Where Did the Occupy Movement Go?

cropped-fist.pngAfter a rapid growth and a huge amount of media attention, the Occupy movement seems to have just faded away. To many people, the cause and results of the Occupy movement is a bit of a mystery. Most people are aware of why it existed, but not many people fully understand how.

During the period of the protests, when all major media outlets had been spotlighting Occupy all over the world, the protests were an omnipresent truth, a constant reminder of the inequalities that we all face. But where did it go, exactly? To the average citizen, it seems to have faded away as quickly as it arose.

The strange thing is that the Occupy movement continues on. There are dozens if not hundreds of websites dedicated to spreading the mission of the Occupy protestors far and wide. They still organize protests on a regular basis and they still do whatever they can to fight against the perceived injustices. But you don’t hear much about it through the mass media anymore.

The biggest change is the shift in media attention. During the buildup and culmination of the Occupy Wall Street protests, the mass media was covering Occupy Wall Street at all times. Twenty four hour news networks had a non-stop stream of information on the protests, whether there was anything serious to report or not. Occupy captured the attention of people all over America, and even the whole world. But like with any other news story, once something more exciting comes along, the media shifts their attention.

In this case, the non-violent sit ins and the attempts to right wrongs through peaceful protest eventually caused a lull in the national conversation. It eventually caused the media to move on to more short-term “exciting” news prospects. Essentially, the news coverage was so intense because it seemed exciting and new.

But the Occupy Movement is still going strong. The topic of conversation has been opened upf for widespread debate by people of all income levels, and income inequality is a generally agreed upon political issue, regardless of whether you believe there’s a real problem or not.

The protesters themselves still continue to hold regular protests all over the world with varying degrees of intensity. In fact, many of the so-called “official” Occupy groups managed to register as actual charities, and carry on with a more official mission, attempting to produce changes within the system from inside the system.

So the real answer to the question of what happened to the Occupy movements: It settled down a little bit. It was tempered into something more straightforward and, in some ways, more meaningful. The Occupy movement and it’s protesters were able to create channels for the average citizen to be heard on the subject of income inequality. And with the charities and organizations that sprouted out from the initial protests on Wall Street (and all over the world,) there is now places for the 99% to get together and discuss issues of inequality and to organize attempts to enact change.