quinta-feira, 6 de outubro de 2011

The “Occupied Wall Street Journal”

Oct 4, 2011 9:33 am
The “Occupied Wall Street Journal”

The Occupy Wall Street protest group recently published the first edition of its newspaper, a four-page broadsheet called The Occupied Wall Street Journal. Didn’t manage to snag your own copy? No problem. Here’s a PDF file where you can take a look at it.

View the file below, download the full PDF here or from Scribd.

Caveat: This is not a production-quality file. I made it by photographing a copy of the paper I picked up myself on October 1 (the day the paper came out). I wanted to share it with people, and was disappointed I couldn’t find it online. I realize some of the seams don’t line up, but everything in the paper should be legible enough to read.

My interest in this protest is simple. I live and work in Lower Manhattan, and I feel like it’s important to follow community events in my own neighborhood. Every day, I walk past the protest encampment at Zuccotti Park (a private park which locals and protestors generally call by its old name, Liberty Plaza). The demonstrators first appeared Saturday, September 17, and are still there as of this writing. Sometimes I take photos or videos of what I see and share them online. I am not part of the protest, but I think this is a legitimate group that deserves to be heard. I also keep wondering how it will end.

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The Occupied Wall Street Journal newspaper was funded by donations collected through Kickstarter. Since this is a writing blog, we have to ask if this paper is any good. My answer is yes. It looks professional enough to pass for a real community newspaper, which of course it is. I gave it a quick read and didn’t see any serious typos.

The quality of the content isn’t uniformly excellent, but some of the articles are well argued and enjoyable to read. The best written piece is under the front-page headline: “The Revolution Begins at Home.” It’s signed by Arun Gupta. There’s also an excellent introduction to the protest by Nathan Schneider called “Occupation for Dummies,” a version of which was originally published by The Nation. If you wonder what the protest is all about, these two stories will explain it to you in clear, persuasive language.

The passages in the newspaper that make the least sense to me are several comparisons to the Arab Spring protests. Some of those protests ended with the overthrow of governments. (If you need a primer on Arab Spring, the best source I’ve seen is this interactive timeline from The Guardian.) I don’t get a sense that Occupy Wall Street is about overthrowing the American government at all. And if it is, the General Assembly leadership needs to say so, so everybody’s clear what they’re signing up for when they unroll their sleeping bags.

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Also: The New York Times says the two main organizers of the Occupied Wall Street Journal newspaper are Arun Gupta and Jed Brandt, who also work on The Indypendent.
— By Daryl Lang. Filed under News & Journalism, Politics

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