Chief Twit Elon Musk has put a hold on Twitter’s controversial $8 a month blue verification checkmark. Meanwhile, eight bucks can make someone a “Verified Humanitarian.”
World Food Program USA (WFP USA) has launched a social media campaign aimed at activating Americans to join the global movement to end hunger. While Americans debate whether it’s worth spending $8 for a “verified checkmark” on Twitter, (which WFP USA refers to simply as a leading social platform), the nonprofit challenges people to make a “better investment” by asking the question: Would you rather spend $8 to be a Verified Human or to be a Verified Humanitarian?
“I was reading the news, watching commentators talk about the checkmark and I thought to myself, it is so frustrating that we’re spending so much time talking about the wrong thing,” said Barron Segar, president and CEO at WFP USA. “But since people are so focused around what’s happening on social media, my idea was to simply take that discourse and make it relevant to the most important issue were face today — hunger.”
The world faces an unprecedented global hunger crisis, with 345 million people facing severe hunger and 50 million on the brink of famine, said Segar. “Why spend $8 on a social checkmark when you can spend $8 to provide 16 lifesaving meals to someone in need? By becoming a Verified Humanitarian, donors provide more than a meal – they provide hope for a better future,” said Segar.
Now in the holiday season, people are thinking about how they might put their money to good use and invest in ways they can make a difference, Segar explained. “This campaign was put together in a matter of hours with my incredible team and a fresh way to demonstrate how, for a little is eight dollars, people can make a huge difference in someone’s life,” he said.
Segar said that Musk stopping and starting the program created more buzz. “I’ll add it was never about the specific program, but about the crazy attention given around charging an $8 monthly fee,” said Segar. “I wanted to take something that everybody was talking about and link it to real issues that we should be talking much more about.”
Segar Tweeted about it here … @WFPUSA_CEO
“These are people living on the edge of starvation and the situation for them and their families is very dire. We are living through an unprecedented hunger crisis,” he said.
Segar said he called the staff together to think through a possible campaign. “The team took off and developed the most creative, amazing assets within about an hour and got it posted soon thereafter,” said Segar. “Because we have to deal with responding to emergencies so often, we actually have a good system set up for developing ideas and implementing them very quickly.”
The hope is that it will be recurring donors but a one-time gift of $8 is also welcome, he said.