Sylvia’s Works In Progress (WIP) Nixes Independent Reporter


Rick’s Media Island bus to the Cascade Media Convergence

Olympia, WA (9-15-14) — The sewers of Oly’s r@dical underground are stinking up the neighborhood, adding to the stench in Oly’s municipal ordinances filth served up by its City council. Who would have suspected Works In Progress, an independent alternative, some say r@dical of late, newspaper barely surviving in the Olympia area which has been around since Jesse Jackson ran for President would attempt to discourage a reporter from attending a media oriented public event? Sylvia is said to have been editing it these past 24 years. Like all print media, it’s struggling and probably won’t survive, at least in its current format. Whether it can legitimately be called a news periodical that promotes reporting without fear nor favor is questionable given the following e-mail exchange, initiated apparently by Sylvia, sent to an independent investigatory photojournalist who does exactly that, letting the chips fall where they may and refusing to be seen as part of anyone’s camp:

Speaking of ‘bleeding’ for what one believes in, get a load of WIP’s Sylvia and her take on 1st Amendment principles at a media oriented public event, no less:

Amicus Curia From: Works In Progress <>
To: Amicus Curia <>
Sent: Monday, September 15, 2014 9:57 PM
Subject: Cascadia Media Convergence

John, I am going to be very upfront with you. I think you are a very talented person and writer, but unfortunately you seem to have a great deal of difficulty dealing with people. I am sorry to inform you that we will not be able to provide you transportation down to Portland for the Cascadia Media Convergence this weekend. Also, I think you need to know that the folks in Portland are very concerned that if you attend the Convergence you will be disruptive and act inappropriately with other attendees. You have a pretty gnarly reputation, John. Sylvia

>>>Well, Sylvia, some of the folks you must be referencing have a pretty ‘gnarly reputation’ themselves–violent, criminal, threatening, and remorseless. Of the meetings I’ve attended, and many I’ve read about, the ONLY ones being disruptive were them. It’s pretty easy for nameless/anonymous accusations to be leveled, and accordingly difficult to defend against. It’s par for this particular course for the principals you seem to be defending to insist on 1st Amendment protections for themselves but not for others who are critical of their excesses. The reputation, I’m afraid, isn’t mine.

Amicus Curia: BTW, and how is it you (Sylvia) are able to grant/deny permission to ride on this particular bus, which I thought belonged to Rick Fellows? What is the hierarchy you’re claiming? Just WHO, specifically, objects to my presence? Names?–yeah, I thought not.

Not only are Sylvia’s chosen miscreants wildly enthusiastic about snitch hunts and outrageously erroneous labeling of whatever nemesis of the day they’ve targeted as sex offenders, but they’re their own worst enemies when it comes to disrupting the very meetings Sylvia vacuously inveighs.  Many examples of the same this reporter has never attended have been written up in this publication.


Fast forward to the magical mystery bus chosen to transport those with $25 for gas to Portland’s Cascadia Media Convergence hosted by the University of Oregon at 70 Couch St. this coming weekend, 9-19-14 through 9-21-14. The bus itself belongs to Rick Fellows, the director of the 501(c)3 non-profit known locally as Media Island across the street from Olympia’s downtown public library. The media convergence (CMC) is sponsored by the Wayne Morse Center for Law and Politics and the University of Oregon Turnbull Center. It’s billed as a series of workshops, facilitated strategy sessions, and public events aimed at bringing together alternative and community media makers to network, share knowledge and skills, and discuss ways to continue collaboration and build toward a regional media coalition happening September 19th-21st at the University of Oregon Turnbull Center in Portland, OR. Who made Sylvia God with the power to deny/censor an independent investigatory photojournalist from attending or traveling there, God only knows. Perhaps she (Sylvia) may yet inform readers.

The poison pen e-mail invites the question of whether those who genuinely believe in 1st Amendment principles should ride Rick’s big yellow bus under WIP’s auspices, thus rewarding enemies in all but name only of the very 1st Amendment principles they profess to be hawking. The hypocrisy is so thick as to be cut with a knife.

It would be comforting to believe this is an aberration rather than a pattern. That optimism would be sadly mistaken. WIP has consistently rejected well written submissions for its hard copy publication. Now it appears to be discouraging an independent investigatory photojournalist from attending based on the thinnest of pretexts on behalf of @narchists predictably given to violent disruption of public events on college campuses and fond of jacketing anyone who opposes them or even publishes their pictures while accurately reporting on their actions. Folk wisdom holds birds of a feather flock together. That they don’t wish to be SEEN, at least in print, publicly together is telling. Folk lore also holds the wicked flee when none pursue. Sylvia’s biases are transparent in this instance. The Devil’s in the details as with any Faustian bargain. God willing, THIS reporter will be there, whether Sylvia and her allies like it or not! Coverage will be made available to the public at the first opportunity without fear nor favor–something WIP might consider if it chooses to survive as a relevant community alternative publication.

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