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From the 8th Annual Shorty Impact Awards

Don't Choose Extinction

Silver Honor in Environment & Sustainability


In October 2021, the UNDP launched the #DontChooseExtinction climate campaign with a video starring Frankie, an animated dinosaur. Frankie storms the United Nations and urges humanity to end fossil fuel subsidies. “Imagine if we spent hundreds of billions subsidizing giant meteors?” Frankie quips. Frankie’s speech became the most watched in UN history, aided by the celebrities who provided voice overs for Frankie in 58 languages. It demonstrated the power of comedy to communicate an important—if grim—message.

The goal: expand the reach and extend the life of the #DontChooseExtinction campaign by bringing Frankie the Dino to life with a realistic dinosaur puppet and staging activations at global events and gatherings.


Strategy and Execution

Frankie the Dino knows a few things about extinction, which is why he took the stage at the UN to urge humanity to take action to end the climate crisis and avoid our own extinction. We wanted to take Frankie’s message to new audiences by bringing this animated mascot to life with a realistic, life-sized puppet. The goal was to establish Frankie the Dino as a “real-life” public figure and influencer, using humor and spectacle to inspire environmental advocacy and rally climate action. 

Frankie took his message on the road, popping up at major global gatherings, like Climate Week NYC, COP 27 in Sharm El-Sheikh, and the YouthConnekt Africa Summit in Kigali, Rwanda. Frankie spoke on panels, appeared on television, visited preschools, marched in climate protests, danced with youth leaders, engaged with political officials, and generally disrupted everyday life wherever he traveled with his playful wake-up call to humanity.

Target audience(s):


Frankie’s activations were anchored by participation in major events where he engaged with participants and spoke about his campaign via a dinosaur “translator”. Alongside these appearances, Frankie took to the streets in the cities he visited, improvising “one-dino” climate marches in busy public spaces with a protest sign that drove onlookers to the #DontChooseExtinction campaign website. Crowds swarmed the dinosaur looking for selfies, and Frankie’s impromptu street protests often led to media interviews.

The campaign also leveraged the UNDP’s extensive network of country offices to engage local schools and recreation centers in host cities. Frankie entertained students while offering teachers a playful opportunity to discuss challenging environmental issues. Frankie’s social media platforms capitalized on the virality of these appearances to further develop Frankie’s voice, character, and identity online.


Timeline and Placement:


Reviving a Campaign

The #DontChooseExtinction campaign video has achieved more than 2.2 billion views. But after an initial surge, Frankie’s social media traffic dropped from more than 2 million impressions in October 2021 to 11,241 impressions in February 2022. 

Generating traffic entirely with owned and earned media – and with zero ad dollars behind the campaign – the “real life” Frankie drove:

Building Influence

Media appearances established Frankie the Dino as a globally recognized public figure. Climate influencers like Gretta Thurnberg and Leonardo DiCaprio followed Frankie on social media. Frankie was interviewed in Arabic, French, German, Spanish, Kinyarwanda, and English. The 4000+ media outlets that covered Frankie include:


Video for Don't Choose Extinction

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Social Revolt Agency, United Nations Development Programme


Entry Credits