One of the more interesting things about the W2 Media Centre is the imbalance between events focussed on media, and the number of parties and social events. Have a look at this screenshot from the events calendar on their website:
Well, it’s actually worse than it seems from this screenshot- there must be a problem with their website. Because, actually, there are only two workshops-and the one about W2 seems (appropriately) masturbatory! And, isn’t this what is supposed to be their main purpose?
They do, however, have summer camps for kids! Do they do this in the same room as their ‘camp’ parties?
The space at the W2 receives direct funding from the City of Vancouver. The space was created under the guise that it would be used for “cultural events, broadcasting, and media centre operations”, and would be focussed on serving the people of the Downtown East Side (DTES). I’ve been there many times- and, personally, the only time I saw a DTES resident there was outside of the front door, asking for money…
So, what does Irwin Oostinde qualify as a ‘cultural event’ for the people of the DTES? Well, it seems that his definition of culture has migrated from art openings to sadomasochistic sex parties! I wonder how many people in the DTES are attending these? Sounds more West-End to me!
Their ad in the Georgia Straight gives us some of the details of what goes on at these parties:
Hmm, you gotta wonder what goes-on inside the ‘makeout booths’, don’t you? Well, I just asked some gay friends of mine about them- without hesitation, they said that these booths are used for sex! If you have any doubts, look at the ‘rules’ posted on their website:
I think that item #3, CONSENT, makes things clear. Now, this is the 21st century, and there is nothing wrong with these sort of parties. That said, I’m not sure if the people of Vancouver would be pleased to hear that their tax dollars are paying for it!
And, the people of the DTES are still standing outside asking for change. Isn’t it about time that we changed leadership at the W2? And, when he leaves, let’s make sure that Irwin takes all of his ‘slutwear’ with him…
UPDATE: W2 Has written to me, and I’ve given them a response, click this link for the article!
- Harsha Walia’s Gonna Get It! (Bob Ages Too!) (genuinewitty.com)
- Occupy Toronto And The DTES FauxHawk’s Sacred Fire! (Featuring Harsha Walia & David Eby!) (genuinewitty.com)
- Naomi Klein Fights For The Needs Of Vancouver’s DTES Drug Dealers & Poverty Pimps! (genuinewitty.com)
- Occupy Vancouver Has An Asshole Problem! (so do the Council of Canadians & Vancouver Media Co-Op) (genuinewitty.com)
- Welcome Media Co-Op Readers! (Do they receive Government Funding?) (genuinewitty.com)
I don’t attend SPIT, but they are using W2 as a temporary venue for TWO events due to renovation as it states in the Georgia Straight ad. I don’t see what the issue is here. The article title, and politicizing this by claiming CoV is “funding S&M sex parties” is very misleading.
The space is donated by the CoV- so it is not inaccurate to say this. Regardless, if you look at W2’s activity list you will notice that there are more rave club nights than workshops. It is clear that W2 is not being used as intended…
Your ongoing harassment of progressive voices in Vancouver and across the country is sad to watch. The worse type of sensational journalism. Are you hoping people sue you for defamation? We wouldn’t waste our time to give you the attention, plus weI worry about your mental health Greg.
W2 worked with 120 different community organizations and companies in the past year. Atleast 50 of those partnerships were workshops, and other 50 were receptions and literary readings and film screenings. Evidently not all the community groups who use the community space post their events on the website you are citing.
The two Spit events that were held in the past were rentals. Rentals enable W2 to survive because W2 receives NO operating funding and is mostly funded by our own revenue generation.
As to your wild imagination about the kissing booth, Irwin never attended the events, but other event staff reported that is what the aptly-named booth was used for: Kissing. Enough of your homophobia Greg. And whether you or W2 as an organization likes the poster artwork is immaterial to the queer community’s right to free expression. Your draconian world view is showing itself.
It seems you have a penchant for attacking just about anyone you don’t agree with or those who don’t fawn your ego, so we best leave it at this to avoid being distracted further and wasting anymore of our time.
If you were sincerely a progressive you would spend your energy on investigating the system that harms people not attacking people and projects working for inclusive change and people trying to make Vancouver a better place for everyone.
Wow! What a nasty letter! Please see my response in this article:
This guy comes off as a total liar. Having to have a ‘safe’ word in a kissing booth? Give me a break! These people put on a summer camp for kids? Am I reading this correctly?
This guy is most definitely lying. I spoke to someone who was at a SPIT party and he confirmed the booths were used for sex & drugs…