During our visit to Bristol we met with different occupiers, looking tired but still motivated to get the movement going and growing. The protest camp is located on College Green, a land owned by Bristol Cathedral but managed by the Bristol City Council. Occupiers have been there for 32 days and the camp is the 2nd's largest in UK after London.
On Monday, a taste of irony was in the air as less than 10 meters away a huge student graduation tent was raised. All day students and parents were taking celebration photos with the protest camp as background. "Well done but there are no jobs for you. Save some time and join us now!" shouted one of the occupiers.
Media-wise you'll find on their site photos and videos but not as yet a real media strategy which is the main problem of all Occupy websites. Hard to blame them as 1st priority is on-site organisation, also maybe the whole point of these protest camps is to raise a debate. Though I'm still looking for an efficient online platform for this debate to take place.
So how can we, as an independent video training project, help #Occupy?
For visionOntv it's obvious: we can offer to aggregate their videos on our channels, our blogs to post articles and news, our community tools (forum and wiki) to discuss and build their project.
But what's missing is a network of trained reporters among occupiers, who know how to cover events and upload media on the day. I've been a bit slow to react on that last part but I'm starting now: offering video training when we can so the protesters can get the journalistic and technical skills they need to create quality news.
The 1st Making News workshop will be this Saturday 19th November in Finsbury Square in London, more to come soon. RSVP here if you're interested in joining this workshop on Mobile Phone reports.
And if you're in Bristol, visit the camp's wish list on their website. You can already support them by posting articles, write to your local councillor or even better come in person at the camp and discover how you can be really useful.
More info on Occupy Bristol:
How to film mobile phone reports: