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Dreaming of ads weEod pay to watch.

Byline: Ramsey Naja

Summary: NA

The word EochangeEo has been so used in our industry you can practically see the wear and tear on the letters the moment you write it. ThereEos so much of it in the air at the moment that event managers might as well have it as a customisable default setting for speakers.

And, of course, itEos no bad thing. Change refreshes and stirs and gets us out of the cobwebs of the comfort zone and into territory that could be well worth exploring. Which is where we are today: in the midst of change so radical we really should give it another name. The double-whammy of recession and ad scam scandals has wacked the creative scene so hard itEos still seeing stars above its head. Out goes the achingly beautiful DPS for the local gym, in comes the hard-working campaigns for bouillon cubes and telecom thrifty packages. And you know what, if these campaigns end up as achingly beautiful, then itEos all for the best. And itEos the same thing in retail: while sales of trendy designer labels are tobogganing, Saville Row tailors, Hermes and LVMH are reporting healthy growth. Out goes Eobeautiful disposableEo, in comes Eoquality durableEo.

Meanwhile, hereEos something to note: Campaign has already reported that Rupert Murdoch publications may start charging for online access to news. Same for Twitter for mobile phone access. Now, if those giants really go for it, we may see change that is genuinely worthy of the name: the migration to content that can justify a premium.

You see, a whole generation sees free content as a God-given right and, as Wired magazine argued recently, much of that content was accepted as EAEgood enoughEo. Once you charge for it, however, it is only normal for consumers to get all naggy and demanding. And this goes for us, too: unless we go to clients armed with superlative, innovative, enduring work, we will change into mere suppliers, and will be decreasingly remunerated as such. Instead, we could aspire to creating that holy grail: ads youEod pay to watch. ThatEos the kind of change IEod happily subscribe to.

Ramsey Naja is chief creative officer, JWT MENA

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Publication:Campaign Middle East
Date:Nov 1, 2009
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