This week, thousands of people walking through London have been faced with a crucial decision: will they address the disturbing effects of domestic violence or will they turn a blind eye?
A powerful new ad campaign from Women’s Aid — a British charity that works to end domestic abuse — is the driving force behind that question. The organization recently unveiled interactive billboards around the city that show a woman’s swollen, bruised face and the simple plea, “Look at me.”
Here’s the kicker: through a jaw-dropping use of facial recognition technology, the image changes based on how passers-by react to it. If people ignore the billboard, nothing happens. But if they stop and look at it, the woman’s face begins to heal. People are also captured on camera and projected on a live feed at the bottom of the screen.
The idea behind the compelling campaign is that addressing the silence and ignorance that accompanies domestic violence is an important step to ending it. Furthermore, it’s an important reminder than we can all make a meaningful difference in the fight against abuse.
This video further explains how the billboards work:
Women’s Aid CEO Polly Neate recently spoke about the campaign, explaining that it coincides with International Women’s Day on March 8. “We want to show this International Women’s Day that anyone can ‘Make it Happen' and everyone can help put a stop to domestic violence, by noticing it, by donating to Women’s Aid, and to making sure their communities don’t tolerate the sexist attitudes that lead to abuse. That’s what we hope to achieve with this advert.”