Dubai Lynx launches investigation into FP7 Doha’s winning work

March 25, 2009

samsungThe organisers of the Dubai Lynx have launched an official investigation into a string of winning work by FP7 Doha.

The investigation follows the publication of a damning entry on bloganubis, in which the legitimacy of FP7 Doha’s work for clients Higeen Mouthwash, Samsung and Nissan was questioned.

Steve Lane, festival director of the Dubai Lynx, confirmed that complaints had been received from numerous agencies as a result of the blog, as well as from clients.

“There are two or three prongs to the investigation,” said Lane. “With Samsung – specifically the camera campaign – the washing machine and the printers. We’re trying to get to the bottom of whether the camera stuff actually ran and was actually approved.” He added: “I am in contact with Samsung and we are having an ongoing discussion with them, trying to get to the bottom of who exactly said yes to this stuff.”

Lane said official complaints had been received about the agency’s Higeeen mouthwash work. He also confirmed that a campaign for Nissan had been withdrawn from the Lynx shortlist prior to the awards ceremony following complaints from Nissan that the ads were nothing to do with them. Shortlisted work for Matchbox had also been removed.

FP7 Doha was named advertising agency of the year at the Dubai Lynx awards ceremony on 17 March, but is now in danger of being stripped of its title if the investigation goes against them.

The original bloganubis posting was the work of an agency insider going by the alias of ‘John Doh’. He had originally sent his letter to a number of different media, including Campaign.

According to Lane, the Samsung work is being looked into the most seriously.

“If we withdraw any of the stuff that’s actually been awarded, we will recalculate agency of the year,” said Lane. “They [FP7 Doha] may be so far ahead they’ll retain it, but we will see.”

A new age for the region’s media?

March 25, 2009

The region’s first grass-roots professional community will hold its inaugural get together this evening. Adwomen Middle East’s first gathering will be held at Dubai art gallery The Jam Jar from 8pm and promises to be an informal affair “with beanbags and pizza,” said its founder Preethi Mariappan of Dubai’s Ogilvy One. The group will hear two seminars from speakers within the industry as well as seeing showreels of fellow members’ work.

The group’s successful incarnation provides a positive note in a period when, more often than not, inter-agency dealings seem to be defined by ill will. That more than 70 female professionals have signed-up, with the only inducements being to share knowledge and meet their peers, bodes well for the industry’s future.

So are these the early days of a new age for the region’s media – one where openness and collaboration moves everyone forward – or does it represent a false dawn where others are unable or unwilling to follow suit?