Documenting The Occupation: A Call For A New Media
It has been twenty-four hours since the solidarity march left Duncan Plaza in front of the New Orleans City Hall and there is still no trace of local media coverage. The march was difficult to ignore, leaving as it did from the steps of City Hall, moving through the Central Business District, and targeting the locus of the city’s economic foundation, the French Quarter. Traffic was stopped on Canal Street, the center of New Orleans tourism, where hundreds of people left their shopping to watch, photograph, and video record the procession. Chants of “This is what democracy looks like!” “Banks got bailed out—we got sold out!” and “We are the 99%!” rang throughout the very heart of the city. Employees of local businesses left their work to raise their fists in solidarity. When the march passed a wedding in front of St. Louis Cathedral, a man in a tuxedo joined the ranks. Though the message of unity was heard by thousands of tourists, business owners, and passersby; though the march was recorded by hundreds of onlookers; and though the march was one of more than a thousand solidarity demonstrations worldwide, it failed to win the attention of a single news team.
In fact, there has been almost no media coverage of the Duncan Plaza occupation since its commencement ten days ago. Critics of the #occupywallstreet movement still insist that it lacks momentum, though in just under a month there have arisen solidarity occupations in over 1,500 cities worldwide on each habitable continent on the planet, only 100 of which are in the United States. The media continues to will its own confusion about the movement’s purpose, though this is articulated daily. The revolution, apparently, will emphatically not be televised, though it will be live streamed, blogged, Tweeted, uploaded, and shared. These are our tools of dissemination. When the media fails us, we must make our own media. We are our own journalists. We are our own pundits. We must make ourselves heard.
If you have occupied, marched or raised a fist in solidarity with our brothers and sisters on Wall Street, share your experience, your photographs, your videos. Make known your participation. Show us your face, broadcast your grievances, evidence your unrest. The revolution will not be silenced. We must raise our voices in resistance.
I marched in solidarity with the Occupy Wall Street movement on October 15th, 2011, the Global Day of Action in New Orleans, Louisiana. Here is what it looked like: