罗伯茨似乎想要让这个问题从此从视线中消失，他说道，“爱德华·德·波诺（医生、心理学家、作家）曾告诉我，一件错误的事情，做得再好也没有任何意义 — 还他妈有什么可争论的。这是一个多元的世界，现在比以往任何时候都需要融合、需要合作、需要联通、需要创意…..这也会反映在阳狮集团的做事方式上。”
Saatchi & Saatchi chairman Kevin Roberts has sparked controversy, stating that the gender debate in advertising no longer exists.
In an interview with Business Insider published on Saturday 30th, Roberts said he believes “the fucking debate is all over.”
Apparently dismissing the issue altogether, Roberts said, “Edward de Bono [the physician, psychologist, and author] once told me there is no point in being brilliant at the wrong thing — the fucking debate is all over. This is a diverse world, we are in a world where we need, like we’ve never needed before, integration, collaboration, connectivity, and creativity … this will be reflected in the way the Groupe is.”
盛世长城执行主席Kevin Roberts｜Saatchi & Saatchi executive chairman Kevin Roberts
然而数据却显示，男女平等问题仍然非常活跃。2014年The 3% Conference进行了一项调查，这是一场旨在捍卫女性在广告行业的地位的运动，结果显示，虽然广告行业女性占据比例的46.4%，但是创意总监的职位中只有11.5%是女性，六大广告机构（WPP、宏盟集团、电通安吉斯集团、阳狮集团、IPG、哈瓦斯）的CEO均为男性。
The statistics though suggest the issue is still very much alive. According to a 2014 survey conducted by The 3% Conference, a movement championing women’s role in advertising, though women make up 46.4% of the industry, only 11.5% of ad agency creative directors are female, and the CEOs of the six major advertising agency holding companies (WPP, Omnicom, Dentsu Aegis Network, Publicis Groupe, Interpublic, Havas) are men.
由The 3% Conference和咨询顾问Cindy Gallop等大胆敢干的评论家所引领的男女平等运动势头越来越强劲，而罗伯茨的此番言论则与之背道而驰。在Cindy Gallop看来，罗伯茨的此番言论尤为轻蔑，罗伯茨说“我觉得她的问题是她一手造成的。她捏造了很多事实，打造自己的形象，赢取掌声，却华而不实。”
Roberts’ comments run contrary to the beliefs of a growing and potent gender equality movement, led by The 3% Conference and outspoken critics like consultant Cindy Gallop. For Gallop, Roberts reserved particularly disdainful remarks, “I think she’s got problems that are of her own making. I think she’s making up a lot of the stuff to create a profile, and to take applause, and to get on a soap[box].”
Cindy Gallop在推特上言简意赅回答道，“还是让业内人士给你最好的答案吧，问问全球各地广告行业的人，告诉罗伯茨@ krconnect，大家是不是觉得我在‘捏造事实’。”
Responding on Twitter, Gallop simply replied, “The best response to that is to throw it open to the industry, and ask the women and men of the ad industry, all around the world, to tweet at @krconnect to let him know whether they think I’m ‘making it all up’.”
Cindy Gallop在英国媒体THe Guardian上回复推特留言与采访｜Cindy Gallop has since responded with a number of Tweets and an interview with British newspaper The Guardian.
Inadvertently kicking the hornets nest further, Roberts suggested that, in fact, women are happier to remain as creative directors doing the work, rather than taking on management positions, “I don’t think [the lack of women in leadership roles] is a problem. I’m just not worried about it because they are very happy, they’re very successful, and doing great work.”
He added, “we are trying to impose our antiquated shit on them, and they are going: ‘Actually guys, you’re missing the point, you don’t understand: I’m way happier than you.’ Their ambition is not a vertical ambition, it’s this intrinsic, circular ambition to be happy. So they say: ‘We are not judging ourselves by those standards that you idiotic dinosaur-like men judge yourself by’.”
To these comments, Gallop replied, “[Roberts] shifts blame onto women themselves because, he says, they just don’t want to be in leadership positions”
Roberts also said, “I can’t talk about sexual discrimination because we’ve never had that problem, thank goodness.” Publicis Groupe does indeed boast a 50-50 gender split amongst its staff as well as women in leading roles worldwide, including Saatchi & Saatchi worldwide chief creative officer Kate Stanners and Publicis Worldwide China Chair and Chief Creative Officer Sheena Jeng.
不出所料，这场争论火药味十足，Campaign的全球主编Claire Beale写道，“罗伯茨@KRConnect针对@cindygallop的论述做出的回应是一派胡言，这是很长时间以来广告行业最令人心寒的负面言论”，同时，Airbnb的首席营销官Jonathan Mildenhall说道，“罗伯茨@krconnect，你在开玩笑嘛？我要是宝洁@P&G的首席营销官的话，我肯定会质疑你对我们核心消费者的理解到底是什么”
The backlash has been predictably vehement, with Campaign global editor-in-chief Claire Beale writing, “The @KRConnect farrago over @cindygallop comments is one of the most depressing damaging things to happen in our biz for a long time”, while Jonathan Mildenhall, CMO of Airbnb, added,“Seriously @krconnect? If I were CMO @P&G I would be questioning your understanding of my core consumer”
Publicis have responded by placing Roberts on a leave of absence effective immediately, with CEO & chairman Maurice Levy stating, “it will ultimately be the Publicis Groupe Supervisory Board’s duty to further evaluate his standing.”
Why an experienced ambassador for a major agency would choose his words so carelessly is odd. Whatever his motivations, the outcome has already proven to be renewed discussion of the issue he seemed intent on dismissing.