In an arty, soul-searching 90-second Nike commercial released in October, basketball star LeBron James asks repeatedly, "What should I do?"
While the original version and direct copies of the ad—which attempt to deal head-on with Mr. James's controversial decision to leave the Cleveland Cavaliers to play for the Miami Heat—have generated 5.1 million online video views, spoofs and parodies have generated 5.8 million views, Visible Measures says. The figures don't include views of Nike's paid advertising. In one spoof of the Nike spot, Cleveland fans call the athlete a "traitor," "back stabber" and "selfish."
A parody from Comedy Central's "South Park" likens Mr. James to former BP PLC Chief Executive Tony Hayward. ...
The episode highlights the difficulties of repairing the image of a beleaguered public figure in the days when the Internet enables consumers to influence public perception.