Open government doesn’t equal 18 pages to B.C. Jobs Plan campaign

(Victoria, 20 March 2013) – IntegrityBC has written B.C. Information and Privacy Commissioner Elizabeth Denham asking that she include the B.C. Jobs Plan ad campaign in the scope of her recently announced investigation into the use of personal email accounts by public servants.

This after the organization received all of 18 pages to an Access to Information request that it filed regarding the B.C. Jobs Plan ad campaign.

The 18 pages of documents include an Ipsos Reid August 2012 B.C. Economy Focus Groups report, October TV scripts and keyframes, and a DDB Canada December script for the domino’s TV ad.

In its Access to Information request, the organization had asked for:

  1. All instructions provided to the ad agency or production house responsible for the creation, production and execution of the BC Jobs Plan television advertisements from June 1, 2012 to February 5, 2013;
  2. All emails, correspondence, power point presentations and any other electronic communication formats related to the conception and production of the ads;
  3. All focus group results, agency advice on the ad buy, scheduling of the ads and the response of the GCPE to that advice, and the names and positions of all those involved in the campaign.

It defies belief that the government spent $16 million on an ad campaign and no one provided any instructions to anyone, had an exchange of views about anything to do with the campaign, or even bothered to jot down the names of those in government working on it,” said IntegrityBC executive director Dermod Travis.

At the very least, if there were ads to test at focus groups or later produced, then likely there were instructions given by someone to someone about something.”

The organization noted that the Ipsos Reid focus group results which claimed “overall the advertising concept was well received” almost flies in the face of findings of a January Angus Reid poll that found the top four opinions expressed about the domino ad are: “Useless (43%), Deceiving (42%), Untrue (31%) and Informative (29%).”

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For more information:

Dermod Travis, Executive Director




For more information

Read IntegrityBC’s letter to Commissioner Denham

Read the Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training transfer letter