Sometimes boycotting things does matter: The case of W2 Woodwards

There’s an event happening in Vancouver related to Lawful Access. Normally, I’d tell people to go to it because of the real threat to privacy this Lawful Access legislation has in the short term. However, it appears that this event is happening at the W2 Media Cafe, so instead I’m going to tell people to boycott it and here</a> is why.

In short, W2 took Olympic money to get started and W2 sees nothing wrong with that. It’s not like it was a compromise for them. The official narrative that we hear over and over again is that they ‘appropriated the resources to make something better’. Honestly, that sounds like complete and total bullshit. I don’t feel that W2 does anything for the community that it couldn’t do without the Olympic money, and I do think that W2’s existence is actually detrimental to other groups in this city, since it’s the token group that the City can point at when they shut down any independent gallery, studio or community space.

However, because it’s a community group that relies on people participating, I can encourage people to not participate in any event that W2 puts on. I don’t know why the event was booked at W2. It’s entirely possible that the people who booked it were not aware of the fact that it was funded with Olympic money or they don’t care that it was funded with Olympic money. While there may be a good discussion to be had about surveillance, the fact that W2 took money from VANOC shows their implicit support of the exact forces that spied on me in the past, which is where the irony really starts to kick in. By supporting W2 by attending events held there, it sends a message that its ok for community groups to take funding from those who seek to spy on us and imprison us, which is clearly wrong.

I apologize for this post, but I am admittedly frustrated that people are implicitly supporting the surveillance of activists by giving support for W2. What makes it even more frustrating is the amount of control it gives a certain person over who can have community space, which sucks.

Oh well, hopefully there are discussions in more neutral venues.