Launched for Tax Day 2013, Tax Evaders included an original video game, guerilla projections, street light brigades and finally, an online 'twittter bombing' campaign. Participants across the country were given toolkits and micro-grants that allowed them to quickly develop their own materials to join the campaign with their own actions. The action took place across 12 cities.
Based on the iconic 80's arcade game Space Invaders, Tax Evaders gives players the chance to blast corporate tax evaders out of the sky and force them to return revenues to the people in order to keep society running. In the game, the player is not a single individual, but the masses, who shoot flaming fists of 'people power' up at corporate aliens in the sky who are trying to escape with resources that belong to all of us. Each direct hit knocks a fairer share of taxes back down to earth, powering up schools, hospitals, parks and bridges. Be careful though, the aliens fight back using austerity bombs, tear gas, and ultimately the Alien Mothership, a combination of corporate robot and government capitol building.
The game was a hit online with over 50,000 people playing in the first week.
WE AIN'T JUST PLAYIN'
If the player wins they enter a 'scoreboard' that shows statistics on how much each corporations evaded in taxes. (Note: All data was backed up with citations). Players can then repeatedly hit a FIRE button that sends 'twitter bombs' directly at the corporations’ actual twitter accounts.
Nearly 1000 twitter-bombs were sent in the first 5 days.
YOU'RE BUILDING, OUR SCREEN
On the night of Tax Day, the game was projected onto the sides of office buildings of those corporations in the game. The game was connected to wireless controllers like a Nintendo Wii and the XBox Kinnect (which is controlled through body motions).
These controls were handed to passerbys on the street, giving everyday people the ability to blast Tax Evaders themselves.
LIGHT 'EM UP!
Simultaneously to the game projections, light brigades hit the streets to target specific corporations with their giant LED messages, including CitiBank, BankOfAmerica, Wells Fargo, Chase Bank, and Goldman Sachs.
A tookit was created with custom-designed 'sprites' that turned corporations into their own original Tax Evaders icons. As part of a distributed action strategy, activists across the country then downloaded the toolkit and used the designs to fit their own actions.
FORBES: Tax Evaders Video Game Sheds Interactive Light On Corporate Greed
Gan Golan, coordinator of the national project, talks about what’s wrong with our current tax loopholes and how gaming can be used to raise awareness for important issues in this exclusive interview. [Read Full Interview]
REAL NEWS NETWORK: Video Game and Tax Day Actions Target Corporate “Tax Evaders”
(Watch Full Interview)