February 11th is the day we fight back against NSA surveillance. In addition to a huge online demonstration, groups around the world are planning events on the local level to protest surveillance abuses.
Hosting a local event is a great way to harness grassroots energy in fighting surveillance abuses. Below are some ideas for local events you can organize. Be sure to let us know your plans so we can include it to our growing of activists and concerned individuals that are joining the fight against mass, illegal government surveillance. Email us at [email protected].
Tip: You may want to start an email list for participants who want to help organize future events, share news, and continue the conversation about mass surveillance. Here’s a sample email sign-up sheet.
Tip: Take photos to document your event and help spread the word more widely. This can help get your message out to the media and others who weren’t able to attend in person.
Sample Event Ideas
1. Host a rally
This can range from getting permission to stand in front of a business to waving signs on the side of the road to getting a permit and attracting large crowds. Make creative signs, puppets, or banners. Take photos and send them to us!
Check out the Bill of Rights Defense Committee guide to hosting a successful rally.
2. Organize a viewing-party and a discussion afterwards.
Have snacks available. A few videos you could consider showing:
- The video made for The Day We Fight Back
- A film from the list of films featuring surveillance on Wikipedia
- One of the op-docs from the New York Times
- A short video about N.S.A. produced by Fight for the Future, featuring Evangeline Lilly: “How the Government Tracks You: NSA Surveillance”
- The stopwatching.us video, featuring John Cusack, Maggie Gyllenhaal, and Rep. Conyers: “Stop Watching Us: The Video”
3. Invite a speaker to talk about surveillance issues.
This could be a local expert or professor, local activists and community leaders who have surveillance stories to share, a local reporter who can discuss how NSA spying has affected newsrooms, or a lawyer who can talk about the First and Fourth Amendments.
4. Hold a letter writing party or deliver a petition. Some writing projects you might undertake include:
- Letters to elected officials—from city counsel members to Congress members—about why ending mass surveillance is important to you.
- A petition signed by members of your local community
5. Book a concert, art installation, or reading about surveillance.
For example, you could:
- Fundraise for a non-profit that’s working to fight mass surveillance
- Invite local bands to play a show and speak about organizing in your area between acts
- Have a poster design contest about government surveillance and hold an exhibition in a local gallery
- Invite poets, writers, and artists to share stories and words
- Share facts and informational one-pagers. EFF has several resources:
6. Handout flyers at other events.
Print out the flyers from above
7. Hold a community meeting to start a local activist or discussion group.
You may want to start an email list to share news and organize. You might even coordinate an event or regular time to meet.
8. Join the Twitter party
Use #StoptheNSA to follow and share photos and updates from around the world.
Let us know what you do
Email [email protected] to let us know what you’re planning and send photos.
We’ll add events across the world to a list on our site. No event is too small! Join us.