Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Marriage equality: Red equal signs lead the way in social media

What are red equal signs doing all over the Internet? On Tuesday, as the Supreme Court began two days of hearings on the issue of marriage equality (or same-sex marriage), the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) unveiled a social media campaign.

The focus of the campaign is, HRC said, for marriage equality supporters to “paint the town red,” changing their profile images on their Facebook account to the HRC “=” logo, as well as wearing red. The campaign spread to Twitter, as well.

The HRC's logo actually features a yellow equal sign in a blue box. HRC Director of Marketing Anastasia Khoo explained why it was redesigned in red in a press release.
By harnessing the passion that equality supporters feel for the freedom of loving and committed couples to marry, the internet is awash in a sea of red –- the color of love.
According to the HRC, a number of celebrities have signed up for the program. They include politicians such as U.S. Senators Chris Coons, Al Franken, Mazie Hirono, Frank Lautenberg, Bob Menendez, Chris Murphy, Patty Murray, Bernie Sanders, Brian Schatz, Jean Shaheen, Jon Tester, Mark Warner and Elizabeth Warren, as well as celebrities like Sophia Bush, Lance Bass, Tegan and Sara, and George Takei.

Variants of the logo were turned into a meme, showing up all over the Web. Images include the Statue of Liberty kissing Lady Justice, Bert and Ernie, the first landing on the moon, Yoda, Peanuts, Les Miserables, and more.

A slideshow of meme images can be seen here.

On Facebook, the HRC lists the following as its mission statement:
HRC envisions an America where lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people are ensured equality at home, at work and in every community.

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