Press freedom ads may come to U.S.

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[Paris] A shocking French ad campaign that portrays famous French journalists as murder victims to drive home the dangers journalists face and the importance of defending press freedom may be adapted to run in the U.S. and around the world.

"As soon as I saw it, I thought `We've got to make it travel,"' said Bob Isherwood, worldwide creative director at Publicis Groupe's Saatchi & Saatchi.

Saatchi's Paris office created three print and poster ads featuring leading TV journalist Christine Ockrent with a bullet hole in her forehead, and two male TV journalists, one apparently with a slashed throat and the other shot to death in a parking lot. The ads, for French journalists' group "Reporters without Borders," say: "Start fighting for press freedom before you lose it."

Mr. Isherwood said he's putting the ads, which started running in France in January, on the agenda at Saatchi's worldwide creative board meeting in Sao Paulo in late April.

"I'm going to see if we can't run it globally," he said. "It's a very powerful idea. There's no reason we shouldn't be able to run it in the U.S., with U.S. journalists, and I'm sure people would do it."

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