STORY ABOUT THIS VIDEO:
I have learned so much from OWS about social media in the past 3 months I've been filming the movement. The night I shot this, I overheard someone reading Twitter saying a Mother Jones reporter was trending on "Mockupy" Law & Order. I came home, stayed up all night to edit, posted on YouTube with that title and the #Mockupy hashtag to all bloggers on Twitter who were mentioning it. The next morning it had been picked up by the Huffington Post, Mother Jones, The Associated Press, Fox (who I actually turned down but they used it anyway), CBS, MSNBC and Stephen Colbert! The first day it had 35,000 views on YouTube! Moral of the story?....you tell me!
In a bizarre case of art imitating life, 'Law & Order SVU' episode "The Official Story" aired last week. The show opens with an "Occupy Wall Street" protestor, surrounded by signs in a tent city, being told...
"Something happened yesterday that could tarnish your movements image."
A month earlier, I received a tip to show up with my camera in Foley Square at midnight. Members of the OWS movement were going to be converging to protest the Law & Order SVU "fake" Zuccotti Park set erected for an upcoming episode.
It was surreal, to say the least when I was the first to arrive, there were blue tents in the eerie lamp light, "We are the 99%" signs, The People's Library and kitchen, all decimated by the NYPD in the 'real' Zuccotti Park two weeks earlier.
I was the first one there and asked the production assistant what was going on he said there was a shoot tomorrow morning and it had to do with this billionaire and a murder and 'coincidentally' the tent city looked exactly like Liberty Plaza replete with library, kitchen, tents, signs, "We are the 99%" etc.
Soon, a couple of hundred jovial protesters arrived, passed by the Law & Order wooden barricade and streamed into the park, "We are a movement not a TV plot", "OWS will not be bought", "The people's kitchen is open! The people's library is open!" all laughing and chanting passages from the Constitution.
Eventually, live stream told us that the producers had revoked their permit and the Lawyers Guild attorney told us that the cops had given us a warning and we had to leave or risk arrest.
We left, as the production assistants and NYPD dismantled the set.
The irony was not lost on me. The "real" cops destroying the 'fake' tents as they did so violently on November 15 in the 'real' Zuccotti Park.
"and the people have the power to redeem the work of fools" ~ Patti Smith