Find The Right Words

Screen from the Find the Right Words campaign video

(Click on the above to watch the video)

13th October 2020

We're excited to launch our new campaign aimed at changing the language and perception of stammering.

'Find the Right Words' aims to kick-start a conversation around the negative language used when talking about stammering, and help those who don't stammer to understand that this is just how some people talk. The campaign is the brainchild of VMLY&R, who've worked their socks off on it.

Campaign advertisements for Emily BluntCampaign advertisements for Emily Blunt

Over the next days and weeks up until International Stammering Awareness Day (ISAD) on 22nd October, there will be outdoor digital adverts across the UK and a social campaign to show how we changed the language used on Wikipedia — language that described people who stammer as being 'plagued' by an 'affliction', or  having had a 'defect', when all they did was stammer.

Example of wikipedia entries being edited

Entries included historical figures such as Charles Darwin and Lewis Carroll, as well as more modern household names like Ed Sheeran, Emily Blunt and Samuel L. Jackson.

No one should feel like they are worth less as a person because of something they cannot change. The project really speaks to the nature of Wikipedia, not just as a learning tool, but as an ever-evolving platform that needs to accurately reflect the world we live in.

Jimmy Wales, Founder of Wikipedia

An advertisement for the Find the Right Words campaign

The campaign has been documented in a video which you can watch at the top of the page, voiced by our very own Patron Scroobius Pip, who stammers himself. This vividly illustrates what we did and why we did it. Share it far and wide!

Campaign advertisements for Lewis Carroll

Campaign advertisements for Lewis Carroll

The Message

In advance of the campaign, we have launched Editorial Guidelines endorsed by the Royal College of Speech & Language Therapists, which set out the kinds of words, language and assumptions that we want people to steer clear of. You can read the guidelines here.

At the end of the day our message is really simple: We stammer, it's how we talk. We need people to simply accept this and move away from ideas about how we can or how we should change. In this day and age, stammering shouldn't be viewed negatively and met with suggestions to 'fix it'. It should be embraced and acknowledged as simply the way someone speaks.

We need people who don't stammer to just accept how we talk.

Wherever you are on your journey, whether you did the McGuire Programme or Starfish Project, whether you're at home with your stammer or seeking fluency, we need people who don't stammer to just accept how we talk.

An advertisement for the Find the Right Words campaign

The campaign will culminate on ISAD on the 22nd. It will go out globally, showcased by the National Stuttering Association in the USA, the Canadian Stuttering Association, the Australian Speak Easy Association and the Irish Stammering Association.

Here are a few words from Scroobius Pip, who narrated the video:

engage on social

We'll be pushing out content on Twitter (@stammer), Facebook and Instagram (@stammauk) so get stuck in, share and engage with us there. If you see one of our ads out and about, take a photo or video and share on social using the hashtags #FindTheRightWords and #ISAD2020.

Become a member

Join us and help make a difference - become a member of Stamma for free here.

Wikipedia entries that were edited for the campaign


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