When The Cove won the Oscar for Best Documentary Sunday night we briefly saw one of its producers, Ric O‚ÄôBarry, held up a sign saying “Text DOLPHIN to 44144” while Fisher Stevens gave their acceptance speech. It was an attempt to do what all winners were instructed to with theor speeches — make it interesting, make it personal, make an impact — but the director of the Oscar broadcast cut away as if something obscene were happening. So much for honoring and appreciating filmmakers who try to make a difference.
Although the number was seen so briefly if you blinked you might have missed it — thousands of views didn’t blink and responded with a far more clear-eyed sense of responsibility that the knee-jerk reaction of whomever was directing the on-air editing. Waterfall Mobile, powers the mobile campaign for Participant Media, and after the sign aired on television, Waterfall saw an enormous spike in mobile subscribers to the keyword (with steady traffic for the next several hours). Since airing Sunday night, there has been a huge show of support over Twitter (which continues to generate steady traffic) and the number of subscribers has nearly doubled — from 38,000 to over 70,000.
You can help keep the interest surging. Here‚Äôs how it works: When you text the code word “DOLPHIN” to 44144 you’ll be asked to join the mobile subscriber list. After opting in to the list, concientious texters receive a message with a link to sign a petition to shut down dolphin slaughter depicted in the Cove — a petition sent to President Obama and the Japanese Ambassador to the U.S., Ichiro Fujisaki.