National Conference Call Minutes 11/17/11

National Media Conference Call
Meeting Notes
In These Time is a national progressive monthly magazine that is part of the Media Consortium, which is a nonprofit national network of independent progressive media outlets.

This week, the Media Consortium is beginning a weekly conference call featuring Occupy activists and independent journalists
from around the country.

Here are the minutes.
Checking in of participants
Smallest movement: Town in Oregon with 150 people set up 100 tents. One stop light. Reaching out to tea party to find common ground.
Occupy Wall Street – Story ideas – focus on the localization aspect as well as the international spreading of the event.

Mayors from 18 cities participating in conference calls for national wave of evictions, need more attention on this.
Occupy Philadelphia – Marching today to take a bridge. Having a big problem with homeless outreach, but feel that they are handling it well. Looking at revisiting their GA process, including an increasing call for talking to more people whohave jobs
Occupy Greensboro – Spoke of bank foreclosure march, occupation, focus on local issues and the need to find a link to national/international message to get more people out. My accent was glaring.
Occupy Cleveland – Reaching out to local churches for a base in the winter, successfully stopped a foreclosure. Cleveland highest foreclosure rates in their state

Occupy Chicago – Working a lot with unions and with political groups that share their messages in order to provide daily programming. They work with their local borough occupations. Seem to function as a
coordinating hub for smaller groups. Looking to move indoors for the winter and go out into the city for activities. Putting out global call of action on April 7th 2012, Nato G8 occurring then.

Story Ideas Website:
An idea was discussed about establishing a national online database for pro-active story pitches for use in press released and other interactions with the media.

Question about Recent Polls

Then a question about what is causing the rise in people being against OWS. New York – The focus onpolice v protesters, toilets, etc. How do we turn this around? Focus on the local issues.

– OPhi – Community outreach and panels and positive events. Having a problem getting the
media to focus on these positive events as opposed to the logistical difficulties that the group is facing. If media would focus more on positive, these polls would change.

– OChi – Independent media needs to be engaged, and also more community out reach outside of the media (alliance building)

Racial Justice and the role of people of color in the occupation: OWS – bringing up photos, Occupy the Hood (boston, Chicago, other cities). Philidelphia – there are interest groups within the movement
(POCupie – People of Color)

Foreclosure – Is anyone doing anything? OGSO – Talked about working with register of deeds about foreclosure rates.

Press release process
Occupy Greensboro asked question about what peoples process was concerning the crafting of press releases; did they run everything by the GA, did they have autonomy, what did they use? People chimed
in and decided that they wanted to have this be a topic of a national email thread, with Greensboro,
Chicacgo, Philadelphia, and New York media group representatives involved.

– – Chicago – email about process.
OWS – Need to share resources, will help
Phili – wants to be a part of the conversation as well.

Moderator – email her, she’ll start an email chain (done)
New Policing trends since eviction notice? Camps noting police attitudes are getting more tense. Police are getting tired of the attention and the long hours. Also media is focusing a lot on this
aspect (as mentioned in the poling question)

Occupy Chapel Hill
Question was asked of me about Occupy Chapel hill and purpose of actions and whether the tactic of taking foreclosed buildings would continue ( I responded by saying that the Chapel Hill
folks had intended to use the building to better service the community but hadn’t had the chance to convert it. As far as a continuing tactic, I had heard people talking about occupying foreclosed and
vacant properties in Greensboro, Winston, Raleigh and Charlotte, but that the methods of going about it weren’t as militant as what had happened in chapel hill necessarily. For instance, we might talk with the property owners before hand.

Next Call: Dec 1st 3pm EST – next call (involving media and media groups)