A Citizen Clown Who Takes It To The House

Joel Moss Levinson has fashioned an occupation out of thin air. He enters consumer generated media contests sponsored by brands. And he wins them. Consistently.

According to The New York Times, Levinson, a.k.a. “Happy Joel” has won more than $200,000 in cash, trips to Budapest, Buenos Aires and Copenhagen from Delta Air Lines; an iPod from the American National CattleWomen; and $6,000 from the Israel Project, an advocacy group.
Mr. Levinson is working on his Doritos entry for the Super Bowl but he has not forgotten his roots. He says he will enter any user-generated contest, no matter how small, and is at work on videos for Bush Brothers & Company beans, Home Depot, Contiki vacations, Krazy Glue and a telecommunications company in Kansas. But as a point of professional pride, he refuses to enter sweepstakes or any other game that depends on luck.
“A sweepstakes is like a lottery, right? Everyone’s equal,” he said. “With contests, I feel like I’m able to bring whatever skills I have to the table.”



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.