Tuesday, December 22
On the plane back to London, I got talking to the guy next to me - I saw from his name on the boarding pass that he must be a Muslim, but he introduced himself not as Mohammed but just Mo. Dressed in the smart casual style of the young middle manager, and touting a Blackberry, he turned out to be in the advertising industry - he provided technical expertise for the back offices of Publicis Group, and of course knew Martin Stepanek. He had arrived as a refugee and felt that no other country would have given him the chance.
Thursday, December 03
In his interview in M&M, Evžen Hart recalled what for me also was one of the most ludicrous events in my business life, the investigation by ÚOHS into pitch fees. The agencies wanted to charge a symbolic 25,000CZK to clients for speculative creative work presented in pitches. After all, creative ideas are what agencies produce, why should they give them for free? And what business did ÚOHS have investigating this? Nobody has ever explained me ho this could be seen as a 'cartel' when it did not concern the actual provision of services an agency provides; competition between agencies on price would still have been a big part of any pitch.