activists

Here’s Mike Manning’s “End Hate” Campaign. It Needs Work

So this is the “End Hate” campaign that Real World DC‘s Mike Manning came up with to compete with complement Adam Bouska’s “NOH8 Campaign.” In this photo is Mike’s on-again-off-again boyfriend Tanner Ray (and the lass is Megan McDonald), and they snapped the photo at the University of Northern Colorado. Some 40 people dropped in on the event, and Manning says other schools have expressed interest in taking part. So that’s nice. But there’s a reason Bouska’s effort is so iconic, and Manning’s will not be.

Manning’s gimmick is that you can append anything to the “End Hate For …” phrase, personalizing your message against intolerance. It’s flexible, mobile, and catchy. His signs and branding, however, are not.

And that’s a stark difference between Manning’s effort and Bouska’s NOH8, which uses the same face painted logo-and-duct tape (and white t-shirt) image on every subject, whether it’s Cindy McCain or, well, Mike Manning.

Then again, Manning says he isn’t copyrighting his project, which means anyone is free to backpack on and expand it. Bouska and partner Jeff Parshley have retained sole rights over the “NOH8” name, which is certainly his prerogative to do, given that he created it — and is profiting from it, charging $40 per photo in what is not, as many who have participated believe, an officially registered charitable project, although fees are called “donations.”

“Funds raised by the NOH8 Campaign will be used to continue promoting and raising awareness for Marriage Equality and anti-discrimination on a global level through an educational and interactive media campaign,” the project’s website says. Whatever that means.