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Scott McKay is a Toronto strategist, writer, creative director, patient manager, half-baked photographer and forcibly retired playwright.

This little site is designed to introduce him and his thoughts to the world. (Whether the world appreciates the intro is another matter.) If you'd like to chat, then you can guess what the boxes below are for.



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    "They had their cynical code worked out. The public are swine; advertising is the rattling of a stick inside a swill-bucket."

          – George Orwell






    "Advertising – a judicious mix of flattery and threats."

          – Northrop Frye






    "Chess is as an elaborate a waste of time as has ever been devised outside an advertising agency."

          – Raymond Chandler


    Entries in Margaret Wente (1)


    a letter to Phillip Crawley, publisher of the Globe and Mail, and John Stackhouse, editor-in-chief

    "The subject who is truly loyal to the Chief Magistrate will neither advise nor submit to arbitrary measures." – JuniusDear Mr. Stackhouse and Mr. Crawley,

    This is an open letter to you from someone who's been a Globe and Mail subscriber for most of the past 20 years. 

    I'm writing because of the Globe's response to the recent situation regarding Margaret Wente and an alleged case of plagiarism.  

    I can't judge the truth of the allegations made by Carol Wainio, or as your Public Editor called her on Friday, the "anonymous blogger." (Although having read Professor Wainio's post, the allegations seem to be extremely serious.)

    But I can expect your Public Editor to take those allegations seriously. And I expect the both of you to take them seriously as well. 

    Unfortunately, Ms. Stead did not seem very interested in going through the allegations in any detail. Her response to Professor Wainio was not only patronizing and dismissive, it was laughably unthorough. She says that she "asked" Ms. Wente if she'd read an article by Dan Gardner of the Ottawa Citizen, where at least one of the quotes Ms. Wente had used originated. Ms. Wente denied it. Case closed for Ms. Stead.

    Perhaps even more unfortunately, now that the Globe has apparently investigated further and "taken action" in this case, the action is nowhere near enough. Ms. Stead now reports to someone else, and Ms. Wente continues to write her column. Everything else is being handled "privately." 

    This is not good enough. I expect more from both of you, and from the Globe.

    The dismissive and and contemptuous attitude continued after whatever "appropriate action" had been taken. Ms. Wente's column as posted at 10:10 Monday night seems less contrite about her own mistakes than it is bitter about the current digital culture that held her work up to examination. Having read her latest column, I can only assume that she'll try harder not to take work from other people and call it her own, but can't really promise anything. I'm not even sure that I heard the sound of her wrist being slapped.

    This arbitrary decision to not punish plagiarism is not acceptable.

    Ms. Wente and Ms. Stead need to be dismissed for cause, as neither has lived up to the expectations of their positions.

    As neither of you has seen fit to do what is needed, please cancel my subscription, effective immediately.