RNC Sprodic updates, constant rain, and showers in nature.

Hey all, 


Still working on the online project, but the goings slow. I’m not too worried about it. I think I just need to open up space for others peoples voices. Sometimes I feel like I’m just ramming out e-mails in the  space between being on the street. Regardless a lot of time to troubleshoot and play, until we figure out what works. I’m not that worried. 

Today, or yesterday August 26th was the first day of marches for the RNC. I expected an all day stream-a-thon You know, Live! till I can’t sort of stuff. Sadly, I suffered a billion issues with my hotspot, and ustream. I finally gave up and started tweeting pictures to cover the events as best I can. 

I probably could have done a better job, but got caught up in the different feel of it all. I come out of Occupy Wall Street where actions and marches were based around banks and corporations. The actions ranged from LGBT issues, environmental issues, housing issues and so on and so forth, but what underlay them all was the collusion of corporation and state. The thread ran through the actions…

Here it’s mostly against the GOP. It’s been an interesting transition and one I’m thinking about as I cover the events.


Started out wandering the city to some marches that ended up at the freedom of speech zone. This zone consists of double fences, and a giant space that didn’t give you the true reality of being caged in. One entrance, on exit and folks rallied and chanted and stuck their signs to the fences before taking off to St. Petersburg.


Had a fun ride on the way there as our vehicle threw a belt and we ended up marooned in a BP. I dealt with it how I usually deal with stressful events. I ate some crappy food while we troubleshot. 

The solution? Vermin Supreme and his partner appeared and carted us the rest of the way. The ride was pleasant, crossed the bay and I enjoyed the general feel of these two people being so casual with us, and each other. It’s nice, always nice, to see how two people’s relationship play out in a car ride.

I have to say, they’re fucking pleasant. 


I have to cut it short. I’m exhausted and have to get some sleep. Expecting a long day of coverage tomorrow, but it should be exciting. 


The organizers said that no storm would hold them back. So, let’s see how the rain and wind treat this visitor.





RNC ticks into the future August252012

I feel like I missed a day on this blog, but I haven’ slept yet. I’ll just treat it like a birthday! Where it doesn’t end till you sleep. You know?

It was a good day. Started hot and unbearable, but good nonetheless. I went to a local coffee shop and just worked on the computer and enjoyed some coffee. I didn’t plan on streaming much else but my morning update, and just whatever came along. Sent some e-mails and worked with the folks online on our project.

I love projects. The end. I feel like I should just say, the end. 🙂 but just working with some folks online to cover and event has been really fulfilling, challenging and exciting.

So, I”m doing well. If a little tired and constantly dehydrated.

The highlights of the day were just being. I really enjoyed walking through Romenyville, with it’s weird woodchip parking lot connected to it’s fenced in tent space. People just floating around and being. It’s nice you know. Maybe not nice in that air-conditioned loft, or whatever, but nice in that just being alive amongst folks who all seem to be here for the same reason.

I’ve been enjoying floating around and asking why folks are here to protest the RNC, and most just say because they’re.

They didn’t see why not, and they’re going to march.

Even while the police threaten mass arrests and swoop around the encampment in their helicopters 24/7. They’re gonna march, and at times it doesn’t even seem to be what moves the camp. It just seems like people are sharing food and being. Just being, and something about that is more powerful than any march I’ve ever covered.

The folks come from everywhere, all walks of life and in these moments living together seem to understand that they can support each other with the absolute little they have.

Thanks for letting me see it.

Spent the night streaming a radio show with this guy Diamond Dave. He’s 75 years old, living in a bus and, “Feeding the people, it’s what we do, we feed the people.” And the kiddie village rainbow bus does just that. Every morning, cooking whatever food they have and giving it to anyone who comes along, not just the camp.

Ended the night at an open mic. It was at this little place called, “The Silver Meteor Gallery.” Just some guy turning a house into an open space. He said he doesn’t make any money, but he’s been there for over 15 years.

Diamond Dave, this guy who beatboxes who goes by Black Zeppelin and a guitarist whose name slips my mind played together. 3 folks who never met created what they did, and it times it was really good, and at other times it just didn’t matter. People had fun.

I thought, simply, here I am in Tampa Bay Florida, at an open mic put together by a homeless camp listening to strangers make music together.

Not a bad day,


RNC 8/23/12 Here we GOGO!

So, I’ve been in Tampa now for nearly 3 days. It’s definitely hot, hot, and hot. I was told today it hasn’t been close to as hot as it gets. That’s a nice little wake up call to know it’s only gonna be hotter. I spent most of this morning trying to find a place to shower. A colleague and I roamed around looking for a gym to see if we could pay a little to use their showers. The answers were  no. So, no shower, but I’m looking forward to the next rain and I plan on getting out in it with some soap and using natures open air shower to get myself feeling a little cleaner.

Other news, when I was closing my eyes last night the headlines were being over run with threats: http://www.cnn.com/2012/08/22/politics/conventions-anarchists/index.html?hpt=hp_t2 Why I find this frustrating is the article starts with this claim, “The bulletin, which was obtained by CNN, says that anarchists could try to use improvised explosive devices.” This claim being given it’s own paragraph and space amongst the whole article before diving into the explanation of the piece. What’s frustrating is that the article follows up with what it calls Anarchist tactics:”During past national and international political and economic events, anarchist extremists have blocked streets, intersections, and bridges to disrupt or impede local business operations and public transportation access and, in some instances have initiated violent confrontations with police, the document states.”

So the claim given so much space, and which forms the rest of the article is followed by what  the FED’s say Anarchists have done in the past. Which doesn’t sound much like IED use. It sounds more like non-violent blockades of streets to disrupt an event that folks didn’t agree with. Shit, you know those folks in the civil rights movement? The ones who sat at the white only lunch counters. They might have just been disrupting businesses, and those tactics would have fit into that  neat followup paragraph.

The article then uses this:  “Law enforcement officials cite the arrest in late April of five Ohio men for allegedly plotting to blow up a bridge over the Cuyahoga River near Cleveland. Authorities said at least three of the men are self-proclaimed anarchists who had considered “a series of evolving plots over several months.” The article absolutely forgets to mention that the Cleveland five were provided logistics and given resources by…(drum roll it!!!) the FBI!  http://articles.latimes.com/2012/may/02/nation/la-na-nn-fbi-stings-20120502 This article shows the FBI being the folks who gave the plotters the materials to pull off the  threat.  The Eric Mcdavid case during the Green Scare is pretty much explain the FBI’s standard operating procedure for this sort of actions: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eric_McDavid (Yeah it’s wikipedia , but check out the source material in at the end.)

So, my beef with this CNN article is that it lays the framework for some impending disaster, props it’s argument up with the past non-violent actions that have been documented, and then uses the sensational Cleveland 5 debacle which was orchestrated by the FBI as is finale. You see how all the pieces fit together. Shit, do you see how they were all built to fit together.


Regardless, my real beef is that I’m staying at Romenyville. With a collection of folks from everywhere who sat through a meeting that explained to them that the Police might use pepper spray on them. They didn’t run, or get upset, just a little lady in maybe her mid 40’s, sunburnt, asked what that would do to her if she had asthma.

She’s planning on marching on the RNC and planning to probably clap her hands and let folks know that she’s here, and tonight I’m gonna spend my time learning about these people. These people who’ve come to stay in an open air camp. Who are baking in the sun, and preparing to march. People  should start flooding in soon, and  each one of them has come here for their reason, and I want to learn why.

It’s like the new’s agency sometimes forget we’ve been at war for more than a decade, people’s homes have been taken from hands, and their families dispersed across the face of this country. All the work in the world doesn’t seem to buy enough food for their families, and sometimes thats enough to get a person to get together with some strangers and get ready to march their feet to let, not only the RNC, but the world know their grievances.

“They say get back, we say fight back.”


all love,






RNC 8-22-2012 my day 3 on da road to the RNC

Hey all, so I’m just doing a quick update on where I’m at. I spent most of yesterday getting a feel of Romneyville. Romenyville being the encampment i’m staying at here in Tampa Bay. It’s a camp organized by The Poor Peoples Economic Human Rights Campaign.  (economichumanrights.org)  The camp’s pretty nice, everyone seems glad to be here. It reminds me a little of Liberty Park in NYC. I guess all camps probably will from now on.

I did get a little flack from a person who was helping in the camp asking me to not photograph them. I explained that I would try not to, out of courtesy. Regardless, camped next to a kitchen and getting free meals, though they’re trying to get some support to get more food to the encampment, but are unsure how to proceed on that front.

We also just got a Police helicopter hovering over the encampment. It showed up at 8:31 am and is hovering over the camp.  (whatever)(8:54am police gone) Some folks said they were told it was a traffic helicopter, but it was interesting that it wasn’t over the interstate, but over us, then moved towards the other camp.

Today I plan on getting out to cover a story that broke last night. (http://www.tampabay.com/news/publicsafety/crime/police-recover-bricks-pipe-from-tampa-rooftop/1246953) I’m just curious if the building was built of brick. Since, they found bricks ontop of it, bricks and one pipe. The story reminds me of one that happened in 2008 RNC about hidden (anarchist) supplies at construction sites. These supplies looking much like construction supplies.

Regardless these stories will continue to increase, and so will the good v bad protester story line. I really want to show how these stories build an environment of fear. This environment then allows the police to get away with subduing peoples rights. They have no choice but to corral you, and force you down giant fenced areas, they do this for your safety, because somewhere, someone, has hidden bricks and a pipe–on a building no where near the convention.

Good times,

all love,


Post-2 August 20th: RNC a GoGo

Right now, I’m sitting at a desk between two folks who are also working on covering the RNC. It’s a little humorous(shouldertoshoulder) and I wish I could share a pic, but can’t imagine anyone getting up to take one anytime soon.

These past few days I’ve been sending e-mails to as many folks as possible. I realize that I’m just organizing, or trying to organize a journalistic undertaking, and folks seem excited about coming along.

My goal is to create an interactive form of journalism where the streamer is intaking content, and producing a solid primary source for material.

The folks I’m contacting will be working together on a collaborative pad taking notes on what’s happening, time stamping events they see in my stream, and creating articles about what’s going on around the RNC in near real-time.

There will also be a group of folks who are watching the stream, and accessing my content and cutting it down to a more digestible format. Again, hopefully creating clean produced content using my stream as a primary source.

The exciting developments, are, well, interest, there are a lot of folks who are excited about jumping on board and helping this experiment, and model of content curtailing using streams as a primary source..

Also, someone is lending me a better streaming phone, which will up the quality of my stream. Which will allow the video’s that are cut to look cleaner.


I really want to push viewers to join in as well, and work together to take notes on what they’re seeing. While I’m organizing folks who want to help, I really hope that this sort of activity can be crowd sourced. Viewers and chatters giving an opportunity to engage with the stream in different ways, and actively trying to open space for viewers and chatters to engage in various ways.

I assume it’s always about building a model and then showing it to folks in hopes of improvement.

In the end, I envision this as a giant team undertaking. While I’ll be on the ground streaming as much as possible. It’ll be the folks who are working with the content and creating polished articles and vids off it that will be doing much of the work. I’ll just be running about capturing everything I can.


Alright, I need to go work on  my first vid.


All love,


Lorenzo Serna


PS: plane leaves tomorrow at 7am. I’ll be doing a live update, before i go. I’m a little worried about sleep. I usually get really nervous before a flight. I always assume I’ll miss it, so I’m sure I’lltry to get to the airport around 5am. Which will cause me to sleep less, and I’ll stay up worried my alarm wont’ go off. The usual. Regardless I’ll be in Tampa Bay, around this time, tomorrow.





First post-One week before departure to the RNC in Tampa Bay.



I’m currently planning on heading to Tampa Bay, Florida to cover the Republican National Convention, and then travel to Charlotte for the Democratic National Convention, and the then end up in New York for the one year Anniversary of Occupy Wall Street. I didn’t plan to start writing until Friday when I finally left town, but I’m prepping already. I figured I should explain the prep I’m doing to maybe add more clarity to my coverage plan.

Firstly, I plan on daily updates to this blog about where I’m at in my coverage of the conventions. I also plan on  daily streaming updates of my experiences, and also streaming the marches and events I attend. Check out. Ustream.tv/uneditedcamera for video updates.


These updates will be a daily morning update, where I explain my coverage of the day, and also answer any questions that are submitted via uneditedcamera@gmail.com, or are on this blog, or twitter: @uneditedcamera  I want to try to make this an interactive journalism experience. Where I am on the ground, but actively  providing methods for viewers to get their input used as I cover the conventions.

I’ll be honest, I don’t know exactly what that means. My first move will be to create a collaborative writing pad and tweet out and ask for folks to add links to any article they find talking about the RNC(it’s first) Hopefully we can read through them and create… a collaborative annotated bibliography?

For prep, I’m planning to meet with various communication professors and English professors to sort of nerd out on language and narrative. I really want to talk about what it means to provide this sort of coverage of an event, and think about it theoretically for a bit before really diving into it.

I’m expecting a challenge. I expect to create a massive about of content as I move through the conventions. I plan on exploring and learning as much as possible. I also expect exhaustion, and a touch of stress. It’s going to be a lot of work, but work I’m excited to do.


There’s also another element of worry. When I think of conventions in Florida I think of this film: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u2QfHaFitMs Which covers the FTAA protests where the Miami police brutally attacked protesters. I’m planning to cover this as a journalist, but a video camera, and a press badge has never stopped them from arresting me before. I also believe that as journalist, or street journalist, indy journalist, or whatever, my job is to stay and show what’s really happening.

So, we’ll see how it goes. Right now just planning to pack light: One backpack of clothes(plan on a lot of handwashing) One camel back (totally dumpstered and in perfect condition) A messenger bag with my stream gear: Ipod touch,hotspot, battery, chords, a laptop.(laptop will stay back in bus) I’ll also be wearing a gopro on my head.

I’ll probably pack my messenger bag with notebooks and wear it across my chest. I do this in case the police decide to fire projectiles. I’ll also be, at least for now, packing a bandanna and some apple cider vinegar. Right now, I don’t think I have a lot of protective gear and assume if anyone donates to my wepay come in (https://www.wepay.com/donations/uneditedcamera-cover-s-the-rnc-dnc-and-s17), I’ll use the donations to get some more protective gear.

Well tomorrow, look forward to the collaborative writing tools try. I’m gonna go celebrate my birthday old school.


All love,