The Art of Advocacy: How Red Changed Everything

Join Anastasia Khoo, Human Rights Campaign Marketing Director, and Robert Villaflor, HRC Design Director, as they discuss the details of HRC's very successful viral logo campaign, in effect "painting the Internet red."


Imagine this: More than 2.7 million Facebook users, all with the same profile picture. It can happen. Beginning on March 26, 2013 Facebook began to notice an unusual trend. One-by-one, Facebook users across the nation and around the world began to change their profile picture, replacing what they had with the same red symbol. That symbol? A unique adaptation of the Human Rights Campaign's iconic logo.

The HRC official blue and yellow logo, introduced in Fall 1995, has grown in strength and visibility over the years, spreading the message of equality around the globe. Designed by Stone Yamishita (now SYPartners with offices in San Francisco and New York) the logo's simple, bold design depicting a yellow equal sign inside of a blue square is immediately recognizable.

In March, the U.S. Supreme Court began hearing oral arguments in two marriage equality cases. To show support, HRC asked its followers to change their profile photos, spreading the message through Facebook and Twitter. However, the replacement wasn't HRC's well-known blue and yellow symbol, but instead, a new red and pink version of its logo, chosen because the colors are synonymous with love. The campaign went viral and millions of people shared the logo while others created their own, personal versions of it. Just 24 hours after HRC posted the red logo, Facebook saw a 120 percent increase in profile photo updates, with more than 2.7 million more Facebook users updating their profile picture compared to the previous Tuesday (and those numbers reflect changes on Tuesdayalone).

Learn how HRC approached this new flexibility in their brand and hear some of the internal debate around the change. Understand their strategy in creating successful online cause marketing and how that strategy helped this viral campaign. And gain insight into what may happen in the near future when the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule on the cases they heard in late March: Will their ruling spur a resurgence of the HRC red logo?

Join Anastasia Khoo, HRC Marketing Director, and Robert Villaflor, HRC Design Director, as they discuss the details of HRC's very successful viral campaign, in effect "painting the Internet red."

Spots available: 125
Tickets: AIGA members: $10, Non-members: $20
Registration has closed for this event. Approximately 20 tickets will be available for purchase at the door. 

Event coordinator, Mollie Bates:

AIGA DC would like to thank HRC for supporting this event by donating the venue.

When & Where
Wed, Jun 5, 2013 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM EDT
Human Rights Campaign
1640 Rhode Island Ave NW
Washington, DC 20036