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No Space for Online Hate Speech.

Why Engage Responsibly? Humanity is under attack online. Join us in fighting back.

Hate speech is turning corners of our online spaces toxic, with 40% of Americans having experienced online hate. Words are being used as weapons. Perpetrators sit behind screens, spewing hate with expressions of racism, homophobia, xenophobia, misogyny, and other forms of targeted harassment against vulnerable groups and individuals. Watch the manifesto video to see what we can do about it.

What is Engage Responsibly? Engage Responsibly is an initiative that harnesses the collective power of brands, social media platforms and individuals to stop online hate.

Led by the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) in partnership with Global Alliance for Responsible Media (GARM), Engage Responsibly’s goal is to drastically reduce online hate by 2025 by driving awareness and action on the issue and empowering everyone to be part of the solution in stopping its spread.

Why Engage Responsibly focuses on SMBs in addition to big brands and consumers

With approximately 28 million SMBs in the U.S., these businesses offer a tremendous ecosystem for scaling mobilization against online hate speech, with 68% of SMBs saying they would fight hate if there was a coalition to join. Through Engage Responsibly, SMBs, a fragmented, yet powerful business segment in aggregation, benefit from resources that democratize responsible media practices and tools, the same ones that many large corporations use, providing them as a turnkey, no-cost solution.

Our Partners

Engage Responsibly is led by the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) in partnership with the Global Alliance for Responsible Media (GARM) and supported by capability contributors ANA Alliance for Inclusive and Multicultural Marketing (AIMM), Brand Safety Institute, Ogilvy, and Pernod Ricard who founded, seeded, and donated the initiative to the advertising industry to scale. Engage Responsibly is an all-in approach to tackling online hate, built collaboratively with the social media platforms within the GARM environment, along with the support of major brands and businesses of all sizes, non-profits and SMB representation.

Frequently Asked Questions

    • The ANA is leading Engage Responsibly, in partnership with GARM, building the initiative in the GARM environment, specifically with the GARM Education Working Group comprised of ANA, GARM, and platform executives spanning Facebook, Snap, TikTok, Twitter, and YouTube. The ANA-led Engage Responsibly business system is further supported by ANA Alliance for Inclusive & Multicultural Marketing (AIMM), Brand Safety Institute (BSI), Ogilvy, and Pernod Ricard who seeded and donated the initiative to the ANA and continues to be actively involved.

    • The ANA is leading Engage Responsibly as an initiative in the GARM environment, aligned with GARM’s 11- protocol brand safety floor, which includes online hate speech. Engage Responsibly is developed within the GARM Education Working Group comprised of GARM, ANA and platform executives, including Facebook, Snap, TikTok, Twitter, and YouTube representation. Through Engage Responsibly, SMBs, a fragmented audience, will benefit from GARM tools and consumer outreach will offer vital focus for moderators—with these efforts advancing GARM brand safety work. Engage Responsibly education developed within GARM will span a resource portal highlighting reporting tools (creating transparency & highlighting efforts), SMB outreach & education (democratizing brand safety tools & best practices via media spend and engagement), and consumer outreach & education (creating visibility & promoting civility via incident reporting and engagement).

    • Online hate is a significant issue, distinct and nuanced from misinformation, bullying, and other online challenges that need to be tackled uniquely to be effective given their complexities. According to the Anti Defamation League, 35% of Americans have experienced online hate due to their racial, religious, or sexual identity. Of those experiencing hate, 45% of Americans reported cumulative negative physical or mental health effects due to online harassment and more than 35% of Americans stopped, reduced, or changed online activity because of the experience. The severity of the problem is evident in the government declaring online hate a mental health risk for young Americans. In the UK, online hate speech can be prosecuted as a crime.

    • Engage Responsibly uses the GARM definition of hate speech which is “behavior or content that incites hatred, promotes violence, vilifies, or dehumanizes groups or individuals based on race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, ability, nationality, religion, caste, victims and survivors of violent acts and their kin, immigration status, or serious disease sufferers.”

    • There are many ways to get involved:

      • Take the education —and if you are a business, share it with your employees, partners, and customers too—to learn how to stop online hate through actions including reporting online hate speech when you encounter it on the platforms, using counterspeech, deploying technology to help protect your online presence, and inviting others to join the movement.
        • Commit to the ANA Engage Responsibly pledge(hyperlink to pledge page)—a commitment to combat online hate speech through education and action.
        • Use your brand channels to amplify the Engage Responsibly campaign and content to drive awareness and engagement with the education resources, as well as support with ongoing Engage Responsibly donor and sponsor opportunities.
    • Yes, the social media platforms support Engage Responsibly, including through program collaboration and co creation in the GARM education working group environment, in which they are members. Further, the platforms have publicly expressed their support with endorsement at the time of announcement that Engage Responsibly would be scaling as an industry-wide initiative led by the ANA, working together with GARM.

    • Engage Responsibly is part of the ANA Growth Agenda’s Society and Sustainability priorities, which includes brand safety, and guided by the principle that brands should be a force for good as well as a force for growth.

    • Engage Responsibly will include a robust set of assets spanning:

      • Pledge to show our industry’s commitment and serve as a catalyst for momentum going into the launch

      • Education for SMBs and consumers that informs and spurs action. Education is the heart of the initiative and will continually refresh with an expanding educational curriculum

      • Website to serve as the hub for the education experience and other details about the effort

      • Campaign to drive awareness and engagement of #EngageResponsibly education to combat online hate

      • Programming for additional awareness and discourse

    • Leading brands, including ANA members and GARM Steer Team companies, are mobilizing, but can’t do it alone. However, most SMBs have yet to engage. With approximately 28 million SMBs in the U.S., these businesses offer a tremendous ecosystem for scaling mobilization against online hate speech, with 68% of SMBs saying they would fight hate if there was a coalition to join. SMBs, a fragmented audience, will benefit from GARM tools and consumer outreach will offer vital focus for moderators. Education will include a Resource Portal highlighting reporting tools (creating transparency & highlighting efforts), SMB Outreach & Education (democratizing brand safety tools & best practices via media spend and engagement), and Consumer Outreach & Education (creating visibility & promoting civility via incident reporting and engagement).

    • Yes. We are working closely with many NGOs, including ADL and NAACP, who are GARM strategic advisors on the issue of online hate speech. In addition, we continue to expand outreach, exposure, and collaboration of Engage Responsibly to other NGOs, with recognition that marginalized communities are most impacted by online hate.

    • We know that success is contingent on scale. With this as our guidepost, our first measure of success will be scaling Engage Responsibly to as many SMBs and individuals as possible and validating on KPIs that measure the reach, engagement, and action stemming from Engage Responsibly’s education focus. These may include:

      • How many businesses and people the Engage Responsibly campaign reaches
      • How many businesses and people visit the Engage Responsibly website
      • How many businesses and people engage in the Engage Responsibly education
      • How many SMBs download the responsible media tools
      • How many people reported online hate after taking the education In addition, we will be working together with GARM within their brand safety floor efforts to identify the right measures for benchmarking reduction in online hate speech.
    • Our 2022 goal is to launch Engage Responsibly’s educational curriculum, with a supporting campaign and programming to begin driving SMB and consumer awareness, education, and action on the issue of online hate. Further, we look to scale Engage Responsibly as a long-term business system for ongoing impact. 2022 will be our pilot year, focused on the U.S., to test and learn, with ambitions of scaling globally in the future, and, together with GARM, establishing the right KPIs for measuring success towards our goal of reducing online hate.

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