Graphic PSA hits home

September 7, 2009

A new public service announcement (PSA) released on YouTube depicting four deaths caused by texting while at the wheel, has provoked wide debate and resulted in more than 2 million views on YouTube alone.  The four-minute video, produced by local police in Gwent (UK), once again shows that strong viral ingredients, in this case stark images and shock value, are needed to cut through video clutter and get a message across.

The video has caused especially wide commenting in the US where texting while driving is not illegal in all states.  The trend in anti-texting messages there has so far been to try and get across more gently through humour.  In this case though, grim reality seems to be working;  one survey in the US found that 80% of people who had seen the Gwent film were less likely to text while driving than before…