Having spent £25m on the branding rights to London's new cycle hire scheme, the bright sparks in the Barclays marketing department have started a dialogue with the public which could last for several years. The scheme is part of a private finance initiative providing thousands of rental bikes in return for painting London's roadways in the bank's corporate colours.
Only minutes after the bank unveiled the bikes-for-rent in partnership with the city's Conservative administration, situationist guerrilla teams struck in the night to add their own mobile advertising messages under the Barclays logo. One of the messages, "Funding depleted uranium birth defects in Iraq", was particularly timely. New studies suggest that the ongoing genetic damage caused by the U.S. attack on the Iraqi city of Fallujah in 2004 may be worse than that caused by the atom bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki 65 years ago.
Barclays was also targeted in Cambridge on Friday 30th July 2010.
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Mostly from London Action Resource Centre the capital's most cheeky radio crew have netcasted a lively radio show every other Friday for the past three years.
On Dissident Island's third birthday, the crew brought a nice mixed bag of happenings from the UK and beyond.
In the History corner this week we have Martyn Everett discussing the life and work of revolutionary Frechwoman Louise Michel.
We hear about the upcoming anniversary of Sean Rigg's death in police custody as well as some of the inspirational and defiant speeches from last week's vigil for Ian Tomlinson.
Finishing off the talking we had an exclusive follow up with members of the Belgrade 6 on their acquittal. Ronin rolled up to the studio at around 10 to help us celebrate our birthday in style - raise a toast to three years of radical radio!
Check it - click here to download (132 mb),
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The global indymedia network
is the work of thousands of people at many different levels, from the people who read the articles and speak to other people about what they read, the reporters who post their stories, photos or video etc, to the admins who check for breaches of open posting guidelines
and the techies who maintain the servers and develop the software.
Indymedia always needs more volunteers and at the moment the IMC UK network in particular is seeking more tech help so that it can be more active in the development of the content management program used by many IMC sites. It is really important to increase the developer pool since many proposals made for improving the site are stalling at the tech bottleneck.
If you think you could help please get in touch with your local collective or email imc-uk-tech. You could also mention this to anyone else you think might be able to help.
If you'd like to develop your own tech skills, you might be interested in the various Hacklab projects around the country which host regular training and workshops. The rampART lab for example provides a useful venue for anyone wanting to become more involved in indymedia.
On Saturday 25th the London Hacklabs Collective is putting on a benefit event to help cover the cost of the broadband both at the rampART and Freedom Book Shop. You can find more details about the event from the rampART or the Hacklabs website. The event will be a workshop about IMC tech and various IMC projects.
Related Articles : IMC Needs You, Bad time for indymedia servers, rampART hacklab report, evolution and changes to IMC UK.
Outside Links : London Hacklabs Collective, Aktivix, Sheffield Hacklab, International Hacklabs.
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While ever cheaper consumer electronics and increased internet bandwidth have made it easier than ever to make and distribute independent video, the number being made still appears to be disproportionately low compared to the number of people filming at events. Various projects have been initiated to empower more people to get involved with radical video production and screening. They include online distribution, archives, screening databases and training sessions (see IVDN
and Clearer Channel
. In London during January there was a video activism gathering
consisting of skill sharing workshops, presentations, discussions such as the role of cameras on demos (how video can be used to get protesters both nicked and set free), along with feedback from the G8 video indymedia experience. Modeled on similar national gatherings in previous years, this one was organised by and took place at the rampART social centre
. The event ended with a public screening
with films from Real2Reel
, Revolt Video
, Camcorder Gorillas and many others. There was also a premiere of Cine Rebeldes 'Latitude 36'
and two films made during the gathering 'Justice For Dad'
& 'The Demo Demo'
. Related links: UPDATE
- The gathering generated a number of proposals to indymedia
and have already resulted in support for uploads of 3GP and M4V formats for mobile phones and ipods etc. Further follow-up workshops will be taking place, join the list if interested
. In Manchester next month there's a gathering to look at how groups currently work with each other, what resources are available for screenings and campaign work and how best to make them accessible.
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On Monday, June 27th, Indymedia Bristol's server was seized by the police. An Indymedia volunteer was arrested during the raid on suspicion of incitement to criminal damage. He is now on bail. See Indymedia Bristol Statement (28th June 05):
"We are outraged at the actions of the police. They have completely disabled the entire Bristol Indymedia news service. By their actions they have undermined the principle of open publishing and free access to the media, thereby removing people's opportunity to read and report their own news. This situation has serious implications for anyone providing a news service on the Internet. We do not intend to let this stop us from continuing the project."
IMC Bristol statements [1 | 2] | Imc Bristol Solidarity Page | Full Feature | donate to imc uk | Autistici Server Surveillance | Mainstream Media Coverage
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The government has introduced draft legislation for potentially compulsory biometric identity cards and a central database of all citizens. A trial of related biometric technology has already been launched. The card system will cost at least £3 billion and is likely to become an essential part of life for everyone residing in the UK. Read more.
Home Secretary David Blunkett thinks that the "ID Card Scheme is the key to the UK's future" whilst affirming that they will be a crucial tool in the "prevention of terrorism" and against "illegal immigration". Citizens organisations such as Privacy International, Stand, Liberty, Statewatch and FIPR strongly refute these views. On Wednesday 19 May in London they held a public meeting under the title "Mistaken Identity".
The meeting gave a resounding vote of no-confidence over the national Identity Card. Leading politicians, lawyers, regulators, security experts and civil libertarians were unanimous in condemning the proposals. The president of the Law Society, representing 116,000 solicitors throughout the UK, also warned in his statement (pdf) that the government's draft legislation contained dangerous provisions. For corporate media coverage, see the articles from Silicon.com, BBC, and the Guardian.
A similar meeting was held on May 20th in Glasgow.
Defy ID Network | A complete guide to the UK ID card | Liberty on ID Cards | More Links
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The official week of events
(6th-12th sept) against DSEi, Europe's largest arms fair
had seen counter-conferences, vigils, film screenings, protests, direct action, and blockades all taking place - see the DSEi 2003 Special Section
). Sept 11th was the penultimate day of the arms fair:
Trafalgar Square became Red Square, as anti-arms trade campaigners filled its famous fountain with fake blood. See Photos and Report
and Report Two
Sept 11th was also the auspicious date chosen for the DSEi / DMA Gala Dinner
at the Royal Lancaster Hotel in central London. Arms dealers dined in luxury while around the world the dead were remembered (see Guardian article
Anti-Arms protestors and peace activists showed their disgust outside the hotel throughout the evening with a noise demonstration. Diners arriving were greeted with shouts of "How many children have you killed today?", while the surrounding streets were repeatedly blocked by cyclists and drummers. Hundreds of police, some in riot gear sealed the area off and were overly aggressive, injuring at least one person who needed hospitalisation (see witness appeal
There was strong support from passers by, while at least one person infiltrated the hotel dressed in a ball dress. Free food was given out as people stayed late into the night making as much noise as possible, banging pots and pans.
After holding their arms fair gala dinner on September 11th, the world's arms industry left the Lancaster Hotel under heavy police guard. They were able to leave the area via Lancaster Gate Tube Station, which, closed to members of the public, was commandeered for arms dealer only transport.
See Full Timeline
Audio: Samba soundscape from arms gala dinner
, Meeting the DSEi dealers
Video: 3 short clips
, video 2
Recent mainstream articles: 1
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The second main day of protest against the Defence Systems & Equipment International (DSEi) took place at London’s Docklands on Wednesday 10th September. Activists, anti-arms organisations, students and the public, angry, both about the items on sale, the well-known human rights abusing countries invited, and the devastation caused by weapons and munitions, attempted to "Shut DSEI by any means possible". This was the day that bargaining at the DSEi arms fair began in earnest and general press were prohibited from entering (see pics
from inside: 1
). "Whose streets? Our streets!"
Early in the morning the Dockland Light Railway (DLR) was stopped in the first of several actions (see reports
:  
:   
) with activists D-locking
themselves onto the train at various stations or climbing onto the roof (see video
). This disrupted the DLR for much of the day. Also on the DLR, activists engaged in "train theatre"
posing as arms dealers (report and pics
). On their way to the Excel centre they announced they had arms for sale two opened their cases revealing various sets of arms (prosthetic and dolls arms) they had to sell.
At Custom House DLR (pic
others went to a "Meet the Delegates"
action. From eight in the morning a Critical Mass
left from the City of London to the Docklands (pics
:  
. On their way to the Excel around a hundred cyclists blocked traffic while comedian Mark Thomas entertained the crowds. Just after nine the Palestine support group, International Solidarity movement (ISM) visited the Israeli arms company Rafael in an attempted office occupation
, later unfurling banners outside.
At eleven o'clock the two meeting points of "Storm the Death Fair
" at Connaught Bridge underpass and "Blockade the Death Fair" at Canning Town roundabout allowed affinity groups to converge to form mobile groups forming and splitting as they engaged in their various actions. At Canning Town the group was prevented from moving by police but soon shoved their way through and moved off down Silvertown and along Victoria Dock road.
At Connaught Bridge a car partially blocked the ExCel approach road in a D-lock action (pics
) while groups moved in a variety of directions, many up to Connaught roundabout and some down to the underpass (pics
:   
), blockading the traffic for several hours. Groups remained mobile; some pushing through police lines as other roads nearby were temporarily occupied or blockaded.
As pink and silver Samba drummed their way along Victoria Dock rd (pics
), blocking the road with crash barriers, clashes occurred as police pushed the crowd against the railings of a recreation park. Samba managed to move off up Freemasons Road joined by Sheffield samba band and preceded to block the A13 main road (pics
). There were scuffles and arrests as police chased the crowd in different directions.
Meanwhile at the ExCel centre six activists infiltrated DSEi, occupying two tanks, daubing them in ‘Stop Death’ banners and locking on, before being removed by security (see press release
, pics and video
). Some delegates are forced to walk to DSEi due to the disruption caused by the protests (see delegate video
At 4pm the Reclaim the Streets
party mobilised many of the roaming affinity groups at Rathbone Market where a crowd of around 300 took to the streets soon meeting up with a critical mass bicycle group complete with sound system. On the A13 the crowd was eventually blocked in by police (video
), later being forced into a park (video
), which police had cleared with mounted riot police (video
). They were slowly released in small groups after being photographed (reports
:   
Meanwhile next to Canning Town DLR a second RTS group occupied the roundabout, as the DLR was again stopped, banners hung on top of the flyover ("Disarm DSEi"), arms delegate buses blockaded and riot police deployed. With another samba group playing, there were more arrests and scuffles as police cleared the roads, later blocking in two main groups of protestors for several hours as people tried to push through police lines (pics
:   
The day had seen a high level of disruption around the arms fair, especially given the relatively small numbers of protestors, while police continued using stop and search powers under Section 44 of the Terrorism Act 2000 (reports
:    pics
). There were many arrests, some targeted, some quite violently, throughout the day.
See Full Timeline
Miscellaneous: Pensioner protest
, Corporate media: [1
] Call for evidence of legal support
Arrests update: 10th
Reports from corporate press:   
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