Revolution #190, January 31, 2010
Ideas on promoting Bob Avakian's REVOLUTION Talk Online
I was having a conversation with some friends in my city about the work we've been doing to promote the Revolution talk from Bob Avakian online and while we've been out doing a lot of important stuff, it struck me they didn't fully understand the conception of this particular promotional plan. The materials that we're getting out – the Revolution talk postcard, the stickers people are taking from us, the posters being put up in stores and those great quote sheets – are all geared to drive people to watch the talk online, and to spread it in different ways themselves. While there needs to be promotion online in its own right (and I understand there has been some advertising on Facebook), we're working to make a big deal out of this talk online, by making a big deal out of this talk wherever people are at. We want people to be intrigued and provoked to go find this for themselves and to be introduced to Bob Avakian through the materials, and then mainly through the talk itself. (The editorial from Revolution newspaper talks more about the strategic importance of all this, which I also encourage folks to return to.)
In terms of spreading this, one of the interesting things about social networking online is the degree to which people do share things they find with their friends. People retweet things, they post videos on their Facebook pages and they talk with each other. And becoming a fan of the Revolution talk page on FB is a way people can be plugged into the revolution in a more mass way, regularly getting quotes from the Revolution talk, updates about the promotion and announcements of new plans. I encourage people to go check out the page (facebook.com/revolutiontalk), which you can do without having a page yourself. There are currently over 600 fans and some initial discussion is being kicked off with people who are just being introduced to Avakian, and coming from different perspectives. This is exactly what we want.
Because of the particularities of this plan, we decided to focus in on having a visual impact – people seeing the logo everywhere, getting those quote sheets up and asking stores to put up the poster. (The quotes are powerful in particular because they introduce people to Avakian right off the bat.) Also, while returning to the areas we've focused saturating materials in before, we're also spreading out to different parts of town (in particular where there's more of an arts and music scene) and to shows that are happening throughout the week. (There are also a bunch of benefits for Haiti we're going to with the talk cards and the statement from Revolution on Haiti.)
I want to emphasize there are a lot of things people can do to spread the talk online: they can become fans of the page, invite their friends to become fans, subscribe to the youtube channel, post the clips on their FB pages, and contribute money to promote this further (they can do this in person or with the paypal button on the FB page or the donate tab on revolutiontalk.net). We should talk with people we're just meeting about this, and people we know who have some kind of online presence (things like going online to find all the students you know and find them on FB). There are a lot of people who don't have access to the internet and we should talk with them about engaging and spreading this talk in other ways (while this is geared to the net, we shouldn't be mechanical about that and the more people are getting into this talk, the better). But in most places we've been, the youth usually have FB pages (even if they only access it on their phones).
I'll end with a quick anecdote: there's an artist I know who I've been talking to about Bob Avakian's work for some time though he's yet to really engage it himself. When I saw him recently, he said he'd been seeing his name all over the area he hangs out in. He was interested in the talk and said he was curious to find out who Avakian is, and what he's like. This wasn't only because of the visuals, but it did make Avakian, and the revolution he's about, more real. The importance of this can't be overestimated.
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