to pay $100,000 a second for advertising in the current economy," explained Pat T. Barnum, vice president in charge of advertising at ABS.
With time running out, the ABS board considered discounting its ad rates for the Super Bowl.
"I said 'screw that'," said Barnum. "'Let's just use it to promote next year's Super Bowl.'"
With that, ABS produced six seperate advertisements that ran throughout the program.
"They weren't very funny," said Sally Swisher, a mother in Wisconsin, "but my family and I did have to sit through them."
ABS also did a great deal of self-promotion in the form of commercials for Ulterior Vows and S.F.I.A.
"We figure it'll be easier to sell ad time in 12 months, when the recession's over," Barnum said based on nothing.
"Then we can sell the air for $150,000 a second."