September 3, 2010

Now Hear This

Is your inevitable response to anyone who isn't shouting directly in your face a quizzical “Huh?" or a distracted "What?” Are your parents and siblings constantly telling you to “Turn the damn TV down!”? If so, you're either a bored and inattentive friend/family member with selective hearing loss, or one of the millions of people worldwide who are genuinely affected by hearing impairment.

Anything that affects one in six of the world's population is a serious issue, and the folks at hearing-aid company Phonak -- who admittedly have a vested interest in raising awareness of the problem -- are trying to do something to help. Phonak's new new campaign, “Hear the World,” has attracted the support of an impressive cast of “Hear the World" ambassadors including Sting, Amy Winehouse, Peter Gabriel, Renee Zellwegger, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jude Law, Moby, Annie Lennox and Common.

If the campaign could have been more imaginatively named -- they did just substitute "feed" for "hear," after all -- it is a well-meaning and legit initiative targeted at an important global problem. So click here to visit the Web site, listen to interviews with the ambassadors, take an online hearing test, find out how loud your city is on the Global Sound Map, and learn what you can do to help.

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