Lions boss Savage offers to talk to Aussie agency bosses about media judging

Cannes Lions chairman Terry Savage has offered to meet with Australian agency bosses concerned over the judging methodology for the media category.

Savage was responding to yesterday’s criticisms by Mediabrands chairman Henry Tajer and Starcom Mediavest CEO John Sintras that the jury system leaves complex media strategy entries “set up to fail”. Their complaints followed a poor showing in the Media Lions by Australia.

In a video interview with Mumbrella, Savage said: “Each year we get feedback from the jury on how they can improve the system. Media is the one category we change virtually every single year in response to that. I live in Sydney, they live in Sydney I’m very happy to meet with them any time, listen to their comments and their feedback and if they think it’s relevant and appropriate of course we’ll listen to them.”   

Asked about Sintras’ complaint that an entry from Starcom that had been highly awarded in another awards had not even been shortlisted, Savage said: “In a show such as this there’s a huge volume of entries but the reality is that the cream always seems to rise to the top. The cream is not that hard to identify.” He added: “I can think of many awards that do well at one show and don’t do well at another show. That will happen this year, next year and in ten years’ time.”

At present most of the 3000 Media Lions entries are looked at by the jurors over four days at the festival. But Savage conceded that one option might be to have jurors screen more entries beforehand. He said: “If it’s something we’ve got to consider, it’s something we’ll consider. Maybe that’s something that’s got to be looked at and there’s more judging at home done to bring the number that are actually judged at Cannes down to a smaller level.”


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