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the world cup is no excuse for violence

This public service announcement was commissioned by the UK-based charity Tender, and aired in Britain during the 2014 World Cup. This 40-second spot depicts a young woman intently watching a soccer match on television. Shot from the point of view of the television, the camera focuses closely on the woman’s facial expressions and only the sound of the TV is heard. The woman appears to become increasingly frightened as it becomes clear that the team playing on the television is losing (we hear the crowd booing). Her expressions turn from anxiety to sheer terror. The woman proceeds to switch off the television and the screen goes black for a few moments. The viewer is then presented with plain text against the black background; “No one wanted England to win more than women… Domestic violence rises 38% when England get knocked out of the World Cup.” The final image utilizes the hashtag #StandupWorldCup. The ad was released just days after England was knocked out of the tournament by Italy and Uruguay.


Who is the target audience for this public service announcement? Is it significant that this ad aired during the World Cup? Why?

What kind of emotions does the PSA stir in its audience?

The PSA draws a direct relationship between domestic violence and the World Cup. Does it provide a solution or advocate for specific change? Can the message in this PSA be applied to other sports contexts?

Alcohol is often involved in domestic violence. This ad does not explicitly highlight the relationship between the two. Do you think the absence of visual or textual references to alcohol in this ad was intentional, and if so, why?

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