Octopi and cameras go together like–well, like two other things that have basically nothing in common, but which get mashed up a lot anyway. (Maybe the “Tiger Bee“?) Last month, an octopus being studied by Middlebury College’s neuroscience program flipped the GoPro that a digital media producer placed in its tank for a portrait of its captors. And now, Sony New Zealand has launched an entire campaign around the strange affinity that octopi have for cameras.
In a campaign called “World’s First Octopus Photographer” (which brazenly ignores the existence of the lil’ homie at Middlebury), Sony placed its DSC-TX30 underwater camera in a tank at Aukland, New Zealand’s Sea Life Aquarium with an “Octographer,” and taught it how to use the device. (According to CultOfMac.com it took three tries for the octopus to get it.) In the spot, the octopus takes photographs of children visiting its tank with its spindly, suction cup-laden arms–a fine reminder that not only do octopi look like science fiction alien monsters, they’re also smart enough to recognize the desires of children, a skill that they will presumably use against us at some point in the future. The wisdom of training an octopus in the use of human technology may be questionable (wait’ll they learn how to pilot drones!), but the cleverness of a campaign built around it can’t be denied.