NEW YORK, USA — At the recently concluded The Webby Awards in New York, Save Our Sharks (SOS), conceptualized by Philippine creative agency Octopus&Whale for NFT marketplace Likha by BayaniChain, won under the category of Public Service & Activism in Metaverse, Immersive & Virtual, championing one of the two honors – The Webby People’s Voice Award.
Hailed as the “Internet’s highest honor” by The New York Times, The Webby Awards, presented by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (IADAS), is the leading international awards organization honoring excellence on the Internet.
IADAS, which nominates and selects The Webby Award Winners, is comprised of Internet industry experts including Questlove, DJ and producer; Tan France, fashion designer, television personality, and author; Natalie Guzman, Co-President and CMO, Savage X Fenty; Werner Vogels, CTO, Amazon; Roxanne Gay, Host, The Roxanne Gay Agenda; Quinta Brunson, writer, director, and actor; Ziwe Fumudoh, comedian and writer; Reshma Saujani, Founder, Girls Who Code; LeVar Burton, actor, podcaster, and TV host; Andy Slavit, Host, In The Bubble; Takashi Murakami, artist; Samantha Bee, comedian; and Tracy Chou, Founder and CEO, Block Party.
“With Save Our Sharks, Octopus&Whale has set the standard for innovation and creativity on the Internet,” said Claire Graves, Executive Director of The Webby Awards. “This award is a testament to the skill, ingenuity, and vision of its creators.”
Save Our Sharks is the only visual scientific compendium of all 200 sharks in the Philippines, each of them minted as NFTs to remain in the blockchain for all time. Octopus&Whale joined hands with the Marine Wildlife Watch of the Philippines and Bayanichain to utilize the technology as an immutable record and a bridge between two unlikely allies: scientists and NFT holders.
Octopus&Whale is the only game and experience design agency in the Philippines that guides brands into the gaming space. The advertising agency combines gamification and design thinking to deliver big ideas, marketing innovations, and digital products. This is its first recognition with the award hailed as the internet’s highest honor.
Bayanichain assisted in developing the NFT collection for Save Our Sharks. It created a platform for local artists and brands in the Philippines to mint, manage, and market their NFTs. By providing a space for creators to participate in this growing trend, the company aims to accelerate the understanding and acceptance of blockchain technology among Filipinos.
Nolan Fabular, Co-Founder and Executive Creative Director of Octopus&Whale, led a team of artists to craft the digital artworks and embed scientific information in the files. “Creativity is constantly evolving. It’s important for us to explore emerging tech so we can determine if it is of value to our clients,” Nolan said. “Being small gives us the agility to try new things, and I’m glad this one is a success. It wasn’t easy!”
Joey David Tiempo, CEO and Founder of Octopus&Whale, is a regular winner of various creative awards and has bagged the very first Webby award for the Philippines in 2015. Hence, it’s no surprise that the winning company followed in her footsteps to achieve another big feat at the Webbys.
“It took many people to bring this project to life, and even more for it to win a Webby People’s Voice Award. Maraming maraming maraming maraming salamat. There’s my Webby 5-word Webby speech,” Joey said. “I’m sure the Philippine sharks also thank you from the bottom of the ocean.”
Octopus&Whale was honored along with the other winners at the 27th Annual Webby Awards on May 15, hosted by Roy Wood Jr.
This year’s Webby Special Achievement honorees include Emoji Creator Shigetaka Kurita (Lifetime Achievement), SZA (Artist of the Year), Sharon Horgan (Actress of the Year), SmartLess Hosts Jason Bateman, Will Arnett, and Sean Hayes (Podcast of the Year), Tracee Ellis Ross (Webby Special Achievement), Tobe Nwigwe (Webby Special Achievement), Under the Desk News (Webby Special Achievement), and Chat GPT (Breakout of the Year).