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Occupy Wall Street Is Overrun With Big Media’s Preening Narcissists

by | 18th, November 2011

OCCUPY Wall Street has been Occupying Media. The Telegraph’s Tim Stanley observes:

Only when you get there do you realise the extent to which the Occupy movement is the creation of the mainstream media. The park is tiny (it’s about half the size of Soho Square) and even when it was packed it couldn’t have held more than 1,000. The space was reduced by media presence, which is wall to wall and preposterous. Journalists outnumbered protesters by four to one – there were so few demonstrators that the reporters starting interviewing each other. Whenever something (anything!) happened, we all ran over and filmed it. This included a dog that started barking. I took a photo of it and an Australian journalist stuck a microphone under its nose.

But do the number of activists always reflect the strength of the movement? The BBC:

Several thousand demonstrators have marched across New York’s Brooklyn Bridge on a day of protest that saw solidarity rallies across the US. At least 300 people were arrested just in New York, many of them as trouble flared near the stock exchange.

That’s a lot more than the 200 protestors Stanley sees. Toby Young, also writing in The Daily Telegraph, says the protestors in Wall Street and St Paul’s are “preening narcissists”. Mr Shy And Retiring says this in his opinion piece. The irony is unavoidable.

The protest needs the media – and the media needs the protest to keep its workers occupied.

Stanley adds:

“Why are you here?” she asked the boy. He garbled an answer and she turned to the cameras and shouted, “Always give a personal answer that people can relate to. This boy isn’t here because he wants to change the world. He’s here in Zuccotti because he works two jobs at $4.20 an hour and his last shift was 14 hours. There are millions of people like this young man – Middle Americans who are getting squeezed by Wall Street.”

She asked the boy her second question: “What do you hope to achieve by standing here in the rain?” “I don’t know,” he replied. “You don’t know?” “No, I don’t know.” “Okay, well that’s probably not the best way to say it. Instead: this young man is standing here in the rain to show that – fair weather or foul – he is committed to defending Middle America against Wall Street.”

The media worker has her own story to tell. But the story is this: protest is a right and we should delight that people bother to make their anger visible.

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Police officers arrest a demonstrators affiliated with the Occupy Wall Street movement, Thursday, Nov. 17, 2011 in New York. Two days after the encampment that sparked the global Occupy protest movement was cleared by authorities, demonstrators marched through New York's financial district and promised a national day of action with mass gatherings in other cities. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

 



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