Disclaimer for the feds: Incite, Conspire, Inspire is a solely-for-fun section never designed to give real advice. The tools, tactics and ideas given on the series are only thought to entertain. We would never dream of anyone using any of this tools as a form of dissent and we do not promote, partake in or condone any illegal activities that might derive from said tools.
Many of you will have seen evidence gathering cops at protests before, they are the ones walking around having ‘friendly’ conversations, asking questions like “did you travel far to get here?” “so are you a student?” “what’s your name?” and so on. Never answer these questions, don’t talk to cops! Alongside the chatty ones there are also the ones walking around with big ass cameras, taking photos and videos of everyone they can. The footage they collect is often used to help identify and target individuals and can lead to successful prosecutions.
A simple tactic to combat these intrusive protest stalkers is to follow them around and use your placard or banner to block their cameras from filming the crowd.
It might be wise to attach long sticks or poles to your banners as the cops usually come with extendable poles for their cameras in order to get clear shots from above.
It’s not just banners and placards that can do the job of blocking cameras, umbrellas work brilliantly and fit in your pocket after. Skateboards have been used many times too and depending on your skating abilities can provide a fast getaway or dramatic fail.
Be aware that preventing these creeps from filming effectively is likely to upset and frustrate them. It can result in grumpy cops targeting you, even if what you’re doing isn’t illegal. Make sure you are well masked up and alert to your surroundings and ideally doing it with friends. Factor in your vulnerability, if you’re undocumented, or really can’t afford another arrest if things go sideways then this probably isn’t the job for you. Talk in your group about who could take this role before heading out.
Remember, we keep us safe.