A few weeks ago I was working with my former partner, Laura Sweet, on a pitch for Roku.
Naturally, before we could move forward to a possible re-positioning, we had to look backwards to see what they had done and where they had been.
Well, that was an eye-opener, because where they were in 2013 is where we were in 1997. With our now famous/infamous work for ABC.
The Roku campaign was done by a small agency in San Francisco dubbed Division of Labor. Ironic, if you want to call copying a campaign out of the awards book, "Labor."
Of course we all know that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. So I invite you to see why myself, John Shirley and the entire Chiat/Day team that worked on ABC, should feel so "flattered."
Two campaigns, one about a TV network and one about a TV streaming device. Separated only by time. And a clear lack of integrity.
Am I crazy? Here's more.
And then there's this...
The last two are the most egregious of the bunch, as they even lift Pantone 187, otherwise known as Chiat/Day Yellow.
By the way, we also did a board much like the very top photo. But I went through my files and couldn't track it down. Ours said, "Eight hours a day is all we ask. ABC."
I'm not going to lie, when I first saw all this I was a little pissed off.
Then I realized that while the topic is thievery, we are talking about advertising. And the world doesn't give a tinker's cuss about advertising.
I also made the pleasing discovery that the gentlemen responsible for the Roku work came from Goodby Silverstein and Partners. For those of you not in the business, GS&P were the gold standard in the industry.
For so many years, I was trying to do the kind of work that creatives at Goodby were doing. And now, some former Goodby creatives were doing the kind of work I had already done.