The Lebanese society is deeply rooted in patriarchy to the point of shaming and blaming women who are victims of rape. Victim blaming is the main reason women do not report rape cases in Lebanon fearing scandal and stigma. Abaad, a Lebanese NGO, wants to shift the blame from the victim to the rapist, and empower women to speak up.
Our objective was to reach the Lebanese mass, however, given our limited budget of $16,000, we had to adopt an effective approach to maximize our OOH reach. Thus we took our campaign to the streets to publically expose the rapists and finally put the shame where it belongs.
Describe the creative idea.
#ShameOnWho? (#MineElFelten) – Judge the rapist not the victim
In the Lebanese patriarchal society, people tend to blame the woman who was victim of sexual abuse as if she was “Looking for it”. They criticize the way she dresses, the way she looks, her actions, etc… Victims of rape are accused of being at fault and called names. A very common Lebanese word is used when “accusing” a rape victim is “Feltene” which means someone who is morally loose. This is why we asked the rhetorical question #Min_ElFelten (#shameOnWho?) to highlight that the woman is not to blame, but the rapist is. He is the one to be blamed for his lack of humanity and loose morals. The shame needed to be shifted from the victim so that people could finally judge the rapist not the victim.
Describe the strategy.
Our audience was the Lebanese society, including public figures, influencers and the public at large.
It was crucial for our campaign to portray reality to the fullest so our insights stemmed from the experiences and testimonials of rape survivors who shared their stories on how their families’ and society’s shaming forced them not to speak up and report their rape cases.
To expose the Lebanese patriarchy we conducted a social experiment in the popular streets of the capital to show how people reacted to the cries of a rape victim. Their shameful reactions sparked popular outrage, encouraging more women to publicly face their rapists as we graffiti their facial composites on the city walls through a collaboration with female graffiti artists. With a limited budget at hand, we exposed the rapists for the first time and plastered their faces across Beirut’s walls, putting the shame where it really belongs.
Describe the execution.
After revealing our social experiment online and sparking local and international outrage, more women were encouraged to come forward. Our aim was to help them publically shame their own rapists.
The survivors described their rapists in details, and we collaborated with female graffiti artists to turn these descriptions into immersive graffiti/outdoor installations of the rapists’ facial composites.
We turned real stories into interactive installations, using simple yet powerful black and white design along with our main campaign message #ShameOnWho, and placed them in prime locations around the city of Beirut.
Through motion detector VO technology placed under each graffiti, pedestrians were compelled to stop by and listen to the survivors’ stories, judging for the first time, the rapist not the victim.
List the results.
Unprecedented conversation on rape and massive local/international resonance pushing 238 rape survivors to speak up.
- 4 Billion+ impressions
- 13.9 Million+ views
- $12.23 Million+ earned media
- 226,000+ engagements
- 497 publications (34 countries-Digital+offline)
- 238 cases of sexual assault reported to Abaad during the month of the campaign versus 13 in previous year
- ULAP–Major Lebanese international influencer, came forward as a rape survivor following the campaign and is met with unprecedented support and praise.
- Prominent politicians, celebrities and public figures tweeted/posted their support.
- Local/regional TV coverage (news bulletin)+international coverage including CNN International, BBC, France 24, AJ+, Brut India etc.
- #ShameOnWho recognized as the prime #MeToo campaign of Lebanon.
- Huge debate sparked in the Lebanese American University around #ShameOnWho.
- Instagram artist Audrey Ghoussoub created #ShameOnWho comic series.
- Irish movement #ThisIsNotConsent joined the #ShameOnWho campaign.