Thai social experiment urges public to report on domestic abuse

Thailand's Women and Men Progressive Movement Foundation (WMP) has launched its campaign titled "The Daily Fight". The campaign aims to raise awareness on domestic violence in Thailand, and convey the message that what is unacceptable in public is unacceptable at home. The campaign will run until the end of March.

As part of the campaign, WMP worked with Dentsu Thailand, Dentsu X and Isobar to produce a film based on a live social experiment held at the Ram100 Thai boxing arena. The social experiment features a couple dressed in casual clothing, Lek Chanwit and Aey Napat, entering the arena for the "main event" of the day. Once the fight starts, Chanwit abuses Napat by kicking her, pulling her hair, and slapping her while she cowers in fear. When the audience shouts for Chanwit not to hurt Napat, he said: "Shut up! This is family business." A video was then played, explaining that fights like that happen every day in Thailand homes, and urging the audience to make a report when they see a case of domestic violence. 

In a statement to Marketing, Jon Chalermwong, chief creative officer, Dentsu Thailand said with the film, it wanted to bring the abuse that usually happens behind closed doors into the limelight by staging a fight in a real boxing arena with a live audience. The agency also wanted to capture people’s raw emotions when witnessing domestic violence in public by putting them in a position where they can’t ignore it.

The film will be made available on WMP's YouTube channel, as well as its official Facebook page. Chalermwong also told Marketing that the Ram100 Thai boxing arena was chosen because it is one of the few boxing arenas in Thailand that hold men and women fights and was therefore open to help conduct the social experiment. The average number of audience in the arena is approximately 300 to 400 people. 

According to Chalermwong, a press conference was supposed to be held at the WMP's office following the production of the film, where women will share their stories about domestic abuse. The press conference, which was cancelled due to the COVID-19 situation, was also intended to be shared with news channels within the foundation’s network.

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