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Monday, 21 February 2011

Jerking off at Cannes ... and British Telecom's brilliant new "fuck the customer and lose money” service

I see there is to be a "global debate on creativity" at the Cannes Lions Festival - the ad-luvvies giant exercise in mutual masturbation avec cocaine that occurs every year.

Perhaps they can discuss the French Connection ads which won the top prize in the UK at another Adwank. They feature models looking like idiots - as shown - with brilliant headlines like "Are you Man?" in a sort of pidgin English.

French Connection's U.K. sales are down 8%, and no doubt the usual drivel is being poured out by the agency "Oh, it takes time for these campaigns to work, your Majesty. May I kiss your arse again? Left buttock or right?"

Lucky for the client that their sales are up everywhere but the U.K.

This reminds me of my time on the Ogilvy Worldwide Board. We once wasted a whole day discussing "What is good advertising?" I wondered how everyone got on the board without knowing the answer. And since David was there, they could have asked him.


Actually, if you want model idiots, look no further than
British Telecom.

They have found a brilliant new way to fuck customers and their own staff around simultaneously.

This is vintage stuff, so pay attention.

The love of my life rang to tell them that nobody would be home at the time we had arranged to have the new broadband (finally) installed, because I was cracking jokes in Ljubljana and she was working.

The idiot at the other end said, "I can't do that until you give proof of identity."

Uh? Uh? UH? Who the hell would know BT were coming round except the customer, shit-for-brains?

Then he asked her for details of the email they had sent making the arrangement. She said, "I can't. I've changed jobs - I have a new email address."

She added, "Look I'm just trying to help you. You will have a man hanging around for an hour, wasting his time and your money".

Sorry, no can do unless you give me proof of identity. "How much was your last BT bill?" was the inane request.

Well, of course she carries the bill round next to her heart everywhere she goes.

And so it came to pass: some poor engineer hung around pointlessly last Friday - because of corporate stupidity.

What overpaid dickhead is responsible for this? Does anyone there think?

Can you imagine how many millions these fuckwits add to everyone's bills whilst demotivating their engineers - through sheer stupidity?

I have a theory large corporations recruit staff by running ads headed, "Wanted: Morons Who Hate People."

They probably win awards,

I was reminded by this of Dryden’s lines about the Poet Laureate Shadwell - which destroyed his reputation forever.

Dryden imagined the God of Stupidity looking for a worthy successor among his sons, and wrote:

Shadwell alone my perfect image bears,
Mature in dullness from his tender years.
Shadwell alone, of all my Sons, is he
Who stands confirm'd in full stupidity.
The rest to some faint meaning make pretence,
But Shadwell never deviates into sense.
Some Beams of Wit on other souls may fall,
Strike through and make a lucid interval;
But Shadwell's genuine night admits no ray,
His rising Fogs prevail upon the Day.

All you have to do is substitute the name of someone senior at BT for Shadwell and there you are.

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