While most Americans have found news on the Occupy Wall Street movement dwindling over the winter, it’s beginning to look as if occupiers are once more taking to the streets of Manhattan as weather in New York continues to improve.
This rekindling of the movement has come accompanied by some effective use of social media.
The Occupy Wall Street Facebook page posted the above video on Monday, a recap of events in the early weeks of spring, which included occupiers light-heartedly taking part in ‘spring training’, a protest at Bank of America, another spat of arrests in Zuccotti Park and protestors tearing down police barricades surrounding the Wall Street bull.
While the video has not necessarily gone viral, it is worth noting the kind of reach that a Facebook page like Occupy Wall St. can have when posting to its wall
The Occupy Wall St. Facebook page has a reach of 376,719 fans at the time of publishing. Since posting the ‘Spring is here for OWS’ video, over 1, members have ‘liked’ it, over 1 have commented on it and some 377 have shared the video themselves. Multiply those shares by the 25 friends that your average Facebook user has, and that increases reach by almost 95, users. Add that to the pre-existing fans, and you’ve got about 47, possible viewers.
Both the reach of the video and the levels of participation and sharing by group members are worth noting. This kind of activity reinforces the sense of community and a common goal for those already involved, and forces those on the periphery to begin to take note.
The Occupy Wall Street movement is attempting to increase activity on the streets while preparing for its big May 1 general strike, in which they hope that the American people will not go in to work or school, abstain from shopping, and instead take to the streets as a sign of protest.
The movement has also made concerted efforts to maintain a physical presence, first with the attempted reoccupation of Zuccotti Park, and then with subsequent tries at occupying Union Square, a New York public space known for its rich history of protest.