On Saturday, tens of thousands of people took part in the ‘Unmute Us’ protest march in cities across the Netherlands. The march, organized by the leaders of the event industry, aimed to protest against the Dutch government’s ban of large-scale events until at least October 31, which was announced last week. Big-name events like ADE, DGTL and Awakenings were all part of the protest.
More than 70,000 people attended the marches. The cities ivolved were Eindhoven, Groningen, Nijmegen, Utrecht, Rotterdam and Amsterdam. As you can see in some of the images, the ‘Unmute Us’ protest itself looked like a festival. In fact, marchers were walking and dancing behind trucks carrying live DJs and sound systems.
Obviously, from the perspective of Bram Merkx, initiator of Unmute Us, these marches have been a huge success. “I had so many goosebumps all day. This is our scene, this is what we live for. Happy people, music, and positivity. I only now realize how terribly I missed this”. Similarly, Jasper Goossen, co-owner of Apenkooi Events (DGTL, Amsterdam Open Air, Elrow Amsterdam), said :
“Today we issued the best possible business card. The fact that an ambitious idea can grow into a real movement in such a short time is typical of our field. I am very proud of our entire industry. We now expect a quick response from The Hague.
As for their demands, the leaders of ‘Unmute Us’ want the ban lifted for September. Even if the government complies, it would still come too late for events like Down the Rabbit Hole (27–29 August) and Mysteryland (27–29 August).
Stay tuned for more news !