The ad business is a Boys Club of the highest order. Zoe Scaman, a strategist, recently reaffirmed this fact and set the Interwebs on fire with her front-line reporting of the abuse she endured while working in agencies not her own.
Her narrative is both raw and ugly as can be. Painful though it is, I encourage you to click over and read it.
I tell you these stories not to be sensationalist and not to seek out your sympathies, but because I want you to understand. There are real, horrific and painful reasons why women in this industry are angry, broken, exhausted, and often scared into silence.
When we raise our voices, we are not crying wolf.
We are crying for help.
It seems the acute cries for help are often noted and shared and discussed. Yet, the perps are for the most part free and free to make more degrading moves, further cementing their fate and hurting more people along the way.
Can Money Make the Problem Go Away? The Holding Companies Wish
Sex tech entrepreneur and former Bartle Bogle Hegarty partner, Cindy Gallop, wants to make the abusers pay. Cindy Gallop is powerful and she knows how to get what she wants, which I’m sure sends many a chill down a Manhattan and London-based spine.
I’ve also been working with national publications, in the UK and the US, to try and break these stories. There are major business implications for publicly-traded holding companies, when it comes to the $$$ spent on buying silence, paying women off, ‘making it go away’
— Cindy Gallop (@cindygallop) July 4, 2021
“How Qualified Are These Monsters to Lead?”
Derek Walker of Brown and Browner is not in the Boy’s Club. Because he’s a man. A man who calls bullshit.
Reading @zoescaman‘s essay pisses me off to no end, because many of these same agencies will claim that they cannot find qualified Black people to lead while paying these monsters to abuse people. How qualified are these monsters to lead besides being White men?
— Derek Walker (@dereklwalker) July 6, 2021
Why don’t more good men step forward to support their colleagues who claim to have been attacked or otherwise abused?
Man to Man
While harassment at work for a man is NOTHING by comparison to what women and people of color endure every day, I think it’s fair to say that there are plenty of men who harass other men too.
And any man who chooses to stand outside the Boys Club is a danger to the Boys Club. I can report from personal experience that ‘the boys’ don’t like men getting in their way. If you’re not in the club and you’re not willing to protect the club, you’re forever marked as “difficult.” But do you know what’s truly difficult, aside from working with creeps? Increasing market share is difficult. Opening minds and wallets is difficult. By contrast, calling out an abuser and naming names is a breeze, particularly for a man.