Talk About it: A Video Campaign
The Uncomfortable Conversation, Inc. seeks partners on a ground-breaking video campaign designed to spark and support practical conversations about sexual violence among Millennial men (ages 15-25). This campaign will help advance dialogue about sexual assault and abuse, inspire support for survivors and change the culture that allows sexual violence to take place at all.
In partnership with individual and/or institutional creators, this campaign will formally launch a YouTube library of short (60-90 seconds), practical videos that can serve as a way to make sexual assault prevention and response education scalable and accessible to anyone with a cell phone.
To ensure broader reach and amplification, The Uncomfortable Conversation, Inc. will launch a public campaign featuring the videos and contributing partners. This campaign will consist of targeted media pitching, blog posts, and outreach to partners likely to use this video content for curricular purposes, including campuses, fraternities, sports teams, high schools, and other organizations focused on sexual assault prevention and response. This content is not designed to replace curriculum, only to enhance it, and will be offered free-of-charge. The campaign will launch in mid-August 2017 and run through the end of October 2017.
There are many ways to engage with this project as an individual creator, an organization or brand, or a member of the creative community:
- Contribute content ideas. Will video content support your efforts to train others on sexual assault prevention or response? Let us know how we can help. Are there conversations you’ve had about sexual violence that helped you as a survivor or advocate? Help us educate others on what they can do and say.
- Host or organize a 2-hour video shoot. Depending on the flavor of your network, we can help with brainstorming content, issue advising, writing dialogue or providing actors and/or videographers. You can do this with a group or just with a friend or two. All content contributors will be recognized as project partners.
- Participate in a video shoot organized by The Uncomfortable Conversation. To date, we’ve hosted 2 shoots resulting in 50 videos for the campaign. Volunteers include people with acting experience, logistics support, and videographers.
- Host a premiere party. We’ll be rolling these videos out in style. Do you have a location perfect for a premiere party? Food or beverage you’d love to contribute? Or would you serve on a host committee and make sure amazing people are in the room?
- Build our distribution network. Don’t have the time or talent to produce a video? That’s okay! Sign on as an amplification partner, and help us reach those who want to talk about it. As an amplification partner, you can help make introductions to schools, conferences and other platforms where we can showcase this work.
Benefits to Partners
- Branded partner on national campaign press release and outreach to potential partners and media
- Co-branding on individual videos shared on YouTube channel
- Recognition on The Uncomfortable Conversation, Inc. website as founding video partner
- Social media amplification during rollout period (mid-August – October 2017)
Framing of Issue
Most men want to talk more about sexual violence, but they don’t know where to start. The topic is uncomfortable, and we aren’t skilled on the topic or skilled at being uncomfortable. At The Uncomfortable Conversation, Inc., we believe the following:
- Conversations – and education – about sexual violence need to go beyond narrowly defined images of male perpetrators and female victims. The truth is that one in four women and one in six men will be sexually abused or assaulted in their lifetimes (U.S. figures).
- A culture of blame and shame prevents us from engaging in meaningful conversations about this topic. When we drop the blame game, we stop looking for the cause of the problem and start identifying our role in the solution. We can still hold people accountable without stripping them of their humanity.
- We need to embrace – and answer – practical questions men have about sexual violence. It’s not that the other broader issues, like gender inequity, masculinity or violence, don’t matter. But we can only tackle this topic one practical conversation at a time, and in the real-life scenarios that unfold in our lives.
- We believe in a world where healing from sexual is possible, and a world where pathways to healing are paved by men and women of all ages and backgrounds. Unless and until we can speak comfortably about sexual violence, we’re leaving survivors behind.
We are looking for a range of videos directed towards Millennial men (ages 15-25) and the conversations they have about sexual violence with the people in their lives:
- Classmates (high school or college)
- Members of their fraternity or sports team
- Casual or serious dating partners
- Teachers or Professors
- Parents or Guardians
- Younger siblings or cousins
- Colleagues or bosses
- Engaging in social media
Given that the goal here is a massive collection of videos, each individual series can select 1-2 key audiences from this group of greatest interest.
These videos are NOT targeting perpetrators of sexual violence. They are targeting survivors (male/female/non-binary) and the people who love them and/or the general population of people who find sexual violence abhorrent but are uncomfortable talking about it.
Purpose/Call to Action
The purpose of these videos are to model real-life scenarios in which conversations about sexual violence take place, and then to illustrate those conversations in a variety of settings. A few examples:
- How to get drunk and not rape someone
- How to advocate for survivors
- How to tell the truth about sexual violence/addressing myths
- How to respond to a friend who was just sexually assaulted
- How to support a survivor who is mad/sad/scared/in dark place
- How to navigate consent in sexy and smooth ways
- How to take your foot out of your mouth if you say the wrong thing
- How to jump on teachable moments or address troubling behavior (without blame or shame)
- How to talk about sexual violence in the workplace
Additional Creative Direction
- Viewers should walk away feeling empowered, confident, and more aware. “Yeah, I can have that conversation.” “Oh, that makes sense.” “HA! I never thought about it that way.” “Phew, I handled it okay.”
- To provide a library of truly accessible and engaging content, we are looking for variation in gender identity and sexuality, gender of survivor, race and ethnicity, and location or context. The contexts can add humor and entertainment value. For example, you can ask for a kiss at a bar – or on a roller coaster wearing a GoPro camera. Other contexts: gaming, watching TV, surfing the net, rock climbing, playing a sport, during a hook-up, at a party, at a sporting event, etc.
- Brand-wise, we’re edgy and crisp. We are not afraid to take risks. We’re willing to “go there,” as long as going there results in deeper understanding and productive ways of engaging on this topic. Humor is fine, but not necessary. Above all, keep it real.
If you haven’t had many conversations about sexual violence, please reach out to Sarah who can provide sample scenarios, scripts, and other resources.