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The European Social Fora

category international | public consultation / irish social forum | feature author Tuesday October 19, 2004 18:51author by seedot Report this post to the editors

from space to space to space

From the Newswire by Seedot: A report and pics from a weekend in London - covers the Camden Centre, Beyond the ESF and the Official ESF.

ESF logoThe ideals of the social forum process speak of the creation of a space for dialog and debate between the many social movements that present an opposition to capitalism. The Porto Allegre principles are designed to ensure as inclusive and broad a forum as possible, to encourage the cross-fertilization of all these strands that make up what is referred to as the 'movement'. While the London organising process has been heavily criticised for its departures from the charter of principles many people traveled to London because of the sheer scale of the event, the opportunity to see the differences between the groups and test the pulse of the European movements. The diversity was supposed to be the strength of the social forum, the size was supposed to overcome the problems in the organising with space for everyone in the various events.

Before I left Dublin I had read of the range of groups and spaces and thought that the weekend would be an opportunity to witness this marvelous coming together that many had spoken of in the social forum process. The weekend before I had sat in a circle at the Irish Social Forum and heard academics, trade unionists, social democrats and anarchists discussing their opposing and complimentary views of neo-liberalism and their strategies for dealing with it. The meeting had been positive, not least for the links that were made and the comparisons drawn with the mass movement that developed in Ireland a century before as Nationalism, Socialism and what came to be Irish Republicanism coalesced to defeat the imperialism of that time. London was supposed to be this on a much larger stage.

Flying home my feelings were more of frustration and opportunities missed than any real satisfaction or excitement. I attended events at the Indymedia Centre in Camden, at the Beyond the ESF in Tottenham and the 'Official' ESF at Alexander Palace. Each event was well organised and attended yet it felt like I had been to three conferences in the one weekend. The frustration was that the linkages and cross fertilizations seem to have been ruled out even before the event began as each of the movements retreated into its own space, establishing multiple fora which talked amongst themselves. While what happened was thoughtful, sincere and at times exciting it was what didn't happen that left the lasting impression.

The Media Space

After being involved in setting up the media centre in Dublin during the Mayday mobilisation I have huge respect for what was achieved by Indymedia UK (United Kollektives) in the Camden centre. The space was fantastic, the debates about infowar and propaganda (I was there on the Friday) were really important and the range of media available was brilliant. There were three rooms of public access machines, including 15 or so in the canteen/bar and a large screening / meeting space. As is usual at this type of thing, the management of the centre took away from the business of Indymedia but the Saturday morning meeting gave a chance for many different Indymedia groups to discuss the recent server seizures.

Both the UK and the overall network seems to be evolving in its attitude to dealing with corporate media, mainly as a result of the recent server seizures. The quick and wholehearted support of groups such as the International Federation of Journalists and Reporters Sans Frontiers on this attack on the network did much to help this evolution. The discussion on info war included a contributor from the NUJ who analysed the requirements to construct a story for mainstream media and the audience seemed focused on using rather than replacing other media.

Attendance wasn't great in the mornings but apparently the Friday night saw the big party of the alternative ESF taking place in the hall. The computers downstairs were in constant use both for checking mail etc. and, later in the weekend, for filing reports on the various actions that were taking place. Food was excellent and cheap, the whole atmosphere was positive and supportive and it was good to put faces to the many nicknames and email addresses I had dealt with over the last couple of years. As a place to find out what was happening where in London over the weekend the centre worked with many people calling in on their way to and from other events – aided by its proximity to Kings Cross station.

But in many ways the centre felt isolated as no non-media discussions took place within walking distance and it seemed somehow out of the loop. There has been criticism of the reporting of the ESF on the Indymedia UK newswire (mainly by people who attended the ESF, didn't write about their experiences and then visited to website looking for other peoples reports). While the UK wire has always been excellent at reporting actions, a function which it again filled admirably over the weekend, there was little on the politics of the ESF. I searched in vain for any news about the EU Constitution discussions or the outcome of Assembly of the Social Movement, both of which were absent from the newswire.

The main problem was the location – the open access computers should have been in Alexander Palace (ESF) where the concepts and practices of free media were most needed. The people who had least to gain from info war analysis were the people who were in the media centre – those already involved in the project. In some ways this isolation meant that the centre turned into a network type meeting for the wider European Indymedia network – which is a good thing in itself but could happen at any time.

The Womble Space

Leaving Camden we took the long train journey up to the Beyond the ESF space in Middlesex University in Tottenham. One of the more fascinating things about the UK anarchist movement is their abilities at graphic design. Their programme was the best looking piece of literature I saw all weekend, the entrance was hung with a great banner quoting Gerard Winstanley and the entrance hall had flyers and leaflets of a very high standard. Here the voluntary ethos that was evident in the media centre was reinforced as food was served free from Marquees in the grounds and the registration desk not only didn't take money, but didn't seem to take names or any details – handing out (well designed) invitations as entry tickets.

The canteen was full of sociology staff and students trying to get people to fill out huge questionnaires (the price for the use of the building?) and the workshops and plenaries were firmly focused on planning and organising. On Friday the theme was the G8 conference next year in Scotland and we tried but failed to get into the Clown Army workshop which was completely packed out. Then the crisis struck – the bar had been shut and it seemed there was no alcohol to be had on campus. Muttering about the need for a beyond the beyond the esf space which would be truly free and where you could get a beer we trekked past 3 boarded up pubs to one full of Spurs scarves and other refugees from the oppressive, rule laden space that was the Beyond the ESF.

That evening we returned for the Dissent plenary on the Visions for the G8 process. This was held in the form of a spokes council, which sort of worked for what it was – a brainstorming session on what people wanted to happen next year. While the format allows everybody to have their say a couple of big debates were missed out – not least on the use / non-use of violence in the protests. The most interesting thing was the focus on infrastructure (both for the protestors and of the G8) and the need to create links with workers and residents in the area. This move from the 'spectacular' made perfect sense, both because of the logistics of the location and the need to develop and escape the 'kettle' that people felt was being used too effectively against them.

But the weakness of the Beyond the ESF space was most clearly seen here. The very people that this should be discussed with, the more radical elements of the trade unions, were nowhere to be seen, all being up in Alexander Palace. While the Beyond the ESF was very international, it many ways it seemed sort of uniform – white, young and oriented towards action not theory. Loads of energy, creativity and a positive atmosphere – but it was difficult to find any debate or cross fertilization. The closest I came was a leaflet from the GMB on sweatshops – but no-one (not in Tottenham or later on the GMB stand in Ally Pally) knew how this trade union literature had found its way across the city.

The Official Space

While the Indymedia space could cater for maybe a thousand people and the Wombles possibly two thousand Alexander Palace was on a different scale altogether. Outside Wood Green tube station crowds of attendees (the Guardian called them delegates but i doubt that) filled rows of double decker buses for the climb up the hill. The palace was surrounded by Marquees and you had to run the standard gauntlet of paper sellers to get in the door. Once inside, after negotiating the heavy entrance fee (St£15 for one day??), avoidable via side doors, rushing through the entrance or a variety of other means you were faced with the noise of hundreds of stands and dozens of simultaneous meetings.

The programme, in the form of a tabloid newspaper, ran to 76 pages. More than anything else, this reminded me of the Internet World shows I had attended in New York at the height of the Internet boom. Same mass of stalls with eager people trying to catch your eye, same big meetings running side by side, same overpriced 'world' food. While there were glimpses here and there of art work and slogans and creativity most of it seemed to have been packaged and prepared for sale. The floor was strewn with leaflets on environmentalism, the larger stages had their sponsors banners and all the services were provided by the standard, uniformed, trained to be invisible minimum wage workers.

As far as I could figure there were three main groups involved: NGOs and campaigning groups; the large UK Trade Unions; and all of Europe's hard left parties. No visible social democratic ruling parties, no direct action / libertarian groups and no real sign of the vitality and diversity that is supposed to represent this movement. As is normal in a foreign country, every familiar Irish face is latched onto and drilled for their impressions, what they've been to and whats on next. I had missed the Iraqi trade unionist the evening before who was prevented from speaking and could only admire the preparation of the political parties as I was shown the assigned seminars that people had been given. A lot of the time I felt adrift and not really engaged with what was going on around me.

I did try though. A seminar on the constitution looked promising and when I arrived Susan George was just finishing a speech that i am sure was word for word from a recent article. More interesting was a French Socialist who stressed the need for a campaign on the constitution – that didn't get hijacked into a referendum on membership of the EU. Next up was a German Green, who spoke at length and with much passion. Unfortunately I didn't have a clue what he said since everybody spoke in their own language and you needed a headset to pick up the simultaneous translation. By Saturday lunchtime it was very difficult to get hold of a headset so I went looking for something in my limited range of languages.

A meeting on the Hijab provided the first bit of excitement as the platform, which were all from groups opposed to the French ban, had to deal with contributions, heckles and some rather spirited singing in French. The crowd seemed strongly with the platform although the statement that those opposing voices who demanded to be heard sat uncomfortably with me. I know that is the way the social forum works, with groups proposing their own workshops, but in the larger meetings with a top table and limited contributions from the floor it seems some balance should be an objective. Maybe I only felt that way because, on this issue, I was strongly with the noisy minority.

By now I decided to be a bit more structured in dealing with the forum and tried to find out about the EU constitution campaigns in different countries, about the debates that had been happening at the social forum on it and whether there would be a motion at the Assembly of Social Movements on it. At least it gave me an excuse to talk to people on stalls asking about each countries campaign. This seemed a good idea but after an hour I realised the best information I got was from an Irish guy I know well who I could have just rung. I also got fed up being told about the workshops i had missed and the Italian comrade who supposedly had spoken very well – but nobody was sure what he had said. I went looking for a computer to see if any reports had been uploaded, only to find that the media centre was only available to those who had some business being there. It was made plain to me that that did not include me.

I went outside to the Marquees to hear Mary Lou MacDonald from Sinn Fein and Dave Prentis from Unison in different tents avoiding talking about anything of interest. Whatever about Mary Lou who was in the coldest meeting I have ever attended, Prentis seemed to think that announcing a joint venture with the largest German public sector union and focusing on pensions was preferable to talking about public services which he had been billed to do. The funny thing was the trade union speeches in general ignored the left wing parties, talking about how great it was to link up with environmental groups and ngos. The Left wing parties ignored the NGO's focusing on the potential of the trade unions joining the movement. And the NGO's ignored everything except their own campaigns. Maybe it was just me, but even here, with a huge crowd the promised synergies and cross fertilization seemed missing.

Virtual Space

I left the ESF before the storming of the palace, before the Assembly, before the march which may or may not have been an ESF march. I had a bag filled with newspapers and leaflets and a notebook with email addresses and contacts. I never really figured out what the whole thing was for.

Looking for information on the web just left me more confused. Two days after the event I have yet to find anything that resembles real information on what went on. The Guardian had a few puff pieces online, Indymedia UK had blow by blow accounts of the arrests and actions and a French site has some nice impressionistic writing. Maybe its too early for reports from the physical spaces to have reached the virtual space which are supposed to be where the new movements network and theorize and organize. But maybe these will be as splintered as the spaces in London last weekend with each group reporting on its own space through its own medium. Maybe I'm just crap at conferences.

When I read about Paris last year the main complaint was that the forum was spread out too much. This year it seems to have split up entirely creating a new beast – the European Social Fora.

audio testing 0 Mb

author by seedotpublication date Tue Oct 19, 2004 13:56author address author phone Report this post to the editors


The Belly of the Beast
The Belly of the Beast

Running the gauntlet
Running the gauntlet

Another World for sale
Another World for sale

Catering - festival style
Catering - festival style

author by I didn't go to the ESFpublication date Tue Oct 19, 2004 14:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

so I really appreciate this report. Thank you. any comments from others who were in attendance would be great too.

author by miapublication date Tue Oct 19, 2004 15:56author address author phone Report this post to the editors

albeit depressing, is it actually possible to hold such huge forums and get anything out of it if you are already engaged somewhat in the movement?
I think the idea is a little archaic, and is really just used as a tool for publicity, general awareness of issues, recruiting new members etc...
When the left as a whole get involved in something it generally has been proven not to work ?
From this report we can assume it's the same old sectarian hurdles people can't jump, as far as I can see this leads to a hierarchical use of social forums by the various usual suspects!
could be wrong, these are virtual impressions!

author by YTpublication date Tue Oct 19, 2004 17:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I think that these fora are useful. Perhaps not hugely so but there are always unexpected encounters. groups active in similar or slightly related activities may become aware of each others existence for the first time....etc...

author by Indy Reporterpublication date Tue Oct 19, 2004 18:30author email billhickslives2 at yahoo dot ieauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

I too am appreciative of this report, because there seems to be such a real dearth of articles in follow up to last weekend’s greatly anticipated 2004 european social forum. It’s almost a surreal, eerie silence across the media that has made me question if the event really happened at all! An official sponsor, the UK Guardian newspaper, has had little or no follow up coverage to it. The UK indymedia site has in turn fallen silent on the topic. I suppose I expected the esf to spark debate and activity, and to be a catalyst for action. This must surely be the aim of activists following so much theory and debate. But unfortunately if that was a central aim of the esf, then it has plainly fallen short of that goal. It just shows the gap that can emerge between expectation and reality.

I arrived at the esf in Alexander palace on Saturday afternoon fresh off a Ryanair flight from Dublin. My purpose for going was three-fold. Firstly, having been involved in the anti-war movement in Ireland I saw the esf as a potential site for advancing this cause. Secondly, as Noam Chomsky has pointed out in recent writings, the “second world super power” (after the US) is now the global community. The esf, as a subset of the world social forum, has at least the potential to mobilise that community to play a constructive role in resetting the global agenda in the interest of all of humanity, and not just in the interests of narrow private elites. Finally, I came to the esf in London because I wanted a concrete, lived experience of resistance, solidarity and liberation, to learn through action. Whether I found that or not I didn’t know in advance. But I guessed this might be a good place to look.

Well, I was both rewarded and disappointed. I was rewarded mainly because the esf has potential, not because of what the esf is today, but rather what it could become. The main venue, Alexander palace, was overflowing with information stands representing a broad spectrum of NGOs, left parties, and trade unions. That all these groups are gathered under one roof in 2004 is both significant and necessary if we are serious about advancing social and environmental change that benefits the majority of the world’s people. And there is a convergence of ideas and interests emerging here. I don’t wish to seem to be papering over the cracks between reformists and revolutionaries in all their shades; real and substantive ideological differences exist. But if these differences are to be thrashed out then this must surely be the kind of place to advance that work constructively.

I was disappointed for much the same reasons the author of this piece draws our attention to. Although there was a very diverse and inclusive polyphony of voices and perspectives available in London last weekend, the cross pollination and engagement of ideas and policy leading to actions seemed to be lacking. The event was wonderfully decentered, but it was at the same time rendered benign and inert in a way that I don’t believe the organisers wanted it to be. After all, those of us involved in activism want to see constructive, consensual action arising out of an event like this.

It is ironic that the French philosopher Derrida should have died last week. His work very powerfully decentered the hither-to authoritative narrative of western civilisation. This has opened us up to otherness, difference and fringe narratives in new and fruitful ways that we are still exploring and we are indebted to him for this. However, as one writer on his obituary pointed out, Derrida’s radical philosophy left him no basis for grounding a political philosophy that could lead to action. Between Derrida and the esf we need to engage with each other and our world and somehow hammer out some common political philosophy. The elites that are driving neo-liberalism and a global war fought at various levels on ordinary people openly have a pragmatic political philosophy and engagement with the world. And it is becoming more and more patently clear that this is not in global communities interests. We’ve gotten this far, we now need to move towards the next step; full engagement of ideas and debate, and a willingness to participate in joint power and action.

Otherwise the esf will become just another talking shop. It will become another pressure valve in the system, useful for blowing off steam and dissipating dissent with disappointment, and not actually doing what it was set up for: to challenge illegitimate power, injustice and narrow short-term interest where ever it is found.

But I believe this commentary on the esf merits ending on a high note. The esf is young. It might be flawed, but it is in existence and it might not be but for the difficult organising work put into it to date. It has gotten us to a point where a spectrum of diverse groups working for social change are found under one roof, and are being (at least minimally) civil to one another. It has potential to be robust enough to contain diversity, tolerance and change; it must have this robustness. This, I believe, will be crucial in the years ahead. The best thing we can do now is look calmly at the as it is now esf, take stock, and build the wsf/esf to be the change we want to see in the time ahead.

author by Indy Reporterpublication date Tue Oct 19, 2004 18:55author email billhickslives2 at yahoo dot ieauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

Some photos from the ESF, London 2004






author by hs - sppublication date Tue Oct 19, 2004 23:52author address author phone Report this post to the editors

the 'weekly worker' has been running articles on the esf in the months running up to it, questioning problems within the movement, democracy etc. It's got a couple of reports on the actual event in the latest issue. The paper is more of a leftist activist discussion paper as opposed to a propaganda paper so is alot more interesting.

3 articles on esf in this issue
3 articles on esf in this issue

Related Link:
author by dick whitington's catpublication date Wed Oct 20, 2004 12:17author address author phone Report this post to the editors

it's nice to see we've the support of NUJ and RSF and people like that isn't it? Still I imagine it was an expensive weekend. You must have had a four zone travel card at least to get around Lahndin, and I notice that you did hoof it a bit. I'd like to know, maybe you'd leave a comment when the "relevant comments" have died down,-
"what do you think of London?"
Surely you didn't go from Wood Green to Camden to Middlesex university without forming impressions of interest to Irish readers of Lahndin. Are the people happier? Or are they still "grey-ish". Is there a palpable excitement in the air running up to christmas, or rather are they paranoid and scared of terror? Did you see a TASAR? Is the Graffiti good? What is the sound of the street now?
Did you go to any parties? Is the Guinness still awful or has cold draught sorted that out?
Did you catch mass? Are there really more people (just like Tony Blair) converting to the church of Rome? Did you cross the wonky footbridge? Did you see the Gherkin? Is King's Cross still full of junkies? Did you see a Pearly queen? Did you do the Lambeth Walk? Did you eat any chestnuts? Did you see squirrels? Did you see rats? Did you see pigeons? Are you contagious now?
My local quality newspaper celebrating its 10,000 issue (with some pride) [and still a bit left-ish] referred to the event as "the left of the left of the left of Europe met in London and argued about how many people marched". Is that fair?
Would you recommend London as a holiday destination? Was the ryanair flight comfortable? How about the transfer from the airport? Was that convenient and quick? Did you have difficulty recognising the coinage and using Sterling money? Did you try and use Euros? Did you send any emails or faxes from a BT kiosk? Did you send any postcards? Why didn't you send any postcards?

author by dunkpublication date Wed Oct 20, 2004 16:07author address author phone Report this post to the editors

association mondial des radiodiffusers communitaire
world association of community radio broadcasters

dublins NEARfm are part of this network and they have some interesting radio links from ESF and WSF and other things

author by seedotpublication date Thu Oct 21, 2004 12:19author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I'll come back later and make irrelevant conversation re. London and the joys of Heathrow later ;-), just had some thoughts while reading billhickslives.

I was v. interested in your view that the ESF was young and could evolve into something.` Unfortunately I came away with the opposing view - that it has regressed, at least from the view I had formed of the origins of the process. I felt that much of what was missing had been there in the past but had now splintered off and both (all) strands were weaker as a result.

I think my argument goes something like this.

When I go to something I will carry with me my vision for open and free media. I think this is the way the world should be - a strong part of my vision for the other world which is possible. Through working on something like Indymedia I try and create that world in this one. Then I go to the ESF and find that, either consciously or unconsciously, it has been established in such a way as to be more restrictive of access to an open and free media than the world I am leaving behind. I could not get access to an Internet connection in Alexander Palace, either paid or free. I did not have the right to take photographs. I did not have the right to refuse being filmed by others. The only type of information available was dead tree based - no videos, audio or other media.

So the ESF was worse than the world I left to go there - not least because the project I am involved in exists in the current world but for whatever reason, it and all the concepts it stood for were excluded from the ESF. And it wasn't always thus. Freedom of information and movement were trends that were in the social forum movement before, but are now going to their own places. This example was repeated in many areas such as food, meeting structure, security, staffing etc.

This analysis is obviously colored by my involvement in a particular movement that was excluded from the ESF. From the outside, did what you attend feel different in structure or form from other political meetings you have attended? Did any of the vitality and newness of, for example, the RTS party you attended exhibit itself in Alexander Palace? When you mention the 'polyphony of voices' in your report is this a reference to the language people were speaking or was there a range of narratives present as well - and any more so than you would find in a broad political movement / industry conference?

Can I end by quoting the Clown Army who, I think, have so much guidance to give:

You could be part of a fighting force armed with ruthless love and fully trained in the ancient art of clowning and non-violent direct action.

You could learn ingeniously stupid tactics that baffle the powerful.

You could uncover your inner clown and discover the subversive freedom of fooling.

Follow your nose and join CIRCA (Clandestine Insurgent Rebel Clown Army)!

Related Link:
author by Raypublication date Thu Oct 21, 2004 12:30author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"I did not have the right to take photographs. I did not have the right to refuse being filmed by others."

So there were some people who were allowed film in AP, with no restrictions, but other people couldn't even take a photograph?

author by seedotpublication date Thu Oct 21, 2004 13:26author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Ownership of the images of the event had already been passed to a 3rd party - or at least the registration clauses left this possibility open.

Same as some music events.

author by Raypublication date Thu Oct 21, 2004 13:37author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I suppose if you're going to have minimum-wage cleaners and security, and commercial caterers selling Coke and Nestle products, commercialising the image rights isn't that big a deal.

author by dunkpublication date Fri Oct 22, 2004 13:39author address author phone Report this post to the editors

thanks for ESF feedback seedot

on ISF website C. reported that a small ESF feedback meeting happened on wed 20th. I would have liked to attend but was not informed about it.
ive responded about that issue here

so far there is little or no direct feedback about or from ISF. this is unfortunate, the forum itself finished without enough time for feedback, far more the previous year.

so anyway,

feedback is an essential part of healthy open living sytesms, so i would have liked to attend this meeting but there was no mention of it on indymedia, no mention of it here, on irish social forum website.

i signed up to the IAWM site to recieve info and to see what they were informing that network about, recieved nothing about it.

there was no mention of the ISF on the last mail i recieved from IAWM but there was a lot on the ESF, i responded to them questioning why there was no mention of ISF, a request that they would inform their network about it and my view, along with most peoples (given half the chance to make it) that building strong local links was the key to bettering global issues etc, which is the reason for developing ISF in the first place. since then i have not recieved any mail from IAWM, perhaps i was struck from the list?

along with this, during ISF while questioning IAWM people about this divide, they stated that they had 200-300 people going to ISF, where were these hundreds for the ISF, did they even know about it?

as stated many times, there are obviously massive problems between the different sides but can we please grow up and get over them.

author by imc'istapublication date Fri Oct 22, 2004 19:27author address author phone Report this post to the editors



This is a listing of some of the reports posted around the European Social Forum and the Autonomous Spaces in London, October 2004.

There were still serious problems with the Indymedia webserver after the seizure of the servers in London, so many people had problems posting reports. If you have unublished reports of events please post them to Indymedia or to the text reporting database @

This listing is not complete, there's still a lot of content to come in and be tracked down - another updated version will be released soon including links of other media coverage.

Don't hate the media - be the media!

Sign the Indymedia Solidarity Declaration here:


The Assembly of the Social Movements Call

Final Text on official esf website



Indyemdia UK Precis Feature

Indymedia UK ESF Section

IMC ESF Thursday Reports

IMC ESF Friday Reports

IMC ESF Saturday Reports

IMC ESF Sunday Reports

Also see:
Indymedia Ireland Feature and Reports

Indymedia Belgium Reports [NL] [FR]
[Overview] ESF2004 | London | FSE2004



Pictures of Alexandra Palace ESF

Belgium Delegation and Registration

First impressions of the ESF

Some more impressions of the ESF

Stalls At Alexandra Palace

Art and Banners At Alexandra Palace

General ESF Pictures

Speaker Portraits

Photos of the speakers at "GM-Free Europe" and
"A Trans-Atlantic GMO Trade War" (+relevant links)

Photos of the speakers at "Developments in Human Genetics " and
"Beyond GM: Nanotechnology in Food and Agriculture" in Bloomsbury (+relevant links)

Photos of the speakers at
"Resisting corporate monopolies and new enclosures",
"Prenatal screening: eugenics or women's rights?" and
"Human cloning and genetic engineering: what's at stake?" in Bloomsbury (+relevant links)

Autonomous Spaces Newspaper Pics



Indymedia Centre @ Camden Centre (pics)

IMC Centre / Indymedia on the streets / Party

IMC and European Forum On Communictaion Rights

Phone Pics of Indymedia Flags

Have Nots / No Vox Party at IMC (Friday)

Pictures from the Penelopes who worked out of the centre

Indymedia Madiaq Tee Shirt Picture



ESF registration in chaos

PICTURES: Police at ESF registration at Conway Hall

VIDEO: Arrest at ESF Registration

Women's Open Day Autonomous Space

PICTURES: Beyond ESF Autonomous Space

No Borders Waterloo Action Reports

No Borders Waterloo Action Statement

Pictures: Waterloo station No Borders Action

Evening Standard: "Protesters to defy Canary Wharf ban"



Fairford coach kidnap High Court appeal hearing:
Samba action, police harrassment and arrest

Pictures Outside Royal Courts of Justice

G8 Climate Criminals Critical Mass Action Report

European Social Forum Starts!

Canary Wharf Banned Protest Goes Ahead - Report and Pics

Pictures: Global warming G8 protestors halt traffic

Pre-event G8 Climate Criminals Press Release

Evening Critical Mass Ride

Pictures and Report: LAB Action Against CCTV

Tube Party Reports

IMC Breaking News Timeline: Police surround and close off Victoria station after tube party

News of Arrests after Tube Party

Pictures: Tube Party, Reclaiming Public Transport + Repression

Beyond ESF: Grassroots movements against the Clash of Civilisations Report

Beyond ESF: Caracoles, Zapatismo and the Piqueteros

Beyond ESF: Swapping lives - Social Centres Discussion

Beyond ESF: G8 Scotland Sessions



Police Film and Video Autonomous Spaces

Laboratory of Insurrectionary Imagination : Action Reports

Actions Against Consumerism Reports

Street Theatre: 'The Chaps' out in force 'civilising the city'

Worldwide Anti-McDonalds Day - mass leafleting event


(otherwise knows as 'storming the palace')

IMC Feature

IMC Breaking News and Timeline

Babels Coordinators Statement, 7pm, October 16 2004

Storming the Palace (report and pic)

Assembly of Social Movements And Anti-Ken Livingstone Intervention

Storming Palace visual report

The storming of the palace - criticism

Middle class white kids playing at politics AKA the anarchists


Livingstone AllyPally speech replaced by protest

storming the palace (more pics)



A letter condemning the takeover of the ESF stage in protest against the lack of democracy of the ESF organsing process was published in the Guardian. It accuses protesters of being white anarchists, denies that the intervention had anything to do with the ESF process and implies a racial attack. Here are some of the letters and exchanges:

Ken Livingstone's Special Advisor Accuses White Anarchists of Racial Violence

REPLY: Anti-Racist Groups Accuse Lee Jasper of Playing 'Race Card' re ESF

Stop using race to smother dissent: another Letter to The Guardian

Collection of Letters sent to the Guardian and other articles

IMC Lancaster Open Letter to the European Anti-Social Forum

Alex Callinicos blames violent "Black Bloc"

GR Scotland tries to capitalise on disruption re G8 Organising



People detained in king kross ldn, sunday 14:03

Preventitive arrests, police violence


75 police at King's Cross surrounding about 15 peaceful protestors

Kings Cross Detention of anti-capitalist block - Pics and Report



Report of anti-war march and rally in London October 17th 2004

Photo Essay: A protestor's eye view

Clowns versus Pro Capitalists at Leicester Square

Police Shut Down Bicycle Sound System

Sunday march, ECF Carnival bus video (1.7mb wmv video)



The main ESF demo

StopWar March and Arrests - Pix and Report

70,000 demonstrate against war in london

Photos from the ESF march / Arrests and Kings Cross / Surveillance

Samba against war in london

Pix of ESF 2004, Sun 17 Oct 04 - Set 1 of 5

Pix of ESF 2004, Sun 17 Oct 04 - Set 2 of 5

Pix of ESF 2004, Sun 17 Oct 04 - Set 3 of 5

Pix of ESF 2004, Sun 17 Oct 04 - Set 4 of 5

Pix of ESF 2004 (Pro-Capitalist Bloc), Sun 17 Oct 04 - Set 5 of 5

Banners and General Demo Pics

Photos from the anti-war march at the end of the ESF

More Demonstrations Pics and Portraits

Diversity at the London ESF demo

Indymedia takes to the streets

Stop The War Demo Pics

Backwards Intelligence Team (FIT surveillance cop piss take)



Main Stage: Lee Jasper, Secretary of National Assembly Against Racism speaking on behalf of Ken Livingstone, Mayor of London
MP3 at 1.5 mebibytes (3.18 mins)

Main Stage: Venteran Campaigner Bruce Kent
MP3 at 2.6 mebibytes (5.35 mins)

Main Stage: Ismail Patel, Chairman Friends of Al Aqsa, speaking on Palestine
MP3 at 2.1 mebibytes (4.32)

Main Stage: Paul Mackney, General Secretary of NATFHE Union
MP3 at 2.5 mebibytes (5.25 mins)

Main Stage: Rose + Maxine Gentle, relatives of Gordon Gentle, a 19-year-old Glaswegian soldier killed in Iraq, plus Tommy Sheridan , Scottish Socialist Party MSP
MP3 at 6.2 mebibytes (13.36 min)



Anti- ESF process action at Trafalgar Square report, Sunday, 17th of October

stage storming attemt at Trafalgar square

ESF: arrest at stage at Trafalgar Square - eyewitness report

COBAS Union condemns UK ESF organising committee (swp/sa/gla)

Clown Army Show Solidarity at Charing Cross Police Station

VIDEO: Clown Army Show Solidarity at Charing Cross Police Station



Arrests reports (at least 8 on sunday, and more from before)

Arrested for 'molotov cocktail' - turnS out to be bottle of whisky

QuickTime movie at 18.6 mebibytes
QuickTime movie at 9.3 mebibytes



Post ESF Show: Wednesday 20th October (58 mins long)
Indymedia Radio London Weekly Show on Resonance FM

MP3 at 40.1 mebibytes

MP3 at 13.4 mebibytes



Human Rights Discussion Held at the IMC - Friday 15th October

Speakers include a campagning journalist , a diaz school (Genoa) survivor, the mother of Tom Hurndall (shot dead by the IDF), the mother of Carlo Guiliani, and one of the UK Guantanamo detainees released this year:

Introduction audio: MP3 at 10.3 mebibytes

Diaz_lawyer audio: MP3 at 6.8 mebibytes

Palistine_audio: MP3 at 6.6 mebibytes

Campaigning_journalist audio: MP3 at 2.8 mebibytes

Human_rights_journo audio: MP3 at 6.2 mebibytes

Questions_to_the_panel audio: MP3 at 15.6 mebibytes


ADDITIONAL AUDIO: European forum on communications rights

Raw Stream Archives (patchy):

Some short excerpts from the audio of the sessions at the Indymedia Centre and European Forum of Communication Rights ( - an autonomous space around the European Social Forum in London, October 2004

1) Gus Hossein - Privacy International on Communication Rights Challenges to civil society post 911 (2.59mins)

2) Indymedia Server Seizure I (2.41 mins)

3) Indymedia Server Seizure II (1.06 mins)

4) Corporate Media + Propaganda Against Dissent in UK (4.02 mins)

5) Corporate Media and Dissent in Ireland (6.51 mins)

6) Steve Buckley - AMARC - Corporatisation of The Media + Community Media (3.34 mins)

7) Institute of Race Relations and and Communication Tools + Strategies (4.25 mins)

8) Justice for Janitors and Communication Tools (4.30 mins)

9) Electronic Security Issues and Politics (5.48 mins)


ADDITIONAL AUDIO: Interview with Marcelo Andrade

(director of "Venezuela Bolivarian: People & Struggle of the 4th World War") 2004-10-15 in Caracas by phone (recorded & uploaded at indymedia ESF-media centre, king's cross, london)



Gonzalo Gomez - editor and founder of an independent news wire in Venezuela talks about the situation in Venezuela
MPEG at 36.5 mebibytes (7.06 mins)



Babels Coordinators Statement, 7pm, October 16 2004


European Social Forum events - short report and thoughts on lack of media coverage

IMC Solidarity Missing From ESF Assembly of Social Movements Declaration!

Hacking networks of power: Report on the contrast between the 'official' ESF and autonomous spaces

A discussion for the autonomous movement networks about the ESF and the N/europa challenge

The European Social Forum: time to get serious

Precarity: New forms of exploitation, new forms of resistance at Beyond ESF

ESF Coverage - Mainstream & Indymedia Criticism

Anti-SWP posting is killing indymedia

The Trots will destroy ESF

This is all desparately sad. We can not let it end like this.

ESF future: We should go deeper, to find more links between movements

Changes Must be Made for the Next ESF - Greece 2006

Some comments on ESF

Last word from the ESF

Litter at ESF

TUC leader calls for closer links between unions and social movements

General Motors strike - Tues 19 October - European day of solidarity action!

What's Hot and What's Not at the ESF 2004



Female Media Network - The Penelopes ESF Reports [FR]

Red Pepper ESF Blog [EN]

Other Red Pepper Coverage

Open Democracy Cover Social Forums


author by dunkpublication date Thu Oct 28, 2004 15:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

wow that has to be the biggest amount of links in 1 post
anyway heres another one
ESF debrief from the UK indymedia and alt ESF crew

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