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  • Posts Tagged ‘the guardian’

    • Craft, the Journalist and the Agency Strategist

      23rd November 12

      Posted by Mel Exon

      Posted in storytelling, strategy

      The Guardian’s Editor, Alan Rusbridger, came into BBH earlier this year and spoke to a group of us about what it takes to deliver open journalism. In particular he described how one of his most awarded journalists, Nick Davies, operates day-to-day. He shared three or four articles Davies had written recently, breaking down the anatomy of each story in meticulous detail. And it properly sank in that “open journalism” doesn’t just mean simply laying the news bare, unfiltered, checked or analysed, nor does it mean opening up a new fire hose of information in the hope someone will make sense of it.

      Perhaps the clue is in the phrase “Open Journalism”. As they say at The Guardian, “Comment is free, but facts are sacred”. The Guardian staff are information omnivores, analysts, fact checkers and storytellers. And, as Rusbridger put it to us, there are 3 characteristics that define ‘craft’ in journalism. Very few journalists master all three (Nick Davies is perhaps a rare example), but here they are:

      1. A relish or hunger to find out new intelligence
      2. The intellectual ability to see patterns in that data; see the big picture and understand the facts
      3. An ability to write beautifully

      It sounded strikingly similar to what makes a truly great Strategist in an agency. Three things a Strategist usefully might aim for, either way.

      Good weekends, all.

    • 5th July 12

      Posted by Mel Exon

      Posted in Cannes, Events

      Last month Google asked me along to their Creative Sandbox in Cannes to give a ‘lightning talk’ about ‘something I was particularly interested in’. Luckily, they gave me just 15 minutes to speak or we would have been there all day in the baking heat.. Thank you to everyone who came along and asked lots of questions afterwards – here, for what it’s worth, is a record of what got discussed.

      I’d like to talk about 2-3 things here, loosely connected by a theme around how and why we should keep contributing to, using and building the open web:

      1. The Guardian, the UK newspaper (a client of BBH London) and their ‘open journalism’ positioning.
      2. A project we’re developing at BBH Labs called Robotify.me.
      3. A postscript on how we like to work here and what “open and constant learning” means in practice.

      But first, some brief scene-setting: we’re all familiar with the debate that has raged and continues to do so about the open web – but why should we care? Read full post

    • How The Guardian And The 3 Little Pigs Hope To Keep The Wolf From The Door

      2nd March 12

      Posted by Mel Exon

      Posted in Brands, media

      Author: Jason Gonsalves, Head of Strategy, BBH London

      Our first ad for The Guardian broke on Wednesday night. It’s basically a product demo taken to epic proportions, re-telling and shedding new light on the classic story of the 3 Little Pigs. If you haven’t seen it already check it out and see what you think. Then below I’ve shared the thinking behind the work for anyone interested in hearing a little more.

      YouTube Preview Image

      Readers of this blog need little convincing of the merits of citizen journalism, crowd-sourcing and open platform collaboration. Nowadays eye witness accounts are shared instantly with the world through Twitter, whilst Google Alerts or new destinations like Gawker and Huffpo offer an alternative to traditional news brands. What’s more, we all know the broader Newspaper industry is struggling. Print circulations and revenues keep falling, and for most the business model simply isn’t working.  Add to that mass criminality and corruption, and the long-term diagnosis looks terminal.

      All this starts to beg the question, where does that leave a newspaper like The Guardian? It has to continue to be far more than simply an aggregator of opinion and comment. It’s an innovation business almost two centuries old, one looking to lead the global news agenda and set an example for how modern brands should behave.

      Our brief was to help cut through preconceptions, engage new readers by bringing to life The Guardian’s remarkable transformation over the last 10 years from a left-wing, British newspaper to a global digital news hub.

      This change has been driven by Alan Rusbridger, The Guardian’s editor and is built on a belief that in the modern world no single organisation can possibly claim to be sole arbiter of truth, with experts journalists working in isolation to pass down the day’s news to the masses. Instead, for The Guardian, modern news is a dynamic, participative and open dialogue in which the public and other news sources enrich and expand stories, inviting response and opinion. It’s open and mutual rather than closed and didactic. It’s iterative and alive rather than final and definitive. It’s multi-platform and digital first.

      • Whilst most newspapers jealously guard the stories they are planning to cover, The Guardian now publish their news lists online daily, encouraging both public and experts to get in touch with their journalists if they feel the have something to contribute, advise on or just to have their say.
      • When the MPs Expenses Scandal exploded, The Guardian swiftly built an app that enabled the public to get involved, sift through receipts and flag anything they decided was worthy of investigation.
      • During Arab Spring, in addition to providing content from its journalists in the field, The Guardian invited Arab commentators to share their views and blog, in Arabic, on the Guardian’s platform.
      • The Guardian’s open platform enables anyone to access data collected by the Guardian as well as providing a search tool so that users can search for government information from around the world. It also encourages readers to upload their own data visualisations or share their favourites.

      Whilst The Guardian represents open news, it remains a brand with a point of view, with a role and purpose that is more, not less, important in today’s world.  Rather than benefiting shareholders or a proprietor, the Guardian is owned by the Scott Trust which ensures that  profits are reinvested to sustain journalism that is free from commercial or political interference. The trust, which was formed in 1936, and is named after CP Scott (Editor between 1872 and 1929) protects the Guardian’s commitment to a set of values that can be summarised as honesty, cleanness (today interpreted as integrity) courage, fairness and a sense of duty to reader and the community.  Scott’s famous words  “Comment is free, but facts are sacred” remind us of the importance of accuracy and truth in a world where information and opinion is ubiquitous. Relentless inquiry is the responsibility of organisations that want to set the news agenda, they must stop at nothing to get the bottom of the stories that matter. Nick Davies did just this – he was the Guardian journalist who spent 5 years finding and checking evidence and withstanding threats to uncover the truth behind the  ’phone hacking at the News of the World.

      If you couldn’t tell already, I’ll admit personally to being a huge fan. But I believe as digital innovators, creative pioneers, and champions of civil liberty and reform The Guardian is a rare and precious thing that deserves support. The story of the newspaper industry as we know is unlikely to conclude with a fairy-tale ending, but the Guardian is definitely painting an exciting vision of things to come.


      Client Credits – The Guardian

      David Pemsel, Marketing Consultant
      Richard Furness, Head of Sales and Marketing, The Guardian
      Anna Hayman, Marketing Manager, The Guardian

      Media Buying Agency – PHD

      Toby Nettle, Media Planner

      Creative Agency – BBH

      TV Credits
      BBH Creative Director: David Kolbusz
      BBH Creative Team: Matt Fitch & Mark Lewis
      BBH Producer: Davud Karbassioun
      BBH Production Assistant: Genevieve Sheppard
      BBH Head of Strategy: Jason Gonsalves
      BBH Team Director: Ngaio Pardon
      BBH Team Manager: Alex Monger
      BBH Team Assistant: Katie Burkes

      Print credits
      BBH Creative Team (Print): Carl Broadhurst and Peter Reid
      BBH Head of Art: Mark Reddy
      BBH Designer: James Townsend
      BBH Print Producer: Sally Green
      BBH Creative Director: David Kolbusz
      BBH Head of Strategy: Jason Gonsalves
      BBH Team Director: Ngaio Pardon
      BBH Team Manager: Alex Monger
      BBH Team Assistant: Katie Burkes

      Production credits
      Production Company – Rattling Stick
      Director: Ringan Ledwidge
      Producer: Chris Harrison
      DoP: Franz Lustig
      Editor/Editing House: Richard Orrick (Work post)
      Post Production (Graphics + CGI effects):  The Mill London
      Sound Design: Will Cohen & Sam Brock
      Music: Phil Kay (Woodwork Music)

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