see also: TheMiracleOfCampaigns2 TheMiracleOfCampaignsDe
The Miracle of Campaigns
- Clarify early/in good time, who will participate and who wants to and will do what.
- reassure everyone that money for travelling to the place and back will be alright. Make clear that everybody is really needed, and that it's much more fun to do a media center than admin the imc page. And that it's a chance to learn loads.
- If there is no local group, get in touch as early as possibe with those who are organising the campaign. If ever possible organise a meeting.
- Check out rooms and technical equipment.
- If necessary and possible, make sure that you can bring your own equipment.
- Find out or ask someone to find out which local groups are interested to collaborate (local free radio stations, video activists, info telephones, helplines, legal team, ...?). Exchange information and check out possibilities to share infrastructure.
- Check out the technical equipment (hardware and software). Is it ready to be used? Make sure that it is.
- Check out which organising local groups can write a feature about the campaign, whether they want to do it and if so, whether they need help.
- Find out how much money you will need for travelling and expenses. Apply for grants or think about other ways to cover the costs.
- get cheap train tickets/ coaches/ flights, book in advance, borrow or rent cars/vans...
- Find an indy-phone no you can use, design flyers/stickers with phone no and instructions.
just before the event
- write feature
- get translators on board. Maybe prepare a TWiki-site for translations (Expl: http://docs.indymedia.org/view/Global/MuenchenUebersetzen)
- Read up on the issue of the campaign, to avoid embarrassing mistakes on the site.
- Arrange a time for a first short meeting at the location
Dispatch is actually an easy task. Make sure you hear about everything that happens, double check, and put it on the site in a way that's easy to read. Information travels in two main directions:
- It comes in (incoming info)
- then it is being doublechecked and structured
- It goes out (outgoing info)
- Get local maps, city maps
- take large sheets of paper (wallpaper...) and pens
- arrange passwords for silc-channels, make sure that everyone knows what they need to know.
- practice SILC, to avoid things like accidentially typing the password into a busy channel -- http://docs.indymedia.org/view/Local/SilC
- get coffee and chocolate (sometimes, all shops suddenly close. In Genoa, none of the cashpoints in the surrounding area was working...)
- Collect phone nos and URL's from relevant groups and places (see incoming info active)
- write down a detailed timeline of the campaign, including all planned actions.
- maybe get an accreditation for the official conference etc.
- fix a daily short meeting for coordination (who does what, who goes where?)
- Find out times and places of meetings in the convergence center, plenary sessions, info meetings. Coordinate who goes to which one. Make clear and structured wall posters for these infos.
- Prepare a feature for www.indymedia.org and coordinate with email@example.com
- via Indyphone
o always ask: Did you see what you are reporting yourself? Where are you right now? What exactly happened? What else is going on right now in that place? What will probably happen next?
o If the caller did not see him/herself what s/he just reported, treat the story with utmost care. A noisy bang equals a brick thrown equal a smashed Mcdonalds equals...
- via SILC/IRC
o ask the same questions as on the phone
- Call people that you know are in the place where something happened. Ask them whether they can confirm unconfirmed infos or ask them to go to the place where you had news from. When they report back, ask accurately whether they saw themselves what they are reporting, or if they are reporting a rumour that currently makes the rounds in the entire demo.
- Watch webcams
- Call Info telephones or helplines /legal team /hospitals /press departments of local council, police or conference organisers... call and get them to confirm unconfirmed infos
- Regularly surf websites of local newspapers/ press agencies/ organisers of campaign/ groups involved in campaign
- go to the press conferences of the "evil" and the "good" forces
- go to plenary sessions in the Convergence Center or similar places
- research central points of conflict (why are the trade unions registering a demonstration and nearly at the same moment, the "B\xFCndnis gegen BLA" is registering one as well? What's J\xF6rg Bergstedt doing, suddenly being Pink-Silver?)
- find out what's happening at the counter summit - central issues and discussions? Who - how many - where from... ?
- A crucial issue for dispatch is that outgoing information is NEVER EVER unconfirmed. This means that even if your best friend calls and reports having seen xy, the info only goes up on the site when it has been confirmed in one way or other. This procedure of course depends on the explosiveness of the report. As the situation on the streets is getting more stressful, people tend to get less accurate in reporting (on the phone or elsewhere)
- Also crucial: not to ask leading questions ("Did you see that 200 cops were running down xy street?")
In Genoa, the radio stream reported at one point that the G8 summit broke up. This announcement spread fast, and it wasn't easy to rebuild trust in the radio stream afterwards.
- SILC is a great facility to confirm information, and generally deal with information. Ideally, there is
o a channel for chitchat,
o a channel for unconfirmed infos. This is for typing in everything we hear of in any way. This is useful to reconstruct which info came from where, once the acute stir has calmed down. If they want to, people from other groups like info telephone, helpline, radio can participate in this channel.
o a channel for confirmed information. This is ONLY for documenting news that we are rock-solid convinced of. Only people that we trust 100% can be in this channel. If unknown people turn up in this channel, we absolutely need to find out who they are.
- Regularly add stuff to "Breaking News" - but not too often.
- Pass on texts that are ready for translation to the translators - ideally, they are in the "chitchat" and "confirmed news" SILC channels themselves.
- From time to time, report to the Indymedia-IRC what's happening. This can raise interest in the international indy-community. Often, this generates spontaneous reports and translations on other Indy sites.
- pass on ongoing developments to radio, video teams, photographers.
- in large actions use a public IMC info wall. This helps people who want to report to find out where something is currently happening.
- post short reports, either on your own or with a text group (if it exists)
- evening/night - write a summary of the events of the day. These chronological summaries can be posted in the newswire as a timeline and linked to the Start-Special.
Logistics + (internal) Coordination + Communication
Here are a few questions which are often passionately discussed, therefore they should be dealt with in time.
- Dealing with mainstream media. They often want interviews or film the workspaces.
- How to integrate new people or indymedia activists from othe countries?
- Are we having Indymedia press cards?
Providing food can become a problem. Often there is no time for shopping/cooking/getting a takeaway - but food is necessary. It's best to find people who want to deal with it early on. Or it needs to be discussed how the task can be shared equally.
- Even if stress levels are really high, an indymedia plenary session should take place at least once a day. This helps to avoid the multiplication of work, canalises good ideas and gives new people a chance to understand how they can get involved.
- Best to put up large signs everywhere, explaining that everybody is always under massive stress, and please, everybody try to stay friendly and not expect others to do their work.
++++++++++ to be continued! ++++++++++
- 28 Mar 2003
--IonNek - 4 Apr 2003 - translation
- 06 Apr 2003
- 02 Jul 2005 replaced #EA# with 'legal team'