In October 2011, Occupy protesters set up tents and encampments in Frank Ogawa Plaza as a way to show solidarity with the global Occupy movement. By October 12, the city of Oakland had taken note and, on October 25, the encampment was cleared out by Oakland police and other law enforcement agencies. During that action, Iraq vet Scott Olsen was hit in the head by a metal canister and suffered a fractured skull and brain swelling; more than 100 people were arrested that night and Oakland was suddenly in the spotlight once again.
During the year or more that Occupy Oakland raged through and within the City, our non-profit news site Oakland Local devoted time and resources to both covering the events and posting opinion pieces by community members about their views. Our coverage was self-funded until it became obvious we needed to supply more news than we could afford: at that point, we ran a crowd-funding campaign and local residents–and some of those reading from afar–kicked in the $3,000 we needed to expand our coverage pool.
During this most recent anniversary and look back at Occupy Oakland–an event that truly helped shape the Oakland of today and many of its community leaders–we thought it would be good to revisit some of the news coverage from that time that reflected our evolving understanding of what was going on. You can read a list of the most-read stories from 2011 in our 2012 coverage round-up , but what we’ve done this time is to go all the way back to the early days and share some of the pieces that best reflect community views and Oakland Local’s in-depth coverage. We’re including both the date the story ran and the author’s name, so you can see the timeline evolve.
During the year(s) of Occupy, we watched the city and its residents become weary, furious, and resigned, as if Occupy’s colonization of Oakland was some sort of chrysalis or incubator representing what a working-class city looks like when its government and resident Occupy-istas feed on its soul. We’d love to hear more about what you think the legacy of Occupy is for Oakland–both the lessons learned and the scars, the amazing discoveries and triumphs and the hopes that failed.
Editor’s Note: You can follow coverage and discussion of the Occupy movements at http://oaklandlocal.com/occupy and at our archive: http://archive.oaklandlocal.com/tags/occupy-oakland and please keep in mind that many of our more serious reporting beats are funded by individual donors and contributors.
If you’d like to make a tax deductible contribution to fund our city hall beat, reporting on police accountability and public safety, and/or our coverage of education in Oakland schools, we’d be thrilled–and make your dollars go far. Click here to give and for more information.