Okay I admit it. Like a bunch of other media figures who didn’t do enough homework on a story, I bought it hook, line, and sinker. On May 27, 2005, I posted a story about Forget-Me-Not GPS-enabled panties, only to find out later that I was utterly hornswaggled.
As it turns out, the supposedly always sold out panties were a ruse, merely an entry of an online contest sponsored by Contagious Media to see whose site would generate the most traffic. Forget-Me-Not Panties was hands down the winner, generating 615,562 unique visitors and netting the creators a $2000 grand prize.
In second place, creating a far funnier but less realistic site was CryingWhileEating.com, whose site featured video of various people, um, crying while they ate. The site attracted a respectable 386,638 unique visitors.
It must have been novelty, the plausibility, the sheer “is-this-thing-for-real?” factors that drove the Forget-Me-Not Panties site. It sure looked legit enough with prices, ordering information, testimonials, and even legal stuff at the bottom listing the manufacturer of the bugged underwear--Panchira Corp., in Tokyo.
If my gullibility had limits, which apparently it doesn’t, I might have googled the company and noticed that there was no homepage, only a string of stories related specifically to the Forget-Me-Not Panties. Alas, I am a trusting soul.
To drive the knife deeper, I speak a bit of Japanese after living in Japan for a while, and it turns out that my hentai (pervert) Japanese wasn’t strong enough to pick up on the pun. Panchira is Japanese for “showing underwear,” a phrase I should have remembered from some of my perverted Japanese friends as they informed me (without my asking by the way), on how to flirt with high school girls at the train station. That I forgot the word should be evidence of how little I used it. An extension of the word is a Japanized version of the English word “punchline,” or “panchirain.” Ouch. That hurts, dude. But very clever.
Anyway, I have to give props to the creators of the site, self-named “The Panty Raiders,” (who are chicks by the way) on creating a convincing and hilarious website that had all of us talking. I even printed out the information to show my family at our Memorial Day cookout. My uncles got quite a chuckle from it.
"The Panty Raiders" emailed me to let me know that they received hundreds of order requests from men and an equally impressive number of requests from women wanting male versions. In addtion they had hundreds of distribution offers from around the world.