Why I hate“Creativity”

I know what you’re thinking.

The writer of this article works at a creative agency, yet hates “creativity”? Is this just going to be a load of clickbait nonsense? Well, only partly.

Of course I don’t hate creativity in the traditional sense. As a marketer and screenwriter, my entire life revolves around our ability as humans to be inspired and to inspire others; to mould and create works of genuine art – whether commercial or otherwise.

However, as we’ve shifted increasingly into empathetic marketing over traditional (and frankly, no longer viable) models, I’ve noticed an unfortunate side to this thing we call the “creative industries”.

Increasingly, I see the very concept of creativity being weaponized as a metaphorical get-out-of-jail-free card. An excuse to exercise our own ego, desires, and whims, rather than focusing on our very foundation as an industry: to serve an audience.

“I see the very concept ofcreativity being weaponized”

It’s as if people in our industry have long-since forgotten that these things we are paid money to create exist to serve a concrete purpose. Whether to entertain, inspire, or call-to-action: the very reason for our existence is a desire to communicate to or with someone. If we create only to serve our own wants and needs, we lose any notion of empathetic value in the process.

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with creating for the sake of creativity itself. However, when we find ourselves feeling a sense of entitlement to exercise this creativity as a billable to a paying client? A line must be drawn.

“A line mustbe drawn”

As creatives, we are “problem solvers”. Our role is to bridge a gap between value and audience; to create stories that people genuinely want to be a part of; and to challenge the status quo. Whether in publicly funded arts or in marketing, we don’t exist without an audience to receive our work. If we refuse to acknowledge this, we simply aren’t doing our jobs properly.

So no, I don’t hate creativity. In fact, I love it.
What I do hate is how the term has taken on an edge of dangerous self-importance.

It’s time we, as creatives, got back to basics and used our skills as radical problem solvers to serve a valuable purpose.


Otto Koli

Senior Creative Producer

Dirty Talk

The Kirkkonummi Brandventure

Early 2024, Dirty was selected to undertake a full-scale rebrand for the…

Empathy: a new era in marketing

When we talk about the most important tools we have at our disposal as…

Dirty x Itis announce partnership

What do you do when you’re given the opportunity to pitch a campaign for one of…