D&AD judging has been going on all week down at the miserable ExCel centre in east London. On Tuesday I was on the Magazine and Newspapers jury, and a group of us spent a long day working through the many round of judging.
As I noted last year, until then there hadn't been a seperate category for magazines and newspapers. While the volume of entries in 2006 wasn't great, and there were many publications that should have been present but weren't, we judges managed to collate a broad selection of work that I believe represented well the current state of publishing.
This year the number of entries was up about 30% I reckon, but this increase in quantity wasn't matched by an increase in quality. I think we've again managed to collect a strong range for the in-book selection but the number of actual awards will be less.
The problem is there are still so many great magazines (and newspapers) that ignore this awards programme. I know D&AD have a very mixed reputation as an awards programme and organisation as a whole, particularly amongst the design world, but historically magazines have featured strongly in these awards. Now D&AD are putting resource behind this new category it seems crazy not to try and take advantage of the opportunity. Surely the best of what we make deserves/needs to be seen alongside the other creative endeavours featured in the D&AD Annual?