Best Thing to Come from a Facebook Protest

Screen on the Green 2009
Approaching online “activism” with a healthy dose of cynicism is understandable, since 99 percent of the time it yields no discernable result outside of unwanted newsletter subscriptions and Canadian pharmaceutical bargains. But after HBO made plain its intentions to cancel the National Mall’s beloved Screen on the Green due to a lack of corporate sponsorship, the Internet’s ire proved conventional wisdom wrong. Funneling distress into action, D.C. Film Alliance’s Jesse Rauch rallied more than 2,000 members to the Facebook group “Save Screen on the Green,” inciting a surprisingly dynamic campaign to help find new financial contributors. After a month of uncertainty, the Monday-night tradition returned for a limited four-week run that included crowd-pleasers like Dog Day Afternoon and On the Waterfront. Although HBO has yet to commit for this coming summer, it’s comforting to know that we’ve got a contender in the fight.