Michigan Student Sustainability Coalition

Unifying the voice of a generation in environmental solidarity

CMU SEA New Post-PowerShift Structure

By Stephen Lokos, Central Michigan University SEA Member

The main environmental group at Central Michigan University, Student Environmental Alliance or SEA, has undergone a substantial amount of changes this past semester. The group has become much more focused on community/university involvements and projects. One might say that the group has started undergoing the active part of activism as of late. SEA used to be based more around educational efforts within the club and also attempts at gaining new members through tabling, movie showings, and Earth Week events. The club had its annual river cleanup and would partake in hosting, or helping to host, events on campus that pertained to environmentalism. However, the main focus of the club seemed to pertain more to education of its members through presentations about environmental issues.

            That practice continued at the beginning of the new semester and SEA tried to liven things up by creating groups that could all work on a presentation related to a similar environmental idea. The idea was to promote social growth within the group and to also help provide information to the other members of the group with the presentations created. The major changes that are now present within SEA today occurred after Powershift 2013. The group restructured its main goals of education and turned them into activism, which, in turn, also educates members of the group and others who see the types of things SEA is trying to do. The idea of having groups that were self-created based on central interest was kept. However, instead of having these groups work on creating an educational presentation they are based on efforts to implement changes within the University and Mt. Pleasant community. There are a variety of groups that SEA currently contains.

            There is a solar energy based group, which is working on pressuring CMU to implement more solar panels on campus to help provide electricity and heating for CMU buildings. The group just recently had legislation passed in the student government showing support for an increase in solar energy on campus. There is a group that is beginning to work with the indigenous Chippewa members to help build local connections with the Native American members of the community. This group also plans on working with the Chippewa to try and obtain a moratorium or ban on fracking, because attempts through the local community have been unsuccessful (Mt. Pleasant’s high school students are known as the oilers). There is a group that is working on a divestment campaign on campus. They just recently had legislation pass in the student government showing support for divestment. The group has also meet with some of the main financial advisors at CMU and is scheduled to present at a board of trustees meeting in February. There is also a group working on the recently developed palm oil campaign, which urges major snack food companies to remove palm oil from their goods due to the destructive methods by which palm oil is obtained. There was also a recent political prisoner writing event that a few SEA and also a few nonmembers attended. It is unknown at this time if this will be a reoccurring event.

These groups each have their own goals and strategies, which are not affected or approved of by any SEA e-board members. SEA has become more of a space where these groups can meet an hour every week to pursue their own passions instead of being dictated as a large group by a few voices whose ideas are most heard. This helps to create greater member involvement because there is a greater chance that someone gets to work on a project they enjoy instead of merely going with the flow of the bigger group. We also hope that this will help to retain new members because they feel more involved in the club, but because this is just a recently implemented strategy the outcome is not known in those regards. 

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Intersectionality and Movement Building at the MI PowerShift Convergence

By Marion Berger, University of Michigan

Yesterday about 25 students gathered from across the state of Michigan at the Michigan Pre-Powershift Convergence in Highland Park.  We spent 8 hours discussing recruitment strategies, including everything from tabling to fundraising.  Somewhere in those 8 hours, we spent an hour helping to harvest veggies and sift compost with a local group working on green economy development.  Groups from each college or university represented had bountiful opportunities to plan their campaigns together.  By the end of the day, participants were ramped up and ready to commit to getting 500+ Michiganders to Power Shift in October.

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Amidst all of this, what was most wonderful to me was the lens with which most participants were viewing Power Shift.  Though we all have our own reasons for working on environmental issues and recruiting for Power Shift, it seems to me that more and more of my peers are approaching environmental issues with a greater understanding of environmental justice and how our movement is tied to all other social justice movements.  The systems of oppression that lead to the destruction of the environment and environmental injustices across the world are the same ones that are responsible for the racism reflected in the United States prison system, the oppression of women, queer and *trans populations, and People of Color across the world.  That said, there’s something I need to come clean about in terms of my environmental activism: I’m not an organizer because of climate change. Or coal plants, GMOs, or personal sustainability choices. I organize within the environmental field because I have seen directly how environmental injustices can impact a community, and I work to combat those injustices in solidarity with other social movements across the country and world.

I’m really excited to see that though we all come to environmentalism from different angles, youth within the environmental movement are ready to build a more inclusive movement that stands for Collective Liberation of all peoples facing injustice.  I believe Power Shift this fall could mark a huge turning point for the environmental movement–I saw glimmers of the incredible conversations we need to be having about race and the environmental movement yesterday, and I’m excited to continue them with 500 of Michigan peers and 10,000 of my national peers in 6 weeks. In solidarity.

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600+ Michigan Youth to Powershift!

The date has been set, the recruitment teams are forming, and the excitement is building for the country’s largest youth climate conference, happening October 18-21 in Pittsburgh, PA. Will you be coming to Powershift 2013?

If you decide that the answer is “YES!” to that question, you should know that you won’t be alone. In fact, you should probably start getting ready to spend the most inspiring, intense, cozy, crazy, and exciting 4 days of your life this fall with hundreds of other Michigan students (and THOUSANDS of youth from across the country). For these 4 days our movement will come together to express our power and actively work to stop the climate crisis and protect the rights of people, land, air, water, and wildlife against the destructive forces of fossil fuel profiteers.

Unfortunately we can’t all get there on excitement alone, and its going to take a lot of hard work, collaboration, and dedication to make it all happen. The good news is that the MSSC has already got an amazing team of students taking the lead in recruitment around the state! We’re currently organizing at MSU, LCC, CMU, NMU, UM, EMU, WCC, GVSU, WMU, and more to come. Our overall goal is to get 600+ youth from MI to attend this conference, but also to come back and take effective and unified action to step up the climate movement in our state. If you want to join the recruitment team at any of these campuses or any others, please let me know! We can use help with recruiting 5 of your friends, organizing student groups to come, fundraising, and more! Send me an email at starkeel@gmail.com to learn more and get plugged in.

Wondering about all the rest of the details about Powershift? Like how to register? Or how you’ll get there? Or where you’ll sleep?? Along with getting over 600 MI youth to attend the conference, our team of recruiters will also be making sure that everyone who registers has a way to get there and somewhere to stay. There’s even opportunities to apply for financial assistance in registering for the conference, apply soon to get your reg fee covered! While we don’t know all the details about transportation and housing right now, we can say that we’ll be working to coordinate these logistics as a state and will be doing our best to make them as free and/or low cost as possible. If you have questions about your specific campus, feel free to contact me, or contact the State Lead in your area:

CMU, NMU- Mariah Urueta (mariahamberurueta@gmail.com)

MSU, LCC- Steve Riccardi (stevericcardi312@gmail.com)

UM, EMU- Marissa Solomon (solommar@umich.edu)

Grand Rapids Area- Gwen Gell (gellg@mail.gvsu.edu)

If you register before August 10th, you’ll pay the lowest possible price for the conference! Register today so that we can start planning all of our logistics and keep you updated!

If you want to get started with recruitment ASAP, we’re having a national recruitment phone bank this Thursday from 4-9! Learn more here and sign up. 

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G.R.O.W. Divestment at the MI CATS Action Camp!

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Every single orange flag in this photo represents $1 million the University of Michigan has invested in fossil fuels.  Now imagine what it would look like if we added flags representing every million dollars invested in fossil fuels from every college and university endowment in the state of Michigan.  Would there be double the one thousand flags? (U of M has ~$1 billion invested in fossil fuels). Triple?

Now imagine what it would look like for divestment organizers across the state to come together to G.R.O.W.—Gather. Rise. Organize. Win. We’re excited to announce that G.R.O.W. Michigan, part of a national campaign to build the divestment movement and collaborate with students regionally working on divestment, will be taking place at the Michigan Coalition Against Tar Sands Action Camp from July 19-22.

Not only will you get to join in on the badassery of fighting tar sands in Michigan, but you’ll get the opportunity to network with and join forces with other students fighting the same divestment fight as you!

If you are interested in attending, please sign up here and MI CATS will get in touch soon!

And of course if you can’t attend, here’s the donation link for you to use and/or share widely!

If you have any questions regarding the GROW divestment chunk of the weekend, don’t hesitate to contact me (Marion Berger)! You can email me at marion.berger@350.org.

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Power to the People: Petcoke Resistance in Detroit

When the news of the petroleum coke piles dumped along the Detroit River broke last month, I’m sad to say that my immediate reaction was not surprise. The petcoke piles are just another notch on the continuum of pollution and environmental injustice in Southwest Detroit.  Ever since my mom chose to move back to the city of Detroit two years ago, I’ve become used to the mysterious soot that seems to coat every outdoor surface and to the pungent smells that radiate down the block of my family’s home in Southwest Detroit.

As a brief reminder, the piles of petroleum coke (“petcoke”) have been deposited along the Detroit River, just east of the Ambassador Bridge to Canada, since the fall of 2012. Petcoke is a byproduct of burning crude tar sands, and it is estimated that every barrel of crude imported from Alberta results in an output of 60-130 pounds of petcoke. The petcoke being deposited along the Detroit River is only the beginning. The Marathon Oil Refinery in the 48217 zip code that produces this substance recently went through a $2 billion expansion in order to be able to process more of the tar sands, and thereby produce more of the petcoke.

It pains me to know that my family is suffering the side-effects of such environmental injustice while I live, work, and go to school in Ann Arbor, enjoying the privilege of clean air that is so often taken for granted.  So when I learned that the Detroit Coalition Against Tar Sands (DCATS)-a division of the Michigan Coalition Against Tar Sands (MI CATS)– had been formed and was working on action around the petcoke piles, I was thrilled that people were taking action to combat the injustices my home community have been facing.  On Sunday, June 23, DCATS organized a march, rally, and action called “People Against Petcoke.”  At 3pm, we all met in Clark Park–a hub for community events in Southwest Detroit–where we heard several amazing speakers, from DCATS organizer Jarret Schlaff to the inspiring Charity Hicks.  From Clark Park, we marched the 1.8 miles to the site of the largest of the petcoke piles at the intersection of Rosa Parks and Jefferson Avenue.  Once there, we heard from more speakers, were fed exorbitant amounts of pie and pizza, and got direct action training, in which we practiced making consensus decisions and dealing with police, workers, and our fellow activists.  After the training, we walked down to the riverfront to join in a candlelit vigil at dusk with fellow activists across the river in Windsor, Canada.  It was windy and the candles flickered in and out, but the sense of solidarity was emanated from one side of the river to the other nonetheless.

A group of people kept a presence at the site of the action overnight, and at around 8:30 the next morning (July 24), they began a blockade to stop a truck carrying petcoke into the site.  I arrived around 9:15 and linked arms with the brave people who had stood in front of the truck to stop it.  There was a large cardboard padlock tied with string across the drive into the dumping site, behind which stood several police officers and border patrol, the numbers of which increased throughout the day.  In front of the padlock stood about 25-30 activists, about 7 of whom had arms linked directly in front of the truck, and the rest of whom stood in successive rows behind those who were willing to risk arrest for the action.  We held a press conference in which we read a “People’s Eviction Notice,” which ordered Marathon, the Koch Brothers, and Matty Maroun (the property owner) to shut down the docks and the discontinue the illegal dumping of petcoke.  We had incredible press coverage, and our police liaison did a spectacular job of communicating to the police that this blockade wasn’t about just “making a point.” It was about turning the trucks around and not letting anyone dump petcoke in this space anymore.  Therefore, when the police asked us several times to pack up and go, our response was that we wouldn’t leave until the petcoke was moved.

The morning continued on, and the amount of trucks waiting to enter the facility/dumping ground increased.  Several of them turned around, but when the action came to a head, there were 5 trucks piled up waiting to get in.  One of them–the one we stood directly in front of–held petcoke.  We held signs with the Marathon logo that read “Murder” and signs that informed that Koch brothers that Detroit is NOT their dump.  Once in awhile the wind would pick up and we would all be coated in a layer of petcoke. When I returned home I discovered the cap of my water bottle was filled with the substance and the sign I was carrying had a thin layer the black, oily grime on it.  The police were incredibly cooperative, and kept underlining that they didn’t wish to make any arrests that day.  However, as the hours came and went, they began to give us warnings that if we didn’t move, they would be bringing a paddy wagon to arrest us all.

The 7 people standing directly in front of the truck were prepared to be arrested; they had come to a consensus that they were willing to do so, and we had written the phone number of the legal aid on all of their arms and were beginning to prepare for the process of getting them out of jail.  Just before the paddy wagon had appeared, however, a worker from the facility we were blockading the entrance to appeared to negotiate with us.  He explained that it was really important to get the trucks that weren’t carrying petcoke into the facility, and that if we backed up the blockade, he would make the truck carrying petcoke turn around and wouldn’t let any other petcoke trucks return for the day.  When we asked how we could trust him on this promise, he pulled out his wallet and handed it to one of the protesters.  We confirmed that his I.D. and other important information were in the wallet.  The decision was made to back up the blockade to allow the petcoke truck to turn around and let the other trucks through.  As we backed up, the police line backed up, and several people were in tears as the petcoke truck turned around.  It was truly one of the most beautiful and cooperative outcomes I’ve seen at a direct action.  DCATS–theorganization responsible for coordinating the action–has vowed to continue its resistance until the petcoke piles are gone.

The illegal dumping of petcoke in the city of Detroit is just a small piece of the destruction created in every step of fossil fuel production and consumption.  I stand with DCATS, MI CATS, the Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance, and everyone else across the country and the world standing up against the fossil fuel industry.  Together, we will be victorious.  All power to the people!IMG_20130624_100315_451

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President Obama on Divestment

A few Michigan students are doing some pretty awesome things this summer, and one of them is Marissa Solomon from the University of Michigan. Marissa is spending her summer in Washington, D.C. working as a Powershift Fellow with the Energy Action Coalition. She’ll be working hard all summer preparing for the nation’s largest youth climate gathering, happening this October 18-21 in Pittsburgh. You should come with us! 

Marissa rallied outside of the President’s climate speech yesterday, and wrote a great blog post discussing his mention of the divestment campaign happening everywhere in the country. At UM, Marissa is engaged with the Divest and Invest campaign, calling on their administration to divest from fossil fuels.

“I was rallying outside of the president’s speech yesterday with at least 100 other students- students that were there to support the president’s response to grassroots environmental activism. The rally was overwhelmingly attended by young people, who came up with chants like ‘Yes we can! Comprehensive climate plan!’ and ‘Fired up, ready to go! Fossil fuels have got to go!’ It was proof that young people have passion, and young people come through. Obama would not have made his speech yesterday if students hadn’t pushed him there.”

Read her whole blog post here on wearepowershift.com about what the President’s speech means for the divestment movement

Thanks, Marissa!

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Unity and Support Key to MI Grassroots Fracking Movement

Over the weekend of June 1-2 I had the pleasure of attending Part 2 of the Common Ground Fracking retreat. Held at Circle Pines Retreat Center and representing over 40 different grassroots groups opposed to fracking, this was an amazing opportunity to meet the diverse group of people in this fight and think about how the MSSC can best support these efforts.

You should read all about it in this wonderful article written by Maryann Lessert! Much thanks to Maryann for her ability to sum up our weekend quite accurately and portray the new sense of unity with which this movement will progress.

Many of you know that the MSSC has an anti-fracking working group, and over the past semester we’ve been struggling to find where students can fit in to the anti-fracking movement. Part of this had to do with the divided nature of the fracking debate in MI- do we call for a ban? Is a moratorium more politically feasible? Or maybe we should enact local ordinances because of our political gridlock? While I was once frustrated by what seemed to be a lack of unity in the movement, I’ve now come to realize that, by supporting groups pursuing all of these strategies, we can be part of a movement that is truly fighting on all fronts.

Although we may not always agree on the best strategy to pursue in each moment, we certainly can agree that, united, we stand a much better chance. By coming together for this weekend of dialogue and work, we were able to forge a path forward that allows us to provide support for all of the organizations fighting fracking without having to choose one strategy over another. In this way we can all move forward with the heavy load of work that needs to be done- educating Michiganders about the dangers of fracking and building enough grassroots power to fight the massive oil and gas industry doing everything in their power to suck our state dry of natural gas.

The MSSC still has some more work to do to figure out where we can fit best in to this movement, but I”m confident that we’ll figure it out. We’ve got wonderful students working in the field already, and plenty of organizations and efforts to plug in with. How do you think the MSSC should support student action around fracking this fall? If you want to talk more, please leave a comment and/or join the anti-fracking working group!

I’ll leave you with another highlight from my weekend, brought to me by the beautiful Circle Pines Retreat Center:

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Yep, that is me milking a goat. A goat named Kesha.  If you want to have this awesome goat-milking experience, and maybe throw in a  Michigan music filled weekend, check out the upcoming music festival at Circle Pines- the Buttermilk Jamboree! 

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Biannual Atrocity: Mineral Right Lease Auction. Brought to you by the MI Department of Natural Resources.

 

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Tis’ the season for the biannual atrocity; 38,000 acres of our treaty/public/state land was auctioned off from our MDNR to oil and gas monetary puppeteers. Last Thursday, May 9, approximately 40 people from every corner of Michigan gathered together in opposition of the selling of this land for pennies.

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To no one’s surprise, MDNR mineral rights lease auctions are always depressing, and leave us feeling disempowered. Since this was the third time that our voices have been silenced, we decided to switch it up this year.

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In the morning, we planned a non-arrest-able action. Then, we had a press conference of fours speakers, followed by different trainings that people could attend and learn new ways to fight fracking in MI this Summer! Nobody was arrested. There was a superfluous police presence, including a police dog named Diesel (go figure).

9am- A group of demonstrators coordinated outside of the Lansing center and exchanged phone numbers. Together, they walked inside of the auction room and took a seat, with duct tape placed over all of their mouths. As we were being read our “rights” and the rules of the auction, cell phones started ringing loud and obnoxious ring tones. A few were escorted out right away, but other ring tones were hard to pin point. Then, people spontaneously and simultaneously started coughing and hacking to cause even more disorder! You could say that it disrupted the first bit of the auction.  But aside from this, there was no other action. This can be looked at as good or bad. In a way it was humorous, because the police were very paranoid and expecting more!

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11am- The press conference was held and we had four speakers from across the state:

  • Jim Nash, Oakland County Water Resource Commissioner

Jim talked about the importance of our water and Great Lakes here in MI!

  • Steve Losher, MLAWD

Steve discussed how MLAWD is suing the MDNR for violating the public trust!

  • Phil Bellfy, Article32.org

Phil discussed how First Nations communities are being impacted, and made the clarification of “Treaty” land, opposed to “State” or “Public”.

  • Mariah Urueta, Citizens Against Drilling on Public Land

I spoke about the love driving this movement and how we are growing more organized by the minute!

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Check out some of the coverage we received:

http://www.mlive.com/business/index.ssf/2013/05/fracking_michigan_chamber_supp.html

http://www.wlns.com/story/22210424/protesters-fight-against-fracking#.UYxMUBHAoFw.twitter

http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130509/POLITICS02/305090453

http://www.lansingcitypulse.com/lansing/article-8817-fracking-up-the-future.html

http://www.michiganradio.org/post/state-auctions-mineral-rights-anti-fracking-groups-gather

For footage of some protestors getting kicked out of the auction room, click here.

 

1pm- Trainings where we learned new strategies, tactics, and ways to fight fracking in MI this Summer!

  • Direct Action led by Deep Water, Earth First!
  • Local Ordinances & Working with Local Elected Officials led by Brian and Stephanie of Kent County Water Conservation
  • Messaging, Led by members of the Michigan Student Sustainability Coalition

As much as this movement is connecting here in MI, the industry is moving faster. It is time for us to make our way from defense to offense. Please keep a lookout for opportunities this Summer you can directly fight fracking. As of now, there is the ballot initiative being led by the Committee to Ban Fracking, a lawsuit being filed by MLAWD, ban resolutions being presented with the help of Food and Water Watch, and efforts to work on local ordinances and a creation of a local ordinance guide by Kent County Water Conservation and Food and Water Watch!

Even more exciting, there will be a group forming a Statewide Strategic Action Plan (SSAP) for MI at the end of this month. I will keep you all posted! In the meantime, get connected with one or more of these groups, and keep being awesome students fighting the good fight!

If you’re interested in planning the next auction action and protest, contact me at mariahamberurueta@gmail.com

Mariah Urueta

MSSC Steering Committee

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RESOURCE: Social Media that Builds a Movement

Today I took part in a national conference call held by Climate Reality Check entitled “Social Media that Builds a Movement”. They covered some really great tips and tools we can all use to better use social media as an organizing and movement building tool.

Check out the notes I took to start integrating some of these lessons with your campaign or project! We covered how to create engaging content, how to make effective memes, and talked about the climate silence campaign as an excellent case study

For the skimmers out there- here’s the most useful resource included: a toolkit on meme making

Social Media that Builds a Movement

4/25/2013 Climate Reality Check

How to create engaging content (graphics and memes)

-          Do one thing at a time! The climate problem is extremely daunting, so just try to focus on one number at a time.

  • While it’s important to build the bigger picture and tell the whole story, focusing on one or two concrete details at a time helps you build this story over time, but in a way that allows people to understand easily and is much more engaging

-          How to understand the problem- important to capture the scale of the problem and the solution with dramatic imagery (climate change does give us epic visuals)

  • Helps convey the size of the problem that condenses the larger science into a single emotion or feeling
  • People don’t relate very well to global or apocalyptic thinking, so talking about specific impacts is a better way to get people fired up without making them feel like the world is over.

Effective ways to use social media to amplify on the ground actions

-          The big picture- its best to break up social media strategy into three parts and have a plan for each: before the action, during the action, and after the action

  • make a plan for all of these phases based on what your goals are (recruitment, engagement, next steps) and then craft tools/strategy to meet these goals
  • before an action- goal is to make it feel real so that more people relate/are excited to join in
    • use stories from people who are signed up, ask them to tell why they’re doing it
    • if you’re about to reach your recruitment goal, tell people about it!
    • Adds momentum and excitement = more people
    • Use diverse messengers so that your message resonates with as many different communities as possible
  • During an action- show, don’t tell.
    • You should have exciting things to show if you have a successful action!
    • Use quotes from speakers and lots of photos, but mix up your scale (use pics from crowd and speakers)
  • After the action- you want people to feel really good about the next steps
    • Post reflections on numbers, goals that were met
    • Gives you a chance to show more photos, let the movement have a chance to see itself and feel powerful

Best practices for groups with limited capacity

-          Make a plan for the goals you have

  • Goal for how often you want to post, and be concrete

-          Make it part of your routine, this should just be a part of organizing

-          There are some apps schedule social media work for you- tweet deck

-          Focus- get it all done at once, don’t let it be something that is always distracting you! Use your post schedules

-          Follow this advice on meme making!

Meme making

-          Be a movement builder, not a marketer

  • Listen to hash tags (etc) if you’re going to use them
  • Be a trainer and teach others about social media
  • Don’t just list your stories, but list movement stories (because that is what people want to be a part of)

-          What is a meme?

  • the word comes from a book by Richard Dawkins about evolutionary biology- based on the word genes (we spread our genes virally because we’re compelled to)
    • meme is the spread of ideas

-          Why are memes useful?

  • Photos catch people’s attention
    • FB algorithm is programmed to prioritize images
  • Captions travel with photos and memes when other people share them (but not with articles)

-          How to make a good meme?

  • Use Picmonkey.com, especially if you don’t have graphic design skills
  • Be snarky
  • Minimize text, but entice the viewers to read more (in captions, links)
  • Show agency- lift up the people who have made the changes you’re posting about.
  • Include a next step (bare minimum is “click like and share”) petition, letter, event to attend, etc.

-          Using pictures that won’t get you in trouble

  • If you give credit to where you found it/person who took it, you probably won’t get in trouble
  • Worst case scenario is that you have to take it down
  • If you’re really worried, there are creative commons photos that anyone can use

-          What to do with it

  • Post it! But not in a vacuum- call on your network to help you share the image
  • Have a good caption
  • Tag groups or people who helped/are involved- just a subtle hint that they should share it too

Climate Silence: Case Study of using social media to amplify a campaign (breaking the silence on climate during 2012 presidential debates)

-          (check out a really successful climate silence meme here)

-          Most of the effort/challenge is being a good organizer and coming up with a good campaign idea and strategies, the social side of “social media” is the most important one

-          Used moral imagery in this case (duct tape)- this was a very compelling visual message and something national media paid attention to (as they’re always looking for a good political scandal), but coming up with this idea actually took a long time

  • It helps to work with good designers, but the most important part is creating the campaign/content/messaging

-          Built a network of allies and groups to contribute

  • After they generated the original image with tape over candidate’s mouths, EAC then made a meme/poster making tools that people could use to tailor this message and make their own. That way people felt ownership and wanted to share more

-          They were prepared to respond in real time (while watching the debates) that made them super time relevant- rapid response is one of the most key things you can do to generate a wide response

  • You’re not just trying to reach them with something new, you’re connecting to something they already care about

 

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Divestment Working Group Notes!

Hi MSSC!  Here is what the Divestment Working Group talked about during our call on April 24th!

Stephen from CMU spoke about how they launched their campaign with videos and posting fliers around campus.  They’ve begun asking faculty members for support in their campaign, and at the beginning of next school year they plan to publish a disorientation guide about divestment and chalk #divestcmu all over campus!

Marissa from U of M talked what the Divest and Invest Campaign has accomplished this year.  They launched the campaign in early March with a panel event, and went right into passing a resolution with the College of LSA Student Government.  They have also begun garnering support from faculty, and plan to pass a resolution in Central Student Government and meet with individual members of the Board of Regents to ask for support.

We also spoke about plans for the national Divestment Day of Action on May 2, where students will show support from divestment all over the country by taking pictures of events with orange squares, the national symbol of divestment!

Finally, we spoke about planning a Michigan Divestment Day of Action at the beginning of next year, where students all over Michigan can show support for divestment!  Maybe by wearing orange mittens?

Stay tuned for information about the next working group call!

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