From:   Willie Osterweil <>
Sent time:   Friday, September 16, 2011 7:31:58 AM
Subject:   Re: [september17discuss] Media 30 seconds

There is, also, a way of dealing with the media that is not so friendly. Although if you are capable of these techniques that's great, and if you have a sound bite and you feel like you can manage, that's great, but I've also seen activists pull the dada ninja trick with reporters, and it's awesome. 

What do I mean? Play a game with them. Answer in truly nonsensical forms. I respect and appreciate that they are just doing their jobs, and if you want to speak to them, that's fine. I basically support everything that's been said here. But if you find yourself in an interview you're not too pleased to be in, or if you realize that you might be taken out of context, or think maybe you're talking to a cop, etc, good to really go for the nonsense gold. What do I mean?

Sample Dada-Ninja Interview Technique:

Interviewer: Why are you here?
Dada-Ninja: The gravitational forces of the moon have ruined the taste of my coffee. I came down here to put pressure on the worldwide calorie-free sugar lobby, with their astrophysics and the scent of air fresheners. It's all about the waves and cocoa beans! We need to stop it.

I've seen interviewers intrepidly barrel on through one or two Dada-Ninja responses, but eventually they give up and go away. As Will's experience demonstrates, they are happy to manipulate your words and get the worst out of you. Instead of being focused on a sound bite, if, like me, you have no interest in talking to the media, use ways of expressing yourself nonsensically or creatively, have fun, and confuse the reporters- this seems like a form of radical creativity that can be helpful and inspiring to those around you.

Talking civilly and honestly with the media is a pattern worth challenging as well.


On Fri, Sep 16, 2011 at 7:11 AM, Matthew Presto <> wrote:
Agreed with everything pointed out here, and perhaps this should have been something we discussed much earlier on.
I would add that all too often activists spend the entirety of their interviews with the media distancing themselves from and condemning the more militant elements of an action. If property destruction were to happen at Wall Street (not that I want it to), I would recommend that anyone who speaks with the media avoid condemnation and bring the focus back to why we're there--namely, a few broken windows amount to nothing in the context of the immense violence done to this planet and its inhabitants caused (in part) by Wall Street.


On Sep 16, 2011, at 12:15 AM, David Graeber wrote:

yes if possible have one short sound bite, and one longer one. Emphasize the positive. about how amazing and wonderful what we're
doing is because after all, it is. Prepare responses to simple questions like "who are you?" (not as simple as it sounds) "why are you here?"
"don't you think Wall Street people have a right to be able to carry on their work unmolested?" Always remember that solidarity is the life
and breath of any social movement, when we're in the streets, all we have is each other, so never, ever say anything bad about another

On Sep 15, 2011, at 10:05 PM, Marina Sitrin wrote:

Talking to the media can be really challenging. I agree with the other
messages that first we act in solidarity with one another. (We have
enough people against us.)

Those of us who have not gotten to go to a media training can still
practice a 30 second sound bite with a friend. It is hard to put it
all in such a short time span, so practice is key. What do you want to
say. Pick one message. "I am out on the street because ..." "I want to
occupy Wall Street because ..." "I believe together we can create a
different ... "

One sweet short point. After 30 seconds you are cut off, so work at
the time frame.

I am so thrilled to be a part of this action and to have already met
so many inspiring folks.

In Solidarity,

Seamos realistas, hagamos lo imposible ~ che

One day Orlov ate too many ground peas and died. Krylov found out about it and he died too. Spiridonov up and died all by himself. Spiridonov's wife fell off the cupboard and also died. Spiridonov's children drowned in the pond. Spiridonov's grandmother took to drink and hit the road. Mikhailovich stopped combing his hair and caught a skin disease. Kruglov drew a picture of a woman with a whip in her hand and lost his mind. Perekhrestov received four hundred roubles by wire and put on such airs at his office that they fired him.

Good people -- but they have to learn to take themselves in hand.

  Daniil Kharms