Why not? Why be shy about what you
want to say to the world?
Almost all the information that reaches
people in our society about the world around us
goes through channels ('the media') which are
controlled and mostly owned by people with a
huge vested interest in keeping society how it
While some stuff which challenges this gets
through, the vast majority of news and views
that reaches people is confined within very
narrow boundaries - anything outside those
boundaries is labelled as 'extremist', and easily
All sorts of dodgy people pay huge
amounts of money to designers and councils to
paste their consumerism bullshit all over our
streets - why shouldn't you have your say?
What to post:
Anything you like.
Information you want people to know,
events that are happening and news that never
gets in the 'mainstream' media.
You can also paste up all sorts of other
things: artwork, slogans, surreal messages,
stories. Anything that puts an alternative point
of view onto our streets is playing a valuable
role in undermining the 'status quo', by
challenging people's automatic acceptance of
You can make copies of things you like
or design your own. If you are doing something
that obviously comes from a particular group or
organisation, remember to put 'not for
flyposting' at the bottom of it.
You may have access to a flashy
computer and high quality copying or you may
be writing something by hand and copying it in
a shop. Don't be ashamed to put up really
rough-looking stuff. The important thing is
getting the message across - and no-one
knows it's you anyway!
Where you put your posters depends on
what they are. Stuff with loads of information on
needs to be where people are likely to read it
all - bus shelters are good, but your poster
won't stay up very long.
Look out for old posters that are still up - a sure sign of a site with a long life.
Show some respect to fellow flyposters and don't stick your stuff on top of theirs unless the
event has already happened (unless they're a dodgy Nazi outfit, of course!)
You may like to post
your stuff over billboard adverts that you don't
like - your poster may even be specially
designed to go over particular adverts (eg car ads).
Be warned though, that if you start regularly posting up over the big music posters, you may end up
getting a visit from some very unsavoury types - that operation is run by some very dodgy gangs
who are not adverse to a bit of aggro if they think you're invading their 'patch'.
Our favourite spots include disused buildings, lampposts, tube stations, backs of buses (if you're cheeky enough!),
street furniture, pub toilets and even (yes we did this to a Radio One DJ once!) someone's back! Be audacious!
If you're targeting an individual corporation, stencilling the steps up to
their office with your message is often a good way of reminding them of your cause!
The most important thing is to get the message out!
How to Flypost
You need: wallpaper paste, a big paint brush (some people prefer rollers) and a bucket.
Plastic bags are less obvious than a bucket, but make sure to use two or three bags
- spilt paste can be very messy! Another very useful bit of kit is a bicycle -
it's amazing how much more you get done!
It's best to post in pairs (or threes), so
one can keep a lookout, Watch out also for
closed circuit tv.
Remember that if you look shifty and
nervous you will draw attention to
yourselves - also being relaxed helps you
appreciate just how much fun you are
Paste on the wall where the poster is going to go.
Put the poster up, press it flat and then paste over it again.
This helps to smooth out bubbles, and also makes it harder to rip the poster off.
Some people prefer to flypost in the dead of night, some do it in broad daylight.
This depends a lot on the area you are in, it's up to you.
If you don't fancy breaking the law or getting your hands mucky with all that paste there is another option: the human billboard.
Although very effective, it is a time consuming business and you may find yourself being moved on by the police if they decide that you're causing an obstruction.
Human Billboards photo feature
History of London Human Billboards
THE LAW (updated August 2006)
In most areas there are local by-laws against flyposting and these can vary from borough to borough. Breaking these
by-laws is a criminal offence, which means that if the police catch you, you can be arrested and charged and possibly end up in front of magistrate getting a fine.
Flyposters can be prosecuted through the magistrates court using:
Town and Country Planning Act
Anti-Social Behaviour Act
Local Government Act
Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005
The Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003 increases maximum fines from £1000 to £2500, with authorised council officials now able to issue £50 'on the spot' fines.
Many authorities have bylaws making the venues (or the owners of the advertised event/product) responsible for any publicity bearing their name, punishable with fines.
The Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005 makes the business/event being advertised equally liable, unless they can demonstrate that the posters were being displayed without their knowledge or that they took reasonable steps to prevent their display.
Make sure you've got some idea of your rights if you are arrested, just in case - this will make you feel a lot more
confident dealing with the police.
» (see the 'rights on arrest'
section for more info).
Stickers: you can make these on a
computer, or use sheets of stickers by
drawing onto all the stickers on one sheet,
then photocopying from that.
Stencils: Good for putting a message up
quickly, Especially good for symbols/
logos/ pictures?. Best made out of lino to
last a long time and stay flat easily.
Banners: Another handy method of drawing attention to your message is to paint up and old bedsheet and hang it from
a busy footbridge (the pedestrian footbridge in Vauxhall, London is especially good for this).
Make sure that it's securely tied and that you won't be needing it for the night's kip!
Legal disclaimer: naturally, urban75 does not encourage anyone to break the law and we suggest that you only flypost the walls of your own house...or something...
London flyposting ban spreads [Guardian, June 2004]
Judgment day for the phantom flyposters [Guardian, June 2004]
your rights on arrest
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