Saatchi and Saatchi Canada have created a short film for the upcoming FITC Toronto conference (which Applied Arts will be attending, live-blogging, etc) envisioning a future where the traditional ad agency model has perished. This little video has spread like wildfire over the past week and a half, chalking up 54,000 plays on Vimeo and appearing on sites as varied as the Financial Post, Creative Review, Changethethought and Tech Vibes.
There have been a fair number of people “in favour” of the message — however tongue-in-cheek it may or may not have been, coming from a multinational ad agency — whose comments have included (from the vimeo page) “Awesome, just awesome. And true of course. I’m glad I’m working for an agency that has this kind of thinking in its backbone” and, more colourfully,”hope they vanish soon, adbastards.”
The spot also drew the attention of the Ad Contrarian, who, in a post called “Gutless Ad Weasels” rants and raves against the video and everything it represents in a typical calm and mild-mannered fashion.
“…They have started to believe the “advertising is dead” nonsense. They have accepted the fiction that there is a new breed of humans who don’t believe anything that isn’t on the web. They no longer believe that advertising is about persuasion, and think their job is to create “conversations.”…Why is everyone in the ad business so anxious to bury it? Where are the people with the balls to call bullshit on all these new age web-hustlers? When are we going to drag these jargon-spewing meatballs away from their precious digital conferences and make them do some useful f*cking work?”
One way or another, it certainly has drawn a boatload of attention to FITC and gotten everyone talking again. I’m sure we’ll one day see people playing nice between traditional agencies and newer digital shops, but until then the discussion is ramping up. For some opinion pieces on the fluctuating nature of the biz, check out Brent Choi’s piece in the April/May issue of Applied Arts and Chris Staples’ online piece coming soon.