Causes and consequences of the 2011 London riots.
Twitter  2 April 2015 | LINK | Filed in

Austerity is Class War

Twitter  27 March 2015 | LINK | Filed in
“Stories make data human. Data make stories real.”
@kimberlysilk via @rdlankes
Twitter  24 March 2015 | LINK | Filed in
France decrees new commercial buildings must cover their rooftops with plants or solar panels.

Twitter  20 March 2015 | LINK | Filed in


Activist and journalist Leah Borromeo interviews two members of Lapiztola, a street art collective from Oaxaca about the roots of the 2006 uprising and their visual response:

You can see more of their work up at

>  15 March 2015 | LINK | Filed in ,

State of the Union

>  7 March 2015 | LINK | Filed in has a nice approach to crowdsourcing creative activist interventions: calling for skills & supplies, as well as cash.
Twitter  4 February 2015 | LINK | Filed in ,
1 out of every 5 homicides in NYC in 2013 was domestic violence related. —¬†New York City Domestic Violence Fatality Review Committee. HT @Nisha_Varia
Twitter  3 February 2015 | LINK | Filed in ,
@lifewinning: The weird thing about power is it's really bad at recognizing itself and will invent endless villains to invent its own powerlessness
Twitter  29 January 2015 | LINK
Be My Eyes: an iPhone app connecting blind people with volunteers to read live video and answer questions.

Twitter  15 January 2015 | LINK | Filed in

In a World...

In September 2014, the National Book Foundation awarded Ursula LeGuin its Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters to recognize a lifetime of literary achievement.

In her acceptance speech LeGuin had this to say about the power of art, change, and envisioning alternatives:

Hard times are coming, when we’ll be wanting the voices of writers who can see alternatives to how we live now, can see through our fear-stricken society and its obsessive technologies to other ways of being, and even imagine real grounds for hope. We’ll need writers who can remember freedom – poets, visionaries – realists of a larger reality.

Right now, we need writers who know the difference between production of a market commodity and the practice of an art. Developing written material to suit sales strategies in order to maximise corporate profit and advertising revenue is not the same thing as responsible book publishing or authorship.…

Books aren’t just commodities; the profit motive is often in conflict with the aims of art. We live in capitalism, its power seems inescapable – but then, so did the divine right of kings. Any human power can be resisted and changed by human beings. Resistance and change often begin in art. Very often in our art, the art of words.

(HT Caterina)

>  15 January 2015 | LINK
@tinysubversions: Startup idea: forsake money to the best of your ability and focus on being empathetic, kind, and creative
Twitter  13 January 2015 | LINK | Filed in

Protests in 2014

A week ago I tweeted a link to a stunning collection of dramatic photos from protests around the world in 2014. It was an amazing year: Ayotzinapa, Bangkok, Catalonia, Euromaidan, Ferguson, Hong Kong, Taksim…

But it bugged me that such a list omits the many protests in 2014 that were less spectacular or photogenic, but just as vital to the participants.

So for your consideration, a heatmap of protests across the world in 2014:

Protest in 2014

I drew the data from the GDELT project, which monitors media around the world and logs people, places, organizations, and events into an open database. Doubtless, many actions did not receive the media hit necessary to make it into the dataset, but the map gives a better sense of the breadth of activity this year.

2015 should be interesting.

Happy new year!

>  31 December 2014 | LINK | Filed in ,
RT @astroehlein: “If you only care about human rights abuses when your enemies commit them, then you probably don’t really care about human rights abuses.”
Twitter  26 December 2014 | LINK
Euromaidan, Taksim, Catalonya, Ferguson, Ayotzinapa, Kenya… 2014 protest in pictures:

Twitter  24 December 2014 | LINK | Filed in
How prosecutors persuade and mislead with PowerPoint — and PowerPoint so awful it backfires:

Twitter  23 December 2014 | LINK | Filed in
“Thank you young people for shouting what your parents and I silence out of fear.”

Twitter  4 December 2014 | LINK | Filed in

A Brief History of the Umbrella Movement

There have been some fantastic graphics coming out of Occupy Central in Hong Kong, but this brief chronology of the Umbrella Movement in comics is one of my favorites thus far. It was drawn by Dolly for Passion Teens Weekly.

Occupy Central Timeline
Occupy Central Timeline
Occupy Central Timeline

>  7 November 2014 | LINK | Filed in , ,

Protests in Popular Culture enter the Culture of Popular Protests

It’s fascinating seeing elements of pop cultural representations of protests feed back into the visual vocabulary of real political protests in the streets:

Do you hear the people sing?

“Do u hear the people sing,” a banner at the protest in Hong Kong right now comes from the title of a song in Les Mis√©rables, that hugely successful Broadway musical set during French Revolution.

This past June, Thailand’s Junta warned protesters: “[T]hey are monitoring a new form of silent resistance to the coup — a three-fingered salute borrowed from “The Hunger Games” — and will arrest those in large groups who ignore warnings to lower their arms.”

Three-finger salute in Thailand

And of course, the Guy Fawkes mask from Alan Moore's comic book V for Vendetta, later adapted into a Hollywood movie, was adopted by various Occupy protestors.

Anonymous from the Internet

Related, the Pink Bloque (2001-2005) was a Chicago-based radical feminist dance troupe challenging the white supremacist capitalist patriarchal empire one street dance party at a time.

The group used matching pink outfits, choreographed dance routines, and humor as tactics to draw attention. For instance, performing Janet Jackson’s Nasty in front of Chicago Police Department, and Outkast’s Hey Ya! at a pro-coice rally, and in the face of anti-abortion protestors.

>  2 October 2014 | LINK | Filed in
South China Morning Post:‘Umbrella Movement’ spreads: a new offering from artist Tania Willis.
Twitter  29 September 2014 | LINK | Filed in

More? See September’s archives.
Or August’s.