Just weeks before world leaders convened at the United Nations to debate the first international Arms Trade Treaty, Amnesty International reached out to O-Arms. They asked us to generate an integrated global campaign designed to raise immediate awareness, educate people on the issue and secure a million petition signatures to present to the U.N. To fire everyone up, we based our effort on one ridiculous fact: bananas have strict trade regulations yet light artillery and other serious weapons do not.
Goal: To inspire young activists and encourage President Obama to vote yes on a global Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) in the UN. The campaign centered on the discovery that bananas face stricter global trade regulations than AK-47s do. And it worked. The petition garnered over 1 million signatures, enough to influence President Obama to vote yes, and on April 3, 2013, the ATT was signed by the UN. The campaign went on to be named Most Powerful Amnesty International Campaign by BuzzFeed.
Case Study Video
We launched ClickBoom.org, a street art-based campaign demonstrated how fast and one-click easy it is for one person to affect the issue; as in "just click the online petition and Boom!" You registered your support and the United Nations delegates would hear your opinion.
The effort centered around a rally held in Times Square on June 27. Quickly, we reached out to five young artists located all over the globe and created a series of modern activist art designed to be shared on Facebook and printed on t-shirts.
A 12-page printed guerilla book, “Bananafesto”, was distributed to thousands of New Yorkers in Times Square during the rally.
Ammunition crates stocked full of bananas with messages affixed to them appeared aside rally activists.
Thousands of people were exposed to the activists’ messages on June 27, which included a film running on digital outdoor media throughout the square.
Dozens of major media like BBC, CNN, Al Jazeera. Reuters, AFP and the Christian Science Monitor covered the campaign, focusing on Amnesty International’s creative “bananas” concept, which gained continued traction throughout the arms trade talks in New York in July 2012. The Click Boom campaign helped to ensure nearly a million signatures were delivered to the UN.
The result: on April 2, 2012, the U.N. ratified the first global arms trade treaty in history.