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Workshop ideas: guerilla communication

Is there life beyond NVDA?

Telling the truth about NATO

Whats behind this guerrilla communication? Some received ideas

guerrilla communication: a name that encompasses a set of diverse political practices among currents of art, social movements or grassroots collectives [situationists, adbusters, provos, yippies, billboard bandits, the Italian movement 77, Kommune I, nobody is illegal, reclaim the streets, okupaciones, antimilitarists...] q political practices possible and appropriate for our here These workshop notes have been and now: shamelessly ripped from MOC in irrelevant: q in advanced capitalist societies of welfare and social Spain and translated by Peace recipe book: if peace News. All translation errors are we are bored with ours! You can find the full (English) q for underdeveloped or defensive movements of social chaining ourtransformation workshop notes, along with pretty selves to things, diagrams and more subvertising at q grass-roots groups, decentralised and with experience or theres not of unconventional political activity http://www.peacenews.info. enough of us, or we already have too many fines, or we just dont want to become street subversive affirmationichange context iexaggerate the discourse of poweri unmask the rhetoric of toleranceitransposeialteriparodyicounter-publicity threatre... what shall we do?

is there life beyond Nonviolent Direct Action (NVDA): guerrilla (pardon the word) communication is a set of tools close to our objectives and forms of action and organising; to set out a load of parallels and connections between NVDA and guerrilla communication

ifake itiimitate the voice of those in powericonvey dissidence iconfront people with texts/action that they would otherwise avoidiinvent false newsi undermineidemystifyiplay on words...

why doesnt anybody listen to me?


to expand our toolbox: to encourage groups to experiment and make this type of practice their own

How does it work?

it reclaims and gives a twist to dominant codes, formats, language, symbols or rites to turn them and fill them with a new critical content [Altering billboards, initimations of official adverts] q it is a tactic not a strategy: it does not have its own place but plays in the terrain and with the elements of the adversary, using their cracks. it is usually anonymous and covert. q the context of actions: act at the local and daily level, without mediators [changing traffic signs, imitating official letters, invisble...] it works as part of a campaign q spontaneous laughter: as a point of connection with peoples everyday knowledge, instead of possible common ideas, analyses, theories or teachings. creativity, imagination, entertainment and experimentation
Page 28 Peace News December 2003 February 2004

q every political campaign is a process of communication aiming to reach out to society q it isnt just the content of the message (our perfrect pamphlet/statement/posters) that is important from the point of view of communication q the transmitter does not determine the final result of the communication: there are other factors such as - the context (the local, the concrete situation) interpretation is - the receiver, who interprets the message from always ambiguous their everyday understanding each message is cracks in the read, interpreted in the perfect pamphlet? power of the media different ways by difno matter how much we some messages ferent receivers refine our discourse, peobackfire and provoke depending on their ple will interpret it a critical reading context, worldview, etc in different ways: Example 1: an advert for a luxury cruise might attract an
executive while angering someone with a crap job Example 2: images of police brutality might provoke indignation or be read as the hooligans got what was coming to them Example 3: a classroom with rows of pupils seated silently looking towards a teacher on a platform. The situation communicates (values of obedience, submission, hierarchy) as much as what is said by the teacher.

q Do actions that could incur repression have to be carried out publicly? q Is it difficult to justify the illegality involved in actions of guerrilla communication? q Have your groups actions always been public and accountable?

q Are both types of action compatible?

q Are GC actions just jokes without content and that people dont really understand? q Should there always be an explicit statement to make the message clear? q Is it too simple to think that it is only by saying whats right that people will listen to us and be in agreement? q Is it dogmatic to believe that we have the truth? q Is there a place for fun in our political discourse?

q Is NVDA a too narrow a framework for your groups political activity? q Is NVDA losing impact, can it be neutralised by reduced repression and partial tolerance?