Should you inform the media of a Direct Action, before, during of after an event? Is your action aimed purely at sabotaging or disrupting something which needs to be stopped for the sake of stopping it, or do you want word of your disruption attempts to filter into the mainstream news channels with the aim of raising the profile of criminal or unacceptable behaviour by govenments and their corporate allies?
With the exception of the BBC which exists to emit propaganda on behalf of the establishment round the clock, the mainstream media exists to make money which comes in the main from its advertisers. The media slave will not cover actions of dissent with accuracy or truth if the action is likely to upset or threaten the establishment, that’s if they do actually show any interest at all.
It is worth considering, that even if the media report an event with a composition based on lies or lies by omission, there are enough bright people ‘out there’ who can join the dots, for it to be useful that news of acts of dissent taking place to be given air time.
If you decide not to involve the media in your efforts, any reports or coverarge given to an action will be based on statements by the police or the criminals who created the need for protest. It may be useful to present the facts to the media, but don’t hold out any hope of any accuracy or honesty to come from making them available.
Selecting one person to inform and liase with the media, should you decide to involve the press is invaluable, but I must stress, you select a representative…..don’t let anyone select you! This person won’t put themselves in an arrest situtation and will be on the end of a phone to answer any enquiries, provide updates to interested parties and issue press releases. Unless you have worked with your chosen media person previously and have absolute trust in them, it is vital to discuss your media strategy in great detail before any event so there is a clear understanding of what is required.
Whoever you choose as your media contact will be on stage on your behalf so I can’t stress the need for trust and full understanding enough. Apparently competent intelligent people can turn out to be a complete disaster when faced with a barrage of interest which can sometimes come from around the world. There isn’t a comparable nightmare to finding yourself behind bars on account of action taken to try to stop the slaughter of children, and finding that your media person is chattering away to the press about the rights of the Purple Ten-Fingered Toad or Paddy McGinty’s goat.
Most of the world’s ‘news’ is sold to broadcasters and publishers by a handful of news agencies. A press release issued to these agencies and your local newspaper or radio station will reach most mainstream publications in the most efficient way. You could spend hours researching contact details for individual publications, but they will be watching the wire from the agencies to pick up anything they will use. If time is of the essence, concentrate on the agencies in the first instance. Beyond the mainstream, make sure your media contact has the web address for independent on-line news sites and uploads press releases and info to them.