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9 Days Out from Oct. 26 March Against Big Brother Surveillance, are Sponsoring Organizations Spreading the Word?

We’re 9 days out from a big protest march in Washington DC demanding that the U.S. government stop its massive warrantless surveillance programs targeting hundreds of millions of innocent, law-abiding people. If you have the time, come on down to DC for a march to Capitol Hill at Noon on 10/26. I’ll be taking part in the march from Union Station to Capitol Hill, and it would be great to meet you in person there (post a comment here if you’d like to coordinate).

As I mentioned last month, the 10/26 DC protest website features a prominent set of official sponsor organizations with their brand labels placed right at the top of the list of supporters:

Prominent display of organizations named as supporting the October 26 march on washington dc against mass surveillance

This brand placement is great fundraising fodder for “sponsor” organizations: it helps build the image of opposition to Big Brother government, which can lead to valuable donations. What I want to know is whether these organizations are just buying sponsorship in some way or are prominently promoting the march on their own web pages, actively direct their followers to show up for the DC march by doing so.

Are the top 15 listed supporting organizations doing everything they can to support the October 26 demonstration? Do they mention and link to the march on the front pages of their own websites? I decided to check and find out. Results are shown below.

Electronic Frontier Foundation ( YES!
EFF Effectively Promotes the 10/26 DC Protest against NSA Surveillance

Free Press ( YES!
Free Press visibly supports the 10-26 march

FreedomWorks ( — NO. There’s absolutely no mention of the protest on FreedomWorks’ front webpage, and no mention on their secondary “Take Action” page either. FreedomWorks wasn’t supporting the action on its web page in September either.

American Civil Liberties Union ( — NO. There’s absolutely no mention of the protest on the home page of the ACLU, and no mention on their secondary “Action” page either. The ACLU was similarly inactive in promoting the march in September.

Competitive Enterprise Institute ( — NO. There’s absolutely no mention of the protest on the home page of the CEI, just a picture of one of its lobbyists looking smug in a business suit. The CEI didn’t make a peep in September either.

RestoreTheFourth ( — NO. Although RestoreTheFourth put out an article in September, they’ve erased mention of the march from the front page of their website in October, right when the mobilization efforts should be in high gear. Super-lamely, RestoreTheFourth doesn’t even mention the march in its events calendar.

Center for Democracy & Technology ( — NO. There’s absolutely no mention of the protest on the home page of the CDT, and no mention of the protest on its blog either. Not in September, and not in October.

Demand Progress ( YES!

Mozilla ( — NO. There’s absolutely no mention of the protest on Mozilla’s home page, and there wasn’t last month either.

Public Knowledge ( — NO. There’s absolutely no mention of the protest on the Public Knowledge home page. Instead, they’re talking about people charging $20 to let people see a picture of a beaver by the artist Banksy.

Fight For the Future ( — NO. Just… no. It’s not there. Wasn’t. Isn’t. Asses.

Access ( — STILL, UM, SORT OF. Access links to the website, which in turn links to the protest, but there are no direct links or mentions of the protest. That’s the way it’s been for a month.

Libertarian Party ( — YES. The Libertarian Party hadn’t bothered in September, but they have stepped up in October.

Bill of Rights Defense Committee ( — NO. The Committee hasn’t placed any promotion of the protest on its home page. Then again, the Committee doesn’t seem to have updated anything on its home page since August. Really.

Students for Liberty ( — NO. Students for Liberty is talking a lot about itself. It isn’t saying a word about the march against surveillance on October 26.

Since last month, the Council on American-Islamic Relations added its sponsorship to the march. But is there any mention of the march on its home page? NO

Big thanks to the organizations listed in green for using their institutional megaphones to get the word out. But can I just mention how frustratingly lame it is for the organizations listed in red above — all of which have big budgets and staffs and public relations directors — to not even bother to put up a tiny little graphic or a single web link on their home pages? While actual, non-funded human beings are making their way to Washington, it would be polite for the paper movement organizations to make some kind of a peep.

2 thoughts on “9 Days Out from Oct. 26 March Against Big Brother Surveillance, are Sponsoring Organizations Spreading the Word?”

  1. John Lewis Mealer says:

    Four out of Sixteen is not the number we wanted to see follow through in action (even if it’s just posting a note on their website) rather than the other companies vague one liners.

    Good write up Jim.

  2. Stephen Kent Gray says:

    Overall, the same amount 4 and a half out of 16. I say a half because of Access Now. We gained the Libertarian Party, but lost Restore the Fourth. This kept the overall amount the same. One step forward and one step back.

    You didn’t link to the Libertarian Party despite it being changed to a yes. You kept the Restore the Fourth link despite being changed to a no.

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