If someone had said to me before that the immeasurable success of this year’s DIMAS would be amplified by a large church (and by amplified I don’t just mean the amazing acoustics), a pie in a cardboard box and colloquial dress code, I would have had my doubts. Media events are often top heavy with glamour and ostentation, and light on substance and compassion.
The 2008 DIMAS, however, avoided any of the above and instead produced an evening of exceptional local talent, only matched by our emphatic neo-gothic surroundings. Leapfrogg were among an illustrious list of sponsors, and we were proud to support the ‘Most Effective Digital Marketing Campaign Award’. As a sponsor, we knew it wasn’t about our name up in lights, but more for the recognition of the industry and businesses that we are happily associated with – especially with the last quarter of this year being enveloped by an unstable economic climate. I think the industry and everyone involved has proved that staying positive and passionate has certainly got us all through a turbulent time.
This is the why the DIMAS had more emphasis draped on them this year. Each category was full of businesses, agencies, studios and individuals who had all remained focused and driven, and subsequently deserved to be nominated.
Kevin Carey delivered a speech with the usual amount of brilliance. His engaging introduction, titled ‘HumaniTy’, echoed around the cavernous All Saints’ interior. Proceedings were then comically sewn together by host Stephen Grant, with the help of Mark Walker of SCIP; very few escaped a cheeky, but innocuous comment from the Komedia keeper as people arrived on stage! The award itself deserved a prize for its innovative design and unique character – attributes that were synonymous with each winner that held it.
The judges undoubtedly had their work cut out to distinguish between some healthy local competition, so they were probably thankful when the task was momentarily directed to the audience. As the award for ‘BANG Best Use of Animation’ was ascending, glow sticks (yes, glow sticks) were being distributed to every table, and guests looked at each other with both puzzlement and anticipation. Was this to be a media rave of religious proportions? Not tonight, no. The glow sticks were to be used to select the winner by everyone waving them frantically in the air when each nominee was announced! The light from the sticks and the noise from those cheering was captured on a visual device, that then gauged the nominees popularity on the large screen. Whether or not the experiment was genuine, it certainly provoked the crowd and was the perfect preface to Big Fug stimulating the masses with their DJ set.
So, a night to remember. Never before have I had so much fun in a church, neon green glow stick in my grasp, surrounded by the elite of the digital south! The Brighton and Hove Web Awards may be in the past, but the reincarnation of the DIMAS has a very bright future indeed. I can’t wait to see next year’s agenda…