More Feedback for Adomatica

I got the best comment ever on this post: I Like Feedback There are several other great comments both is disgust and praise, but this one is worthy of its own post as well as my reply.

Artie – “Fact is, every one of our shops is hurting and real families are struggling mightily. Tonally, this blog is too often snarky and cavalier about that reality. Layoffs are framed only as some sort of agency meat-grinding character flaw vs. the reality of an industry undergoing the worst ad recession since 1981 (by many accounts).”

Adomatica – I’m reporting layoffs just as the business journal or other publication would. I can see how it would take on a cavalier tone due to all the obviously snarky and silly stuff I also post here.

Artie – “The “fuckedcompany” schtick isn’t as cut/dry this time around. You’re painting with an extremely large brush seemingly without much perspective or concern for real people who get spooked by your riffs. You think any of these shops enjoys laying people off? And exactly how many agencies have you run?”

Adomatica – I know these shops don’t enjoy laying people off. I’ve been laid off. I’ve been fired. I’ve been unemployed. The company I currently work for just laid off a double digit percentage of its workforce. What does running an agency have to do with reporting/writing about agencies? I’ve never held public office, but I can still understand politics and have opinions on it.

Artie – “As a VP at one of the shops you crap on regularly (sometimes admittedly for good reason), I can state your feeders, speculating wildly and blindly, aren’t as informed as they think they are.”

Adomatica – Agreed and that is why I always try to be clear about what is fact and what is something I was anonymously told. What I’m doing isn’t totally new. I post what I hear, see, or am told and try to be as open as possible of my sources.

Artie- “Your blog’s tone feeds a sense that all Austin agencies are in chaotic freefall and run by incompetent half-hacks. Clients spot this coverage and begin to think that maybe taking their business to a larger-market shop might be safer. That’s good for nobody. If any of us go down, we all take a hit. Austin is no New York or Chicago and can’t afford the implosion of an Enfatico, Idea City or even a Springbox.”

Adomatica – While causing an “implosion” is obviously not my intention, I am extremely flattered that you think my blog has a reach that its content would actually be a consideration when a company is picking an agency. I frankly post what I hear, see, or am told. I’m also sad that my blog and not an agency’s work and people would cause a possible client to go with another agency.

Artie – “So just maybe just throttle down the layoff revelry just a bit? How about a revolving opportunity for each shop to share with you a recent success story, no matter how much it pains your hipster instincts? It would be a refreshing balance to the often speculative, HR-heavy and smug shit-slinging that’s far too many posts seem to delight in.”

Adomatica – As the PR person/people at (maybe) your agency know(s), I am always open to posting whatever news good or bad that any agency sends me. I would post it as I get it and would only consider any “revolving” spot if/when I was getting too much content, but, as I hope you and your shop knows, bloggers can never get too much content. The squeaky wheel gets the grease, right? This is true on at least two different levels for Adomatica. 1. Agencies that send me news will get posts as long as I think the content is relevant to my readers. 2. I watch my analytics. I get more traffic from a snarky post then from a warm and fuzzy post. I can’t change that fact, but I’m open to posting more feel good and informative items.

I think I know who you are Artie, so please send me an email so that I know who to hug for the great comment at the next party.

All the best, RG


  1. Austin ad market is so damn smug. It’s chock full of ‘old-school’ ad people. And they are at the top of most organizations, making all the decisions. Finally we have a homegrown blog written by someone not afraid to speak his mind. Even if his views are right or wrong it’s telling a lot about the state of advertising in Austin. Who cares if it hurts the image of the town. Do good work yourself. That is all that matters anyway.

  2. “Your blog’s tone feeds a sense that all Austin agencies are in chaotic freefall and run by incompetent half-hacks. Clients spot this coverage and begin to think that maybe taking their business to a larger-market shop might be safer. That’s good for nobody. If any of us go down, we all take a hit.”

    ^^ If the truth hurts, than make your agency better than those in other cities.

  3. thoughful replies. thanks for considering them. you're a better guy than i thought.

    first, i'm not the guy you think i am. but feel free to hug him. it would entertain us.

    my point in questioning your credentials — maybe inelegantly posed in my first note — is that the air gets thinner and the decisions have greater consequences nearer the top. sometimes you make extremely difficult decisions that from the outside may appear shortsighted to the masses, but keep the agency alive in "times like these." random riffs that suggest layoffs=fucked management approach are interpretive. yeah, you've got rights to your opinions (as others do theirs), but especially relating to health of agencies or their reasons for layoffs… use caution in your speculation. your info, and that of your feeders, unless you're hearing it from the top, is not airtight. given that your feeders are fairly well known to many readers, we often sit in frustration seeing stuff filtered through those who revel in stirring up the sediment and gazing affectionately at it. it helps them feel more important than they really are. disgruntled they seem to be, no matter where they land, yes?

    on the google/implosion front, i would concede that agencies do control their own destiny. however, in researching agencies, companies turn to the web. ungrounded speculation on an agency's health can contribute — not create, admittedly — to a perception/reality distortion field. we can never know how many pitches we didn't get invited to participate in because someone read we're on death's door. if it's true, print it. if it's opinion, use judgement. google's tentacles reach far, wide, and very deep.

    the hackstain who commented "who cares if it hurts the image of the town," obviously has never tried to attract talent here. if all they have to judge us is a slate of crap-slinging commentary, we all lose. we lose that superstar account director who decides to look elsewhere. we lose that holy shit producer who is downsizing out of the ratrace. we lose an up-and-coming Flash ninja weighing austin vs. denver. so i care if it hurts the image, and so should you.

    "do good work yourself."?! thanks for the lecture, junior. that's the fucking cost-of-entry. unbelieveable.

    broadly speaking, i respect and agree with your assertion that agencies, far more than a renegade blogger, are their own captains. my original missive was crafted more from frustration about the layoff bloodsport sometimes at work here. it spooks good people, sometimes unnecessarily. it's not healthy. report, by all means. speculate by your own decision, with the knowledge that you likely have far less accurate information than you should.

    don't misread me; this blog is good, necessary, and fun. i applaud its being. rock on, even when you're taking a chunk out of our asses.

    < HUG >us.< /HUG >


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