Burn Your Facebook Photos To Raise Awareness For Home Fire Prevention

By visiting www.every80seconds.com, users can connect to Facebook and see their own photographs and memories "burn" away. After experiencing the virtual fire, users will have the option to donate to the Red Cross or they can help spread the "burn" by posting the experience on their wall, tweeting and "burning" their profile picture. No photos are actually harmed in the experience.

Some Facebook users may find this kind of cool, burning their photo album on Facebook, and then having them still available to share with their friends. Nonetheless, it’s an attention-grabber that will send the message that we need to be aware of the impact of a fire burning of our most precious real estate.

The American Red Cross explains the new attention-grabber as a virtual fire that “burns” Facebook users’ most cherished photos, which will give users some sense of the feelings fire victims, may experience.

By visiting www.every80seconds.com, users can connect to Facebook and see their own photographs and memories “burn” away. After experiencing the virtual fire, users will have the option to donate to the Red Cross or they can help spread the “burn” by posting the experience on their wall, tweeting and “burning” their profile picture. No photos are actually harmed in the experience.

Although I can see the fun in playing around with this program, I can see it as a serious issue. Fran Edwardson, Chief Executive Officer of the American Red Cross of Greater Chicago, explains “The virtual experience is very real and hard hitting. It is intended to be an emotional experience for the user because they are watching their own photographs from Facebook seemingly burn away. We hope that this campaign brings awareness to the amount of home fires that happen in the United States every single day. We want people to take the appropriate steps to be prepared and to reach out to those who have been affected in a time of disaster.”

The “burn your Facebook photos” campaign marks the end of “fire season,” the most common, but underexposed, disaster in the country, which happens during the winter.

Even though home fires is the most common disaster in the country, the public’s understanding of fire disasters lags behind earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes and other natural and man-made disasters, such as acts of war. During the month of March, the Red Cross tackles some of its most challenging issues to commemorate Red Cross Month, including the public’s lack of knowledge of the leading United States disaster.
The creative ideas and development behind the “burn” campaign have largely been donated from the marketing agency Young & Rubicam and several other volunteers representing Chicago businesses including Bravo, Comcast, Dig Communications, GolinHarris, Google, Performics, SMG Search, Tribune Media Group and Zorch.

Media followers and fans of the Red Cross have also committed to participate in the campaign by spreading awareness under the Twitter hashtag #80seconds. The American Red Cross of Greater Chicago affectionately calls this loyal community their “voluntweeters.”

“In less than 80 seconds, our voluntweeters can be a part of saving lives and supporting those who are devastated by fire.” said Edwardson.

The American Red Cross is “burning” people’s most precious memories to raise awareness about fire prevention during Red Cross Month. Home fires occur every eighty seconds in the United States, and the Red Cross responds to a fire every eight minutes nationwide. In less than 80 seconds, people can save lives by participating in an awareness campaign to help.