Amnesty International is a movement understood and supported by only a few, and even they feel it is a distant cause.
In January 2013, New Zealand was named the freest country on earth, so the challenge was to bring to life everyday activities country that are severely punishable in other parts of the world.
Facebook is one of the most visible bastions of freedom of expression on the planet. Many people’s lives are documented along the vertical, scrolling Facebook timeline. So Amnesty gave New Zealanders a first-hand experience of life in countries where basic human rights are severely punishable: No religious status? Atheism is punishable. Group photos? Unauthorised gatherings are punishable. Swear words? Yes, also punishable. Last year, two men were sentenced to death for drinking alcohol. Seventeen people were beheaded for attending a mixed gender party. And a sixteen year old was buried alive for talking to boys.
To bring the cause up close and personal, Trial by Timeline was created, making these situations as relevant and real as possible. This application interrogates your Facebook Timeline and shows you what your behaviour could have cost you in other countries, just for being you.
Trial by Timeline scans people’s Facebook profiles with an unprecedented depth of analysis. Each time someone is sentenced, the software examines everything they’ve ever liked, posted or written on Facebook, searching for keywords and phrases as evidence. It studies their personal profile, their age, nationality, relationship status and political views. It then checks the evidence it finds against a meticulously-researched database of over 500 global offences, and sentences them to real punishments.
Over 340,000 people were shown how fortunate they are to be born in a part of the world where freedom is valued, reaching in the process a global community of over 8 million people. All of whom now have a much more vivid picture of the work done by Amnesty International.
The audience spent on average over 7 minutes on the Trial by Timeline site and this highly engaging experience delivered an amazing lift in Amnesty’s own Facebook community, providing new social contacts of over 20,000 people.