Rules for Organizing a Protest

Rules for organizing a protest from How Did the Wisconsin Capitol Occupation Begin, Anyway? by Rebecca Greenfield in today’s The Atlantic:

1. Be flexible. Adapt your plans according to events as they happen.

That night was the first of 10 — and counting — that hundreds have occupied the Wisconsin state Capitol. The TAA hadn’t planned to stay there overnight. “It emerged rather organically,” explains Alex Hanna, the other co-president of the TAA. 

2. Keep the momentum going.

Not only did the recruits want to be heard, but the TAA also hoped to continue pressuring legislators, and stall the bill. If they had gone home, they would’ve lost that momentum. “If you go home and come back you’re going to have a lower turnout the next day,” explains Gibbons.

3. It takes all kinds of people…

As the night wore on, the TAA ensured the hearing continued, while others — TAA members, student groups, and volunteers — began organizing…encouraged people on campus to join;

4. doing all kinds of things…

They brought in food…”We made sure people were getting out here and told people to bring some pillows and sleeping bags,” explains Hanna. “We were staying.”

5. using all kinds of tools.

encouraged people on campus to join; sent notices out on Facebook and Twitter; and ran a phone bank.

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