Hello AGTC, we can shake hands, I think. English is not my native tongue either, I also write as I think and I fear you miss some of my points too. My slight exaggeration is my way to agitate you a little and break through the barrier between the ways we think. I am certainly not against thinking out of the box, but I also do not believe that everything thought out of the box is for that reason alone a road map to success. I agree with you on the immense impact social media can have and how many people can be reached by that. This is certainly not to be ignored and can be exploited to spread the message of inclusion and acceptance. This will not automatically break the bank, I agree. Your suggestion about an adapted YouTube approach may even raise some money. This has to be worked out as the current relation with YouTube is not in WR / Sport Allies favor. This takes attention, time, effort and skills besides all other things that have to be managed already. If not done carefully, success will be limited and the resources spent can be considered as wasted. I just warn to be cautious. I do not dismiss the idea on forehand. So much for the money side of this.
You too mention the importance that people trust the sender of the message. In this respect the rowing team was a gift sent from heaven. They practiced what they preached. Young bright privileged people with loads of opportunities to pursue their own personal interests, making an effort and speaking out for others. That is a very strong appeal. The message being a campaign against homophobia in team sports. Make people aware that gays may be fellow member of your own sports team / sports club, who can feel restricted in their development by homophobic behavior of other members. It is not very difficult to identify with such a message. The mix of this team and this message is a dream come true from a marketing point of view and resulted in lots of free publicity, in which the message could be spread..If the scope of the message widens, there is the risk of dilution and the appeal may weaken. Do not forget this is a gay/straight alliance, not a gay interests organisation. It very much reaches out to the majority of mankind, the non-gay community. The more people involved, the wider the message is spread. I agree with that without hesitance as far as liking and sharing is concerned. The more volunteers involved in production of content, the greater the risk of widening the scope to “making the world a better place for everyone” (oh oh, I exaggerate again) and the attention of the general public would be lost. Most successful public campaigns have in common that people can identify with the (single issue) cause.
Does all this mean I am not in favor of any possible changes? No, certainly not. Social media? YES! Other sports? YES! Other nationalities? YES! Other countries? YES! Seeking attention of the mainstream in society? YES! All as long as the message and it’s bearers remain as genuine as the rowers were. Therefore: Naked calendar? YES! (Although I agree that nude male bodies will reach a lot fewer people than anything below the 18+ age limit. On the other hand, I think the calendar is an excellent eye catcher / crowd puller for mainstream society. Besides its reach, the proceeds enables Sport Allies to fund projects that do reach people below the 18+ age group. Although most certainly intertwined, remember that the products are a means to raise money and not the actual message/goal of WR itself. Until now we have seen a delicate balance there. If you want to change that formula, make very sure you know what you do). Using professional models? NO! Aesthetic photography above fun sports snapshots? NO! Widening the mission of inclusion and acceptance beyond (team)sports environment? NO! First, I think if you are respectful and considerate in your sports club, you will probably not be totally different in your work environment or neighborhood. Second, the more the mission/message is widened, the more its appeal is diluted. If you want to know what further motivates my choices, read my contribution of February 11th. We may have more in common than we thought at first instance. Have a nice day!