Come be a part of the movement!

While enjoying fine literature as I often do, I came across a fascinating tome titled Everyone Poops. I won’t spoil the ending, but let’s just say that this whole “pooping” phenomenon is far more widespread than I had initially thought. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could somehow harness all this pooping — and, dare I say, peeing — to create positive social change?

It might just be possible with a new service from Tokyo-based startup Vacan. You may have even seen one of their AirKnock Ads in use inside a public restroom of convenience stores, restaurants, office complexes, or other commercial facilities. Quite simply, they’re just tablets mounted on the walls of stalls that display ads while also monitoring overall toilet traffic through a sensor that’s triggered whenever the doors open and shut.

By keeping track of the times when the door, and thus toilet, is more frequently used, AirKnock Ads can judge which times are the busiest and tailor the length of its ads appropriately. In addition, toilet-goers are also given an overview of the toilet situation in the entire restroom such as their own time spent on the throne and usage of other stalls to see if it’s a full house and they need to speed things up, or if the coast is clear to take their time.

▼ The diagram shows how AirKnock ads provide real time updates on how busy the restroom is, to see if you’re impeding on someone else’s need to go

But now they’ve also utilized the traffic monitoring to make a donation to one of several charities each time a toilet is used. So next time you make a deposit in a toilet equipped with AirKnock Ads, Vacan will make a deposit of money into one of four NPOs and NGOs: WaterAid, which helps improve sanitation and water quality in developing countries; Florence, which provides support to parents of special-needs kids; the National Children’s Cafeteria Support Center Musubie, ensuring kids get enough to eat not matter their situation; and Anata no Ibasho, a 24-hour counselling services that offers help to people from all walks of life.

In addition to the donations, AirKnock Ads terminals will display promotional videos for each charity so we can learn more about their businesses while we do our own. It’s exactly this kind of captive-audience setup that has made AirKnock hugely successful with commercial advertisers and helped them grow to 5,000 locations in little over a year, so it’s nice to see them pay it forward.

The revenue also likely helps businesses, like convenience stores who are reluctant to let their public toilets become a free-for-all, by bringing them some added revenue as well. It even helps us regular folks avoid those horrible situations when a bathroom emergency pops up and all the stalls are full.

Who would have thought advertising was capable of so much good?

Source: PR Times (1, 2) via ITmedia Business
Top image: PR Times
Insert images: PR Times (1, 2)

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