Coalition Against Online Violence

Branding a Global Initiative in the Media Industry

Online abuse is a persistent and disturbing trend plaguing social media and other digital platforms across the world. And female journalists are unfortunately all too often the target of this hate – 73% have experienced online violence and 20% have had that violence bleed into their offline lives.

In an effort to support the victims of online violence, our friends and partners at the International Women’s Media Foundation and International Center for Journalists began building a global coalition of media organizations to combat the troubling increase in abuse. Since both groups had partnered with us on nonprofit web design, branding, strategy, and design work in the past, they approached us again to help create a brand, visual language, and website to house resources for journalists, advocate their cause, and work to make real change. The new initiative would be branded the Coalition Against Online Violence (CAOV).

Designing a Modern Brand

When we first got involved with the project, the organization was still nascent; they knew what they wanted to do and who they needed to help, but the name and brand were still in development. This made for an especially exciting branding process. 

We worked with the CAOV to understand their target audiences, near and medium term goals, aesthetic inspirations, and more to build out a comprehensive Creative Brief. This happened while the name was still in flux. But because the organization had such a determined and clear focus, we were able to plan around a visual identity that could support different brands and sub-brands.  

We created a logo and brand that not only position the organization as a strong and modern coalition, but also nod to their audience and subject matter through design details and interactive recommendations. The logo text is set in a slightly condensed sans-serif font for a strong look, while the unique curves of the letterforms create a friendly and approachable vibe. Following the text is a thin line that represents a typing cursor, presenting a subtle but clear allusion to the coalition’s focus and audience. We also thought the logo worked well in an interactive format where we could animate it with the cursor, so we created a GIF of the animation that is now used on the website and other digital assets.

The CAOV name and brand clearly express the underlying attributes and goals of the coalition while also giving the organization a solid foundation for future growth through new initiatives, sub-brands, and more.



Building an Empowering and Intuitive Hub

With the branding in place, it was time to create a web presence that would serve as the coalition’s digital home. The site would be called the Online Violence Response Hub.

The website was the first project of the coalition and an initial opportunity to scale the brand. Goals included reaching out to journalists in need, connecting industry leaders and potential funders with information about the cause, and providing emergency resources and important education on the broader topic.

We designed a clean and modern site that allows the resources and content to speak for themselves, avoiding unnecessary distraction and creating a clear visual hierarchy for visitors. One major focus of the site is presenting resources to those in need, so the homepage leads with persona-driven navigation where visitors can immediately choose their audience and/or need and be taken to content most relevant to their situation. The site keeps an emphasis on action with clean designs and intuitive navigation tailored to relevant audiences.

The site is built on an easy-to-manage WordPress content management system. The setup includes a robust tagging system and a custom library of blocks that allows the CAOV team to quickly build out custom templates and resource guides in the CMS without the need for coding or technical knowledge.

The site, like the brand, was designed and built to be purpose-driven with the understanding that it would need to scale over time and support future growth. This project marked another great collaboration with IWMF and others at the coalition.