We can always rely on the Holmes Report's Arun Sudhaman to represent the best interests of PR and to provide honest reporting from major events.
This round up of Cannes in which he subtly questions the wisdom of Publicis' decision to sit out awards and marketing efforts, preferring instead to invest in an "enigmatic virtual assistant called Marcel" is just such a representation.
The point he makes however is not about Publicis or WPP's response but about the opportunity PR has in an era when the tenure of the CMO is short lived and the demand for instant campaign gratification via technology is on the rise.
The agility of the PR industry and the latent creativity that exists across the entire spectrum of in-house and agency professionals has the potential to take hold in an era when technology is threatening the very fabric of our art.
Speaking as one who is excited by the next generation of marketing technologies and as a passionate advocate for science in communications (measurement anyone?), this statement might seem a tad hypocritical.
The truth is that communications can be both an art and a science. The sooner we appreciate that truly great work which is rooted in creativity ultimately defines who who we are, the sooner we'll have the confidence and the authority to truly get in front of the most senior marketing decision makers. The types that flock to Cannes every year.
With or without Publicis in attendance, PR needs to be better represented at the event. Perhaps the next-12 months will see even more PR driven creativity that will be recognised and celebrated down on the Cote d'Azur at Cannes '18?
Sorrell may be quick to extol the benefits of long-term branding and marketing innovation, and we would certainly agree with his perspective. But that argument is like a fading lighthouse in a sea of short-termism, underscored by the attention-deprived nature of Cannes itself. It is no coincidence that the CMO role is the shortest-tenured among the C-suite. The temptation for the quick hit is irresistible and Facebook, with its bevy of instant advertising solutions, understands this better than most. For the PR industry, still grappling with becoming a more central creative resource for its clients, this trend represents as much of an opportunity as a challenge. Its inherent agility and facility with social platforms can only help and — even if it might bemoan its characterisation as a lower-cost option — that is no bad thing either under the circumstances.