Friday, June 28, 2013

Protest App

  - How's it going?
- Interesting. The first guy I was sent to made me a little angry, everything he said was wrong. I told him why he was wrong, the guy said I should be on video, I had gravitas.
- Gravitas?
- Yeah, Latin for weight. He weighed me down, didn't understand a thing. I was relieved when the signal came to move on.
- To me.
- No, the next guy was like a mirror image of the first. Everything he said to me I agreed with, but nothing I said he had the slightest interest in. You know the early 20th century Austrian writer Robert Musil? He said something like one man is alone, two are a new humanity.
- Just not those two guys. What about me?
- What about you? You haven't said anything yet.
- Actually I did the programming for the App were using.
- Peripatetic Protest. Greek word this time. While walking. Philosophers in ancient Athens used to do their talking while they walked
- Then let's move off this corner. Protest App is an attempt at applying technology to group protest. No, first it was an idea, Rule Of Law. A slogan. No, sorry. Before that it was an idea, different people had to be able to find in our movement different things.
- What things?
- Justice and fairness for most of us. But others are more or less satisfied with injustice or accepting for whatever reason. So they are to be brought to the movement by promise to apply the rule of law. Which is application of existing laws to the rich and powerful who currently are protecting themselves. Politicians, corporations who are breaking the law would have their possessions confiscated, as current law provides, and the repossessed property would be reassigned to the general population. Have you seen the playing cards?
- No.
- We got the idea from the cards giving to soldiers at the beginning of the invasion of Iraq with the pictures of most wanted Iraqi politicians and generals. Our cards have pictures of the houses and cars of our millionaire corrupt politicians and corporate execs which will be distributed by lottery.
- After the revolution.
- After the rule of law is applied.
- No revolution for the ordinary people. And for the justice and fairness crowd?
- Here. Let's go this way. People like me and you...
- The new humanity...
- Who for whatever reason cannot resign ourselves to current conditions don't need material inducements. We like the challenge. I'm in technology. The challenge was bring people together in public safely, without breaking laws against public assembly.
- There are no such laws.
- Without giving a pretext we're endangering public health and safety by creating a crowd. Using a simple app we could assemble without being a crowd. We select a busy downtown area, guide our demonstrators to each other, one meeting at a time. They signal when they want to move on, and a new meeting at a different location is arranged. Demonstrators are encouraged to openly wear their phones. so the public can see the display showing where and how many protestors are participating. At night protesters will wear lights making them visible from the air, maybe even from satellite. You're here, so you know all this.
- Is it working?
- Check your phone.
- 17,000. Not millions.
- We're at the beginning.
- If you don't want the millionaires' houses and cars, what do you want?
- What you said: a new humanity.