A campaign by the Canadian Olympics Committee focusing on improving gender equity and the misrepresentation of women in sports, by challenging Olympic viewers to recognize both the sexist assumptions in language while promoting the positive portrayal of women in media.
There is an issue within the media coverage of female athletes, and how these athletes are underreported and underrepresented in sports media. This creates a false implication that females are absent from the sporting scene and distributes unnecessary content by portraying female athletes unfairly and inaccurately.
Therefore, we proposed a campaign by the Canadian Olympics Committee featuring a video series with female athletes discussing topics such as: gender inequality, mentors, and training routines. #changethegame focuses on improving gender equity and the misrepresentation of women in sport. We are challenging Olympic viewers to recognize both the sexist assumptions in language while promoting the positive portrayal of women in media.
Sports media often emphasizes physical appearance or femininity over a woman’s athletic ability. The effect of media and culture overlooking accomplishments of women, justifies the exclusion of women from positions of power while reinforcing gender inequality.
The COC’s campaigns mobilize Canadian support and excitement for sports across a huge scale and diverse viewership. In recent years they’ve have had increasing success due to larger investments in social media presence and advertising their brand which increases their value for corporate sponsorship opportunities. Tokyo 2020 is an opportunity for the COC to promote the respectful representation of women and female athletes on a global platform.
The goal is to address misrepresentation by encouraging viewers to voice their own positive representation and to also increase the visibility of unbiased women’s media coverage.
We believe this kind of visibility will open new sponsorship opportunities for athletes, brand value for the COC, and role models for young female athletes to look up to. Through this campaign, we aim to create positive dialogue around women in sports on social media.
The campaign theme revolves around language and words because they are so important to changing what we assume is the norm. Sexist language can be unintentional because we may not be aware of our biases. Posters are designed to identify sexist norms in language and change them to accurately represent the woman depicted in the poster in her own words. Through our online template, users can customize these posters with their own words.
On July 1st, the campaign video will launch to capture the excitement and pride of Canada day. Following are the release of athlete intro videos which are like teasers for the athlete interviews and their message to continuously promote campaign until July 24th, Tokyo 2020 when athlete interviews and posters go live, prior to each of their first events throughout Games. This is to make our campaign proactive so instead of criticizing sexist commentary after it occurs, we start the conversation about respectful representation before the Olympics begin.
As I was mostly in charge of developing the user experience and user interface, I chose to go back and forth between the interaction and the wireframes, as I wanted to spend the most time on achieving an easy navigation.
I chose to design for mobile web given that this is a digital campaign in which people will discover the platform mainly through social media. I experimented different approaches for the user interface, but I thought with our purpose, maybe it isn't necessary for us to innovate in this area if we're focusing on the delivery of the content. With this frame of mind, I prioritized a conventional navigation using the hamburger menu.
With the resources given to us today, levaraging social media to promote the campaign was inevitable. Promoting the campaign through various channels using a hashtag allows us to reach a wider range of demographic, as well as influencing people to help spread the movement. The idea of social media and user generated content allows us to create genuine content since the ones who decide to share it are the ones with the motivation to support what the campaign stands with their own unique reasons.
One of the reasons why women sports have difficulties gaining fans is due to the lack of coverage in sports media. By giving more exposure to women in sports, people will become more familiar with the athletes, allowing them to be more engaged when they see them in competitions. To achieve this, we included the athlete's page, which contains content such as competition schedule and connecting to the athelete's twitter account.
To influence the audience to join the movement, we intended the campaign website to become a platform for people to share their own voices by creating their digital poster. As we noticed how feminism and gender equality are still an ill-defined topic, we aimed to structure this digital poster to influence people to form their own opinions. This digital poster, beginning with a template of the athlete ambassador's voice, allows participants to reflect on these athlete's messages and create their own content through their insight.
Our Voices page is essentially a gallery of user generated content. We chose to aggregate the social media posts that used the hashtag on the campaign website to create a platform that people can comeback to, allowing people to see different perspectives and experiences that they can relate to. The value of this page is how it holds the opportunity to convey that this movement is more than just sports.
Another way for people to support the movement is by donating to the Canadian women athletes. Since the COC already provides the option for people to donate on their website, we saw this as an opportunity to increase participation. I believe donation was the part of our campaign that we could have expanded on more in order to convert opinions into action.
Something the team repeatedly discussed in the early phase of the process was about selecting a problem that we all saw value in pursuing. I never understood how these social problems made my life any harder, or how I, as a designer, could help minimize the negatives. Yet after being enlightened by my teammates, I was able to take their insights and apply it to my own personal beliefs, which is designing for the next generation and their life in the connected digital world.
I believe we're a reflection of our environment, as well as the solutions we craft [within that environment], which means everything that has been designed before made us who we are today since they all involved a human decision. It's the subtle design elements and the thoughtful human decisions that influence how we perceive and approach each day of our lives. Therefore, us designers have the responsibility to communicate our foresight by being optimistic and transparent, in order to improve the quality of interactions with the world.