What is pay-per-view video outreach?
At pay-per-view outreach events, we offer people a dollar to watch a five-minute video that exposes cruelty toward animals on factory farms.
Why do we do pay-per-view?
- To raise people’s awareness about the plight of animals used in agriculture
- To talk with people about how our personal choices can have an impact on animals
- To help people move toward a plant-based diet
- To help people become advocates for animals
How do we do pay-per-view?
Review these steps for how to conduct pay-per-view outreach and ask your volunteer leader if you have any questions.
- Before the Video
- With your team of volunteers, set up a table with a few stations of screens and earphones for people to view the video by themselves or with their friends. Display a large sign that reads, “We’ll pay you one dollar to watch a five-minute video.”
- Don’t wait for people to respond to the sign — proactively recruit them. Move out from behind the table, smile, and in a friendly way invite them to watch a five-minute video for one dollar.
- Participants must be at least 13 years old to watch the tablets or have adult guardian consent. They must be at least 16 to use the virtual reality equipment (if you are using VR). If you are not certain that the person is over 14 years of age, ask.
- If a person asks what it’s about, tell them it’s about factory farming. As they sit down, let them know that what they’re about to see is intense, but you think they’ll be glad to have the information.
- If a person asks if it’s scary, say, “Yes, it’s bloody and gruesome, but most of what you’ll see is footage of standard industry practices.”
- Provide the participant with headphones and tablet. Start the movie for them.
- After the Video
- When they finish watching, say, “Thank you for watching,” and give them one dollar. The participant must watch at least three minutes of the 5-minute video to get the dollar.
- They might be noticeably upset after watching the video. Empathize with them and offer encouragement. You can say, “I know it was difficult, but the great news is that we do not need to support these industries. We can expand our circle of compassion to include farmed animals, and we can choose plant-based foods.” You can start a conversation using the Conversation Starters in bullets below.
- Tuck their dollar into a pamphlet, like the “Guide to Cruelty-Free Eating” which includes recipes, nutrition tips, and resources.
- Encourage them to subscribe to our weekly email newsletter, which offers information about our upcoming events, plant-based recipes, and other forms of support for compassionate living.
- Additional Guidelines
- Do not remove money from the donation box.
- Do not ask participants if they would like to donate their dollar to CAA.
- Keep track of how many times people who watched the video refused to accept the dollar bill. Record these numbers on the tally sheet.
Many people are eager to talk to you about the video after watching it. These starting questions can help open a conversation.
- “What do you think we can do to solve this problem?”
- Using “we” phrasing positions you and the viewer on the same side — people who are concerned about animal abuse. It also puts people into a proactive mindset in thinking about what they can do to take responsibility.
- “Have you seen information like this before?”
- Many people have seen footage of or information about animal agriculture from other sources, and this helps them link different sources and information together.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the things that you can expect to hear from participants along with some of the best ways you can respond.
- “I don’t think I can give up eating meat.”
- Any step you can take makes a difference. It can be a gradual process. You could start off with a Meatless Monday.
- “Why do they have to do it like that!? It doesn’t have to be done like that! (in response to the video)”
- Due to consumer demand for inexpensive meat, eggs, and dairy, suppliers are in constant competition to market their products at the lowest price, regardless of how the animals are treated. Whenever we choose not to buy animal products, we help shift demand away from factory farms and toward vegetarian foods.
- “But I buy my meat from free range farms.”
- Any choice that you can make to reduce animal suffering is great. However, be aware that labels such as “free range” may still involve cruelty. For example, the male chicks who are not valued by the egg industry are killed at birth through a grinder or suffocation, and the female chicks are debeaked.
- “I lived on a farm, and they never did that.”
- Unfortunately, the practices depicted in these videos are standard practices on factory farms. The vast majority of animals in our food system experience this treatment.
- “Where will I get my protein?”
- It’s very easy to get enough protein on a plant-based diet. Beans, peas, lentils, nuts, seeds, and whole grains are all high in protein.
- “I’m never going to eat meat again!”
- Thanks for feeling so passionate about it. Please take a look at some of the tips for plant-based eating in this pamphlet.
See our Advocacy Etiquette and Frequently Asked Questions for more extensive answers to these questions, along with other tips.
Most participants were speechless after the viewing. Many were shocked but expressed their gratitude. They were not only thankful to have a better understanding of where their meat, dairy, and eggs come from, but they were also thankful to the volunteers who shared the video with them.
We listened to viewers articulate their reactions, and then we discussed steps they felt they could take right away. Nearly everyone agreed that Meatless Mondays would be an easy way to start putting values into action.
I thought of how research has reported that ninety-four percent of Americans believe that animals on farms should not suffer. The pay-per-view experience helps people confront that suffering. They begin to understand how their daily actions do or don’t reflect their values. Then, with the right resources and positive encouragement, they can take steps to align their choices with their values.
My 13 year old son and I were among the many CAA volunteers and staff working the pay-per-view table this June at the Twin Cities Pride Festival. Putting values into action is why my son and I are longtime volunteers with CAA. It brings authenticity to our own lives. For me, that’s why volunteering is such a positive, rewarding experience.