In 1985, McDonalds sued left-wing activists in the UK for libel over a pamphlet accusing the multinational food giant of environmental destruction, abuses of workers' rights and selling junk food. The ensuing trial became the longest-running civil trial in English history, ending in 1997 in a Pyrrhic victory for McDonalds, who had lost millions of pounds in pursuing the case, and won £40,000 for their trouble. (The judgment was later overturned in the European Court of Human Rights.) Now, it has been revealed that the leaflet in question had been co-written by an undercover police officer assigned to infiltrate Greenpeace
. The officer in question, Bob Lambert, had previously spent years infiltrating environmental groups, even fathering children with activists
before disappearing. [more inside]
posted by acb
on Jun 21, 2013 -
Her encampment is 'an old patio umbrella draped in a white plastic sheet secured with binder clips. It is flanked by two large boards with messages in capital letters: BAN ALL NUCLEAR WEAPONS OR HAVE A NICE DOOMSDAY and LIVE BY THE BOMB, DIE BY THE BOMB. This rudimentary shelter has been positioned outside the White House for more than three decades. It is a monument itself now, widely considered the longest-running act of political protest in the United States, and this woman, Concepcion Picciotto — Connie, as she’s known to many — is its longest-running caretaker.' [more inside]
posted by zarq
on May 6, 2013 -
"Shut Up and Dance’s 1991 hardcore LP ‘Dance Before the Police Come’ was released at a time when the UK authorities were struggling to contain the massive explosion of raves. Thousands of people each weekend were playing a cat and mouse game with the police to party in fields and warehouses, and if the state was often outwitted by meeting points in motorway service stations and convoys of cars, it tried to keep the lid on the phenomenon by staging high profile raids."Dance before the police come
: a social history, covering UK (and US) raves, queer activism, morality police (both figurative and literal) and racial discrimination. [more inside]
posted by Len
on Jul 9, 2012 -
We Will Survive Capitalism!
flash mob with US Uncut [previously]
and the Brass Liberation Orchestra
Previous BLO flash mobs include Bad Hotel [previously], Operation Hey Mackey [previously], and "PAY UP!" (demanding Bank of America pay their taxes). Speaking of BofA, in San Francisco on Thursday activists turned every Bank of America ATM in the city into an Automated Truth Machine, using special non-adhesive stickers designed to look exactly like BoA’s ATM interface. But instead of checking and savings accounts, these new menus offered a list of everything BoA customers’ money is being used for, including investment in coal-fired power plants, foreclosure on Americans’ homes, bankrolling of climate change, and paying for fat executive bonuses. [more inside]
posted by finite
on Jan 15, 2012 -
Occupy Wall Street
is an event comprised of anti-corporate non-violent protests that are being promoted by a range of groups including the AdbustersMedia Foundation and a New York City group called General Assembly. Months ago a plea was put out
to diverse political and activist groups urging them to descend on Wall Street on September 17th and take part in long-term occupation of the area in the spirit of the Arab Spring
rebellions. [more inside]
posted by stagewhisper
on Sep 20, 2011 -
Sue Coe, one of the most committed activist artists in America, has during her thirty-five-year career charted an idiosyncratic course through an environment that is at best ambivalent toward art with overt socio-political content.
posted by Trurl
on Sep 1, 2011 -
application aims to use steganography
to hide samizdat
-type data within a larger stream of innocuous network traffic. Thus, civilians in Iran, for example, could more easily evade Iranian censors and provide the world with an unfiltered report
on events within the country. Haystack earned its creator Austin Heap
a great deal of positive coverage from the media during the 2009 Iranian election protests. The BBC described Heap as "on the front lines"
of the protesters' "Twitter revolution", while The Guardian called him an Innovator of the Year
. Despite the laudatory coverage, however, the media were never given a copy of the software to examine. Indeed, not much is known about the software or its inner workings. Specialists in network encryption security were not allowed to perform an independent evaluation of Haystack, despite its distribution to and use by a small number of Iranians, possibly at some risk. As interest in the project widens
and criticisms of the media coverage and software continue to mount
, Heap has currently asked users to cease using Haystack
until a security review can be performed.
posted by Blazecock Pileon
on Sep 13, 2010 -
Single-payer health care advocates arrested at Senate hearing.
On May 5, 2009 advocates of a U.S. national health care program disrupted
a Senate Finance Committee event to call for single-payer healthcare to be part of the discussion. The eight protesters were subsequently arrested
. The protesters included representatives of Physicians for a National Health Program
, which favors the The United States National Health Care Act, H.R. 676
. Committee Chair Max Baucus (D - Montana), who has received more money
in contributions from health insurance companies than any other member of Congress, favors
requiring Americans to purchase private health insurance from those companies. Baucus, who has previously said that single-payer is "off the table
," responded to the doctors and their fellow activists with, “I want you to know I care deeply about your views," and then, "we need more police [to eject protesters]."
posted by univac
on May 6, 2009 -
Are You Generic?
"Giving Brand-America the finger since 2001." The folks at Are You Generic have a few basic demands
: "natural, unprocessed foods; ad-free space; trustworthy news sources; a healthy body image; promotion of the independents; and the spread of knowledge." They're getting their message
across by means of "culture jams." Their first target
was Starbucks in 2002. Some more recent actions are listed here
, including Confessions of a Generic Magazine
. But they have stuff for sale
, so some might argue that they're not that much different than those they mock. Either way, their site does have a great collection of international street art
posted by amyms
on Mar 20, 2007 -
If you've participated in an anti-war rally, or helped organize a demonstration, the FBI may have a file on you.
The FBI claims that they are only weeding out anarchists and other "extremists." But the ACLU and some legal scholars are warning of a return of Hooverism.
Attention pinkos: You can run, but you can't hide, because you're probably on the no-fly list.
posted by PrinceValium
on Nov 23, 2003 -
Treetop Bloggers Protest Logging
A group of anti-logging activists are now ready to maintain their own blog
130 feet up in an ancient redwood. I've considered tree sitting
, but find myself much more inclined to do so if I could continue working (or reading MeFi, as the case may be). Interesting intersection of technology and activism. Doncha think? (via /.
posted by maniactown
on Dec 13, 2002 -
It's Marching Season!
There's an godless american
march comin' to DC this fall (November 2) "Our leaders, including the President, must stop calling the nation to prayer, or claim that we are a "Christian" country..."
(Amen to that!!!) and "We must remember to not "feed the fundies" by engaging in arguments with religious protesters and hostile "prayer warriors" who want to "save" us."
From what I understand, this will be the first big march on Washington since our new wartime laws have been implemented....will atheists become "unlawful combatants?" Anyone up for it?
posted by amberglow
on Aug 14, 2002 -
Treesitter Falls to Her Death in Mt. Hood National Forest.
95% of our old-growth forests are gone. A coalition
of grassroots organizations are dedicated to peacefully protecting our forests and watersheds, and have been quite sucessfull in Oregon and northern California. Sen. Ron Wyden D-Ore., an opponent of the timber sale, had announced a few days before that the U.S. Forest Service had reached an agreement to cancel the logging contract after an independent review determined the deal required significant modifications to prevent environmental harm, and tree sitters were days away from leaving the site after a three-year vigil. I appreciate the work and risks taken by these activists. More info at tree-sit.org
posted by Mack Twain
on Apr 21, 2002 -
Working for peace in the wake of September 11.
For those who have wondered just what exactly they can do besides flying the US flag or posting on MeFi (myself included in the latter).
This comprehensive site offers all sorts of concrete actions for those who believe that war is not the answer. You can email your elected officials; sign petitions; browse a list of suggested actions (from donating supplies for rescue dogs to flying the UN flag); and find out about upcoming events.
posted by mapalm
on Sep 18, 2001 -
Did you hear about the Trash Bloc
? Some anti-authoritarians are planning a bloc for the weekend of the IMF/World Bank protests that would go around Washington DC neighborhoods and pick up trash. I think we can all get down with that.
posted by sudama
on Aug 20, 2001 -
Large-scale, Global Anti-capitalism Protests Putting Smaller, Local, Anti-capitalism Protests Out Of Business:
"Kyle Redmond, spokesperson for WorldProtest, which has thousands of members in 20 countries and co-ordinates protests all over the world, defended his organisation's approach: 'We give anarchists what they want. It's a supply and demand situation. We offer a basic menu of building defacement, vandalism of a McDonalds outlet and general looting, ending with a confrontation with the local police. All our research shows that this is what the average anarchist on the street wants'." Satire at its finest...
posted by frednorman
on May 2, 2001 -
"I am concerned about the world's silence and co-operation with this massacre. Maybe if people at grassroots act, governments will follow." Neta Golan, 29, Israeli ctizen and voluntary human shield
posted by lagado
on Nov 19, 2000 -
It's odd that people reacting against globalisation
should try to stop the forum meeting in Melbourne this week. It is working to solve the problems they are protesting against, warns the Swiss intellectual who is founder and president of the World Economic Forum.
posted by murray_kester
on Sep 10, 2000 -