Endangered species regularly feature in social media. Their plight inspires plenty of sympathy and outrage but, sadly, likes and shares have little effect in the real world. How, we asked, could the digital community make a real difference to the Cat-Ba Langur, one of the world’s most endangered species? It often appears in Social Media. There are only 53 left.
To solve this problem McCann and MRM//McCANN created #animachine, a platform that actively engages digital supporters in creating statues of the animal they want to save. The statues are then auctioned and the proceeds donated to saving the Cat-Ba Langur.
To help rescue the Cat-Ba Langur from extinction, we created an entirely new way to donate, simply by sharing #animachine. But first, we engaged the passion and talent of world-renowned street artist, Sam3, to create a sculpture of the Cat-Ba Langur. Based on his design, our digital community co-created several copies. By simply posting #animachine in social media supporters triggered a 3D printer that recreated the endangered animal. One layer at a time. The statues were then auctioned off to raise money. Supporters could also follow the process at animachine.de and see who contributed each layer.
The engaging nature of the #animachine donation platform attracted crowds of supporters. They contributed the thousands of layers needed to build the statues. All of which helped grow awareness. And every cent raised on auction will help grow the Cat-Ba Langur population. #animachine let people reach out of the digital realm. And touch the real world. #animachine let people reach out of the digital realm. And touch the real world, which made hashtags literally count in real life.