Hiring cabbies to pitch gambling -- Wake me when it's over

And you thought the blasting radio in the taxi could get annoying. Gambling site 888.com has plastered 375 London cabs with its logo, and according to the New York Times, taken it to the next level with 10 of those cab drivers: "The drivers may seek to engage passengers in conversation about poker. If customers take the bait, the drivers try to steer the conversation gently toward 888.com. Those who show particular interest may be given coupons offering free hands of virtual cards - worth as much as $10 - on the poker site."

Advertising dollars spent on word of mouth pitches grew 38% in 2007 to $1.35 billion.

Maybe I'm a hopeless romantic, but I actually kind of enjoy the idea of being able to have mindless conversation with a stranger whom I will never see again -- without them trying to sell me something.

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