Excellent. There was a palpable improvement in the quality and creative spirit of this year's entries. It was a great year to be a judge.
Did the entries reflect any broad trends in the direction of where interactive design is going? (simpler design, elaborate design, incorporate elements from other media, etc.?)
Beyond any tactical trends in the work, it seemed like interactive is getting brave again, starting to rediscover the innovation that was unceremoniously beaten out of the industry after the crash a few years ago. The adventurousness extended into all categories-broadband and gaming included.
Did the entries surprise you in any way? If so, how?
I'm not sure that it was surprising, but it was notable that the integrated work is getting better. The HP and Discover campaigns from Goodby were excellent. I was surprised that Vodafone turned mobile phones into a compelling interactive story. Their "Vodafone Future" site actually had me believing the 'calling plan of tomorrow' is an interesting topic.
What did you learn from chairing the show?
There are a lot of talented people out there. I make a better CEO than a copywriter.
What did you learn from the jury members?.
Even in the international realm of the world-wide-web, we can be so myopic in the U.S. There are such unbelievably clever and exciting agencies in Sao Paulo, Tokyo, Barcelona and elsewhere-I was reminded of the breadth and diversity of talents in our business.
Was the jury like-minded in terms of what they thought was good work, or was there a broad spectrum of views? Was it difficult to come to a consensus about what to award, and to whom?
We were fairly congruent. No major UN intervention was necessary. The biggest debates arose from the categorization of the work. Because interactive formats are so integrated and often amorphous, deciding whether an online video belonged in viral or integrated or the One Show's traditional show was often devilishly hard to divine. I think this problem will get more and more complicated as integrated campaigns become more sophisticated.
What distinguished the NEC Ecotonoha Project as Best of Show?
The NEC site was a very simple and very beautiful idea. It encouraged people to "grow" discussions online and NEC rewarded those communities by planting trees in the real world. What a lovely and smart use of the web - and what a wonderful feeling the effort engendered for NEC.
What were judges looking for, and how clearly were these guidelines set out at the outset of judging?
Just like the traditional One Show, the One Show Interactive looks to reward the best ideas. Excellence in execution is just the price of admission. It is not a show obsessed with technique or technology-instead, it values conceptual excellence and emotional power above all else. And that is a big reason why our judges were proud to be involved in this show.