Diary: Spinning (red) top

Ashley Highfield, the chief executive of Johnston Press, is putting on a brave face about spending £24 million to acquire i, the 40p daily paper, just as Trinity Mirror prepares to spoil the party with the launch of a rival title, costing 50p.

Highfield Tweeted last week: "Broker Liberum put out another BUY note on Johnston Press citing Mirror’s New Day tabloid as no threat to i paper." There wasn’t room in his Tweet to mention that Liberum is Johnston’s City stockbroker and is working on the acquisition of i – although its media analysts are fearlessly independent, of course.

Jingle hell

There’s a great – perhaps apocryphal – tale about Newcastle United rejecting Alan Shearer in his youth because they put him in goal during his trial, only to pay a record £15 million for the striker in 1996. In a (slightly) similar anecdote, Diary has heard that J Walter Thompson’s executive creative director, Russell Ramsey (pictured, above), almost joined the agency much earlier in his career but was put off when he heard it was responsible for the "I feel like Chicken Tonight" jingle.

Winner or sinner?

Diary hates to stir the pot but should Wieden & Kennedy London’s "keep up" ad for Honda be eligible for a British Arrow given that the Advertising Standards Authority banned it? For the record, Diary thinks that it’s a wonderful piece of work and that the regulator’s ruling was a harsh one… but the question remains. One for all the budding ethicists in adland, perhaps?

Got a diary story? E-mail us at campaign.diary@haymarket.com 

Social photos of the week, 26 February 2016

"Knockturn alley. Dark & rough. Where every design and tech startup would’ve based if diagon alley were real." Only Grey’s Nils Leonard could make Harry Potter sound highfalutin.

Lucky Generals’ co-founder Andy Nairn can’t resist innuendo – as anyone familiar with his agency’s work will know.

A snap of Wacl’s speed-mentoring evening from the Starcom Mediavest Group boss Pippa Glucklich. It’s a bit blurry but that’s to be expected given the event.  

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