Book of Tens 2009: Letter From the Editor

By Published on .

Boy, when Barack Obama promised us change, he really meant it! General Motors is thinning its executive ranks, the ad population of Detroit will soon rival the Jewish population of Kabul and print titles keep marching over the cliff.

In other words, 2009 wasn't that much different than 2008. But the good news is, according to the most recent administration numbers, 10 jobs were created or saved during the publication of this year's Book of Tens list!

I kid, I kid. Because humor is necessary during times like these.

And, we'd begrudgingly admit, optimism has its place next to gallows humor.

We are coming to the end of the first decade of a new millennium. Yes, I know. The new millennium started in 2001, not 2000. OK. Fine. It's still the end of a decade, so we've decided to look back. And while, as journalists, our natural inclination is toward cynicism and negativity, you'll find that in almost all of our picks in the Best of the Decade, we've tried to keep our focus on the positive. (Sorry, nothing we could do about the stories of the decade.)

You may also notice a subtle shift in the landscape. Instead of Best Spots of the decade, we've included a list of Best Non-TV Campaigns of the Decade. And it was no accident that we stacked websites on top of TV shows. (But don't fret, you can find Best Spots on

Of course, we couldn't resist having our fun, either. So you'll find the annual list of industry follies as well as Bob Garfield's most-adored and most-scorned ads and Media Guy Simon Dumenco's epic media feuds.

And for those looking for a little hope in their times of change, we've even included the 10 best jobs for ad folks finding themselves on the wrong side of the current economy. Even the Book of Tens can provide service journalism.

From all of us at Ad Age, we hope your 2010 is better than 2009.

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