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How do you get to be a Sharks Judge?

Well some of you might remember this old joke.. A posh lady in NY asks a construction worker “How do I get to Carnegie Hall?” He replies “Lady, you gotta practice, practice, practice.” (we’re not explaining it). The reason this gag occurred is because our answer is kind of the same. We’re always looking for judges who got to Carnegie Hall, or rather the advertising, design, short film or music video equivalent.  In other words, the proven, the experts, the respected, the leaders. Those who’re looked up to, followed and admired. Those who influence the creativity. We’ll always be looking for those who can say - “I’m qualified to be a judge because I’ve proved I can do it. I practiced, practiced, practiced and I got to the top.” So if you think this sounds like you, or you think it sounds like someone you know, we’re always interested and we’ll always listen to suggestions. ​ Email the Shark Judges Committee

When is Kinsale?

The 2024 dates: 25 - 28 September. Kinsale is where the Advertising, Digital & Design categories are judged, and where the Best New Talent Awards presentations are held. The shortlists will be announced online during Kinsale week as the results are reached by the various juries. The winners are announced on 14th October 2024.

What happens in Brighton?

Short Film & Branded Content judging in February, and Music Video judging in May.

How do I order a duplicate trophy?

Duplicates cost £310 + delivery. (add 20% VAT for UK orders) They are made in batches 3 times a year, so may take a while to produce, depending on your order date. ​ Please send an email with details of the winning entry along with any change in credits for the badge. Remember to include the invoice address and delivery address if different. Email the Sharks Duplicates Team

How do I get a hotel room in Kinsale?

Kinsale has a limited number of guest rooms, and you may find it hard to find a vacancy, especially if you have left it late to book. However, we do hold some rooms for partners and sponsors who are yet to come on board. Please get in touch with us if you'd like to unlock some rooms through partnership opportunities.

What is the judging process?

At the Shark Awards, our ambition is to recognise the best work of the year and create awareness of those individuals and companies responsible for creating it. Our awards are judged by expert individuals at the top of their profession and whose collective experience, knowledge, skill and talent provide the necessary proficiency to make that call. Our judges are briefed to look for the outstanding, most distinctive, most courageous work that elevates, engages and cuts through the daily morass, whether it's in the quality of the idea or the individual craft of the execution that is being assessed. Our method is not unique but follows the principle that all key selection decisions are best negotiated in-person, face to face, in a room together. This may seem a little old-fashioned these days but we firmly believe that bringing the various judges panels together, to sit in a meeting of minds, chew the cud, discuss, examine and to fiercely negotiate with passion, eyeball to eyeball, ensures the selection process is thorough and fair, with no stone left unturned. ​ First, each judge must look through all the entries online, in their own time, usually over a two-week period. They are asked to make an initial score based on their own individual perception of the piece and the category to be considered. This is done in isolation and without discussion with the other jurors. Work can only be considered for the category for which it was entered and cannot be moved to any another. Therefore care should be taken when choosing your categories. ​ Once the online round is over, we bring the juries together, usually over 2 days for the final awards decision making process. This is why we use Kinsale & Brighton: inspiring locations away from everyday distractions. By the end of the first day we expect the panels to have selected their shortlists, sometimes referred to as Finalist. Every entry is collectively considered, but the cream always rises to the top. Usually there is good debate about where the bar for 'shortlist standard' sits, but we (The Sharks) do not set any targets. If it is a good year there will be multiple pieces selected for shortlist standard, but in some years the panel may feel only a handful of entries are worthy of that accolade (or, even none at all). The shortlist results are immediately published online. On the second day, having slept on their thoughts, the judges will re-convene to determine the winners. In Advertising, Design, Digital & Social,  we give Bronze, Silver & Gold. However in Short Film, Branded Content & Music Video the jury are asked to select 'winners' only (ie; no bronze or silver awards), albeit they can select more than one winner if there are two (or more) pieces that are equally brilliant. Please note it is possible (as sometimes happens) that there may be a Shortlist produced but NO winners are subsequently selected for award. At the Sharks we don't run a 'Best In Show' principle - we're proud that it's not easy to win a Shark! Once the winners have been determined the various panels are asked to select an overall Grand Prix from their particular section: Advertising (idea), Digital & Social, Advertising Film Craft, Design, Music Video, Short Film & Branded Content.  ​ The organisers of The Sharks are not present during deliberations but are on hand to advise of any technical issues or clarify any questions that may arise regarding our rules. However, the sessions are attended and monitored by an independent professional who also keeps detailed records of the decisions. For the avoidance of doubt, the judges reserve the right not to make any award in any category if the creative standard, as set out by the collective panel has not been met. Furthermore, the decisions made by the judges are their personal subjective opinions and for reasons of confidentiality we do not provide further comment on individual entries. ​ To be selected as a Finalist or Winner is a real accolade and one of great value and benefit. The work and list of accreditation is published in perpetuity on our website for reference purposes and is free to use. BRANDS, AGENCIES, LABELS, PRODUCTION COMPANIES & REPS are now using our Sharks Search Tool to seek out award-winning talent for their next projects.

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