“It Gets Better” Hits UK Airwaves

June 6, 2011

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Google Chrome have released a special UK version of their TV advert, which features the now famous “It Gets Better” video. Apparently in association with Stonewall, Google is airing its advert during peak broadcast hours (in the US it was aired during an episode of “Glee”), potentially introducing the already viral video to millions more.

The original campaign started by writer, columnist Dan Savage garnered 1.4 million views of the  “It Gets Better” video on YouTube since its creation last year and sparked similar videos featuring everyone from President Obama and Prime Minister David Cameron to the Cast of Glee and Disney characters. Still many others feature regular men and women of all sexualities, marital status, religions and economic classes who share one thing in common – positive words of advice for LGBT youth and those who may be even contemplating suicide or self harm.

After seeing the positive outpouring of support and media coverage from the US version, it's comforting to know the campaign will be given a massive spotlight here in the UK, especially in light of rising bullying rates and youth violence.

According to the Guardian, “a recent study by the Brighton & Hove LGBT Suicide Prevention Working Party shows that people in this group who are under 40 are three times as likely to have considered suicide as a similar heterosexual group, and more likely to turn to substance abuse.”

It’s never been a more critical time for the “It Gets Better” project.

IGB demonstrates the power user-generated content (UGC) has when made available on the right digital platform. Hosting the video on YouTube, the world’s number one video-sharing site, was a no-brainer given its compatibility with most web publishing tools and social networks. One click made it instantly linked to, optimised, embed-friendly, tweet-able and sharable. Opening up the channel to hosting other videos only inspired more participation and views. “It Gets Better” YouTube Channel has garnered 2.4 million views.

The Google Chrome TV advert has already reached more than 1 million views on YouTube alone. Every view potentially reaching an LGBT youth or a bully — and hopefully changing minds.

Whether five, five hundred or five thousand, don’t forget about the passionate volunteer base behind your cause or organisation who may simply need the right tools or inspiration to help spread the word. In the right setting, user-generated content — and the volume of it — can speak louder than any PR campaign. Look at your networks first, see what they are passionate about and give them the tools to share their stories. You might be surprised.