The National Union Of Journalists /NUJP Promo, Case study CLOSED EYES by BBDO Guerrero Makati City

CLOSED EYES

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Industry Charities, Foundations, Volunteers
Media Promo & PR, Case study
Market Philippines
Agency BBDO Guerrero Makati City
Art Director Rizza Garcia
Copywriter Nikki Golez
Released November 2012

Credits & Description

Category: Charity and Not for Profit
Advertiser: NUJP
Product/Service: NATIONAL UNION OF JOURNALISTS
Agency: BBDO GUERRERO
Chief Communications Officer/Writer: David Guerrero (BBDO Guerrero)
Executive Creative Director/Art Director: Brandie Tan (BBDO Guerrero)
Executive Creative Director/Writer: Tin Sanchez (BBDO Guerrero)
Assistant Creative Director/Art Director: Jeck Ebreo (BBDO Guerrero)
Copywriter: Nikki Golez (BBDO Guerrero)
Art Director: Rizza Garcia (BBDO Guerrero)
Print Producer: Al Salvador (BBDO Guerrero)
Final Art: Manny Vailoces (BBDO Guerrero)
Account Manager: Jace Burayag (BBDO Guerrero)
Media placement: Non-profit - - November 21, 2012

Summary of the Campaign
58 people, 32 of them journalists, were gunned down in the Southern Philippines in broad daylight. This is the single deadliest attack on journalists in the history of the world.

2 years after the Maguindanao Massacre, not a single conviction has been made. The trial, stalled by endless legal manoeuvrings, has created a ‘culture of impunity’ that furthers media killings.

In a climate of fear, people choose to see no evil. This was the problem. So we visualised it and turned it into a symbol of solidarity for The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP).

For the second anniversary of the Ampatuan Massacre, we took over the editorial spread of the country’s largest newspaper for a week, and changed each of its columnists’ pictures to show their eyes shut. This unprecedented takeover ran in 1.8m copies of a newspaper whose editorial spread isn’t open to advertising.

As a result, we received coverage worth several million times our modest expenditure in print, online and broadcast.

The Situation
The NUJP represents the press in the Philippines. Unity, integrity and dignity for the press are its goals. But when 32 journalists are gunned down in broad daylight and nothing happens with the case, the NUJP has a problem. People are scared; they choose to turn a blind eye to the massacre; and the men behind it are more empowered.

The Goal
Two years after 32 journalists were gunned down in Maguindanao, there has been no progress in the court of law. We needed to take the case to the court of public opinion. The NUJP targeted opinion leaders in the Opinion pages of the country’s leading newspaper. Our goal was to confront Filipinos with their attitudes towards the Maguindanao Massacre.

The Strategy
The NUJP turned to the country’s most influential journalists for support. This gave us the opportunity to do something that’s never been done before: take over the editorial spread of the country’s largest newspaper. Getting these columnists to close their eyes to what happened in Maguindanao allowed us to confront people with the problem in a way that was relevant to the NUJP.

Execution
We wrote The Philippine Daily Inquirer’s columnists one by one, asking them to take a stand on the 2-year anniversary of the massacre. Plain envelopes were sent, with the headline – It’s been 2 years. Do you remember? Days later, we received a call from The Inquirer saying we had the newspaper’s full support. This let us take a symbol of fear and turn it into a symbol of solidarity, to full effect. For the week of November 23, 2011, the columnists of the country’s largest newspaper had their eyes closed in their photos. A headline explained, “Some people would rather forget what happened in Maguindanao. We’ve closed our eyes to remember.” This unprecedented takeover ran in 1.8m copies of a newspaper whose editorial spread isn’t open to advertising.

Documented Results
We received coverage worth several million times our modest expenditure in print and online. The Philippine Daily Inquirer received several calls, emails, Facebook messages and tweets about the editorial page takeover. The creative effort was discussed on blogs, and written about by columnists from other newspapers. Columnists who participated in our effort even used their columns to talk about our cause.