FREE THE BID is a 501c3 non-profit initiative advocating on behalf of women directors for equal opportunities to bid on commercial jobs in the global advertising industry.

HOW TO FREE THE BID

FREE THE BID is an Initiative guaranteeing women directors an equal opportunity to bid on commercial jobs in the advertising world. Less than 7% of directors are women, and less than 3% of creative directors at ad agencies are women. These numbers are hard to swallow for 50% of the world’s population, especially when the Harvard business review and many publications suggest that women are and the NUMBER 1 consumer group that makes for 85% of product purchase decisions. Problem: A cycle that keeps women from being considered. At the bidding stage, ad agencies typically present the brand with three [...]

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CHARLOTTE REGAN – DODGY DAVE

Traditionally, on-screen representations of drug dealers are dark, dramatic, and violent. However, sometimes the job of dealing drugs can be…just as mundane as any other job. British director Charlotte Regan showcases this reality in in her short film “Dodgy Dave,” taking viewers along through the minutiae of a drug dealer’s day of work – with his young son in tow. Charlotte’s writing and visual lens imbue her subjects with the kind of depth, humor, and relational subtleties that are so often missing from depictions of similar characters in media. This authentic humanism is what sets the 24-year old director apart [...]

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KATERINA JEBB

Artist and filmmaker Katerina Jebb finds weighty resonances within the footsteps of passersby for “CHAMPS-ELYSEES SUMMER 2018,” her short film created for luxury French shoe company J.M. Weston. A cacophony of richly layered voices – activists, historical figures, and more – are woven together beneath footage of pedestrian’s feet, a military rally, the Arc de Triomphe. Katerina’s abstract juxtaposition bridges connections between large-scale ideas and events in history, showing how these live side-by-side with mundane moments between ordinary people. Throughout her career, Katerina Jebb has brought a unique artistic sensibility back and forth between commercial work (for clients including Céline, [...]

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HANNAH LUX DAVIS – THANK U, NEXT

Last Friday, Hannah Lux Davis broke the internet. When the London Alley director’s video for Ariana Grande‘s “thank u, next,” dropped, it smashed the record for most Vevo views within a 24 hour period (55.4 million…!). If that wasn’t impressive enough, the video’s impact even caused a weekend-long spike in Amazon‘s Prime viewership of the films referenced in the video: Mean Girls, Bring It On, 13 Going On 30, and Legally Blonde, along with releasing a flood of GIFs and memes that are still dominating Instagram timelines. The masterfully orchestrated rollout of “thank u, next,” included the use of excitement-building [...]

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CHIARA CLEMENTE x ARTSY x UBS

The Artsy x UBS series “Breaking Glass,” directed by Chiara Clemente, is a refreshing reminder that despite systemic biases in every creative field, there are brilliant women working to push the needle forward for representation everywhere. “I don’t think that ambition is different between men and women,” remarks Paola Antonelli, senior curator of the department of architecture and design at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. “I think opportunities are different between men and women.” Kimberly Bryant, founder of Black Girls Code, was inspired to start the nonprofit organization in order to create the sisterhood of women of [...]

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#FreetheBid is supported by:

Marc Pritchard

Chief Brand Officer

"P&G brands are using advertising as a force for good and for growth, and our pledge to Free The Bid is an important step in accelerating the progress toward gender equality. We aspire to see an equal world between women and men with equal representation, equal voices, equal roles, equal pay and equal respect – and Free The Bid is the catalyst to move us all closer to equal representation among directors for the advertising we create."

Karen Kahn

Chief Communications Officer

"#FREETHEBID is more than a pledge, it is part of our operating principle and belief that diversity is a business imperative. We strive to create technology that makes life better for everyone, everywhere, and that extends to ensuring that female voices have equal access – at every level – in the creative process. The powerful work architected by #FREETHEBID delivers cultural and societal impact and aligns with our brand promise to constantly keep reinventing."

Anastacia Maggioncalda

Head of Production

"At LinkedIn, we strive to create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce. Diversity of voice and perspective is critical to creating opportunity and transforming the creative voice as a whole. We are proud to join the #FreeTheBid movement to ensure more female voices are heard and that access to opportunity continues to evolve across the industry."

Lynne Biggar

Global CMO

"Visa is thrilled to take the pledge to #FREETHEBID globally. We want to partner with like-minded agencies who value diversity and inclusion as much as we do and are looking forward to seeing more women at the pitch and behind the camera."

Andrew Robertson

President and CEO, BBDO Worldwide

"We’ve seen firsthand how ‘Free the Bid’ opens up new opportunities for female talent and improves the quality of the work. We’re happy to support it."

Christoph Becker

CEO+CCO Gyro

"This is about supporting some of the most talented directors in the world. Giving them a platform, with #FreetheBid, to shine as they deserve is a logical call to action we believe in 100%, on all fronts."

Fred Raillard & Farid Mokart

Creative CEO, Founders Fred & Farid

"It's great to be "aware" of a problem, but only behaviors drive true change. #FreeTheBid is not a wishful declaration, it's powerful new reflex to hack our change-resistant industry."

We would like to thank the following production companies for their contribution to our website upgrade:

Thanks to the following Editorial Companies for contributing to our site maintenance.

Thanks to the following companies, whose donations helped to make
Free The Bid's database of women colorists into a reality.

Additional financial support from the following individuals:

Aine Clarke, Antiestático, Beth George Schulberg, Caitlin Clarke, Claudia Cifuentes, Dana Offenbach, Emi Lofgren, Emilia Ferreira, Emily Anderson, Kelly Mitchell, Malia James, Mariana Cobra, Orlando Wood, Patricia Santana, Patrick Li, Peyton Wilson, Ramaa Mosley, Sasha Markova, Soilfilms, Sonja Phillips, Stella Scott, Yvonne Bernard

Thanks to Emma Neal for the Free The Bid logo design

Free The Bid is proud to partner with:

Free The Bid would like to thank NeueHouse for providing us
a creative work environment in which to be inspired.

Alma Har'el

Director, Producer and Cinematographer.
Founder of #FREETHEBID

"I’m starting #FreeTheBid so the ad industry can come together and take an affirmative step towards addressing what stops advertisers from working with women directors. I couldn’t have been an independent filmmaker and make the films I love if I didn’t make a living directing commercials. I want to make sure other women filmmakers have the same chance to sustain themselves while being creative and shaping the way women are represented in advertising. We have to start the change right now in the only practical and effective way – Let women be heard."

Spike Jonze

Film director, film producer, screenwriter
and co-president of Viceland

"I find Free the Bid so inspiring. It seems like a no brainer. Of course we should be getting more women filmmakers to bid on jobs! As with all great ideas, its such a simple one and the end result is going to be getting more diverse voices into the conversation and therefore more diverse voices into the work which makes the work better."

Cindy Gallop

Advertising consultant, founder and former chair of the US branch of advertising firm Bartle Bogle Hegarty, and founder of the IfWeRanTheWorld and MakeLoveNotPorn companies.

"I am absolutely thrilled with this initiative and could not support it more.It appalls me how much our industry, clients and brands are missing out on a huge, untapped, completely wasted pool of female directorial talent, not to mention female talent across all stages of production. A huge amount of money (from creating more brand success for our predominantly female-targeting clients) and awards (for truly innovative, disruptive work) are being left on the table. END THAT NOW and pledge #FreeTheBid."

PJ Pereira

CCO & Co-founder
Pereira & O'Dell

"A simple idea that would force the entire ecosystem to consider women directors."

Susan Credle

Global CCO
FCB Global

"We’ve included a female director for consideration in 95% of our production bids. A female director was awarded the job on 30% of the projects. Before the initiative roughly 40% of all bids included a female director, now we are at 95%. Before the initiative roughly 10% of all bids resulted in a female director, now we are at 30%."

Kate Hildebrant

VP/Director of
Content Production
CP+B

"Free the Bid’s work to raise awareness and transparency of the issue has motivated us to help change the stats. For us, it is not about filling a quota by giving opportunity to female directors regardless of talent, it is about the extra push to discover the best female directors in the industry.

Since CP+B pledged to Free The Bid, we have increased the amount of jobs directed by female talent by 400%. Of our jobs that required triple bidding, 20% were awarded to women."

Glenn Cole & John Boiler

CCO + CEO
72andSunny

"We can all agree on the importance of diversity, but it comes down to access and opportunity. Free The Bid fosters both, prioritizing action over talk. It also points to a future where our daughters have the same access and opportunity we had. Hell yes to that."

Maria Smith

Executive Creative Director
M&C Saatchi LA

"It's all too easy to see the disparity in our industry. So championing an initiative like Free the Bid was a no brainer. It's a simple and smart way that we can all affect a sea of change."

#freethebid

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