As Occupiers, we were all pleased - if skeptical and surprised - that 'The Protestor' was recognized as Time's Person of the Year. Many of us have put our family lives, our personal agendas, free time, careers and what little comfort we had left in this recession-ridden world, on hold in order to Occupy. Others were at rock bottom, didn't have any of these luxuries, and yet chose to dredge up what last resources, strength and emotions they had, to join the movement. Across the world, our brothers and sisters faced greater adversities and forged the way for us - in Greece, Argentina, in Tahrir Square, Madrid, and more.
As commercial, consumer-based and bullshit as the Mainstream Media may be, and whatever underhand agenda Time magazine might have for recognizing The Protester as the face of 2011, we appreciate the accolade - even more so, perhaps, because one of our own was the face upon which Shepherd Fairey's picture was based. But as the news leaked across the internet that the faceless protester had a face and a name and was, in fact, a real person from Occupy LA, the faceless protester became a hunted figure. Yet Sarah Mason, the 25 year-old girl upon whom Shepherd's TIME cover was based, neither wanted, expected, nor had any interest in becoming, the media spokesperson and covergirl for a worldwide movement of many faces demanding, simply, change. Sarah was unaware that her picture was being used for the cover of TIME magazine, has not received financial compensation or other material benefits for that fact, and wishes to preserve her privacy at this moment.
In deference to, and solidarity with, our brothers and sisters across the world, we 'protesters' reject the attempts of the mainstream media to seek out and put our sister Sarah Mason in the spotlight. We are disgusted by the fact some 'journalists' have deliberately misquoted our sister by taking an early interview out of context, or claiming 'ownership' of Sarah, as with KPFK's unfounded claim that she worked for them.
Tonight, in reaction to a tabloid journalist attempting to interview Sarah, who has expressed a desire to be left in peace, over fifty of us 'protesters' called the journalist with a message which encapsulates the essence of our leaderless, faceless, movement: WE ARE ALL SARAH MASON.
We will repeat this action to all journalists who attempt to intrude upon our sister's privacy. If you would like to join us, call this number below and say you are Sarah:
I will update this piece with other contact details if and when they become available.