Why Did Some Letters Suddenly Disappear From the Internet?

Because saving a life can be that simple.

Aug 25, 2016
The #MissingTypes campaign to raise awareness for blood donation has been a big success so far (Photo: NHS Blood Donation)

The #MissingTypes campaign to raise awareness for blood donation has been a big success so far (Photo: NHS Blood Donation)

Something strange has been happening around the world and on the internet in recent weeks. In dozens of cities across the globe, as well as on social media profiles and websites, the letters A, B, and O have started disappearing from shop signs, company logos, and ads.

What first seemed like a random case of teenage vandalism, is actually a brilliant viral marketing campaign under the name #MissingTypes, by the British National Health Service (NHS). The campaign aims to raise awareness of a shortage in certain blood types and to animate people to go and donate blood. The ingenious campaign, which was launched in 2015 in the UK only, has taken a global approach this year, including blood donor organisations from 21 countries, covering cover a total of one billion people.

Despite three people receiving a blood transfusion every single second somewhere in the world, numbers for first time donors have consistently gone down over the past 10 years, highlighting the need for smart campaigns such as #MissingTypes. So far, the campaign has been a huge success, with hundreds of companies, celebrities, and private citizens taking part in the project and sharing their photos of missing letters online.

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David has a passion for languages and words, and loves to see people happy. He writes about inspiring ideas, amazing technologies and all the wonders of the world.