Who Needs Atheist Billboards When You Run an Ad Campaign Like This?

The George Washington University Secular Society has a wonderful campaign introducing their group to students on campus.

They took pictures of group members who volunteered to be part of the campaign and put their smiling, happy faces on signs like these:

There are plenty more posters where those came from, too. 13 different students had their pictures taken and several posters of each of them were put up around campus. They are, in some ways, a free billboard campaign showcasing how atheists are all over the place at GW. You might as well talk to them and have a discussion :)

It’s welcoming, non-confrontational, and a great model for other groups to use.

(Thanks to Julie for the link!)

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • Dumboy

    Blatant mathematical flaw in second poster. If the number increases from 15% of population to 20% of population, it’s 5% relative to the population. However, the increase is 33% relative to itself. Per this example, the number in the poster should have been 33, if only for marketing. As it stands, the number could be having the opposite effect.

    • Jon Peterson

      so basically:
      numberpercentage

      • Dumboy

        @joequincy:disqus ?? They’re both numbers and percentages.

        • Jon Peterson

          You’re complaining that they used the word “number” where they should have used “percentage”, but claiming it as a mathematical flaw when it’s really just a typo (which I indicated with basic proofreading markup).

          • Dumboy

            @joequincy:disqus Perhaps I was not clear, and it seems I misunderstood you, although I believe  Julie understood my original post. What I meant to say is expressed in the following pseudocode:pc_old = 15   #just an examplepc_new = 20  #just an example# pc_new asserted to be > pc_oldpc_rise_relative = (pc_new*100/pc_old)-100  #i.e. 33 for expc_rise_absolute = pc_new – pc_old  #i.e. 5 for expc_rise_preferred =  max(pc_rise_relative, pc_rise_absolute)  # i.e. 33 for exshow pc_rise_preferred  # i.e. 33 for exIt has nothing to do with the words or any typo. The word “number” should remain as is. It is not a typo. All I was suggesting is to replace 5 with a higher number, i.e. the relative percent change.

            • Dumboy

              The line breaks were erased but you can see it at http://pastebin.com/mBxGaVb2

              • Jon Peterson

                Should be able to do line breaks with “enter”… for whatever reason, Disqus doesn’t seem to display “shift-enter” line breaks, which messes me up because of Facebook habits. >.<

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=771445916 Julie Elizabeth Mankowski

      Thanks for pointing this out! I can actually get this corrected before we finish posting them!

      • http://www.youtube.com/user/GodVlogger?feature=mhee GodVlogger (on YouTube)

         Julie’s response shows someone who is open to constructive feedback.

  • Drew M.

    Cue graphic designer criticisms in 3.. 2..

    • Matto the Hun

      All I know is that the kerning needs to be fixed, especially in “Atheist”. If the “A” was any further away it would read “A theist”.

      Didn’t want to leave you hanging… well, that and it’s true :P

      • Drew M.

         And now I can’t unsee it. Damn your eyes!

        • Baal

           http://xkcd.com/1015/

          • A3Kr0n

             There’s a cartoon for that? Wheeee!

          • http://theforeshadow.tumblr.com Keith Favre

            Aww, I’m usually the one who says “relevant xkcd comic” to things…

    • http://theforeshadow.tumblr.com Keith Favre

      If I’ve learned anything from /r/atheism, it’s that atheists can’t design.

    • Revyloution

      Needs to be done in Comic Sans.

      • 3lemenope

        Or Papyrus!

  • M J Shepherd

    Where are the horns?

    • Tainda

      I’m not sure about anyone else but I file mine down.  It’s tougher in swimsuit weather to hide the tail though.

  • Sbv

    The first one looks like an angel lol

  • NlueSub

    Atheist shouldn’t be capitalized.

    • beetlerace

      I agree, gramatically – but design/balance-wise, I see why they did it for the main blurb.  The word tends to stand out more with a capital A too… might catch more glances.

  • http://www.facebook.com/vinimarques Vini Marques

    Oh, gawd. We need better designers… but kudos for the initiative!

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/chidy/ chicago dyke

    i do enjoy the simpler campaigns. unless one is a virulent racist or sexist, it’s pretty hard to find hate for those faces. the simple statement of fact is also pretty powerful. it’s got the ‘you are not alone’ element and the ‘are you part of the wrong side of history’ element in a short declaration of fact. 

  • Karen

    I like the non-confrontational aspect of this campaign.  Not because I’m particularly accomodationistic, but because so many theists seem to believe that atheists are not “normal” people.

  • Unbeliever

    The woman in the poster – I must independently verify her atheism.

    • ALittleBitNerdy

       what because all women who claim to be atheists are faking it for attention? newsflash: women can be atheists too.

      • Sergio Castro

        I think what Unbeliever meant was he’d like to ask her out.

  • http://www.flickr.com/groups/invisiblepinkunicorn Anna

    These are great, but they might have made more of a visual impact with the scarlet letter “A.”

    By the way, I wasn’t able to look at any of the other posters. Tried following the link, but those of us who don’t have Facebook can’t see the content because it requires people to log in.

    • Alt+3

      I’ve had to register a fake account on Facebook just for situations like this.

      • http://www.flickr.com/groups/invisiblepinkunicorn Anna

        Too much effort for me, LOL. I don’t actually want to be on Facebook at all.

  • TheAntiAtheist

    How about some posters with nice shots of Lenin, Trotsky, and Stalin?

    There were certainly atheiists too!

    • Patterrssonn

      Sure, as soon as Hitler is sanctified.

    • NickDB

      And what is wrong with Lenin and Trotsky? Trotsky even tried to over throw Stalin?

      Or are they just dirty commies so that makes them evil?

      • JohnnieCanuck

        If it weren’t for them, there would have been no Communists to block the Greatest Nation on Earth from establishing a new Christian order.

        Curses.

        • TheAntiAtheist

          If the Communists had won the Cold War the Gulags would still be going strong.

      • TheAntiAtheist

         Trotsky participated in mass murder, thats what wrong with him.

        Just because atheists hated each other and Stalin managed to murder Trotsky does not make either of them good guys.

        • TheAntiAtheist

           By the way, Lenin like to draw up lists of people to have shot.  He really got a kick out of it.

          Is has nothing to do with Communism, because Communism does not have to be atheistic.  But Lenin wanted to wipe out religion and that was because of his Militant Atheism.  Even Hitchens admits that in his Not So Great book.

        • NickDB

          Citation needed. Actually did my research on them before commenting. Trotsky spent a lot of time in Siberia, started the Bolshevik movement, opposed Russia’s pact with Hitler, and lead the red army against Hitler before Russia officially joined the war. Happy to learn more but so far he seems as responsible as George Washington for mass murder.

          And so what if Lenin had a list of people he’d like to have shot? Who doesn’t?

    • Antinomian

      You do know it’s a sin to have your “O” face on for anything other than the missionary position for the sole purpose of procreation, don’t you. Enjoy hell sinner!


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