M&C Saatchi Abel is lending its talents for an advocacy campaign on behalf of the casual dining chain Nando that questions unconscious bias around African names.
The "Right My Name" campaign invites all South Africans to sign onto rightmyname.co.za, a website where people can add their names to a database to expand the spellcheck options that automatically changes traditional African names to more common ones.
The list of names can then be used to update users’ computer dictionaries, "so that nobody is made to feel like a mistake again," says an agency spokesperson.
"We noticed that after more than 30 years, spellcheck still highlights Nando’s as a mistake, it got us thinking. What about other names in South Africa?" says Doug Place, chief marketing officer, Nando. "Names like Nokuthula, Elodie, Darawees and Tebatso. Why are their names highlighted as mistakes too? Not cool."
The campaign - running through Human Rights Day, March 21, 2018 - includes digital, social, press, print, PR and influencer support via the hashtag #RightMyName.
Over the years, the international casual dining chain's messaging has addressed hot topics and current affairs in South Africa, but this campaign shifts these comments from societal matters to actual advocacy, says the spokesperson.