Angela Natividad's Live & Uncensored!

25 February 2008

Rest Easy, Paul Tilley

I think it's dumb that people are blaming bloggers like Agency Spy and Adscam for the death of DDB's Paul Tilley.

Assuming Tilley killed himself, people don't just take their lives because their feelings get bruised a few times. It's something they mull over for months, sometimes years. And a whole constellation of personal problems factor in.

Paul Tilley had a long successful career that aspiring CDs would kill to have. And blaming his death on bloggers is stupid and irresponsible.

I didn't think Tilley's "get your shit together!" memo was all that bad, but pointing fingers at people who covered it can only hurt the industry at large. Are agency watchdogs supposed to suppress their thoughts about professional behaviour out of concern somebody's going to take things too personally? That's the worst kind of extortion, and it's not a burden anyone should be forced to carry.

You need tough skin to walk out into the world and make a mark; universal approval is a gift nobody gets. Not Carnegie, not Jesus, not Elvis, not Bob Garfield, not Tilley.

Your detractors -- of which there'll be many, the more visible you get -- can't take your will to live from you.