The anti-capitalist activists behind the Counterforce finally released footage of the protest they staged outside the San Francisco home of Google Ventures investor Kevin Rose. The video confirms that the anonymous people I interviewed were part of the protest, but it's hard to muster much empathy for either side.
It's more like overhearing a political debate in the hallway of your dorm freshman year. Neither party backs up their argument and you hope it ends soon.
The protest depicted occurred on a Sunday morning on the street outside Rose's house in Potrero Hill. The anarchist group also published what's tantamount to a ransom note demanding $3 billion from Google . . . for reasons that do not get much clearer after watching this video, first published on The Verge.
On a protest flier, the demonstrators said Rose was targeted because of his role directing the flow of capital:
"As a partner venture capitalist at Google Ventures, Kevin directs the flow of capital from Google into the tech startup bubble that is destroying San Francisco," the flyer said. "The start-ups that he funds bring the swarms of young entrepreneurs that have ravaged the landscapes of San Francisco and Oakland."
They later told me that Rose, who also founded Digg, and Google X engineer Anthony Levandowski were singled out because of their approachability:
Both were targeted for the objective functions they perform within Google, the objections to which we have described in our communiques. Unlike Google executives, these two men are perhaps slightly more inclined to speak to us. The executives never would, isolated as they are from reality and normal human behavior.
Susie Cagle, a journalist based in Oakland, told Valleywag that she recognized the young female protestor in the video from Occupy Oakland. The protestor, who is also pictured in this shot from IndyBay, and perhaps others have been activists in Oakland for years, Cagle said.
"Counterforce": The people you didn't take seriously when it was called "Occupy."
— Susie ヽ(*¬*)ノ Cagle (@susie_c) April 15, 2014
When I asked the Counterforce about that, the anonymous proprietors wrote back:
We unaware of any connection to Occupy Oakland. =)
Why do protestors make allusions to Thomas Pynchon, vomit on buses, and fixate on symbols of tech excess like Google Glass and the double decker coaches parked at their Muni stop? Because it gets attention for the cause. TBD on whether it helps the cause itself.
[Video courtesy of the Counterforce]
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