Frequently Asked Questions

If you have any questions about NO PLATFORM, please leave them in the comment section below, or contact me: taryn.fivek (at) gmail.com

I will put the FAQ here when I receive questions, and also cross-post to the NO PLATFORM kickstarter page.

FAQ

  • Is what you’re doing safe?

    I’ve had this same question asked of me before working in area afflicted by war, going on marches swarming with cops, driving Chinese food around after dark as a delivery driver, door-to-door canvassing by myself, commuting on a 250cc motorbike, etc. I’d say that any one of those things is far safer than being on the road with drunk drivers — though I did crash the bike and won’t be doing that again. The people in my life who passed on have died mainly from drug overdoses or suicide. Safety is relative.

    That said, I will be taking all reasonable precautions to keep myself safe. I will only drive for a certain amount of time per day, ensuring that I am alert and responsible on the road. I will have at least one day off per week. This will be the biggest risk to my safety – driving these thousands of miles alone. I will have AAA insurance, so if I get a flat, I’ll get a tow. Someone will know where I am at all times. I will “use my head”, so to speak.

    Yes, it would be different if I were a six-foot white male doing this trip. It would also be different if I were a six-foot black male on the road by myself. It’s a very dangerous country out there for people who face deportation, live in areas plagued by police violence, are addicted to prescription drugs, or are in prison.

  • Will you be giving talks or speaking with local media?

    I will do my best to meet up with local journalists when I come through cities. I will consider speaking to audiences and local media if I am invited.

  • Is this communist propaganda?

    Good question!

    In the honored tradition of red US journalists – such as Anna Louise Strong, Claudia Jones, Edgar Snow, Esther Cooper Jackson, John Reed, Rose Pastor Stokes, Mumia Abu Jamal, Mary Heaton Vorse, I.F. Stone, Marvel Cooke, Louise Bryant, and more – I am inspired by my politics, but will also be presenting and verifying facts. Journalism is about telling the truth. It’s my hope that NO PLATFORM will be useful to those organizing for a just and fair society.

    I call myself a small-c communist, meaning I do not currently belong to any party. I believe in workers owning the means of production, that imperialism and war are scourges of humanity, and that class struggle is the engine of history. While I do my best to view the world as a dialectical materialist, I intend that what I send out as part of my fieldwork will also be accessible to audiences who are not familiar with Marxism. This work is not just about my political affiliations (though this plays an unavoidable role), rather, it is about the subjects I interview and the facts I gather.

    You should rest assured, at least, that I am not in the tank for any presidential candidate, nor do I plan on voting in the 2016 election.

  • Are you going to be covering _________ ? Is there any way I can assist with your fieldwork?

    Feel free to contact me with leads, or if you’d like to bring a skill you have to this project, via noplatform.org

  • What kind of A/V equipment are you using?

    I’ve have a Canon EOS Rebel T6i, a Zoom H1 voicepen and a MacBook Air I bought in early 2014.

  • Can I make an in-kind donation?

    Yes of course! Many people have donated this way so far – helping me with copy, my website, my video, and of course – lending me a car!

    If you want to make an in-kind donation, you are so welcome to do so. I welcome assistance with getting the word out about this project, copyediting, editing video and audio, and all sorts of other things.

    I’m also keeping a list of items I will want to purchase for my fieldwork here, if you wanted to get anything for me before I go: https://amzn.com/w/19FRHQ9IJJXM8

7 thoughts on “Frequently Asked Questions”

  1. Hi Taryn, do you have a blanket opposition to platforms in general or are there some exceptions (e.g. railway platforms)

    Like

  2. Many workers in the US are bound by increasingly strict NDAs and perpetually surveilled by secret shoppers. Not only that but very sophisticated methods of workplace acculturation make them less likely to speak out against franchisees and corporate masters. Do you intend to crack this nut?

    Like

    1. Yes, I will certainly cover this topic. The Retail Action Project in NYC works to represent such workers, and I will be interested to find out what exists elsewhere in the US.

      Also: I have experience interviewing people who need to remain anonymous for their safety, so will take all precautions necessary to protect the identity of those who are at risk. I will make sure that people featured in this project give their informed consent for participation.

      Like

      1. You won’t be surprised, I’m sure, to find that in many places, especially in the “right to work” south, there is virtually no labor movement or representation like that at all and the various methods of suppression I mentioned continually erode the dignity and pay of workers. I hear impassioned stories from friends in fast food, manufacturing, etc perpetually but the stories are rarely documented except perhaps decades after the fact.

        Liked by 1 person

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