January proved to be a huge month for us. Traffic to this site multiplied several times over, our social media reach increased greatly, and for better or for worse, both the mainstream press, far-Right click-bait, and “progressive” media have all started to point in our direction.
While on one hand it’s great that more people are taking seriously what we are saying, on the other, this higher demand for IGD means that in the next several months we’re going to have to create a much larger dedicated media team that can cover unfolding events quickly and switch more and more to producing all our own content.
What this means for us as a project is still up in the air, but it looks like at some point soon we will begin to expand both the size of our editorial collective as well as the volume of content we produce in order to meet the higher demand and level of visitors.
January Was Huge for Us
In December, we were hovering just below 2K hits per day. As we got closer to January 20th, our hits skyrocketed to around 5-9K, with a monthly daily average of around 4k per day. Our social media reach also grew in a big way, as we hovered just outside of 10k on Twitter and grew to around 8k likes on Facebook. Our articles got thousands of shares on social media platforms in January and we also hit over 1k on Instagram.
In January our most popular articles included a call out for a ‘fierce anti-capitalist and anti-fascist bloc’ at #DisruptJ20, Crimethinc’s history of counter-inauguration protests, an original report from Montana IWW and antifa members on counter-protesting The Daily Stormer’s failed attempt at having a neo-Nazi rally to support Richard Spencer in his hometown of Whitefish, reports, communiques, and videos from #DisruptJ20, as well as our liveblog covering the convention protests.
New IGD Magazine
Alright, Twitter hits this, site growth that blah blah blah…let’s get to the fucking magazine!
Our new issue of It’s Going Down: Anarchist News and Practice Across So-Called North America follows the same flow of the first issue and serves as a look back at 2016 in all of it’s horror, it’s beauty, and the questions that it raised for those fighting, living, organizing, and pushing forward towards a new way of life. We think that this publication is both an amazing introduction to those new to autonomous anti-capitalist struggles and also those who have been here for a while. We hope that it serves as both a reflection and a collection of biting analysis of social struggles that are still raging today, and informs us on the path ahead in 2017.
But instead of asking the thousands of people who read and use this website everyday to kick down even more money or setting up yet another crowdfunding campaign like last time, we are deciding instead to bite the bullet and put $700 towards printing and distributing 1,000 copies through a network of comrades. While this means that we won’t have copies in our physical hands to distribute for upwards of a month while the magazine gets printed and then shipped out, we are also going to put the PDF online in order to both decentralize distribution and also hopefully get it into more people’s hands.
In other words, instead of asking you the readers to kick down $20 to help seed the project or to pay $3-5 for a copy, we’re going to release the PDF now in the hopes that people can print them in their own capacities. In the meantime, we will be coordinating getting the 1,000 copies distributed into anarchist and autonomous bookstores, social centers, and community spaces over the next two months, as well as working with local groups with access to printing to make as many as they can.
If you feel like donating to help us cover the costs of the $700, feel free to kick down here.
It’s Going Down has grown incredibly since it’s inception. However this growth is only a side effect to the momentum building in the streets—the eruptions of revolt that have spread across the country at an escalating pace.
2016 ended on a dark note, with many of us mourning our friends who passed in December’s Ghost Ship fire, and anxiously awaiting Donald Trump’s ascent to the U.S. presidency. Despite the many somber moments of the year, 2016 saw many beautiful moments of joyful resistance play out across the continent. Fascist rallies were met with fierce confrontations in Anaheim, Stone Mountain, Sacramento, Harrisburg—not to mention nearly every city on Donald Trump’s campaign trail. A teachers’ strike set off a massive rebellion across Mexico, mirroring the Oaxaca insurrection ten years before. The summer was marked with uprisings against police murders—Baton Rouge, St. Paul, Milwaukee, Charlotte.
Fall entered with an unprecedented strike in prisons across the U.S. This strike involved a wide variety of tactics used by prisoners across the entire U.S. and even spread to Mexico. Solidarity from the other side of prison walls was also remarkable, with accomplices in hundreds of cities stepping up to the plate with banners, noise demonstrations, attacks and more. A small encampment in North Dakota grew to tens of thousands blockading the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. The struggle exploded after police raided the camp, prompting fierce street fighting and solidarity blockades all over the continent. Just days later, the unforeseen election of Donald Trump sparked widespread rioting in the U.S. Participants in several cities noted that the intensity of local outbursts was unparalleled in recent history.
2017 has already proved that there will be no slowing down. The first days of the new year saw rage boil over at the gasoline price hike as gas stations and stores were attacked and looted across Mexico. Donald Trump’s inauguration day was interrupted by a hundreds-strong black bloc tearing apart corporate stores in Washington D.C. Cities across the U.S.—as well as Montreal to the north—followed suit. With this in mind, we have gathered several pieces published or re-published on It’s Going Down over 2016 that we think can best aid us moving forward.
“What Anarchists Have Been Saying For Years” opens with a quick re-introduction to several basic anarchist principles for those who find themselves in the streets for the first time this year. It’s followed by “Unyielding Before Power And It’s Repression,” an uncompromising text in the face of repression.
Next are two report backs from the summer’s anti-police revolts: “Milwaukee In Flames” and “Welcome To The End Of The World” from Charlotte. “Open To Unorthodox Methods” is an interview on the uprising in Baton Rouge, as well as other local dynamics. There appears to be no end to the rage over racist police shootings, and the more prepared we are to contribute to these eruptions, the better.
The next series of essays examines the dynamics of various anti-fascist actions against the far-right and Trump’s campaign events. Multi-directional conflicts between rebels, fascists, cops, and liberals have become more visible as protests against Trump’s campaign and the far-right groups he inspires gain momentum.
We then take a moment to remember the comrades we lost this year with two excerpts from memorial rallies.
“Destroy Gender” applies an insurrectional critique to gender, both the traditional binary and Facebook’s fifty options. “The Untold Story” and an additional excerpt explore the struggles women, queer and trans prisoners face—and more importantly, their inspiring resistance. “This Was About Unity” continues to highlight actions undertaken by prisoners, in this case a series of hunger strikes across Michigan.
Next, a report from Nashville shifts the focus to solidarity on the other side of the bars. Tennessee rebels describe new challenges in this unique moment, and “A Fire That Cannot Be Contained” notes the qualitative step forward anarchists in New York have taken, in context of prison strike organizing.
“War Against DAPL And Planetary Annihilation” explores the blockade tactic in depth, looking at the recent solidarity actions with water protectors in North Dakota. Trains, highways, bridges and more were blockaded, elaborating an anti-infrastructural perspective that can inform our future practices.
The final selections take on various tactical and strategic considerations that remain open questions in 2017. How can our actions move from the symbolic taking of space and create cop-free zones? Can we move beyond the punctual demonstration format and take action in exciting and inviting ways? What would it take to regain even a slight amount of autonomy in our neighborhoods? How do we engage with an increasing level of militancy amongst people who still cling to statist politics? We hope that you use this magazine to open these critical conversations with your friends and accomplices. Not in order to distill the one true theory, but to brainstorm and experiment in practice.
Once again, we close with a round up of actions and a list of links to further resources. The round up presents its own set of questions as well. Does creating lists of direct actions undermine the importance of other forms of organizing that support those who attack? Does quantifying actions exceptionalize these attacks, contrary to their aim of generalizing in everyday life? We take these concerns with us into the future.
As always, check out the website for daily updates on when it’s going down: itsgoingdown.org
A big thank you from the bottom of our hearts to the people who continue to make IGD a functional project. You are the lifeblood of this effort and ensure that not only will we be around next month, but that we can continue forward and grow bigger and stronger.
Over the last month and a half, we have been fortunate enough to have been getting a landslide of donations, so we have been back-logged with sending out t-shirts as gifts for those that donated over $20. Over the next week, we will finishing getting these out, so if you donated in early January and haven’t gotten your shirt yet, hang tight, it’s coming!
This in itself is a testament to IGD becoming more popular. Over the last month, we’ve been sending out on average 3 shirts a day for people that have donated. That’s a lot of “professional” looking anarchists walking around!