Stirrer No.2 back from the printer

The second print edition of the Stirrer has come back from the printer – distribution will be starting soon. As we can only afford a limited print run, we’ve made this paper available as a downloadable PDF: https://www.dropbox.com/s/x5ixljqiomcwkx5/STIRRER_No_2.pdf?dl=0

As ever, any help with distribution will be appreciated. As the content of the paper is fairly generic and unlikely to date unless there are some seismic political and social shifts coming that we haven’t picked up on, distribution will be spread out over the couple of months or so. We will be keeping back a bundle for distribution at the London Anarchist Bookfair which is taking place on Saturday October 28th.

As per usual, if any of you want to take a bundle of papers to hand out to friends, neighbours, family or colleagues, get in touch and we’ll sort out a way of getting them to you. Also if you run or frequent a venue where you think the patrons would like to read the Stirrer, let us know where it is and we’ll bring a bundle along. As well as the above, we’re also planning some door-to-door distribution in selected areas and at some point, we’ll be handing them out on a high street – we’re just not sure which one yet!

As well as this edition of the Stirrer, we’ve also produced a special edition just for the London Anarchist Bookfair. However, as this is embargoed until the day of the bookfair, there’s no downloadable PDF available until after the event. Trust us, there are sound political reasons for this embargo which we’ll be more than happy to share with you at the bookfair…

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Work on the next Stirrer paper is underway

At long last work on the next Stirrer paper is underway. The aim is to have it written, laid out and off to the printer by the latter part of August ready for distribution from mid September onwards. We will be getting more copies than normal printed as we’ll be distributing the paper at the London Anarchist Bookfair which is taking place in north London on Saturday 28th October – http://anarchistbookfair.org.uk/ We’ve got the tricky balancing act of producing a paper that people out here on the estuary will want to read while also appealing to the very different audience who attend the bookfair. You’ll find out how we resolved that tricky little issue when the papers come back from the printer!

We we’re going to bring out the Stirrer paper fairly soon after the general election. However, with all the uncertainty that followed the election and continues to be a feature of political life, we held off producing one as we didn’t want to be saddled with loads of papers rendered redundant by fast changing events! This is why the next paper will have more of a generic feel to it that will reflect that uncertainty and draw attention to the opportunities that provides for those of us of a radical persuasion.

As ever, any help with distributing the paper will be more than welcome. If you want to take a bundle to hand out to friends, neighbours, family, colleagues and comrades, let us know and we’ll work out a way of getting them to you. If you run or know of a venue sympathetic to our politics who are willing to take a small bundle for their patrons, please feel free to get in touch with the details. Lastly, we want to undertake a few high street distributions during the latter part of September running into October. If you’d like to join us in one of these, let us know and we’ll take it from there.

In the meantime, we’ve produced another paper to complement our sister blog, The Estuary ALTERNATIVE – https://theestuaryalternative.wordpress.com/ Unlike the Stirrer which is ‘in yer face’, this paper and blog celebrates and promotes positive alternatives and the building of a new world in the crumbling shell of the dystopian one we currently endure. Distribution of the ALTERNATIVE is proceeding at a steady pace and if we get a positive response, we’ll be bringing out future issues. So the way it’s potentially shaping up is two issues of the Stirrer and two issues of the ALTERNATIVE a year.

The next paper will be…

As much as we’d love to keep the momentum going with the Stirrer paper, with the political situation being so unpredictable and volatile at the moment, it’s difficult to write, layout and print a paper without the sodding thing being outdated by ‘events’ while it’s on the way back from being printed! We’ve made the decision to postpone production of the next Stirrer paper until the autumn when we might have a better idea of the political landscape we’re operating in. This edition will be ready in time for distribution at the London Anarchist Bookfair that’s taking place on Saturday 28th October.

What we will be doing in the meantime is to bring out another paper – The Estuary ALTERNATIVE which aims to report on and support grassroots community projects out here along the estuary. We’ve already set up a blog for this which is admittedly, still a work in progress: https://theestuaryalternative.wordpress.com/ The content of The Estuary ALTERNATIVE will be more generic which means the distribution of the paper can be spread out over a few months without any fears of the content being outdated by fast moving events. Unlike the Stirrer which as its name suggests, is about stirring and agitation, The Estuary ALTERNATIVE is about efforts to start building a new world in the decaying, fracturing shell of the increasingly dystopian one we have to currently endure. Watch this space for developments…

Future direction…

We’re making a few evolutionary changes to our project… As we also publish two other blogs: ON UNCERTAIN GROUND: https://onuncertainground.wordpress.com/ and The Estuary ALTERNATIVE: https://theestuaryalternative.wordpress.com/ we felt we should change our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/southessexradmedia/ and Twitter account: https://twitter.com/SthEssRadMedia to reflect this. While this blog is the most frequently updated, we’re working to raise the profile of the other two, particularly The Estuary ALTERNATIVE which we hope will end up as a collaborative project.

We’re due to start working on the second print edition of the Stirrer once the general election is over and we have a better understanding of the political landscape we’ll be operating in. As you can guess from the title, the role of the Stirrer is to stir and agitate! Both of which are needed in the troubled times we’re living in…

As well as stirring and agitating, propaganda aimed at inspiring people to start building the new world in the shell of the dystopian one we currently endure is also a priority. The Estuary ALTERNATIVE blog (a work in progress) is our attempt at doing this. However, as well as a blog for The Estuary ALTERNATIVE, we would love to produce a paper for it as well. This would hopefully be a collaborative project in terms of putting it together and distribution but most importantly, funding it.

We can just about afford to print the Stirrer four times a year. As things currently stand, we couldn’t afford to produce another paper. So, there is some networking to be done over the next few months to get people on board with the project of producing The Estuary ALTERNATIVE as a paper. Watch this space for updates on how we’re progressing with this…

The Stirrer is back from the printer!

The first print edition of The South Essex Stirrer has come back from the printer and we’re now planning the distribution. As ever, many thanks to our friends at Oxford GreenPrint for a superb job. The Stirrer has a unique selling point for a political paper in these times – absolutely no election coverage! The papers were on their way pack to us when May announced the general election for June 8th. No worries as the articles in the paper on housing, Brexit and community control of parks are still relevant, election or no election…

Obviously, with the dissolution of Parliament on Wednesday 3rd May and the start of serious election campaigning, we want to shift the Stirrers as swiftly as possible to avoid getting caught up with all the crap coming through people’s letterboxes. So if you live anywhere across the southern part of Essex, broadly support our anarchist politics and want to take a bundle of papers to hand out to friends, neighbours, colleagues, family, etc. let us know and we’ll sort out a way of getting them to you. Alternatively, if you run or know of a venue that’s sympathetic to our politics and want to take a bundle of papers for the patrons, get in touch and we’ll get them to you.

After being put into a position where we had no option but to walk away from having anything to do with the Southend Radical Fair on May 6th and losing the South Essex Heckler in the process (the Heckler e-mail was on the flyers and posters promoting the fair!) we feel that we’re on our way back, albeit trading under a new name. The last few months haven’t been easy and a lot of lessons have been and are continuing to be learned. The thing is we’re back with a new, more focused, somewhat spikier paper and blog – hopefully, it’s onwards and upwards from here…

Some thoughts on the Net, social media & activism

This piece is intended to start what we hope will be a positive and constructive discussion on the impact of the Net and social media on activism…

The aim of this piece is to start a discussion about the pros and cons of the use of the Net and social media in activism. This has been prompted by concerns about an over reliance on digital communication and a decline in face to face, real life interactions which are still essential in building the sense of loyalty and comradeship needed in activism. It has also been prompted by security concerns where there have been examples of the authorities shutting down actions before they even start because they’ve been promoted on social media instead of built by word of mouth. This is not a definitive piece and is open to revision and expansion as the discussion about the points raised in it proceeds…

The positives…

The Net and social media are tools which if used with due consideration, are incredibly useful. With your critical faculties switched on, the Net…

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The first print edition of The Stirrer has been sent to the printer

The first edition of The Stirrer has just been sent off to our friends at Oxford GreenPrint for printing. Distribution will be taking place at selected locations across the southern part of Essex. This will be a mix of high street distributions, door-to-door and finding any sympathetic venues who are willing to take small bundles of the paper for their patrons.

If you want to join us on a high street distribution, let us know and we can sort something out – the first one will most likely be in Southend sometime in early May. Alternatively, if you want to take a small bundle of papers for distribution to friends, colleagues, neighbours and family, get in touch and we’ll sort out a way of getting them to you. Also, if you know of any venues that would be happy to take a supply of radical papers for their patrons, let us know who they are and we’ll get them there. We will be leaving small bundles of The Stirrer at the London Action Resource Centre and the Freedom Bookshop (both in Whitechapel) for our London comrades as well.

It would be all too easy to just stick with this blog but readers of this blog generally tend to be a self selecting audience. What we want to do with the paper is to try and reach people who wouldn’t normally seek out our blog. Also, we’re a bit old school and we still love the look and feel of a rabble rousing political paper!

As we can only afford a modest print run to be distributed in a limited number of locations, we’re making the first edition of The Stirrer available as a downloadable PDF: https://www.dropbox.com/s/ilrhyq3bujgrwy7/The_SOUTH_ESSEX_STIRRER_No1.pdf?dl=0