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Surround-sound radio ad wins top accolades in Australia

A 3D surround-sound radio advert that puts listeners in the shoes of victims of bullying has won a major advertising award in Australia.

Panel judge Tommy Cehak said the winning ad “Earphone Bully” was the clear winner for the single, craft and overall categories in Round Two of Commercial Radio Australia’s 2013 Sirens Awards.

“It is a haunting and disturbing entry that’s expertly crafted and uses the radio medium in an innovative way,” he said.

The ad was produced for anti-bullying organisations including Bullying No Way, Project Rockit and Reach Out and was written by Marianne Harvey, Cristian Staal and Ralphie Barnett from the agency SapientNitro in Brisbane and Ralph van Dijk from Eardrum in Sydney.

Ms Harvey said one in two Australian children were bullied, so as a group of parents they wanted to do something about it.

“Because earphones are welded to kids’ heads, we saw digital radio as a way to get their attention,” she said. “By using 3D sound technology, we virtually put a bully in their heads. This prepared kids for bullies and built empathy in others.”

She said through digital radio, children were able to go straight to their website for ways to speak out against bullies.

She added that they had created an online audio experience that could be customised by any anti-bully group in the world.

“It’s a different way of thinking and part of what we believe makes this project a breakthrough.”

The winning entry can be heard on the Siren Awards site at: