Creatives query need for formal association

Founding committee members of the Association of Creative Independents are facing a dilemma over the future of their organisation, still to establish itself on a formal footing more than two years after its inaugural meeting.

Founding committee members of the Association of Creative

Independents are facing a dilemma over the future of their organisation,

still to establish itself on a formal footing more than two years after

its inaugural meeting.



With the ACI set to appoint a former agency chief executive as its first

president in the next few weeks, some of its founders are questioning

whether it would be better to remain as an informal group.



The idea of the ACI providing a focus for the growing number of

creatives working outside the conventional system was first mooted in

June 1995.



Since then, the organisation has been virtually anonymous. Today it does

not have a membership list or an agreed membership fee.



Almost 40 creative independents declared an interest in becoming founder

members of the ACI when it was first mooted. ACI supporters hoped the

body would raise the credibility of creative independents among

potential clients and would raise the status of its members above that

of mere freelancers.



Bill Thompson, a member of the ACI’s launch committee, said: ’We wanted

a president out of pride rather than necessity. I don’t see any need to

go beyond what we’re doing now if we can’t improve on it.’



But Paul Garrett, a founding partner of Fourhead who has been pushing

for a properly established ACI, this week dismissed suggestions that the

idea was a dead duck. ’We’re still on track, even if we’re not

hurrying,’ he said.



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