Weinstein ignited the conversation we've needed to have for decades. The reveal of his depravity by so many courageous women fuelled global outrage about the inappropriate behaviour we have endured in workplaces in all fields – including advertising.
Our pantheon of misogyny includes Neil French, Gustavo Martinez and Kevin Roberts. Up until now the ad biz sexism has largely been tolerated – a mere hiccup on the newsfeed. For the most part we have been guilty of simply averting our eyes or mumbling something incomprehensible about it being an HR issue.
A significant part of the problem is there still aren't enough women in senior roles of power. Take creative directors as a example: fewer than 10% are female. Bolstering the management ranks with women will help mitigate the problem. Fewer men can abuse their power if they're not in positions of power.
A glimmer of hope was provided by several international agency networks and global companies that announced earlier this year a commitment to a hiring quota. For every position, 50% of the candidates being considered must be female. It's a step in the right direction. We all need to hire, mentor and support more women, help them navigate a path to the top.
I met Laura Gregory of Great Guns, an award-winning international production company. That she owns and leads a successful company in a business so entirely dominated by men that it gives me hope. As does the creation of the Cannes Glass Lion award. But we still need more brave vocal advocates – like Cindy Gallop – who call people on their bullshit. It's no longer someone else's problem, it's our shared issue. Silence equal complicity.
This is the year that women found their voice, their platform and the support they deserved to tell the world their story. It's a watershed year, nothing will ever be the same again. And as a result, misogyny will no longer find safe places to hide. It's about damned time. As we bid adieu to 2017, we also bid adieu to the Joe Alexanders of the world. Don't let the door hit you on the way out.