Opinions - Anyone want to work on Barclays?


by John Fountain



Have you noticed that there are some accounts that have a bit of an odour about them? Not just those that reject all the good ideas, I mean the accounts that really question your moral judgement.

The accounts that make you wonder if you're actually doing the right thing applying your skills to promote their products.

There was a time not so long ago when many agencies refused to work on cigarette advertising. Agencies told the fag companies that didn't agree with what they were doing. But is it right for an agency to judge a clients product or service, and is it our business? I mean if it's legal to sell something, it should be legal to advertise it, right?

Or perhaps we've reached the stage where we simply don't have any conscience left. Maybe we're all just in it for the money? What the heck, we live in a world where everyone is out to grab as much money as possible, even if that means promoting holidays to Somalia. Sure I'll work on that for you. Every brief is an opportunity and who knows, there might even be an award at the end of it?

Down at Barclays, it seems their empire has been built on greed and the pursuit of profit at any cost. Here again another bank has placed the Western world's financial system trembling on the brink.

Of course, in Britain we do nothing about it. We carry on. Even though we've paid out £1trillion to help bailout the same banks that have landed us in a vicious recession - which, according to the Governor of the Bank of England, will be with us for years.

We do nothing. We let them get away with it.

But we in the creative industry could act. We could tell these amateurs to do their own ads, cut their own commercials, make their own artworks and laugh very loudly every time they screw up. Like the fag companies, we could simply tell them we don't do business on ethical grounds.

I'm up for it if you are. I really don't want to work on accounts that are amoral, reckless and corrupt. I don't want to be associated with them.

Do you?

John Fountain is a copywriter.

Visit John Fountain's website

Twitter: @fountainjohn


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