"… This year the pig masks were new, but the message was old. The verve of the antitech demonstrators felt diminished, and even they noted that the turnout was low.
“It’s actually kind of a windy night,” offered Gilgan, 32, an academic librarian and one of about 50 protesters. There was also, someone else noted, a chance of rain.
Last year seemed a climax for tensions between tech and the industry’s adopted city — protests of tech shuttle buses, antieviction demonstrations and bars banning Google Glass all made headlines.
Tech nonprofit founder Theresa Preston-Werner kicked off the 2014 Crunchies by chiding the audience for the industry’s “giving problem.” (Her nonprofit, Omakase, was formed to help tech workers make charitable contributions, but now it’s called Codestarter, and helps kids learn how to code.)
“I think the realization of the income gap is now beginning to set in,” Conway said on stage in 2014.
acting against the tech industry, and gradually the momentum was halted.”
In April, the group distributed flyers around the home of Google Ventures partner and Digg founder Kevin Rose, calling him a “parasite,” and demanding that Google donate $3 billion to build anarchist colonies around Northern California.
The Counterforce, the representative said, “has long since dissolved.” (The source offered proof of association with the group by temporarily adding an image to kevinroseisaterribleperson.wordpress.com, a website linked to the movement.)
“Just a year ago, it felt like there was a revolution in the streets against tech, and the Luddites were going to storm Twitter just like the storming of the Bastille in France,” said Sam Singer, a public relations crisis consultant. “I wouldn’t say tech is winning the PR battle yet, but it’s certainly on the right road.”
The Counterforce blames the withering of its rebellion on the failure to mobilize young people who “are either captured by the capitalist economy and working full time to pay rent, have been priced out, or are a transplant working for the tech industry.”
Erin McElroy, the face of Eviction Free San Francisco, has noted similar difficulties. Though she points to her group’s success in halting evictions — preventing 12 cases of Ellis Act evictions in 2014, she says — major policy efforts have come up short."
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