-- Viacom and the Kaiser Family Foundation Team Up With DDB Seattle to Develop
New Documentary-Style PSAs in Support of World AIDS Day
NEW YORK, Dec. 1 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- As part of their KNOW HIV/AIDS
public education initiative, Viacom Inc. and the Kaiser Family Foundation
partnered with DDB Seattle to produce a provocative series of documentary-
style television public service announcements (PSAs) to underscore the
relevance of HIV/AIDS in the United States and abroad to all Americans. The
new PSAs will begin airing on December 1, 2005 (World AIDS Day) across
Viacom's television networks. Since launching KNOW HIV/AIDS in January 2003,
Viacom has committed $600 million in media value to the campaign, which
includes PSAs and storylines in popular television programming.
The PSAs, developed in collaboration between Viacom, Kaiser, and DDB
Seattle, were directed by accomplished filmmaker Doug Pray to portray people
awakening to the HIV/AIDS crisis. Viewers are introduced to the PSAs' main
characters Ed and Cynthia, who at the onset of the PSAs are skeptical about
the personal relevance of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Pray captures Ed visiting an
HIV/AIDS youth support group in Los Angeles led by HIV-positive AIDS activist
Jennifer Jako, and Cynthia visiting sites throughout El Salvador, including an
HIV-positive youth support group, where the realities of the disease and the
people affected are depicted. The PSAs sign off with the charge, "Change one
mind, change the world," and the initiative's website,
http://www.knowhivaids.org, where information about the epidemic and ways to
get involved can be found.
"A fundamental contributor to the KNOW HIV/AIDS campaign's success has
been our ability to find innovative ways to reach our audiences, capture their
attention and educate them about this devastating disease," said Carl Folta,
Executive Vice President of Viacom. "Based on their creativity and ingenuity,
DDB Seattle was a natural partner to continue our mission, and it's been a
thrill to work with them on this compelling new series of PSAs."
Tina Hoff, Vice President and Director of Entertainment Media
Partnerships, Kaiser Family Foundation, said, "The KNOW HIV/AIDS initiative is
about raising awareness and getting people to think about the impact of
HIV/AIDS here and abroad. The DDB team has been a great partner and proven
adept at taking concepts and bringing them to life in clear and effective
"Take an average American, who may have little understanding of the scope
of the problem and place them smack in the middle of the AIDS crisis," said
Eric Gutierrez, Creative Director on the campaign. "We call the campaign The
AIDS Knowledge Project. It was quite a dose of reality for our subjects and
our intention is that the audience will experience a similar awakening."
Others helping to develop the PSAs include: Eric Gutierrez, Creative
Director; Dean Saling, Associate Creative Director and Senior Copywriter;
Larry Olson, Senior Art Director; Craig Potter, Executive Producer; Candy Cox,
Managing Partner; Sara Cerrell, Management Supervisor; Oil Factory, Inc.,
Production Company, and Doug Pray, Director. KNOW HIV/AIDS staff from Viacom
and Kaiser also contributed substantively to the PSAs.
About KNOW HIV/AIDS
KNOW HIV/AIDS combines the power of Viacom's media brands and unmatched
audience relationships with the public health expertise of the Kaiser Family
Foundation to foster awareness of the disease and its prevention. Every Viacom
division is involved in the campaign, and 123 messages have aired to date,
totaling $600 million in media value. Many of the PSAs are offered rights-free
and cost-free to other television or radio networks. Additionally, Viacom
properties, including CBS, UPN, MTV, BET, VH1 and Showtime, have produced more
than 46 television shows with HIV/AIDS themes seen by millions worldwide. The
campaign targets areas of the world where Viacom has a concentration of
assets, especially the United States and Europe, and it partners with other
companies to focus on regions most affected by the disease. Outside of the
United States, KNOW HIV/AIDS is branded Staying Alive, building on MTV
International's award-winning campaign of the same name, and encompasses the
full range of Viacom's international properties.
Through a joint effort of KNOW HIV/AIDS and the BBC World Service Trust,
messages in seven languages are broadcast to 60 million people in Africa and
the Caribbean. In Russia, the campaign has teamed up with Gazprom-Media,
Russia's largest private media holding, to help implement a cross-platform
initiative on HIV/AIDS. KNOW HIV/AIDS is working in China with MTV and CCTV
for a branded AIDS awareness campaign in the world's largest country.
About Viacom Inc.
Viacom is a leading global media company, with preeminent positions in
broadcast and cable television, radio, outdoor advertising, and online. With
programming that appeals to audiences in every demographic category across
virtually all media, the Company is a leader in the creation, promotion, and
distribution of entertainment, news, sports, music, and comedy. Viacom's well-
known brands include CBS, MTV, Nickelodeon, Nick at Nite, VH1, BET, Paramount
Pictures, Infinity Broadcasting, Viacom Outdoor, UPN, TV Land, Comedy Central,
CMT: Country Music Television, King World, Spike TV, Showtime, Paramount
Parks, and Simon & Schuster. More information about Viacom and its businesses
is available at http://www.viacom.com.
Earlier this year, the Company announced it would be separating its
businesses into two publicly traded companies, and expects the transaction
will likely be completed by the end of 2005. The new Viacom will include MTV
Networks (MTV, VH1, Nickelodeon, Nick at Nite, Comedy Central, CMT: Country
Music Television, Spike TV, TV Land and many other networks around the world),
BET, Paramount Pictures, Paramount Home Entertainment and Famous Music. CBS
Corporation will consist of the CBS Television Network, UPN, Infinity
Broadcasting, Viacom Outdoor, Viacom Television Stations Group, Paramount
Television, King World, Simon & Schuster, Showtime and Paramount Parks.
About The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation
The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation is a non-profit, private operating
foundation dedicated to providing information and analysis on health issues to
policymakers, the media, and the general public. It is not associated with
Kaiser Permanente or Kaiser Industries. Information on HIV/AIDS is available
at http://www.kff.org, and a daily news summary report on developments in
HIV/AIDS is available on http://www.kaisernetwork.org, the Foundation's free
health information service.
About DDB Seattle
The Seattle office of DDB (http://www.ddbseattle.com) is a full-service
communications company with capabilities in issues, advertising, public
relations, direct and online marketing, media and design. The agency is a unit
of DDB Worldwide and Omnicom Group Inc.
DDB Worldwide (http://www.ddb.com), Adweek's Global Agency Network of the
Year for the second year in a row, is one of the leading advertising agency
networks in the world with 206 offices in 96 countries. Acknowledged as the
industry's most creative multinational network, DDB was named the Most Awarded
Agency Network in the World for 2004 by the Gunn Report.
The network has won more Grand Prix Awards in the 51-year history of the
International Advertising Festival in Cannes than any other agency, and over
the past 16 years, has won more awards in Cannes than any other agency
network. In 2004, for the fourth year in a row, DDB was named Network Agency
of the Year at the Clio Awards and was also named Advertising Age's Global
Agency Network of the Year.
SOURCE Viacom Inc.
Web Site: http://www.viacom.com