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media direct action (english)
21 Mar 2003
new idea of direct action - against corporate media - let the civil society take back the airwaves
i am writing here to share a new idea about direct action and civil disobedience,
i am sorry if my English is not very good…
some people are realizing that the street manifestations and sit ins are not very useful to stop war – mostly because the mass media doesn’t give it properly coverage.
(and sometimes a newspaper article or radio interview is more strong - to change public opinion mind - than thousands of people in the street).
what happens is that we live in a globalised world that has its images and messages almost all mediated by the media industry. and we are still using strategies (that were very strong sometime ago) but now, if we make street demonstrations and media doesn’t show it, the effects are very small (important too but very small).
it’s difficult to change this because economical and political interests normally control mass media. which makes it very difficult to have a large and strong space for activists voice and images.
this is serious, because even if we publish our own web sites and use free radios and magazines, probably the people who will access these independent media are the people who already shares this opinion.
and it is crucial to get “non-alternative” normal people to hear our voices and see “other words” rather them official conservative mass media pro-war opinion.
the idea to be proposed is an intent to have the best use of the creative and courageous will to realize direct actions and civil disobedience,
and was inspired in the brazilian land-less peoples movement (MST)
these people, who doesn’t have land to grow their own food, and believing that land is a public resource, they plan and execute big-farm occupies. with this, they fight for their rights and also get a good public attention and exposition on local, national and international media (and this way, putting the land distribution on discussion).
and… if we can see and realize the airwaves also as public resource…
and the fact that this resource is being monopolized by some few companies (which doesn’t give it a good use, because they don’t allow really free speech space or large participation and discussion),
so, the proposal is that people organize to peacefully occupy the commercial tv studios (and also radios).
it could be planned many ways to get in, move to the live studios, make sit ins inside it, present a letter of manifesto, demanding the civil society more space and even control of the media vehicles, and demanding specific dates and times to make free-from-censorship-and-control programs and interviews.
or even demanding that some alternative documentary and interview previously recorded are played on live.
this was just an initial idea, which I think deserves more thoughts and discussions to be improved.
but I really believe it could have some good results,
“waking up” many many people all around.
very best wishes,
marcos (at) rbc.org.br