EP+Co Revives Abraham Lincoln with AI for Criminal Justice Reform Campaign

14 February 2024

Companies

The 13th Amendment is often celebrated as the landmark legislation that ended slavery in the United States, with President Lincoln recognized among its fiercest advocates. A lesser-known fact, however, is that this amendment contains an exception clause permitting slavery and involuntary servitude as punishment for crime — a clause that has persisted since its enactment in 1865. While President Lincoln was aware of this exception, he leveraged it to garner bipartisan support for the amendment, and anticipated it would be abolished shortly thereafter.

Today, the enduring existence of this clause raises poignant questions about the ongoing suffering of those affected. It also prompts reflection on what President Lincoln would say if he could see how many people are still suffering under it nearly two centuries later. In an effort to explore this hypothetical dialogue, EP+Co utilized advanced AI technology and collaborated with Worth Rises to develop a pro bono campaign titled “The Most Famous Speech Never Given.”

Drawing from Lincoln’s historical speeches and writings, EP+Co trained AI to write a new speech in his distinctive voice. Additionally, they created a historically accurate CGI representation of Lincoln to deliver the speech. Working closely with Harold Holzer, the nation’s foremost Abraham Lincoln authority and Chairman of the Lincoln Forum, the agency ensured that the speech itself and Lincoln’s appearance, movements and voice were as authentic as possible. From incorporating Lincoln’s filler words to capturing his stutter and midwestern accent, the campaign reflects the true essence of President Lincoln — who he was, and who he would have been today.

Strategically launched ahead of the 2024 elections, the online and social campaign aim to drive public education and legislative action, encouraging audiences to demand change on a federal level and support the Abolition Amendment to end slavery once and for all.

As part of EP+Co’s continued mission to use advertising and creativity for good, the agency will participate in SXSW 2024 with a panel titled “Branding Movements: Advertising for Impact.” Featuring executives from Worth Rises, Ben & Jerry’s and EP+Co, the panel will explore the impact brands and advertisers can have on social justice activism. Drawing from their experiences, panelists will discuss the significance of initiatives like “The Most Famous Speech Never Given” and offer insights into effectively utilizing platforms and talents for meaningful change.

For additional details about the SXSW panel, click here…

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