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The Right To Communication


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The Right to
Communication/The Media
Claiming the media, communicating the message
Arun Prabhakaran, PPEHRC
SWAA/PPEHRC Joint Conference

Published in: Technology, Business
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The Right To Communication

  1. 1. The Right to Communication/ The Media Claiming the media, communicating the message Arun Prabhakaran, PPEHRC 7/18/2009 SWAA/PPEHRC Joint Conference
  2. 2. The Tools of Struggle “Politics is a battle of words and symbols, but ultimately it is a battle of stories.” Cheri Honkala, National Organizer, PPEHRC
  3. 3. The Importance of the Media and Communications  Media work is an essential component of political struggle. It fashions the publics view of the movement and the organizations agitating from within it.
  4. 4. Leadership Development  It is critical to educate, inform, and develop our leaders, organizers, and spokespeople about our message and media strategy.
  5. 5. Leadership Development  The clarity with which we articulate our message in the media determines the degree to which we will be successful in reaching and persuading our target audiences.
  6. 6. Weaponizing our Media  We “weaponize our media” by turning our message, images, and stories into decisive weapons in the battle for the hearts and minds of the American people.
  7. 7. Weaponizing our Media  This works to ensure that we deliver a unified message out to the world through our many messengers.
  8. 8. Our Strategic Communication Goals  Visibility  Educate our audience through our stories, our message, and our images about the truth of poverty in America.  Insuring the Strategic Positioning of Our Leaders & Building Our Campaign and a Movement  Linking Globally  Use the March for Our Lives as a “Marching School/Organizing Tool”  Serve As Our Own Media Outlet
  9. 9. Visibility That the poor are invisible is one of the most important things about them…They are not simply neglected and forgotten. . . . What is much worse, they are not seen. Michael Harrington If you don’t exist in the media, for all practical purposes, you don’t exist. Daniel Schorr Commentator, NPR
  10. 10. Visibility  Poor people are literally wiped off the face of the planet.  The policies of this country are killing poor people everyday without anyone being held accountable.  The struggle to end poverty is a life or death issue.
  11. 11. Visibility
  12. 12. Visibility  There are powerful forces that work day and night to make sure that we stay invisible.  “Break the Media Blackout” because we understand that there is a systematic way that our stories and our movement are silenced.  We need to let the world know that “The poor refuse to disappear...We will be heard!”  The system is threatened by the stories of the lives of America’s poor. The truth of poverty in America shakes the very bedrock of the world’s assumptions about the richest country in the world. When America’s children and families are homeless and hungry, it makes the world question whether the system works. They know it doesn’t work for them, but if it doesn’t work for us…
  13. 13. Visibility – Forcing the issue  We put up “Bushvilles” not as a strategy to housing families alone, but as a strategy to insure that we stay visible. When we win the media attention that this movement needs to wake up this country to abolish poverty forever.  We don’t have the money to buy advertising or pay for a full on Public Relations firms. We aren’t going to get any “Paid Media,” but we have consistently won “Earned Media.”  We force the media to cover us.
  14. 14. Educating the American People  Many Americans are simply unaware, if not intentionally misled by the lens through which the media uses, about poverty.  Even the poor often do not realize that they are, in fact, poor.  Therefore, we educate our audience through our stories, our message, and our images about the truth of poverty in America.
  15. 15. Positioning our work strategically “He who controls the present, controls the past. He who controls the past, controls the future.” George Orwell
  16. 16. Positioning our work strategically  We seek to capture the moment, spark the imagination, unshackle the minds of many and impart a vision of a human existence without poverty.  In order to do this, we must commandeer the media, take it over and project our message decisively.  Our leaders must be visibility and represent our mission in its totality.
  17. 17. Linking up globally  The internet allows us to:  Amplify and magnify our efforts  Create our own channels to communicate  Share our stories and struggles with the world and organizations of poor people globally
  18. 18. Event = School + Organizing Tool  We always strive to use our marches, demonstrations, tent cities, etc. as walking schools and organizing tools  There is no way, with the speed and demands of this work, to do the necessary leadership development without a integrated education/organizing strategy.
  19. 19. Serve As Our Own Media Outlet  Since the media doesn’t cover our work in ways that accurately represent our struggles, we must do it ourselves  It isn’t always pretty but we spend considerable effort on projecting our images, stories and ideas.
  20. 20. Our Website
  21. 21. Our New Web 2.0 Site
  22. 22. Our New Web 2.0 Site  Blogs for every campaign group  Easy content editing/upload  Online Economic Human Rights Documentation Tool  Social Networking features  Twitter  Facebook  MySpace  Youtube
  23. 23. Contact/Link up Arun Prabhakaran Phone: 215-888-0889