Jane Austin at Cannes: fake news, women fight their corner and Mad Men heads for a Lion

New Yorker editor analyses fake news

Donald Trump’s abuse of the truth is no longer funny, New Yorker editor David Remnick told Cannes. “It’s an emergency,” he said. He likened the spread of fake news to climate change, adding: “We cannot and will not eliminate untruth entirely. Like pollution. But how can we reduce it, and breath a little better, and avoid the toxic cloud of our own making?”


Diversity is the hot button issue at Cannes. Jonathan Mildenhall, the marketing director at Airbnb, is on a mission this year to highlight just how white advertising is. He has also issued a call for non-white people at Cannes to send him their portfolios so that Airbnb can consider them for a role in the marketing department.

Meanwhile Gillian Armstrong, the acclaimed director of My Brilliant Career and Little Women, said that she is appalled that only nine per cent of ads and 14 per cent of films globally are directed by a woman, adding: “There is such a thing as a woman’s point of view and it’s not just feminine products.”

Muslim American Cannes juror says she was forced to remove her headscarf at airport

Amani Al-Khatahtbeh, a Muslim American journalist and activist who runs the MulsimGirl.com website, is taking legal action against French police after they allegedly forced her to remove her head scarf when she arrived in Nice on her way to judge the Glass Lions in Cannes.

Don Draper’s campaign gets shortlisted for a Cannes Lion

The advertising industry is permanently having an existential crisis, and now that a fictional ad exec at an imaginary agency stands more of a chance of getting a Lion than many real people in adland there’s even more reason to wonder why you bother going to work everyday. Don Draper’s idea for Heinz which featured in the TV show Mad Men was realised by the agency David Miami and is now an actual ad campaign, which just got shortlisted for a Lion. Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce even got a credit on the entry.

Theresa May: living proof 2017 is the year of the robot?

British PM Theresa May, aka the Maybot, is in need of a friend and PHD has just the candidate. On stage at Cannes, the agency unveiled a donut shaped AI enabled bot called Olly which rotates and lights up when it talks. Olly is clearly infinitely more animated than the Maybot, but hopefully she can learn a thing or two from her new friend. Olly isn’t the first robot to take the stage at Cannes this year – Sensely revealed its virtual nurse, called Olivia, on Sunday.

And the shortlisted entries are:
If you don’t mind, we’ll take this opportunity to shamelessly plug the fact that Persuasion Communications has been nominated for eleven Cannes Lions. Yes, we’re surprised too and only realised when flicking through the shortlists while taking the waters in Ma Nolan’s.

See all the shortlisted entries on the Cannes Lion website.

Promo & Activation

Grey came out top of the shortlisted UK entries for Comic Relief ‘Swear Jar’.


CHI & Partners got seven of the UK’s 37 entries for Freedom Brewery.

Publicis London clocked up a lot of Cyber Lion nominations for the Heineken campaign “Worlds apart.”


Publicis got shortlisted five times in direct (the agency is clearly on a roll).

Creative data

Publicis was also a big hitter on the creative data shortlist.


Saatchi & Saatchi London, Iris Worldwide London and Grey London all feature on the mobile shortlist.


Weber Shandwick London was the only UK shop on the list for its ActionAid ad raising awareness of FGM.


Supermodel Karlie Kloss gave a masterclass in using social media for good at Cannes.

Kloss who broke fashion protocol by streaming live from the backstage of fashion shows, explained the importance of having an “authentic” social presence.

“All the models were just there, I was bored, so I did selfie videos,” she told Hearst chief content officer Joanna Coles in a Cannes Lions conversation.

Kloss, 24, has 6.7 million followers on Instagram and her YouTube channel Klossy which features weekly vlogs has a very loyal fanbase.

“I wanted to show and tell. I wanted to own my own narrative… I could bring more to a brand as Karlie the computer science nerd.”

The model explained she wanted to use her social platform in a “more fulfilling way” so she launched a coding camp for girls.

Kode with Klossy is now in its second year and has expanded to 15 coding camps in 10 different cities over the summer.

Speaking about the fashion industry, Kloss described how the industry was told she was too fat and too skinny on the same day.

Kloss said, “I was called both too fat and too thin by a casting agent on the same day,” adding she wished female designers would produce clothes for a wider variety of female shapes and sizes.

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About Jane Austin

Jane Austin is the founder and owner of PR agency Persuasion Communications.