MTV Networks refuses to be just another cable programmer. It built on mtvU’s Darfur effort in October 2007 and created the "Channel the Change: Darfur" project to educate audiences and employees across all MTV Networks brands about genocide.

Awareness of the genocide issue was boosted on-air, online and in-house via a variety of initiatives. These included a multi-language translation of mtvU’s "Darfur Is Dying" video game, which allows users to simulate a day in the life of a displaced Darfurian. The game, originally launched in English, was translated into Spanish, Arabic and Chinese with heavy promotion on the network’s international Web sites. Promotions reached 128 countries and a total potential audience of nearly 370 million households.

Other campaign aspects included a $10,000 donation to Darfurian families in refugee camps in Chad in the form of solar cookers, and employee film screenings of the Darfur Now documentary in the Los Angeles, Nashville and New York City offices.

MTV Networks consolidated all of Channel the Change: Darfur efforts by creating an online hub ( to assemble the range of its multiplatform actions and resources. The hub includes links to resources across the company and its partner organizations involved in aiding Darfur.

Fast Facts

  • After launching the translated versions of the microsite, unique visits increased by 41% and page views rose 55%.
  • A simultaneous showing of the Darfur Now trailer on MTV Networks’ channels led to a 62% boost in traffic to the Darfur is Dying site.
  • mtvU ran more than $3.5 million in media value of Darfur-related public service announcements last year.


Honorable Mentions:

Cartoon Network for Rescuing Recess — All work and no play — no way! The network invested in the health of its primary audience, ages 5-12, and contributed media resources and cash over two years to demonstrate that school recess should be a requirement.

Cox Communications for Cox: Better products. Better service. Better people. — Customer service was key to this multidimensional effort that aimed to differentiate Cox from competitors like Verizon. Bumper-sticker campaigns, a salsa lunchtime rally and an ad featuring a customer who knitted a scarf for a helpful Cox rep set the company apart.

History Channel for Take a Veteran to School Day — You’re never too old to learn new tricks: This non-partisan national and grassroots outreach project honors the greatest generation by connecting it with the latest generations in schools and communities nationwide.

Lifetime Networks for Every Woman Counts and Stop Breast Cancer for Life — An I-am-woman, hear-me-roar approach engaged women on political and health issues. The series of public awareness and advocacy campaigns motivated women to vote and become political candidates, and encouraged them to get involved in the fight for breast cancer protection legislation.

NBC Universal for Green is Universal — The green-themed campaign helped seed the environmental awareness movement and encouraged viewers and NBC Universal employees to do what they can to reduce greenhouse gases.

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