Adverlesson #1: Learn To Take Criticism

George Parker, you’ve been personally invited to next year’s “wank fest” a.k.a. leadership conference by 4As President, Nancy Hill.
In a video running on AdAge, Hill says, “It’s been important to me that the 4As take our critics head on.” She continues, “To the incessantly negative adverbloggers out there, I realize it is your job to rattle the cage a bit, but I challenge the central premise of at least one blogging provocateur’s claim that all big agencies are dumb.”
Actually, it’s no one’s “job” to rattle the cage. I can’t think of one advertising critic who gets paid to speak truth to power. I guess you could make a case for Lewis Lazare at the Sun Times, or Bob Garfield, but it would be a weak case.
Parker does what he does for the love of it. Put another way, Parker, like me, works in advertising and thus knows first hand what a shit show it can be. Despite this central fact of our working lives, we continue to believe in the business and in our own abilities to support our clients with intelligent and entertaining marketing communications.

About David Burn

Co-founder and editor of AdPulp. 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. I worked for seven agencies in five states before launching my own practice in 2009. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.


  1. it’s pretty outrageous, but i believe matt van hoven gets paid for “writing” agency spy.
    i’m also hoping angela and steve receive some sort of compensation – but at least they’re legit (if legit can be applied to blogging).
    the rest of us do this out of the goodness of our hearts.

  2. angela and steve of adrants, of course.