WTF is this 86 campaign?

Oct 192004
Authors: Jared McCabe

Recently seen on everything from t-shirts to fake sick bags, the

“86 yourself” campaign has sparked the interest of students


“At first I thought it had something to do with protecting

yourself during unorthodox sex,” said Eric Hammer, a junior

open-option student. “I was anxious to ask anybody about it because

I did not want people to think I was a freak.”

Burns Marketing Communications, 363 W. Drake Road, used a

National Collegiate Health Assessment Survey to help develop the

campaign, which entails cryptic “86 yourself” messages strewn

around campus.

According to the survey, 86 percent of CSU students use a

designated sober driver when traveling intoxicated.

“(The 86 yourself campaign) is a social-norming marketing

campaign to encourage students to have positive, safe behavior,”

said Pam McCracken, director of the Center for Drug and Alcohol

Education at CSU.

McCracken said social norming is a relatively new trend that is

being used to decrease binge drinking among students by telling

positive truths, instead of focusing on the negative aspects of


“When we asked how many people drank in the last 30 days, 22.4

percent had not drank at all, but when we asked how many people do

you think did not drink, they said .4 percent,” McCracken said.

Patrick Hunt, lead copywriter for Burns Marketing and

Communications, said that using “86 yourself” as an active message

should help curb drunk driving and encourage students to “be able

to express positive majority behavior.”

Robert Sons, a sophomore microbiology student and Associated

Students of CSU senator, hopes that the “86 yourself” campaign will

advocate responsible drinking.

“I expect that students will already be responsible enough to

use a designated driver when impaired, and I hope that the 86

campaign will improve the actions of the more wayward members of

our community,” Sons said. “I hope that people continue to use

RamRide to the fullest extent of its abilities and not put

themselves in dangerous situations.”

Some students still find the “86 yourself” campaign


“It is an obscure term that does not communicate the message

clearly,” said Edwin Smith, a junior English major. “I hope that

they get the message across in a different light.”

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