“Troika teamed-up with Moritz Waldemeyer to create ‘The Tool For Armchair Activists’ – a machine for remote rants and protests. Designed to be strapped to lampposts in front of prominent buildings like the house of parliament, or other institutional buildings in front of which many protests occur ‘The Tool For Armchair Activists’ brings the voice of the people to The Man, all from the comfort of your living room. ‘The Tool For Armchair Activists’ was deployed at the MTV European Music Awards 2006, which took place in Copenhagen on Raadhuspladsen on the 2nd of November.
The concept offers a modern alternative to the speaker corner, and saves you the hassle of sitting in the rain waiting for your favourite MP to pass by. A lament to the demise of the organized protest of yore, ‘The Tool for Armchair Activists’ pokes fun at both the powers that be and the powers that would be – if only they could get their a*rses out of the couch.
MTV Campaign Together with MTV, Troika designed a two week campaign around ‘The Tool for Armchair Activists’ to raise awareness about the forthcoming Europe Music Awards 2006. The campaign was set-up as a protest against the awards. In a true activists spirit, the mis-en-scene was equipped with banners and posters calling for participation: ‘Don’t vote, it’s fixed’, ‘Make love not awards’ and ‘Millions died for freedom of speech’. Passer-by could then send their thoughts, remarks or rants to the machine, which would in turn blast them out over Copenhagen´s unsuspecting citizens using it’s computerized voice. Different voices were accessible through a series of codes as the machine is fluent in both English and Danish. The machine was strapped on a lamppost on the city’s main square, Raadhuspladsen, in front of the city hall. To promote further use of the device, dedicated activists also handed out flyers and badges asking passers-by to text the TFAA and ‘Make their Voice heard’. Flyers bearing the machine’s phone number were also left casually in key locations while posters slowly appeared on the walls of the city. Over the two week period, the machine received over a 1,200 messages (roughly 85 a day!). The messages were all very varied in both content and nature.”