Freedom Not Fear 2008/Stockholm
From Freiheit statt Angst!
We had a few things leading up to the FNF event. The FRA-act kept us busy most of the summer and we managed to organize fifteen or so demonstrations around the country from june 'til september. On September 16th we organized a massive tri-city demonstration in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo. The Demonstration was called The Demonstration for Hope, as a way to give word to the swedish parlament that we, the people, wanted the government and MP's to consider ripping the FRA-act to pieces. The 16th was the day when the parlament in Stockholm opened up after its summer break.
In Malmo, we gathered about 5-600 followers. Gothenburg drew more than 2000 people, and so did Stockholm (for Sweden, not really being the activist-Mecca of the world, that is actually quite a lot). Even though the Stockholm demo was divided to begin with, between a Pirate Party demo and our own. We merged these two according do a pre-planned schedule a while later during the day and amongst our speakers were one of swedens most famous comedians who is also a social and political commentator (satirist).
We also gathered two party leaders, 15 members of parlament, 6 leaders of youth organisations connected to parlamentary parties, a few of swedens most famous political commentators connected to think tanks, a few famous swedish bloggers, the chairman of the swedish GLBT-Federation (RFSL) and many others. We were also visited by another two party leaders and many other local politicians from various parties. We totalled 37 speakers during four fully packed hours and the whole demo was broadcasted nationwide in full length about 5 or 6 times. That, by the way, is a nation first - no matter what media we discuss. And we actually managed to contract the public state television. That, in itself, is a feat to recon with. The media was basically thrilled to pieces.
Problem was that we were perhaps a bit too effective. Less than two weeks later, the leading four-party alliance making up government in Sweden decided on several changes of the FRA-act, most of which were basic demands brought forward by our organization. Even though there were several issues still in need of adressing according to our view, this agreement effectively killed all public opinion, all media coverage and most of the political debate regarding FRA and everything else even remotely connected to the mass-surveillance society.
By October 11th, we were basically shut out of all media and debate, plus had a really nasty autumn storm to deal with. This meant a very cold day with heavy winds and lots and lots of rain. Still we gathered about 3-400 activists in the Mynttorget Square, next to the Parlament. We were joined by speakers connected to several political parties, MP's, local politicians, and again people connected to think tanks based in Stockholm.
With things acting up as they did, it was a pretty successful day in any case, even though we would of course have wanted to totally overrun the achievements of September 16th. The evening was spent gathering activists from around the country to discuss the best ways to keep going and to establish a unified plan and general direction for the future.
At the moment, Sweden is facing a whole league of new laws that might or might not be passed to increase mass-surveillance inside the country. Many of them, as you surely know, also connected to agreements within the European Union. This means that our work is ever so much needed also in the future. We are planning a large conference on mass surveillance and the hardening attitude in society at large. This will probably involve most of the established political parties, youth organizations, think tanks, etc, within Sweden and the conference will be held somewhere around the end of January or by the end of February. There seems to be a very wide support for this activity, and we are working hard to make sure this happens.
Massdemonstration på Mynttorget i Stockholm 11 oktober 2008.
Nätverket Svart Måndag anordnar tillsammans med politiska partier och ungdomsförbund en demonstration på Mynttorget, intill Riksdagshuset, den 11 oktober.
Tillstånd för demonstrationen finnes hos Amanda Brihed, grundare och administratör för Svart Måndag.
Mass demonstration at Mynttorget in central Stockholm October 11th 2008.
The Black Monday Network in cooperation with a number of political groups and political parties will be arranging a manifestation at Mynttorget, between the parliament and the royal palace, on Saturday October 11th.
DJ Combustion, Stockholm 11 oktober. Give us an alternative...
Den välkända alternativa duon DJ Combustion kommer att spela i Stockholm för att uppmärksamma den internationella aktionsdagen tillsammans med Nätverket Svart Måndag. Vi arbetar fortfarande för att finna lämplig lokal, med mera. Planering pågår.
DJ Combustion, Stockholm October 11th 2008. Give us an alternative...
Later on in the evening, the well known alternative duo DJ Combustion will be spinning discs somewhere in Stockholm. We are actively searching for possible venues and will let you know ASAP.