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8th June 2020
Off-Topic: Standing With The Black Lives Matter Protests

Today we're taking a little of a departure from our usual posts for something a little more serious. For the past week, I've been wondering about whether to write about this topic for the site, but ultimately it comes down to this; our passion is for communities and for diversity and inclusivity, and there cannot be a place for racism here, whether it's our small section of the internet, or in our wider communities. 


The media's focus has been on the protests across America, but it's an issue deeply rooted in many countries, my home country and city too. London is one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the world and our police aren't quite as armed as in America, but there's still profiling going on, and racism still runs strongly through our politics. Through social media, I've seen many of you speak up as you show your solidarity with the campaigns. There shouldn't be protests, not because it's not a valid topic but because this shouldn't be up for discussion. Racism has no place in 2020. 


Tips On Protesting.

If you're attending protests in person, please be safe. There are lots of tips online for how to look after yourself while at a protest; US Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's office posted a list of things to bring and leave behind while campaigning and @jessfromonline has created an extensive list of additional tips (thank you to @CMDonovann for sharing the list!). With countries only just recovering from the recent Coronavirus pandemic, make sure to also wear a mask and try to social distance if you can, it's a small thing but it will help keep other protesters at least a little bit safer. 

Campaigning online. 

Not everyone can protest in person but there is still a lot that you can do online to help, such as donating to organisations tackling racial injustices and supporting petitions. There's a brilliant carrd with an incredible amount of information about this, including details for those who would like to contribute but can't afford to. You can also find so much more information at sites such as at blacklivesmatter.com and ally.wiki (thank you to @TRHorizons for the links!)

There are also a number of petitions online at change.org that collect signatures to try and enforce change. Sometimes with petitions, it can feel like you're shouting into the void, but pressure on organisations can matter; in London, we've recently seen returns to previously closed cases due to an international spotlight. Your contribution can make a difference. You can find a list of campaigns at ally.wiki.

Gaming & Protests Meet.

There are also a number of ongoing projects in the gaming community in support of the movement. One campaign has been organised by gaming publishing platform, Itch.io, which is giving away hundreds of games for donations in support of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund and Community Bail Fund. The collection was created earlier this week with the initial goal of raising one million dollars. For a minimum donation of £5, players would have access to the entire game collection of 740+ works (with more due to join!) created by over 560 developers and worth $3,400. 

Earlier today, the bundle has raised twice their initial goal, with the donation still climbing. You can view the bundle, HERE

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