Back in my younger, slightly less professional days, I worked on a crappy client who forced us to use a D-list celebrity as a spokesperson. This pseudo-celeb had final say on all our scripts and inevitably he’d fax us back “approved” scripts that were horribly re-written. There was only one production company in town who’d even work with the guy and everyone knew the spots were going to suck. So one day, after receiving “approved”-and-massacred scripts from the celeb, I faxed them over to the production company with a cover letter that said “Here are the final scripts. The celeb fucked them up as usual, but the client won’t care. They’re too stupid to know the difference.”

As page 3 was going through the fax machine, I realized I had hit the speed dial for the client, not the production company. Holy shit.

I bribed our receptionist to call the client’s receptionist and say a confidential document was accidentally faxed to them and could they throw it out without reading it. The fact that I wasn’t fired later that day confirmed they mercifully complied.

The point of this story? Well, The Creative Group just completed a survey that shows nearly 8 in 10 advertising and marketing executives confess they’ve made a mistake when sending e-mail – everything from “I once sent an internal memo about restroom etiquette to a prospective client by accident.” to “Someone sent out confidential salary information to the whole firm.” (I’ve seen that happen BTW.)

Read. Cringe. Laugh. Learn your lesson.


5 Responses to “Whoops.”

  1. 1 katelivesinbrooklyn

    Try via phone. In my younger days my boss, an Executive Producer at a production company had two agents named Jeff. I, unassuming executive assistant as I was, scheduled the right call with the wrong Jeff, which was really really really uncool because it was about some new work that the other agent, from the other agency, had brought my boss. Yipes! Of course I was silently listening on the line and had to pipe up and say that oops we had dialed the wrong Jeff. Oopsie. Amazingly I was not fired!

    When I think about how many times I was ‘amazingly not fired!’ it astounds me!!!

  2. 2 Jeff D

    I know exactly who you’re talking about here Matt. Didn’t know about the FAX incident though. Just about spit my iced tea out all over my keyboard.

  3. 3 dognpony

    Kate, I had an art director who could never seem to figure out how to put someone on hold. So she’d get a call from a photo rep, put her on hold, tell me “We’ll continue concepting later. I have to talk to this annoying rep.” and then realize the rep could hear her the whole time.

  4. 4 dognpony

    Jeff, yeah, I spent about 5 hours that day mentally packing my bags. I certainly learned my lesson after that one.

  5. 5 Kevin

    Back when email was a “new” technology, I worked at an agency that shared (yes shared) a single email address. I had an old friend send me an unsolicited note saying he’d heard I was sick of working there, and was I looking for a job? Well, the President called me into the office, and asked me if this was true. Just so happens I was waiting to hear if I’d got a job at another company…but hadn’t heard yet. So I naturally said, “no, of course not” and that I wasn’t sure what had prompted that email. I got the job the next day and gave my notice, looking like a complete asshole.

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