Ed:Blog: 2010 OMMA AOY

There's something you may notice about OMMA's choice of Agency of the Year for 2010, Wieden + Kennedy. It's not what anyone would really refer to as a digital agency, and as such, it doesn't follow OMMA's history of selecting digital natives.

W+K is probably best known for its television work and there is little demand for the agency to merely design traditional Web sites or infrastructure. But we are in an age of shifting paradigms (as much as you and I might loathe that phrase, it's true). And we felt that W+K was: a) representative of that shift; and b) had piloted some truly groundbreaking and inspiring efforts.

The line between digital media and capital-m Media, to the extent that a line still exists at all, is becoming a bit of a blurred distinction at this point (with digital media even bleeding into the real world to boot, but you can read more about that in the detailed write-ups that follow). It's become increasingly difficult (and pointless) to really separate the disciplines. Consumers surely don't.

Even our pick for Best Web Design and Development this year, Rockfish Interactive, doesn't call itself a digital agency, but refers to itself as a digital innovation partner due partly to its approach and partly to its entrepreneurial drive (the company has launched several efforts independent of client work that differ significantly from typical incubator endeavors). So, too, is our Creative AOY, Pereira & O'Dell, involved in commercial efforts outside the ken of the agency world.

Joining the aforementioned in this year's crop are SapientNitro, Mullen, Phonevalley and Huge, each in its own significant way contributing to the startling evolution of the media and advertising industry. Collectively the group seems one of the strongest in recent memory when it comes to our criteria of innovation and industry leadership, perhaps owing to the fact that as budgets sagged and the ground shifted beneath their feet, the fleetest ruled the day.

John Capone
On Twitter @justcapone
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