Serviceplan Teams up with Central Council of Jews to Launch #StopRepeatingStories Campaign in Response to Surge in Antisemitic Crimes

Since tension and violence continued to rise across the Middle East, there has been a massive increase in the number of antisemitic crimes in Germany. This is shown by the latest figures presented at the Federal Press Conference shortly before Holocaust Memorial Day. To draw attention to this growing issue, the Zentralrat der Juden in Germany has launched a comprehensive initiative that has received widespread press and social media coverage. Designed and implemented by Serviceplan, #StopRepeatingStories uses AI to demonstrate: “How it starts is reminiscent of those days. How it continues is up to you.”

There have been 2,249 antisemitic crimes in Germany since the October 7th, 2023. Felix Klein, the Federal Government Commissioner for Combating Antisemitism, revealed these figures at the Federal Press Conference on 25 January. This is almost as many antisemitic attacks as in the whole of 2022. Antisemitic incidents had already been on the rise in previous years, but now they have reached a new and alarming peak.

To bring this alarming development into the public consciousness and to call for action, the Zentralrat der Juden in Germany, together with Serviceplan, has launched a large-scale campaign against antisemitism. The #StopRepeatingStories campaign was presented for the first time at the Federal Press Conference and is illustrated with powerful images: Antisemitism is not a problem of the past, it happens here and now.

“Antisemitism can be felt in all areas of our society. Often, Jews who experience antisemitism are not taken seriously; their experiences are minimised and sometimes played down. With this campaign we want to make it clear that antisemitism is real, that it affects Jews in their everyday lives. I hope that society as a whole will show more empathy for contemporary antisemitism, especially in times of public remembrance of the Shoah,” said Josef Schuster, President of the Zentralrat der Juden in Germany.

At the heart of #StopRepeatingStories are the real stories of Jewish people from Germany about antisemitic incidents they have personally experienced in their everyday lives. In the campaign, these stories are retold by actors in order to protect their privacy. The campaign launch film uses innovative means: Artificial intelligence has been used to age the appearance of the protagonist, Lea. At first, this gives the impression that she is a contemporary witness of the Shoah (Holocaust). As her story unfolds, Lea’s appearance gradually rejuvenates, and together with the details of the story, it becomes clear that her testimony comes from the present.

Jeannette Bohné, Creative Director at Serviceplan Berlin explains: “#StopRepeatingStories is a campaign that is very close to our hearts. In order to draw attention to this important issue and touch people’s emotions, you need strong, surprising and innovative storytelling. With the help of Artificial Intelligence, we are able to show how quickly terrible past experiences can become the present, and that it is up to all of us to ensure more tolerance. Because never again is now and every day”.

“It is more important than ever to take a stand. We thank the Zentralrat der Juden in Germany for their trust in this highly relevant campaign. It was great to see the incredible commitment of our entire team, working together with specialists from AI, media, production and UX to set a creative exclamation point against antisemitism,” says Till Diestel, CCO Serviceplan Germany.

Michael Johne, managing director of Creation Serviceplan Berlin, adds: “#niewiederistjetzt  (#neveragainisnow) means that one of the darkest parts of our history must never happen again. But many people think antisemitism is a thing of the past. The stories in the campaign tell us that we still experience antisemitic violence today and warn us of how present and real antisemitism is here and now”.

The campaign film is available online and on social media. Celebrity supporters such as Raul Krauthausen have shared it on their channels, taking a stand against antisemitism. The campaign has been widely covered in the national media. Further campaign films are planned for the coming weeks.

The campaign is supported by high-profile media placements. Currently, a 10 x 7.5 meter projection can be seen on Berlin’s Hermannplatz. The campaign video runs on a continuous loop. A QR code allows viewers to directly access the landing page.

The landing page serves as the campaign’s anchor point. It also provides recommendations on how individuals can support their Jewish fellow citizens in situations of discrimination and thus contribute to greater tolerance in society. 

The strategy and creative concept for #niewiederistjetzt was developed by Serviceplan Berlin. The creative realisation and production took place in cooperation with Serviceplan Make. Benjamin Wollf was the director, Felix Baermann the cinematographer and Lars Leier the camera assistant. The film was shot at Neon Island Studios Berlin. Media was handled by Mediaplus and the website was created by Plan.Net TechNest.

The music for the campaign was composed, recorded and edited by Not a Machine. The OOH campaign was placed in cooperation with Concrete Candy and Wedia Out of Home.

The campaign was professionally advised by the Amadeu Antonio Foundation, the Federal Association of Research and Information Antisemitismus e.V. (RIAS), the project ToleranzRäume as well as the intiative „Gesicht zeigen!

To protect the identities of real people, the stories in the films are told by actors, and names and details that could identify the person have been changed.

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