United Nations Invites People Worldwide to Help Promote Universal Declaration of Human Rights through New Multilingual Video Campaign

HR/5348-PI/2197
18 April 2017

United Nations Invites People Worldwide to Help Promote Universal Declaration of Human Rights through New Multilingual Video Campaign

As part of the ongoing Stand up for someone’s rights today campaign, and in the lead-up to the 2018 seventieth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the United Nations is launching a multilingual video campaign to raise awareness of basic human rights.

The campaign initiative by the United Nations Department of Public Information, undertaken in collaboration with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (United Nations Human Rights Office), Showbox, and Universal Human Rights Initiative, encourages people around the world to take a stand for human rights by using a new United Nations platform to record themselves reading an article of the Universal Declaration in their native language and share their video on social media.  The videos are also featured on a dedicated United Nations webpage and on YouTube channel.

“Video is among the most engaging forms of content today, especially for young people,” said Maher Nasser, Acting Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications.  “As such, it can be a great tool to raise awareness of human rights through participatory videos created by people around the world.  We are always excited when technology creates opportunities to engage wider audiences around the globe in promoting human rights.”

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights — a landmark document adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948, which for the first time laid out fundamental human rights for all, to be universally protected — is the most translated document in the world, with currently 502 translations, from Abkhaz to isiZulu, collected and published by the United Nations Human Rights Office.

The UN video recording platform allows users to record any of the 30 articles of the Declaration in any of 135 languages currently available on the site and effectively become ambassadors for human rights in their own language.  The recording technology, with built-in teleprompter, is provided pro bono by Showbox, a cloud-based video creation platform enabling brands, marketplaces and websites to empower their communities using high-quality video.

Videos recorded by people around the world will become part of a multilingual educational platform that aims to increase awareness of human rights in all corners of the world.  In parallel, audio recordings of the full Declaration are being collected by Universal Human Rights Initiative, a not-for-profit organization that leverages technology to increase the accessibility of human rights information in the belief that human rights education is itself a human right.  By combining the video and audio recordings, the project offers an interactive tool that ultimately aims to broaden access to the Declaration to new audiences, including the millions of illiterate or visually impaired.

The Stand up for someone’s rights today campaign, run by the United Nations Human Rights Office, aims to galvanize everyone — private sector, Governments, individuals, civil society — to play an active role in standing up to defend the human rights of all, at a time when these hard-won rights and freedoms are facing increasing pressures across the world.

Follow #StandUp4HumanRights and #RightsOutLoud.

Media contact:  Martina Donlon, United Nations Department of Public Information, e-mail:  donlon@un.org, tel.:  +1 212 963 6816.

For information media. Not an official record.