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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? 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

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Comment Preferences

  •  The case of the humping tents. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    . . . from Julie, Julia. "Oh, well. Boo-hoo. Now what?"

    by 88kathy on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:18:36 PM PST

  •  Why didn't you write (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    about this when it happened?

  •  Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery (6+ / 0-)

    In a way it's proof how powerful the movement, the idea, has become that Hollywood finds it necessary or at least profitable to use it. (Umm, how's that for a little SOPA/PIPA irony?) This will happen more as the movement continues to grow. Just wait for the inevitable movies with Occupy plots this fall. Sleepless in Occupy Seattle anyone?

    "What profit a man, if he gain the world, but has to pay taxes on it?" Paul 8:36

    From the Gospel of St. Ron Paul in the Teachings and Misunderstandings of the Words of Adam Smith

    by ontheleftcoast on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:25:14 PM PST

  •  Surreal. (0+ / 0-)

    Were those real cops or movie cops?

    Maybe the occupy movement should make a movie.  That way they can get a permit to reoccupy.

    Greed's self-regulation is collapse. So is delusion's.

    by Publius2008 on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:56:29 PM PST

  •  "Aires" >>>> "Errs" n/t (0+ / 0-)

    Listen, strange women lyin' in ponds distributin' swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.

    by EdMass on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 01:32:24 PM PST

  •  Thanks for posting this. I saw the episode on (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catte Nappe

    teevee and my jaw dropped at that opening scene.
    I thought to myself that L&O-SVU used Ministry of Truth (Kossack J. DelaGreca) as a template for that protester (in that he was portrayed as a very rational, intelligent, dedicated figure, who was allowed to speak at some length).
    I was starting to get incensed as it looked like the plot was going to smear OWS.
    But they fairly quickly turned it on a 'real' villain and, IMO, had it come out a little sympathetic towards OWS, YMMV.

    In any case, keep the pressure on, even a cynic like me is starting to think that it is having some good effects on 'the system'.

    "Double, double, toile and trouble; Fire burne, and Cauldron bubble... By the pricking of my Thumbes, Something wicked this way comes": Republicans Willkommen auf das Vierte Reich! Sie Angelegenheit nicht mehr.

    by Bluefin on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 02:00:16 PM PST

    •  thanks for the post (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Sean X

      thank YOU for your words of encouragement.  Yes I came to OWS a skeptic and now I'm in love.  I'm in love with the 'possibilities' that it affords us all. I'm a senior citizen on Social Security and Medicare and I've felt so helpless for so long but I don't anymore, this movement has empowered me and all I meet. I agree we need to keep the pressure on NOW more than ever. I do it with Youtube videos. I have 60 hours of footage, and I'm going to post every single minute of it...LOL

      Filmmaker and senior citizen digital journalist. Have a million YouTube views. Been shooting OWS since the beginning.

      by the digital activist on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 02:44:06 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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