An ad industry initiative to combat online hate speech this morning unveiled a campaign to ramp it up via the same medium perpetuating it: social media.
The #EngageResponsibly campaign, backed by funding from spirits marketer Pernod Ricard, will break later this year, and is intended to accelerate efforts by the World Federation of Advertisers’ (WFA) Global Alliance of Responsible Media (GARM), and the Association of National Advertisers (ANA).
Other than the hashtag, details of the new effort were not disclosed, but the organizations said it will “harness the power and reach of big brands and social media platforms to engage and empower small and medium-sized businesses and consumers.”
“More than 80% of Americans feel responsible for being part of the solution to tackle online hate speech,” ANA CEO Bob Liodice said in a statement announcing the new effort, which will oversee the #EngageResponsibly “business system,” which will focus on the development of “educational resources” to help small businesses and consumers become more aware of online hate speech and its connection to real world violence.
“We know that more than 65% of small and medium-sized businesses want to take an active role in addressing online hate speech, but need tools and resources to guide their efforts,” Liodice continued, adding: “With this initiative, the ANA will bring together the industry to educate and inspire consumers to act. We will provide the industry with a turnkey, no-cost solution that matches the brand safety protocols used by those organizations committed to responsible advertising under the GARM framework. Our announcement today is a call for all those who care about online hate to join our efforts.”