We’re going to Atlanta in 2017!

If you missed our announcement during Netroots Nation, I wanted to make sure you knew: We’re going to Atlanta next summer for Netroots Nation 2017!

Click here to get your earlybird ticket to join us August 10-13, 2017, in the Peach State.

Some progressives like to write off the South, but justice and equality will never be fully achieved in the United States without progressive movements winning there. There are some amazing groups and activists on the ground fighting every day, and we’ll be there to amplify the work happening not just in Atlanta and Georgia, but throughout the South.

This is the first time we’ve held Netroots Nation in the South. Will you commit to joining us in Atlanta next summer?

Prices won’t get any lower, so click here and reserve your ticket today at Eventbrite, the official registration and ticketing platform of Netroots Nation.

Day 3 highlights from St. Louis

Here’s a few quick highlights from our last day of programming:

Secretary Clinton addressed attendees via video message, announcing that she intends to back a constitutional amendment overturning Citizens United. She also addressed issues in our country’s police system, promising to bring law enforcement and communities together to develop national guidelines on the use of force and committing to target $1 billion in her first budget to take on implicit bias. Click here to watch her video message.


Attendees stood in solidarity with local organizers at the Old Courthouse—where the Dred Scott case was heard—at an action organized by local group Hands Up United.

Saturday morning’s keynote with Rep. Jan Schakowsky, Pamela Merritt, Laura Jimenez, Aimee Thorne-Thompson and Lizz Winstead focused on the state of abortion access and reproductive justice. Click here to watch the archived stream and check out our Medium wrap-up.
 
The evening keynote featured a fiery call for unity and action from Rep. Keith Ellison, plus remarks from NYT bestselling author Steve Phillips. Click here to watch the video (plus hear from other speakers) and check out our Medium wrap-up.
 
Click here to view photos from Saturday (and tag yourself and your friends).
Thanks for being a part of Netroots Nation 2016, whether in St. Louis or from home!

Day 2 highlights & Saturday streaming guide

I hope you were able to tune in to our live stream of Netroots Nation Day 2. If you aren’t able to watch in real time, you can still catch some of the action from St. Louis on our website and Facebook page throughout the weekend.

NETROOTS NATION HIGHLIGHTS

• This morning’s keynote (with NextGen Climate’s Tom Steyer, the NAACP’s Jacqui Patterson, Green for All’s Michelle Romero and Environmental Action’s Anthony Rogers-Wright) on the intersection of climate change and environmental justice) was a deep dive into what needs to happen to stem the effects of climate change for our most vulnerable communities.Click here to watch the archived stream and check out our Medium wrap-up.

Friday afternoon’s Digital CultureSHIFT keynote focused on using technology to build power for racial justice movements. Rashad Robinson, Linda Sarsour, Autumn Marie, Joe Torres, Cayden Mak, Samhita Mukhopadhyay and Malkia Cyril dug into how big data and digital technology can build power for long-term social change or—if unchecked—enforce a new era of Jim Crow. Click here to watch the archived stream and check out our Medium wrap-up.

Click here to view photos from yesterday (and tag yourself and your friends).

FOLLOW-AT-HOME GUIDE FOR SATURDAY

The following keynotes and panels will be streaming live today (all times are Central). Players are available here, and full descriptions of each session are postedhere.

9 to 10:15 a.m.

  • How the Next President Can Bust Up Big Corporations (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)
  • #WomenVote #BreakingThrough: Building Power for Systemic Change to Lift Our Nation (Breakout Room B Player)

10:30 to 11:45 a.m.

  • Not Your Wedge Issue: The State of Abortion Access and Reproductive Justice (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)

1:30 to 2:45 p.m.

  • TPP: Trade “Trump-ing” the Election [Voter Pick] (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)
  • We’re Taking on Wall Street and the Big Banks (Breakout Room B Player)

3 to 4:15 p.m.

  • #AskaSista: Black Women Muse on Politics, Policy, Pop Culture and Scholarship (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)
  • ALEC’s Three-pronged Attack on Working Families and Communities of Color (Breakout Room B Player)

4:30 to 6:30 p.m.

  • Closing keynote (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)

You can also catch special videos and content from TWiB throughout the day on the TWiB Stage player.

FOLLOW US ON TWITTER

To catch the action on Twitter, follow @Netroots_Nation and search the #nn16 hashtag. You can also follow the action in Spanish (@netroots_es).

Day 1 highlights & Friday streaming guide

I hope you were able to tune in to our live stream of Netroots Nation Day 1. If you aren’t able to watch in real time, you can still catch some of the action from St. Louis on our website and Facebook page throughout the weekend.

NETROOTS NATION HIGHLIGHTS
On Wednesday, the Ms. Foundation for Women convened women from across the country for a pre-conference meeting on how to build an inclusive movement for achieving gender equality. Click here to read the Storify recap from the day.

Thursday night’s opening keynote with This Week In Blackness featured local and national organizers from Ferguson and around the country who are working to resist, empower and build the movement against America’s system of policing. Click here to watch the archived stream and check out our Medium wrap-up.

Click here to view photos from today (and tag yourself and your friends).

FOLLOW-AT-HOME GUIDE FOR FRIDAY
The following keynotes and panels will be streaming live today (all times are Central). Players are available here, and full descriptions of each session are posted here.

9 to 10:15 a.m.

  • Keep It in the Ground: Getting the Federal Government Out of the Fossil Fuel Business (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)
  • Right to Work and the War on Workers in Missouri [Sponsored Panel] (Breakout Room B Player)

10:30 to 11:45 a.m.

  • Climate Justice Strategies: Exploring the Intersections of Climate Change (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)

1 to 2:15 p.m.

  • Justice at the Ballot Box: How Holding Prosecutors Accountable in Elections is Key to Criminal Justice Reform (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)
  • Uniting and Mobilizing Communities of Color, Millennials and Working People in 2016 [Sponsored Panel] (Breakout Room B Player)

2:30 to 3:45 p.m.

  • The Digital CultureSHIFT: Moving from Scale to Power to Achieve Racial Justice (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)

4 to 5:15 p.m.

  • How Progressives Helped Pass the Iran Deal and How We Can Keep Winning (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)
  • The Real Progressive Solution: How the community schools model supports students and revitalizes entire neighborhoods (Breakout Room B Player)

You can also catch special videos and content from TWiB throughout the day on the TWiB Stage player.

FOLLOW US ON TWITTER

To catch the action on Twitter, follow @Netroots_Nation and search the #nn16 hashtag. You can alsofollow the action in Spanish (@netroots_es).

Follow at home guide for Thursday, 7/14

Netroots Nation officially kicks off today! If you aren’t able to join us in St. Louis, we hope you’ll tune in to our live stream from home and catch some of the sessions. The schedule of what’s streaming today is below.

The following keynotes and panels will be streaming live (all times are Central time). The video players are available here, and you can find full descriptions of each session here.

9 to 10:15 a.m.

  • #BlackWomenLead: The Role and Importance of Black Women Organizers (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)
  • Defeating Trump: How Our Side Will Unite and Win the 2016 Presidential Election (Breakout Room B Player)

10:30 to 11:45 a.m.

  • Networked Change: Real Stories and Research from the Front Lines of Today’s Most Successful Movements (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)
  • Beyond the Like: Creative Content for Success on Facebook (Breakout Room B Player)

1 to 2:15 p.m.

  • #BlackQueerMagic: Black Feminism and Pop Culture as Resistance (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)
  • Guerrilla Comms: How to Organize a (Cost-effective) Plan that Gets Maximum Exposure for Your Cause [Sponsored Panel] (Breakout Room B Player)

2:30 to 3:45 p.m.

  • Pop! Goes the Hegemony: Activists Taking on the Entertainment Industry—and Winning (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)
  • Flint and Detroit Public Schools: Disasters for Democracy and Public Health (Breakout Room B Player)
    4 to 5:30 p.m.

Opening keynote with This Week in Blackness (Keynotes and Breakout Room A Player)

You can also catch special videos and content from TWiB throughout the day.

We’ll be updating our website frequently with video clips, previews and highlights, media coverage, photos and more, so check back often. Also,  keynote pages will be updated with Tweets, video and pictures after the sessions.

Thanks for following from home!

Welcome to Netroots Nation!

Welcome to Netroots Nation 2016! Each year, nearly 3,000 activists and organizers from around the country (and beyond) come together for a few sleep-deprived, action-packed days.

If this is your first Netroots Nation, we want you to know that this is a place for sharing ideas and connecting. It’s a place to learn from each other and to uplift and affirm one another.

It’s also a place to be challenged.

The direct action that took place at last year’s Netroots Nation challenged many of us—including the presidential candidates who were on stage—to listen and speak up about the systemic racism and oppression experienced by far too many Black men, women and children today.

Listening and speaking up is important, but it’s not enough. As progressives, we should be digging deeper and asking ourselves some tough questions, too. Questions like: “How can I support those who are fighting for liberation?” and “What can I do to help shatter systems of oppression?”

For those of you on the front lines of this fight, we see you and we stand with you. And to our LGBTQ brothers and sisters: Just weeks after the horrifying attack on the LGBT community in Orlando—on Latinx night—we want you to know that we mourn with you. And we as a community will fight with you.

Liberation for one must be liberation for all. That’s why racial justice is front and center in our agenda this year. You’ll find sessions calling out the policies that cemented the racism that’s still prevalent today, as well as panels that highlight the powerful organizing being done around the country in the Movement for Black Lives.

You’ll also find lots of content that challenges us to reject the status quo and build a better movement—one that’s free of patriarchy, racism and sexism and centered around the lives and experiences of the most marginalized.

You’ll find panels that cover the usual breadth of progressive issues and hands-on trainings—more than 40 of them—that provide concrete skills you can take back home and apply to your work. You’ll have an opportunity to step up and organize a caucus or discussion around whatever issue moves you. And you’ll have a chance to learn about and support the work of local organizers on issues like racial justice and voting rights.

We feel it’s just as important to consider which voices are elevated as what’s being said. That’s why the speakers you’ll hear from this weekend make up our most diverse group ever: 65 percent are people of color and 65 percent are women. Thirty-five percent of our panelists are Black, a 17 percent increase over last year.

You may notice some other changes, too. Instead of pre-scheduling caucuses, we’ve decided to open up a number of rooms and time slots to you—the community—to organize as you wish. And on the keynote stage, you’ll have a chance to dig deep into environmental justice, reproductive justice and racial justice with sessions organized not by us as staff, but by those doing the work.

Whether this is your first Netroots Nation or you’ve been to every single one, we hope you experience things this weekend that both challenge you and inspire you to fight a little harder.

—The NN staff

We need each other

The events that have unfolded over the last week in Minnesota, Louisiana and Texas have been heartbreaking, infuriating and frustrating for all of us at Netroots Nation. Just weeks after the tragedy that unfolded in Orlando, Alton Sterling and Philando Castile were gunned down by police officers. These tragedies were captured on video and replayed over and over, adding to our community’s collective trauma—and, I hope, our resolve.

We hope that this time, maybe, justice will be found for the victims. We hope that this time, maybe, our country’s leaders will finally do something to solve the problems our country faces around systemic racism and gun violence. But it’s hard to maintain that hope when this has happened so many times with the same result.

We’ve been struggling—both individually and as an organization—to know how to respond to these tragedies. I know I’ll never personally experience the discrimination and fear that my black and Latinx brothers and sisters experience daily. I’ve been stopped by the police, but I’ve never feared I wouldn’t survive that encounter. So it’s hard to know what to say, and it hurts to see so many of my friends and colleagues in pain.

I do know this: we have a lot of work to do together over the coming months and years to end our country’s culture of gun violence and dismantle institutional racism. But what is needed right now is healing, and connecting with others can be the best medicine.

We need each other, and we need to work together. Netroots Nation is the largest cross-issue progressive conference for that mutual support. Our hope is that next week is a healing and uplifting space for every single attendee and that we can create a safe place to plan and organize for the work ahead.

Even if you don’t feel personally affected by last week’s events, know that you have an important role to play in loving and supporting your fellow activists. Get to know people you don’t recognize; take time to listen to the experiences of others; and remember that not everyone comes from the same shared knowledge base or social framework.

Whether you’ve been to Netroots Nation every year since 2006 or this is your first one, I hope your experience next week reminds you that we’re stronger together.

Netroots Nation is less than a week away and we still have a lot of preparation to do. We’d love to hear from you if you’ve got ideas about things we can do that would be helpful during these tough and trying times. I can’t promise we’ll be able to deliver on every one, but I can promise we’ll give each idea thoughtful consideration.

Just let us know how we can help.

–Raven Brooks, Executive Director

Looking back, looking forward

karaoke_01A little over 10 years ago, I went to Las Vegas for the first YearlyKos convention—at the time we were a ragtag bunch of do-gooders and a niche curiosity to the press. I didn’t know what to expect, and I certainly didn’t think it would be a career- (and life) changing experience for me.

Since then, I’ve steered the organization from its humble beginnings to an internationally recognized brand that wields real power and stands as a bastion within the progressive movement. Although for me, it always has been about the deep friendships I’ve made and enjoyed over the years. Early on, I witnessed an extraordinary spark within this new community. I was inspired to get involved and have humbly served as a proud member of the community ever since.

Over the years, we’ve hosted Presidents, Vice Presidents, Governors, Senators, key party leaders, an unfathomable roster of activists and even Nobel Laureates. But more importantly, we’ve provided a platform that has changed the political conversation again and again and served as a launching pad for organizations, campaigns and even the careers of so many in the movement. We have a top-notch training program where experts in the field teach tomorrow’s leaders, and we run an organizational mentoring program that changes the way non-profits work on multiple levels.

I’m particularly proud of what we’ve accomplished on the speaker diversity front over the past decade. There are a lot of spaces—especially those in the technology field—that struggle mightily with this, and not so long ago we did too. We’re proud that this year our speakers are 65% women and 65% people of color. This is a reflection of the type of leadership we’ve strived to model over the years. Raising up a diverse group of speakers isn’t just about numbers, it’s about lifting up the voices of people who are marginalized.

I’m proud to know that our community is stronger than ever. There is a mighty crew of people who have been to every conference, but each year we welcome a significant number of newcomers too. Even with the time I’ve put in as Executive Director, I’ll probably never know how many friendships, initiatives, projects, experiments, love affairs, organizations and movement-changing moments were born over the years of sessions, hallway conversations, events, parties and follow-up conversations.

Today I’m announcing that this will be my last convention as Executive Director of Netroots Nation.Ten years is a long time for anyone in any position, and I’m ready for new challenges. I’ve been working closely with our Boards the last several months to ensure a successful transition plan is in place and I’ll remain involved through the end of the year to help see that through. Our boards will conduct an open search for new leadership this fall, and after our time together in St. Louis, our Operations Director Eric Thut will serve as interim Executive Director.

This is a great opportunity for the organization to continue to grow with the movement. Ten years ago we were a small crew of organizers activated by Howard Dean and the fight against George W. Bush. Today our numbers are in the thousands, and we’re activated by the immigration rights movement, by the struggle for LGBTQ equality, by the Black liberation movement, by Barack Obama, by Hillary Clinton, by Bernie Sanders, by Elizabeth Warren and by dozens of other causes and leaders.

There is such a rich pool of talent within our movement that I’m confident we’ll look back in another 10 years and again be incredibly proud of the unimaginable heights Netroots Nation will have reached as it continues to serve new generations of organizers.

My role within the community will change, but my commitment to the movement will remain steadfast and strong. While I’m excited about my future personal opportunities, I’m even more excited to welcome everyone to and be together in St. Louis this year.

I’m looking forward to celebrating with all of you!

Proudly yours,
Raven Brooks

#NN16 in Spanish: Seeking volunteers for the NN Translation Lab

Twitter plays such an important role at Netroots Nation in terms of documenting, sharing and building networks amongst attendees. But at such a diverse conference, sometimes language can be a barrier to participation. That’s why we’re partnering with Meedan to translate #NN16 to Spanish!

The Meedan team seeks volunteers to help translate English Tweets posted by speakers and participants into Spanish. We are excited about the opportunity to make some of the discussions at Netroots available and accessible to those following along who prefer to read and engage in Spanish.

There are three ways you can follow our translations and support the effort:

• Follow, retweet and share. Follow @netroots_es ahead of the conference.
• Volunteer as a translator. Got some translation skills? Want to contribute? Get in touch at hello@speakbridge.io. We’re seeking motivated volunteers to help translate.
• Donate and support these efforts. Check out https://www.meedan.com/kickstarter for more information.

Got questions? Email mary (at) netrootsnation (dot) org.

A keynote conversation on the digital culture shift

NOTE: This was our initial announcement, the updated and current lineup can be found here.

As activism for police accountability, fair wages, just immigration, and more takes center stage, social justice movements are using technology to achieve greater scale and reach wider audiences.

In an age of big data and digital technology, do these strategies build power for long-term social change or are they helping maintain the status quo? Does the Internet disrupt racism or enforce a new era of Jim Crow?

At Netroots Nation, we’ll dig into this topic during a Friday plenary session organized by our friends at the Center for Media Justice. This keynote conversation—The Digital CultureSHIFT: Moving from Scale to Power to Achieve Racial Justice—is scheduled for Friday, July 15, at 2:30 p.m.

You’ll hear from leaders on the front lines of the 21st century movement for racial justice and civil rights, including Color of Change’s Rashad Robinson, Linda Sarsour of MPower, Cayden Mak of 18MillionRising.org, Autumn Marie of the Black Lives Matter network, Joe Torres of Free Press and Malkia Cyril from the Center for Media Justice. The session will be moderated by Samhita Mukhopadhyay of mic.com.

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