Kony 2012 Campaign

Kony 2012 Campaign

Invisible Children's Kony 2012 campaign achieved tremendous exposure in just a few days as well as immense debate and controversy. Is this the future of campaigning or a setback?
The Panel
Key questions
  • Do campaigners need to rethink how they plan and run campaigns?
  • What are the ethics and issues campaigners need to consider?

Kony 2012The 30-minute Kony 2012 video had been viewed by 80 million+ people in just 10 days since it was uploaded to YouTube. It aimed to make Joseph Kony 'famous'. He is the leader of the brutal Lords Resistance Army (LRA) and indicted for war crimes and crimes against humanity. Being 'famous' is claimed would ensure the political will to capture him is maintained and increased.

Yet just as quickly as the video spread, it (and the organisation behind it - Invisible Children) was fervently criticised as misleading, too late, neo-colonial, untrustworthy and many other criticisms.

As an online video, it broke with the 'best practice' of being 3-5 minutes, as a campaign communication it excelled as it had a clear theory of change, a deadline (urgency) and a clear call to action.  Yet both despite the criticism and because of it, the reaction to the video has been phenomenal:

The debate will challenge and provoke:

  • campaigners if they need to rethink how they plan and run campaigns
  • critics and supporters on the ethics and issues around the Kony 2012 campaign


  1. Each articulates their points in a 5-10 minute presentation
  2. Opportunity to respond to others' points for 20 minutes
  3. Audience question, answer, comment and debate
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by Duane Raymond published Mar 01, 2012,
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