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Media Lyings? Allegations Of 'Block-Voting' Follow Cannes Media Awards

  • AdNews, Thursday, June 21, 2012 2:42 AM

There was plenty of grousing surrounding the winners – and the judging process – for this year’s Media Lions awards in Cannes, France, especially the fact that Omnicom Media Group took so many top awards, including the top one – the Grand Prix for Google Voice Search campaign created by Omnicom’s Manning Gottlieb OMD unit. Among the complaints was the fact than many judges said they didn’t have enough time to evaluate some of the more complicated and potentially creative campaigns during the short-listing process. Another was allegations of potential “block-voting” in which a big agency group with numerous votes wields them as a collective voice to influence the outcome. While no one has come out and publicly stated any impropriety in the process, the appearance of influence has been flamed by the fact that Omnicom took so many top awards, and that this year’s Media Lions jury president was Mainardo de Nardis, Worldwide CEO of Omnicom’s OMD unit. While the jury president’s do not actually vote, they have some influence in the way the voting gets done. In an interview with Australia’s AdNews, de Nardis denied allegations of block-voting by any agency groups, asserting, “My job was to check that wasn’t happening.”

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