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The Media

World's First Tree-sitting Weblog 486

An anonymous reader writes "Amit Asaravala over at Wired News has an interesting article up about the tree-sitters in Humboldt County. Apparently a bunch of tech activists from the Indymedia Center are setting the tree-sitters up with an 802.11b network so that they can blog about all the logging going on up there. Seems like a pretty interesting way to use technology to help the environment, which isn't something you see everyday."
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World's First Tree-sitting Weblog

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  • by unterderbrucke ( 628741 ) <unterderbrucke@yahoo.com> on Friday December 13, 2002 @11:13AM (#4880501)
  • by teamhasnoi ( 554944 ) <teamhasnoi AT yahoo DOT com> on Friday December 13, 2002 @11:13AM (#4880503) Journal
    that the loggers use Dells and all the tree sitters use Macs. What could that mean? I'll check back in 24.
    • that the loggers use Dells and all the tree sitters use Macs. What could that mean? I'll check back in 24.

      For those who don't catch this, there was an American TV show last season called "24". It had a few gimmicks to it, but one interesting thing was that all the bad guys used Dells and all the good guys used Macs. There was one apparent exception to this rule, a "good guy" who used a Dell, but she turned out to be a double agent working on "Dell side".

      Yes, "24" is on the air again this season, but I don't think they have stuck with this apparent giveaway, so it's "last season" for the purposes of this joke.

    • I guess it means that if you are dumb enough to sit in a tree when there are a bunch of angry chainsaw weilding lumberjacks waiting below, then Macs are good enough for you...
  • Okay... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Dannon ( 142147 ) on Friday December 13, 2002 @11:14AM (#4880516) Journal
    ...so he's protesting logging, and logging the experience.
  • I wonder (Score:5, Funny)

    by burninginside ( 631942 ) on Friday December 13, 2002 @11:15AM (#4880522)
    how will he spell his scream as he falls out of the tree to his death
  • by Quazi ( 3460 ) on Friday December 13, 2002 @11:17AM (#4880551) Journal
    "Blog" is a stupid word. You know that, right? Okay then.
  • One of these days, you know, someone's gonna come along with evidence that 802.11 causes birds to fly into trees and buildings.

    Do you think that'll stop the tree-climbing environauts from using it?

    Of course not!
    • Rubbish, I say we put 802.11 access points ON the birds. Talk about redundancy.
  • by Cheeko ( 165493 ) on Friday December 13, 2002 @11:19AM (#4880563) Homepage Journal
    "And if you go up in the tree, you can't come down for anything, not a phish concert, not even for Burning Man"

    At least now they can communicate a bit more with the world while sitting in the trees. Though one has to wonder how they recharge their laptops? Those would need to be some pretty long extension cords.
  • I wonder how much polution the power companies are producing to give them the electricity they need to do this.
  • The blog site (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 13, 2002 @11:21AM (#4880595)
    http://www.contrast.org/treesit/ [contrast.org]

    I'm not a Karma Whore!!!!
  • A rhyme.. (Score:2, Funny)

    by Britissippi ( 565742 )
    If you're blogging about logging,
    While sitting in a tree,
    Then the chances are,
    You're a geek hippie.

    Swaying in the branches,
    Laptop in your hands,
    No safety net to speak of,
    Just a couple of rubber bands.

    Be safe up in the treetops,
    And please try not to fall,
    Despite all that long hair,
    You will not bounce at all.

  • I don't understand why the logging companies just don't call in the police to remove these tree sitters. Why hasn't this been done yet?
    • by DCram ( 459805 ) on Friday December 13, 2002 @11:45AM (#4880826)
      I grew up in a very small town in northern Maine where 90% of the jobs were in the lumber industry. Logging paper and milling. 100 years ago the state was something like 80% forest now due to replanting and such the state is over 90%, I believe it is like 94-95% right now but I have been wrong at least twice today already :).

      The loggers really dont mind people sitting in the trees or just hanging out. It just means that they cant cut that tree right now. There are plenty more. There is no real benifit in taking these people away if they are not hurting anyone.

      I say that in a very serious way. The people who we call "tree huggers" can get really scarry and do things that cause peoples lives. There have been a number pf people in Maine arrested for causing harm. Picture a logger cutting a tree with a chainsaw and all the sudden his saw bucks out of the tree and takes him in the head because a protester drove a 10 inch spike into the tree, not to mention that spiking trees isnt good for them either. Logging is a very dangerous buisness and sometimes the activists get mean.

      As long as you do not harm other people or other peoples property I believe you have the right to be heard and if in the process you change some peoples thinking than good. And I know that the loggers will thank you for not messing with them and they might just like the company.

      Sorry for the bad spelling.

      Earth First!! We'll Timber the rest of the planets later!
      • Don't forget the loggers who beat locked down activists, though :P It's not a one-sided issue. Anyway, for what it's worth, there hasn't been spiking in Norther CA for quite a while - they've been doing stuff like spiderwebbing(stringing yarn all over so you have to cut it out before you can log. Stupid.) and tree sitting instead.
    • Have you ever tried to remove someone from a tree? As the older brother of five avid tree-climbers, let me assure you that it is QUITE difficult. Especially when they don't want to co-operate with the removal.
      • by NineNine ( 235196 ) on Friday December 13, 2002 @12:12PM (#4881065)
        Have you ever tried to remove someone from a tree? As the older brother of five avid tree-climbers, let me assure you that it is QUITE difficult. Especially when they don't want to co-operate with the removal.

        Give me a Stihl with a 3 foot blade and 5 minutes. I can get *anyone* down from a tree, guaranteed.
  • by grub ( 11606 ) <slashdot@grub.net> on Friday December 13, 2002 @11:33AM (#4880714) Homepage Journal

    I can just see the IM traffic..

    Tr33Hugg3r: Hey man, can you toss me over another bag of granola? The last one fell on that park ranger's truck.
    fukDaMan: sure, if you toss me another bag of soy nuts.
    veggieChix0r: I'm cold, I want to go home.
    1l0v3Tr335 : damn, my batteries in my MP3 player died, no more Bruce Cockburn for me..

  • FYI (Score:3, Funny)

    by FortKnox ( 169099 ) on Friday December 13, 2002 @11:40AM (#4880784) Homepage Journal
    The laptop being used is made entirely of hemp.
  • by PygmyTrojan ( 605138 ) on Friday December 13, 2002 @11:41AM (#4880787)
    Seems like a pretty interesting way to use technology to help the environment, which isn't something you see everyday

    Maybe, I'm one of few, but I see the environment pretty much everyday.

  • by phorm ( 591458 )
    A car battery recharger powers the equipment

    I'm not quite getting how this works. A car battery charger plugs into wall and thus charges the battery. But, since the activists are up a tree, how are they plugging in?

    I'm assuming it means they're using a car-battery to charge it, but eventually that would run out of juice too.
  • I suppose this article is timely - it is the season of fruitcakes after all! But seriously, isn't there something useful they can be doing with their time?

    Maybe they could study architecture or engineering and come up with good, economical ways to build housing without lumber? Or do fundraising to purchase land to make reserves? Or research to find better, more environmentally friendly ways of logging? Perhaps if some lumber company choose to do old style logging (where you pick individual, strategic trees to remove instead of clear cutting leaving a good variety of trees and undergrowth), they could lobby to support such companies, despite higher lumber costs?

    I dunno, just seems like there's more productive ways to spend your life, and still make a difference.

    Slashdot: New for Hippies, Stuff that is irrelevant.

  • It is not contradictory to use technology to protect the environment. By and large, what these people are against is the thoughtless, greedy, UNSUSTAINABLE raping of earth's resources. Corporations have demonstrated themselves to be incapable of thought beyond the bottom line.

    People like this are you and I. There's a saying: "If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention." Instead of labeling these public servants, read a bit about the issues and I'll bet you find yourself in the same mindset. /.ers are too smart to dismiss environmental issues and activism as "hippie stuff".

  • "...setting the tree-sitters up with an 802.11b network so that they can blog about all the logging going on up there..."

    Blogging about logging.


    I know I'm excited.

    And shouldn't that be "tree-huggers", not "tree-sitters"?


  • If it gets slashdotted the whole damn forest could go up in flames taking the activists with it.

    Hey, wait a minute...

    I was just at the site and they have pictures of the activist chicks doing the traditional wood nymph blessing dance...in the nude. Check it out...streaming video too!
  • This is more than a little offtopic, but do these people come down to do their business or do they just hang their asses over the branch and let loose on the unsuspecting below?
  • Discussion Board (Score:2, Redundant)

    by goldspider ( 445116 )
    I'd love to see some kind of message board on that site (Slashcode?) where people could express their support and ideas about the treesitting, as well as engage in discussion.

    But of course they won't do that because these kinds of groups are very unreceptive to criticism and debate. Trolls aside (and what message board doesn't have trolls), I think they would find that their cause and methods are not as accepted or supported as many of them believe.

  • A bunch of beach bums, based in Pismo Beach, in southern California, just announced the establishment of the first pier-sitting. Established on the old derelict Wallakuma pier, the weblog enables beach bums and surfers to connect via their wireless devices and share their beach experiences with other beachheads worldwide.

    A group of australia lifeguards have expressed immense interest in the endeavour; the only technical hurdle they have to face is that their thongs are too small to accommodate any extra piece of equipment, namely the wireless devices needed to access the service.

    "Is that your cellphone in your Speedo, or are you happy to see me?", asked Cindy, when meeting her fellow lifeguard Jon.

  • by JBMcB ( 73720 )
    In five easy steps.

    1 - Climb down out of the tree.
    2 - Get a job.
    3 - Save up money.
    4 - Buy land with trees on it.
    5 - Don't cut them down.

    Out of all of them, #2 is the only one that takes a lot of effort.
    • These people don't do this because you're right, #2 takes effort. It's much easier (and more fun!) to play "warrior" by sitting in a tree, whining, and getting press.

      You know, along those lines, I'm a bit short on cash. You think I could camp out in a bank lobby until they give me some?

      - Owner of 2 acres of thick, unused forest

  • From the article: A car battery recharger powers the equipment

    So what powers the car battery recharger? A Honda generator?
  • by haaz ( 3346 ) on Friday December 13, 2002 @12:15PM (#4881080) Homepage
    I'm one of those nutty Indymedia activists. I have serious problems with the conservative domination of our so called "liberal" media, and am doing proactive, constructive things to work to change that. Among them is writing for my local IMC, another is working for media reform, as much of this has been made possible by federal legislation and other actions by the Fed.

    anyway, serious bravo to folks at San Fran IMC for doing this. Technology is not necessarily paradoxical to environmental activism -- and if anything, the high tech world needs a serious dose of environmental awareness, power consumption and chip production being the two main things that I'm sure we could come up with very creative solutions to.

    Briefly more on IMC: I can only speak for my local Indymedia, but we've been doing a lot of reporting on things that the Big Media(tm) have ignored. There've been a number of controversial things happening in Madison over the past few years. While we are fortunate to have more than one daily newspaper, we're as affected by radio, TV, and cable conglomeration as the rest of the United States. That means that in the major press outlets, many of these controversial issues have gone on without more than the Official Word(tm) being spoken about it. While we're still small, we're growing, and with it a sense that fair and accurate reporting needs to happen by everyone -- corporate media and volunteer/activist media alike. I'm proud to be working with what must now be the thousands of other media activists in the 100+ IMCs that exist around the world. let's keep it up!
    • I'm one of those nutty Indymedia activists.

      Ah, the chant of the faithful.

      Or was that the cry of the loon?

      if anything, the high tech world needs a serious dose of environmental awareness, power consumption and chip production being the two main things that I'm sure we could come up with very creative solutions to.

      Um, we already are, and quite nicely without the help of yahoos like you. The wireless market is the main driver there. Battery technology still sucks white hot chunks, so we need to work with less and less current. The FPGAs I use are down to 1.5V. The I/O voltages are commonly down to 2.5V or less. They'll be powered by quantum foam in a decade or so the way things are going. ;-)

  • by Luxury P. Yacht ( 18865 ) on Friday December 13, 2002 @12:16PM (#4881088)

    ...does anyone hear it fail?

  • Falling out (Score:2, Interesting)

    Some how, there's something very darwinian about reading the stories of deaths from people falling out of trees where they were living/sitting in protest. Makes you feel like humanity is taking a step in the right direction..

    Truth is I support some of their argument, but this is not how to do it....plus the laptop up there is throwing doubt on my joy of eliminating the dead weight!
  • They're probably fighting to save the big trees to hide the little trees.
    There was a pretty good movie, Homegrown [imdb.com] , about pot growers in Humboldt County.
  • Day six: Frank asked if I was a vegetarian today. He already knows this. What does he mean?

    Day twelve: Will no one let it rest that I dreamed I heard chainsaws?

    Day twenty-nine: Another fricken squirrel!

    Day sixty: I'm just going outside, and I may be some time.

  • Could someone seriously explain what these people are protesting for? Is it wrong for people to cut down trees?

    Trees are burnt to the ground in forest fires, how come people aren't protesting forest fires? I understand that it would be bad if someone were to cut down all the trees, but that wouldn't make much financial sense for a logging company to do that. Is it an age thing? Like an older tree shouldn't be cut down but it is ok to cut down younger trees? What is the criteria for being an older tree?

    BTW, what are their platforms made of? Plastic? Metal? Wood?! What about the food they eat? Even if they are vegan, what makes a tree's "life" more sacred than some bean sprout?

    • by Sebastopol ( 189276 ) on Friday December 13, 2002 @01:32PM (#4881770) Homepage
      1. Massive logging on the peaks of the mountains (which is easiest to log) destroys the root systems that sustain the topography. After the loggers are done stripping the peaks, they move on. A few years of rains and the entire hillside washes away, destroying everything below it. THis happens repeatedly. Landowners get fucked by giant mudslides and erosion due to overlogging. I won't even start with the impact of the dirt/mud runnoff into the drinking supplies of people that live near ridge logging operations. Some people do get their water from streams and not the a municiple water company, like city folk. Don't they have rights to clean water? Think joe blow in colorado has a chance to sue BoiseCascade for the damage done to their drinking water a few years after a logging campaign completes? Fat chance.

      2. Yes, there are natural forest fires. Nature moves on. But when nature has to absorb the stress of natural deforestation AND man-made deforestation, it can't handle it.

      3. The logging companies themselves have no problem clearcutting forests, and then moving on. Suppose you live in a small town of 1,000 people, and Boise Cascade decides to set up shop. They spend 5 years clearcutting all the trees around you, then move on, leaving their abandoned mills, and nothing but dry arid stumpy land. This happens quite a bit. I supposed you don't mind the sight thousands of acres of stumps and dried up land, but many millions of americans enjoy nature.

      4. Before you rant about 'everything is made of wood', that's not the point. Some logging companies use sustainable tree farms. This is costly, but eco-groovy. However, we all know it is easier to clear cut old growth than manage your own. Bush lifting national protections is just a field day for loggers to tear through wildlife and destroy at will. Tree sitters are trying to protect the most endangered flora on earth, eg. 1000+ year old forests. If that means nothing to you, then I guess I'm wasting my breath.

      5. Next time you're in Arcadia, california, drop by the Sequoia National Park. It looks beautiful on rte 1 while driving, until you hike in a half a mile and witness the stumps as far as the eye can see.

      6. When does the greed end? They may not log an entire forest, but ridge-logging effectively destroys everything. Should we just let logging companies blow off sustainability to make an extra buck? Or should we actually do something to protect the shrinking environment?

      The issue here is sustainability, and not giving loggers a free pass to clear cut ancient forests.

      Again, if you see no value in nature, I'm wasting my breath.

Each honest calling, each walk of life, has its own elite, its own aristocracy based on excellence of performance. -- James Bryant Conant