And suddenly, they started to invite more and more people!
At the end of 3 days we had more than 3000 people saying they would join the protest on the 12th of March 2011. The number continued growing as the days went by and thus the media started contacting us, in Portugal and abroad (please check the label Media Clipping).
First and foremost it must be explained: Many people have asked us if we were inspired on the Egipcian and Tunisian protests.
We can’t say this wasn’t a sign of the times. Internet is an important asset, a way of connecting people all over the world, and a way to create groups of interest, a space of freedom and communication, with a huge potential. But we have to bear in mind the completely different situation when we compare both of them.
Egyptians and Tunisians had/have a dictatorship; they were fighting against oppression, for rights that in Portugal we have already for 35 years – if we only think of the Constitution. The “Protesto da Geração à Rasca” was a protest in a Democracy, using the instruments and institutions that a Democracy allows us, as people, to use!
Suddenly we started to receive videos, posters, emails, of people willing to contribute spontaneously, suggestions and ideas…
That month has put in question, forever in my mind, the idea that the Portuguese people is passive, unwilling to participate or distant from politics and issues that affect their life! The Portuguese people are interested, they are willing to participate, in fact they are eager to participate and we have ideas, we have proposals and we want to be part of the change Portugal needs.
With no action plan, we defined shifts; we needed to guarantee there would always be someone on facebook in order to be able to reply any comments. 24/7 became the strategy which after a few days gave origin to a group of people outside the organization and some of them till unknown to us, that would guarantee the continuation of debate in accordance with civic and education rules, in a space where filters were not used.