Big March - Beat Bullying
Web // User Experience // Fluid Animations


The Big March initiative won numerous awards as the largest anti-bullying march ever held - and it was an entirely digital one! It enabled tens of thousands of people to create bespoke avatar characters, personalise their messages in support of the cause, and watch them 'march' across dozens of high profile partner websites across the world. Delivered seamlessly, and timed to perfection. Adding to the challenge, messages were automatically moderated in several languages to prevent unwanted messages.


Beat Bullying wanted to create a unique and special platform to deliver their Big March. They had trialed numerous ideas in the past but consistently ran in to performance bottlenecks, and the end product just didn't feel great. Their key objectives were:

  • Fluid animations on all browsers and operating systems
  • Extremely lightweight for performance
  • Intuitive user experience (target audience were young adults, 8-25)
  • Ability for consumers to personalise avatar design, and message

One of the major challenges was designing a system which would perform equally well on all modern browsers (including Mobile and Tablet) and operating systems. Previous attempts had involved using Flash which required plugin support and didn't work on mobile. Our software engineers experimented with optimising and animating in different ways to achieve a fantastic experience.

Highly Fluid Animations

The Big March was timed across different sites, and the order was available to everyone. This meant that if you opened different partner websites side by side you could literally see the avatar you had created 'walk' across the two websites, instantly and seamlessly.


There was a significant level of 'background' activity before the march day. This included a Big March park where users could explore different areas with their avatars - from content related to the issues surrounding bullying, to information about each partner and sponsor.

Personalising your avatar was also a fun experience. From selecting colours, to clothing and accessories, each avatar was unique. Furthermore, 'partner' avatars were also created, raising awareness of the sponsors and communicating their messages and views on the issues faced by young adults.

Simple, intuitive registration

The registration process was designed to be simple and intuitive, driving subscriptions and preventing barriers for young users. However, there was a safe-guarding issue with moderating the entries, ensuring that each avatar's poster and message was legitimate.

Manual moderation was impossible, so by automating moderation there were numerous challenges to contend with - which language were users entering from? What words did we need to flag up as potentially derogatory / inappropriate, and how was this process managed? This was also of extreme importance to the sponsors who were exposed while the march was taking place over their high profile websites.