Full Stop Affinity have put out a guide on several useful actions anarchists can take, from banner drops, food distributions, graffiti, wheatpasting and more. It’s important to clarify that neither FSA nor us encourage anyone to actually do these things and we are just publishing them for research purposes.
On unrelated news, we remind you that FSA have called for a day of autonomous action against the state next 6th of March.
To change everything, start anywhere. Take action now! Become ungovernable!
You can find the first part of the guide here.
You will need: A bag, gloves, another person
How to dumpster dive (skip): Travel around the area, looking for bins. Usually the bins with food in will be locked away. Climb over the fence and check our their bins. Make sure the wear gloves, bins aren’t particularly pleasant. It’s easier to have someone stand on the other side of the fence and pass things through, usually. Check the packaging on the food. Food with broken packaging can potentially make you ill. Stores don’t usually like people dumpster diving so be discreet and leave the bins in the same place you found them. Leave the site and travel back.
You will need: Clothes, Clothing rails, clothing hangers, lock, chain, a place to put things!
Free shop method: First you need a building, ideally a squat you can use. Clean up the space and set up the clothing rails. Hang the clothes on the rails then open the door! Be cautious when you have the door open. If you’re unlucky cops or the landlord could walk straight in.
Pop up rails: Using a lock and chain attach a clothing rail to a pole. Try to make sure it’s protected from the weather. Then set up the clothes on it. Leave a small “free shop” sign and walk away.
Where you can locate the materials: Clothes can easily be found through talking to your local community. Lots of people have clothes to donate. At once the clothing distribution is set up more people will donate. Clothing rails can be found on places like Freecycle. Locks and chains can be “borrowed” from your local hardware store.
Getting ready: Make sure you’re wearing a mask. Wear inconspicuous clothing and make sure you’re able to run if needed. Hide ID.
Bumping barriers: Push through the disabled barriers using your shoulder and go to the platform. If their are people on the barriers make sure to walk to the platform or out the station quickly. Rarely they will follow you, if that’s the case then run. If you get caught by a ticket inspector we’ve heard that maybe using an alternative name, age, and address could be beneficial since it apparently makes it a lot harder for them to make further steps.
What you’ll need: any appropriate keys used for your local ad spaces (for example, keys such as the H60 hex key, T30 torx key, 13mm T handle socket wrench, and/or 4 way utility key), a change of clothes, non-descript clothes or hi-vis (depending on the story you intend to tell), possibly a toolkit (depending on the story you intend to tell), a face mask, any art/posters etc. you want to put up in place of the ad (you can always leave an ad space blank instead), possibly spray paint (if you want to spray over the ad or spray the area the ad was in)
Where to get the materials: keys can be borrowed from any hardware store. If you already have a toolkit, your kit may have the needed keys. If you’re in activist circles, they might have some. High vis jackets/vests can be borrowed from hardware stores. If you’re in activist circles, they might have some. Face masks can be borrowed from most stores, though we don’t doubt you have one. Toolkits can be borrowed from hardware stores, although it can be difficult- activist circles may have one. Spray paint can be borrowed from art stores, though activist circles may have some. If buying any materials, use cash and cash only. Art/posters/etc. can be made by yourself/others or gotten from activist groups such as Autonomous Design Group! Bring tape if you bring artwork/posters as well.
Getting ready: Check the area you want to carry the action out on a few days before you do it; check for where cameras are located, check how many cops could be there, check how many buildings surround your targeted ad/ads, check for a place to retreat to in case of unwanted attention. You can also check the locks of the ad spaces you want to target (this can be done at night or during the day while wearing a high-vis under the guise of an ‘inspection’. This can help you figure out what keys you will need). Leave ID at home. Prepare a story to tell to any industry workers who might approach you (eg. you’re a sub contractor for a rogue outdoor media firm (this is if you wore a high-vis), you’re an art student who’s putting up a temporary installation, etc.), remain calm if you get approached. If an interaction gets intense, you can always walk away. If police get involved, which is unlikely, follow Green And Black Cross and security culture guidelines; “no comment.” For more guidance, visit GBC’s website: http://greenandblackcross.org/guides/laws/6-criminal-damage-theft/. If you wore a high-vis and intent to use the sub contractor story or a similar story, you can store your tools in a toolkit among other tools to make you more believable. Otherwise, keep your tools in a pocket if possible to make access easier and to make your action quicker. Bigger tools can be stored in a bag. Store spray paint in a bag. Store posters/artwork in a bag. Store tape in a bag.
Doing the ad hack: This will depend on the type of ad you want to hack; a bus stop ad or lollipop ad.
For a lollipop ad: use the appropriate key to open the lock on the side of the ad space shell (usually found at the bottom left or bottom right of the shell). Insert the key and rotate it 90 degrees clockwise (push against the bottom of the case if it’s hard to turn). Gently push on the frame to unlock the catch and allow the cover to open (if hacking at night, you can turn the ad light off by flicking the switch inside the panel down). The cover may have two pistons that open when the catch is released, just keep a hold of the bottom of the screen and let it rise slowly. Roll up the poster that’s inside the ad from the bottom up. If you have art/posters that you want to put in the ad space, slide the art/poster to the top of the panel and push it into the clip that runs across the top of the inside of the ad space (prefolding a 1cm edge on your art/posters may make this part easier; a sturdy card the size/build of a bank or travel card can also help with this part). Roll your poster/artwork down if needed/if you had it rolled up. If needed, you can tape your artwork/poster into position at the top of the light box. Use both hands on the bottom of the cover to push down the cover of the ad space back into the frame of the ad space to re-engage the catches and close the door. Walk away. If you want to photograph your ad hack, you can do it immediately after or come back at another time to photograph it. Remember to never photograph faces and remove all metadata.
For a bus stop ad: some bus stop ads have shit locks so if you can’t open one, move onto another ad space. Use the appropriate key to open the lock on the side of the ad space shell. Turn the key 180 degrees clockwise; if it doesn’t open the first time, you can retry, it might take a few tries as some bus stop ad locks are shit. When you’ve opened the side panel, slide a finger into the bottom of the casting and slide the metal cover up to reveal the next keyhole. You can turn off the ad space light by flicking the switch inside the ad space down. Insert the appropriate key in the second keyhole while holding the metal cover up. Turn the key 90 degrees anti-clockwise to release the catches. The cover may have two pistons that open up when the catches are released; keep hold of the bottom screen and let it slowly rise. Roll up the ad inside from the bottom up. If you have any artwork/posters, you can slide your art/poster into the top of the panel and push it into the clip that runs across the top (prefolding a 1cm edge on your art/posters may make this part easier; a sturdy card the size/build of a bank or travel card can also help with this part). Roll your poster/artwork down if needed/if you had it rolled up. If needed, you can tape your artwork/poster into position at the top of the light box. Use both hands on the bottom of the cover to push down the cover of the ad space back into the frame of the ad space to re-engage the catches and close the door. Walk away. If you want to photograph your ad hack, you can do it immediately after or come back at another time to photograph it. Remember to never photograph faces and remove all metadata.