Please place advertisements that reflect the true value of our city.
  • Petitioned Project of Greater Philadelphia Marketing Tourism Corporation

This petition was delivered to:

VisitPhilly.com
Project of Greater Philadelphia Marketing Tourism Corporation

Please place advertisements that reflect the true value of our city.

    1. Petition by

      HollabackPHILLY

A VisitPhilly.com billboard prominantly displayed on Broad Street in the center of the city promotes street harassment in a large, unavoidable, unmistakeable way, and on an advertisement meant to define and promote Philadelphia to tourists. This fails our entire city, not just the women and LGBTQ community members who are harassed on the streets in alarming numbers every day. VisitPhilly.com can do better than that - and Philadelphia deserves better.

The "VisitPhilly.com" campaign, run by GPMTC to promote tourism to Philadelphia, states that it is working to make Philadelphia "a premier destination through marketing and image building that increases business and promotes the region’s vitality." Having taken on this mission of revitalizing Philadelphia's image, they dropped the ball with their billboard on Broad Street (the main street running North-South through the city, straight through City Hall). 

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention,  street harassment is the most pervasive form of gender-based sexual violence in the United States. Street harassment limits mobility of women and LGBTQ individuals and denies them the basic human right of feeling safe on public streets. Sexual harassment is a gateway crime that creates a cultural environment that makes gender-based violence okay. A clear legal framework exists to reproach sexual harassment and abuse in the home and at work, but when it comes to the streets - people seem to think all bets are off.

We called GPMTC and asked them to replace this billboard with one that deters street harassment, but they refused. Please join us in demanding VisitPhilly.com place an equally prominent advertisement reflecting the true worth of our city and its citizens, and those who wish to visit Philadelphia. Sign this petition asking that they place a billboard telling all those who "walk this way" that they are deserving of safety and respect on our streets; that Philadelphia is a city where street harassment has no place.

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Philebrity defending the billboards and the right to street harass. Enough!

      Now Philebrity is defending the billboards too, and explicitly siding with the street harasser. "Either way, WE SIDE WITH THOSE GUYS. It’s a beautiful spring day in Philadelphia. There’s beautiful people all over the place. AND WE’LL BE DAMNED IF YOU HUMORLESS TORI AMOS FANS MAKE IT LIKE IT’S A BAD THING TO LOOK AT THEM." We're now at 101 signatures and counting - help us get to 500 by signing and sharing and telling them all we won't stand for street harassment!

    2. Reached 100 signatures
    3. GPTMC emailed us justifications & no apology. Tell them we deserve better!

      The President and CEO of Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation emailed us yesterday afternoon in response to our campaign against their sexist advertising. She expressed no remorse as she justified the billboard, completely sidestepped the blatant sexism seen in their advertisements, both current and past, and closed with an implication, but no explicit statement, that the offensive nature of the advertisement was unintentional.

      Until they include us in the conversation, we will continue to demand our voices be heard. Join us in demanding a campaign that reflects the true value of Philadelphia – one that involves safe streets, free from harassment, and a representative dialogue that considers, instead of silences, voices from the margins.

    4. VisitPhilly.com says they hear us. Let's make sure they do the right thing!

      We sent an email, and after a week of not hearing from them, we called. The telephone conversation ended with their refusal to remove this billboard before the contract ran out, and refusal to put up a new billboard to counteract the damage done by this one.

      So, we launched a Change.org campaign to demand that they respond. After 25 signatures and a handful of Tweets to their Twitter account (@VisitPhilly), VisitPhilly Tweeted us "We hear you. We're looking into this." We responded, "Thank you! We'll keep up the pressure until there is resolution - we appreciate that you're getting the ball rolling."

      Please stand by us, keep the pressure up, and let them know we won’t take this lying down. We can’t let VisitPhilly.com remove the billboard quietly. It’s been screaming at Philly for weeks from its prominent position on Broad Street, and we deserve to see a different message for a few months, shouting out love and support. Please help us by encouraging others to sign the petition!

    5. Reached 50 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Jim Cummings PHILLADLEPHIA, PA
      • over 2 years ago

      I am saddened that Philadelphia has not gotten it. Women are human and get to be treated that way not as things for the entertainment of men.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Kaylene Cole-Daughdrill SAN FRANCISCO, CA
      • over 2 years ago

      Because with this kind of advertising, I won't be visiting Philadelphia anytime soon. Which is unfortunate given my love of our country's history. I don't need to take a vacation to get sexually harassed on the street. I get enough of that here in San Francisco for free...

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Dan Hajdo COLUMBIA, MD
      • over 2 years ago

      What are you trying to say, Philadelphia is the street harassment capital? Very, very wrong.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Lynne Rabchuk PHILADELPHIA, PA
      • over 2 years ago

      As a born-and-raised Philadelphian, I am offended that my City of Brotherly Love is being misrepresented as a city of brotherly harassment with these ads.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Erika Owens PHILADELPHIA, PA
      • over 2 years ago

      Street harassment is already rampant in Philly, it does not need any further encouragement and is not a tourism selling point.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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