Media-jacking is when you subvert your opponent’s spectacle for your own purposes. Politicians, corporations and lobbyists have much bigger PR budgets and name-brand draw to attract press to their staged media events. Through well-planned creative interventions, however, you can refocus things and highlight a different side the story.
Sophisticated media-jacking uses your target’s own story against them, so try to aim for instances in which you are able to do this.
There are a fewdifferent ways to design a successful media-jacking. The first is simply commandeering the media. One of the most literal (and bold) examples of this occurred in 1991 during the first Gulf War, when the anti-AIDS organization ACT UP burst into a CBS TV studio during a live primetime news broadcast and took over the set, chanting “Fight AIDS, not Arabs.”
Another option is to use your opposition’s platform to tell your own story. In 2007, Kleenex ran an expensive PR stunt where they interviewed people on the street for a commercial they were making, getting participants to cry and say, “I need a Kleenex.” Greenpeace activists stealthily lined up to be interviewed, crying instead because Kleenex was clear-cutting old growth forests to make their tissues. They successfully shut down the shoot for the rest of the day, and a video of the action went viral.
Article adapted from Beautiful Trouble by Beautiful Trouble, various authors, which is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.