Viacom, Kaiser Family Foundation, U.K. National AIDS Trust Expanding "Staying Alive" Campaign Into Europe
October 2, 2003
, the world's largest media group, along with the Kaiser Family Foundation and the U.K.'s National AIDS Trust, is expected to announce today that it is expanding a multimillion dollar HIV/AIDS awareness campaign to the United Kingdom and other European countries, the Financial Times reports. The U.K. campaign, called "Staying Alive," will include advertisements on buses and in the London Underground subway system. In addition, more than 700 U.K. Blockbuster video stores, a subsidiary of Viacom, will distribute brochures about HIV/AIDS prevention, and British MTV and 200 UCI movie theaters will air HIV/AIDS-related public service announcements. Also, Viacom will screen television programs produced by Paramount, such as "Frasier" and "Enterprise," that include HIV/AIDS-related plots, according to the Times. Carl Folta, senior vice president of Viacom, said, "The value of advertising runs to many millions of pounds," adding that the campaign "marks the beginning of a stepped process around Europe." Derek Bodell, chief executive of the National AIDS Trust, said, "The U.K., like many countries around the world, is experiencing rising rates of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. We have no excuse for this when we know how to prevent their transmission." The number of new HIV cases in the United Kingdom rose 26% last year, according to the Times. Viacom President and Chief Operating Officer Mel Karmazin said, "We encourage other media companies and outlets to use the 'Staying Alive' campaign materials free to get HIV/AIDS awareness messages out to the widest possible audience" (Burt, Financial Times, 10/2).
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