Occupy Wall Street Journalist Tim Pool Hit By Masked Man Last Night

TimPoolAttacker.jpg
Luke Rudkowski
This guy hit a journalist last night.
Hundreds of people marched through Manhattan last night to protest the mass arrests in Oakland the day before. In some ways, the action was a lot like many Occupy Wall Street marches that have come before -- chanting, weaving through neighborhoods, occasionally sprinting to outflank the police, finally petering out.

But there were some new elements too: More of the protesters wore black and masked their faces, a protest tactic called Black Bloc that makes it harder for police to pick individuals out of the crowd. Snapple-bottles and soda cans were thrown at police. And a well-known video journalist was assaulted by a masked marcher.

Tim Pool was covering the march last night, livestreaming his video and commentary, when a masked protester ahead of him whirled and struck him, knocking the phone he uses as a camera out of his hands. (You can see Pool's video below.)

Luke Rudkowski, another Occupy Wall Street journalist who livestreams as We Are Change, was nearby. He pulled the attacker's mask down, and captured him on camera. This morning, Rudkowski tweeted stills showing the attacker's face.

Pool, though clearly shaken, was unharmed. But the scuffle illustrated a larger ambivalence within Occupy Wall Street about Pool and his camera. An admitted sympathizer but not an occupier himself, Pool has become one of the breakout media stars of the movement, profiled in dozens of outlets from the New York Times and Fast Company to Boing Boing.

But Pool isn't universally loved by the people he's covering. His insistence on keeping the camera rolling, even when protesters ask him to stop, and even when he's capturing them in the middle of illegal activity, rubs some in the movement the wrong way.

The night Occupy Wall Street was evicted from Zuccotti Park, Pool stumbled on a group of occupiers in the midst of letting the air out of the tires of police cruisers. Despite the forceful requests of the sabateurs, Pool refused to stop filming. The resulting confrontation -- broadcast live to thousands -- cemented his reputation among some radical occupiers as untrustworthy, more interested in building his personal brand than supporting the movement.

"I and other people have been very uncomfortable with him filming us." said Patrick Bruner, who worked as a media liason and spokesman for the occupation in its early months. "He's aware of that."

On last night's march, Bruner shone a flashlight into Pool's camera whenever it was trained on him, and was nearby when Pool was struck. Bruner says he doesn't know who attacked Pool, but that Pool's behavior -- Bruner accuses him of helping the police make arrests -- makes him unwelcome.

Pool has released a statement on last night's attack, and suggested that his assailant may well have been an undercover police officer, taking advantage of the black bloc tactics to disrupt the livestreaming that has been central to the movement so far.

Last night's episode speaks to an ongoing tension within Occupy Wall Street, as many protesters and organizers embrace radical transparency, while others -- especially those involved in planning direct actions -- see a need for secrecy and strict security culture to protect the movement from the government infiltrators almost everyone agrees must be within the movement.

Bruner warned that the ongoing police crackdowns against occupations from Oakland to New York only serve to encourage protesters to protect themselves with increasing secrecy and Black Bloc tactics:

"As we continue to face increasing police repression, you'll see the tactics changing."

Here's video from Pool's stream showing the attack.

And here's a larger version of Rudkowski's pictures of the man who struck Pool:

TimPoolAttacker.jpg
Luke Rudkowski

[npinto@villagevoice.com] [@macfathom]

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53 comments
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La
La

I remember when Tim first broke out of the scene.  The action was pretty intense and the word was getting out about OWS.  Tim sold out folks.  He sold out for the money.  Went corporate.  However, I don't think he is a snitch.  I think he is a biach.

ScrewBlackBloc
ScrewBlackBloc

Whatever the Occupy movement could have achieved has been wrecked by the "Black Bloc" fools and their cult religion of "anarchism".

Those stupid bastards are as bad as the banksters. Glad that creep had his mask ripped off.

RichieW
RichieW

OWS is just sad. Until competent leadership emerges they will not be taken seriously. They have no mouthpiece. No coherent message to feed the media. Right now their face is Tim Pool. That dude was my roommate in Chicago a few years ago. He was completely paranoid and would talk non stop about ridiculous conspiracy theories. He didn't have a job and just sat on the couch all day playing video games. Then he moved out while still owing money for utilities which he has never paid back. OWS needs a leader with some life accomplishments and credibility. If anyone really wants to stand up to Wall Street the most effective thing they can do is donate money to Elizabeth Warren's campaign.

eksommer
eksommer

He's a journalist not an Occupier. If Occupiers want freedom of speech then we had better be willing to also accept freedom of the press.

Alexander Stark
Alexander Stark

“It’s incredible to think that people choose to take part in a peace protest armed with axes and metal bars and take out their anger on civil servants who are merely doing their job.” -- French President Nicolas Sarkozy

Heaven forbid the violence starts in America. Keep filming Tim, but make sure you watch your 6.

Malcolm Nokizaru
Malcolm Nokizaru

When the rich attack the poor it's called business, when the poor defend themselves it's called violence.

Geireland
Geireland

I support Pool, OccupyMARINES and nonviolent, legal Occupy protests. I will not support violence or destruction against property because it is wrong and simply does not work. If protests become a mindless destructive mob, then the Movement will lose the support of the larger communities it needs to be seen as valid and legitimate. FOX and the Right Wing will win.

Malcolm Nokizaru
Malcolm Nokizaru

the boston tea party was property destruction and it was right and it worked. what you're saying is ahistorical, ignorant and simply incorrect...

weisserj
weisserj

The OWS movement would fear a camera because some are starting to play as dirty as the police.  It's bad PR but Tim Pool is doing the right kind of journalism.  He believes in transparency and OWS should understand that.

Nunzi58
Nunzi58

There violence is not helping their cause.

Jim Mooney
Jim Mooney

The attacker probably worked for the DHS, which wants to, amazingly, abandon terrorism, for which it was created. and concentrate on "internal" security in "cooperation" with local law enforcement. With the new unconstitutional power of the NDAA, they're gathering info so they can send "troublemakers" in secret, to FEMA camps, for now-legal indefinite detention without a hearing, a trial, or habeus corpus.

Welcome to the CorpaGovernment of America. A police state run by and for the Big Banks of Wall Street, where your vote is a joke.

TN Truther
TN Truther

Please don't give anarchists a bad name by misusing the word. Anarchists are not trouble makers. Trouble makers are not anarchists. Anarchists simply reject all forms of COERCIVE control and authority.Participation in society should be voluntary, not mandatory.

PDF-Robb
PDF-Robb

Are you a tard? Anarchists are useless, worthless pieces of garbage. This is all they do is assault and destroy property. Fu** anarchists and Fu** you

Malcolm Nokizaru
Malcolm Nokizaru

this is the most ignorant thing I've read today, clearly you have no clue about anarchism much less about anarchists are or what they do...

PDF-Robb
PDF-Robb

Are you a tard? Anarchists are useless, worthless pieces of garbage. This is all they do is assault and destroy property. Fu** anarchists and Fu** you

David Robinson
David Robinson

anyone remember bill o'reilly attacking that guy with his umbrella?

Brandon Occupy SD
Brandon Occupy SD

Preventing a violent revolution, will only create an even-more violent revolution..

StoneyMaloney
StoneyMaloney

Yeah, and you San Diego occutards are sure changing things down there, aren't ya?

C.
C.

Start distributing and reading Gene Sharps"From Dictator to Democracy" strategic nonviolent action needs to be utilized correctly or it will backfire.

-One Love

Support Cashys Lawwww.cashhydefoundation.com

Daniel Lucey
Daniel Lucey

Dont mess with tim he has been our major voice in new york when it comes to the media.He is doing exactly what every journalist should reporting the facts and staying as bias as possible.Without him we would be left to cbs,abc,and fox news and we all know how that will go.The government uses deceit as a tool occupy needs to be fully transparant.

Jdispenser
Jdispenser

Patrick Bruner and Black Bloc are NOT welcome in the OWS Movement!

Malcolm Nokizaru
Malcolm Nokizaru

because obviously you are the voice of the OWS movement, I know Patrick Bruner and people who use black bloc tactics and as a long time organizer at OWS I can assure you that the movement would not have been as "successful" as it is if the people you are condemning were never a part of it...

.A
.A

He was planted by the police? So I guess police committed rapes also? lol oh please own up to crap ows does. Maybe then you might earn a bit of respect. 

Jim Mooney
Jim Mooney

How about own up to the crap Goldman-Sachs has done. OWS didn't commit vast crimes that destroyed our economy, or speculate in commodities, skyrocketing the price of food. Keep shooting the messenger. The Big Banks love it when they set us against each other, since they think we're all tools. Certainly the right wing is. Total tools to the likes of the billionaire Koch brothers.

Al Swearengen
Al Swearengen

No one gives a fuck about respect from lying assholes like you.

Braaainz
Braaainz

If you are conducting illegal activities, like vandalizing police vehicles, you are not representing the Occupy Movement. Instead, you are hurting it for the sake of 5hits and giggles. Without transparency, the Movement is not any better than the status quo.

RichieW
RichieW

If OWS thinks that what they are doing is productive or changing anything for the better they are delusional.  If they really do want to become relevant there are two ways to go about it.  They could become more focused and media savvy and fashion a specific message targeting a particular grievance (they could start with demanding immediate implementation of the Dodd-Frank act for instance) or they can turn into a more extremist anarchist movement using vandalism and violence to push an agenda that is not clear.

Malcolm Nokizaru
Malcolm Nokizaru

No single action or individual "represents" the Occupy movement. In fact because the movement is horizontal and decentralized, individual moralistic assertions and ahistorical assessments of what hurts or helps the movement also do not represent the Occupy movement either...

Christopher Neal
Christopher Neal

@Malcom: that's exactly why occupy is a complete, absolute clusterfuck. All kinds of issues with a lack of focus.

get
get

I don't think you know what all those words mean.

Malcolm Nokizaru
Malcolm Nokizaru

good argument, you've totally refuted my point by assuming I don't understand my own vocabulary...

Christopher Neal
Christopher Neal

If they believe in their cause, whatever it is, then why do they hide their faces???

Tim Pool: Don't stop filming.

Malcolm Nokizaru
Malcolm Nokizaru

Because hiding one's face has nothing to do with belief, police wear masks and believe in their beliefs as do soldiers and thieves. Anonymity and belief in a cause are not mutually exclusive obviouslyTo believe in something enough to risk arrest is doing a lot more than all the people here online who are applauding a known police collaborator!

Le Colonel Chabert
Le Colonel Chabert

As if half the Black Bloc aren't police collaborators.

Come to Chicago in May. Watch in person as the Black Bloc provokes the police from afar and then runs like pussies when given the chance to actually fight. They would be totally useless in any real combat situation, or any revolution: I doubt half of them could tie their shoes, let alone use a weapon or defend themselves physically without the kind of sucker punching you saw from that guy who hit Pool. I've spoken with dozens of them before; none have ever even heard of Carlos Marighella. That tells me everything I need to know about the amount of foresight they have or their ability to actually accomplish anything concrete in the struggle.

In Chicago, once the BB is finished with its dumpster-torching and spray-painting the rest of us will be left holding the bag. I hope to God Tim Pool is there to film it.

The_amazon
The_amazon

you just compared police to military and thieves. that about says it all.

Christopher Neal
Christopher Neal

They cover their faces because they are breaking the law and do not want photos of their vandalism to surface. "To believe in something enough to risk arrest" = what is it you guys believe in?

Malcolm Nokizaru
Malcolm Nokizaru

Who I chose to compare does not make the critique less valid, if I said bank robbers and freedom fighters and cowboys wear masks it still doesn't make it more or less true...Anonymity and belief in a cause are STILL not mutually exclusive. That about says it all...

Cliff Chesley
Cliff Chesley

Brand it! Brand it!    hey.. this is about me! Not the protest! LOL!

Casey
Casey

It is VERY important to film anything illegally happening under the "OWS" movements name specifically because of infiltration and provocateurs SETTING UP OWS. Of course there are absolute morons that want to hide in the shadows and do illegal things to piss off the police, that's the perfect cover for them so then the Police can crack down and point to the illegal activities taking place, while ignoring the 99% of OWS that remains OPEN, and HONEST, and does not harass or harm policemen and women. 

Malcolm Nokizaru
Malcolm Nokizaru

Police do not need an excuse to crack down on the movement, they have proven time and again that they will attack protestors with or without provocation. Police have not made any meaningful attempts to "cover" their crackdowns they have simply cracked down. If the police choose to ignore "99% of OWS" that can only be blamed on the police, shoot the king, don't kill the messenger...

andyk304
andyk304

 Yes, the police haven't needed provocation to attack, but when they do, the movement gains sympathy. When protestors make unprovoked physical attacks on anyone, that sympathy is lost.

Malcolm Nokizaru
Malcolm Nokizaru

Luckily social change happens because of actions and not because of sympathy...Sympathy won't stop oppression, actions will.

Joseph Annino
Joseph Annino

As someone who has a lot of participation in OWS, I strongly feel it needs independent journalism of itself.  The live streams should not exist as PR tools for the movement.  They should be accurate and frank portrayals of events on the ground as they happen.   For a movement that demands transparency and ethics from the government, it should set an example by turning that light on themselves.

Christopher Neal
Christopher Neal

Yeah, but their excuse is that since Fox News et al is slanted, then they'll do the same. "The live streams should not exist as PR tools for the movement" but they do. I greatly admire unbiased journalism but it is rare. My take on what happened is the undercover cop wanted to score points with his fellow occupiers, but the provocateurs are known by all anyway...

David Robinson
David Robinson

hes a man there filmin everything that is happening, i dont really know what your definition of unbiased is...

Christopher Neal
Christopher Neal

I am in no way claiming that Tim Pool is biased; my point is that nearly all news has at least some slant to it which is a basic journalism tenet.

panther_modern
panther_modern

The guy in the photos is a known NYPD plant; he's featured on several other websites, starting fights and then later hanging out with NYPD personnel.

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