This website exists to help people connect with meaningful grassroots, nonviolent actions throughout the Philadelphia Area. It is intended to help amplify and connect to the work already being done by countless organizations and justice-hungry people.
Finding Protests is Too Hard
In the wake of George Floyd's murder, many people hit the streets to protest daily, but I saw many folks in my social media feeds asking "How do we find the protests today?" I did some digging and asking around, and eventually found numerous Twitter accounts, Facebook groups, a subreddit, and a few other resources for finding up-to-date information, but none of them seemed to capture the full picture of what was happening. To get a broader picture, I had to check about a dozen feeds across the three platforms multiple times a day.
And since these platforms are all optimized to absorb our attention, every time I made my rounds, I inevitably ended up wasting a ton of extra time getting distracted.
Social media may be an indispensable tool for connecting with others, but its goals (suck you into the platform and sell your attention to advertisers) get in the way of effective mobilization. Plus social movements should not depend entirely on the whims of Mark Zuckerberg's algorithm, IMHO.
When things are complicated and time-consuming, most people don't follow through. My work as a web designer has taught me that adding even a single step to a process will significantly reduce the number of users that follow through.
A Simple Platform to Help You Take the Streets
After spending a few hours finding events and accounts to stay in the loop, I decided I might as well share what I dug up publicly so everybody could easily access these events.
This platform is intended to help spread the word about worthwhile events and bring out more people. It takes enough time and energy to show up for protests, there's no reason that finding protests should be a significant chore.
Now you can delete your Facebook without protest FOMO, if you want.
A Boost for Smaller, Grassroots Actions
On the other side, there are lots of individuals and small organizations launching events in their communities but don't have the audience to really get the word out. I hope this platform can help significantly boost the attendance of the smaller neighborhood or suburban actions that don't already have a platform to leverage.
Thanks to the frequent event submissions from you all, we've been able to post tons of events that I wouldn't have been able to find digging through social media.
What's Included Here?
This platform is for nonviolent social actions that work to create a more just and equitable society and environment for everyone. Anything that's working towards these goals is fair game—my goal is to be fairly agnostic in deciding what to include.
For example, some events are calling for radical systemic change, whereas others are calling for reform. I of course have my opinions on this matter but you won't find them here. Both groups are working for a cause I think is "good." I'll let you decide for yourself which one deserves your time and presence. I will not use this platform to tip the scales towards events I favor.
What's Not Included Here?
That being said, I'm not going to promote events that I think are harmful to anyone and/or offering shitty solutions to society's problems. This isn't a platform for everybody and I'm not trying to elevate the voice of "both sides." If you support Trump, like unchecked capitalism, or believe #AllLivesMatter, you probably won't like anything you see here (but stick around, you might learn something).
Also no events promoting violence as a tactic, even if I agree with the issue the violence aims to support. Obviously there's no way to ensure all of these events will remain peaceful as organizers can't control who shows up, though, so use your judgement.
Who's Running This Thing?
That's me, Chris. This platform is not about me and I'm happy to stay out of the spotlight. But I've received many inquiries asking effectively "Who are you?" which is a fair question and I want to be transparent.
I'm a web designer and before that worked at a half-dozen nonprofit jobs in Philly and Mexico City. I grew up in Germantown and live in West Philly now. I'm a single dad of two young kids. I'm white, male (he/him), introverted, and progressive on most issues. When Trump loses in November it'll be the happiest day of my life, I expect.
For the most part, I want to play the role of facilitator/compiler of other amazing people's work and not take up space with my own stuff. If you have further questions, feel free to contact me.
Who's Funding It?
I paid for the domains and added the site to server space I already had. Those are the only monetary expenses I've had so far. Keeping tabs on events takes time but I enjoy it so it doesn't count as work.
I've been contacted by businesses hoping to sponsor but for the time being, I'm not accepting any funding or donations at the moment. There are many excellent organizations that need funds to operate. This platform is not one of them.
Further, I want the platform to be judged entirely on its usefulness in connecting you with meaningful events. I don't want sponsors, fundraising, or myself to distract from that narrow purpose.
The only thing that would change my mind is if I found a way that funding would greatly increase the reach of these events, but at the moment, I think keeping it independent and unbranded is the best fit for the platform.
Thanks again for visiting, dear people! Please keep sharing it with other activists and keep sending events my way.