The Occupy movement (as in Occupy Wall Street) has released a manifesto entitled The Global Square: Towards an Online Platform for the Occupy Movement that could represent a threat to the Facebook hegemony and ignite a fragmentation movement for other niche groups to create their own networks.
In typical Occupy fashion, the manifesto states:
This is a proposal made by a group of concerned global citizens who also act as volunteers for Take the Square, United for Global Change, 15october.net, European Revolution and Reflections on a Revolution (ROAR). We do not pretend to represent or speak on behalf of anyone but ourselves.
The various interlocking groups noted in the statement are:
- Take the Square — A movement “born from the demonstration on May 15, 2011 in Madrid” which is also referred to as the 15M movement and the Indignants movement. Like many Occupy/Arab Spring movements, these protest actions were organized via social networks. It is estimated that between 6.5 and 8 million Spaniards have participated in these protests.
- United for Global Change — This group tracks Occupy movements worldwide, claiming that there are “currently 1,039 events in around 87 countries.”
- 15october.net — This site features a “a proposal for the general assemblies of the Occupy #O15 movement” that encourages the people of the world to “rise up and demand that our G20 leaders immediately impose a 1% #ROBINHOOD tax on all financial transactions and currency trades.” The site further states: “This movement is not guided, it is clearly born as a reaction to injustice and corruption around the world, and therefore it is destined to change the underlying values of the system, not only the rules of it.”
- European Revolution — A loose collection of Occupy groups in Europe that state: “We blame the economic and political forces for our bad situation and demand the necessary change of course. We call on all citizens, under the motto ‘Real Democracy NOW. We are not a commodity lying in the hands of politicians and bankers.’ to take to the street to protest.”
- Reflections on a Revolution (ROAR) — An online magazine that “seeks to amplify the voice of our generation amidst the clamorous cacophony of a rapidly changing world. ROAR was founded in San Francisco in 2010 as an initiative of Spearhead Action Group, an NGO that champions the creation of a more just and more sustainable world.”
The hallmark of this movement, which is distinct from but closely associated with other Anonymous movements such as the Anonymous hackers and the Anonymous protestors against Scientology, is a decentralized, “leaderless” organizational style. Many movement members deeply distrust the global leaders whom they blame for the economic collapse of worldwide financial institutions and their own often dire economic circumstances. Many blame the cult of personality and the rigid hierarchical structure of current societal institutions for the many of the world’s problems.
So why do they want their own social network? That’s the subject of the next post, You Say You Want a Revolution(ary) Social Network?