During the World Ice Hockey Championship in Minsk, bookmakers did not only take bets on sports, but also on people. Palitviazni.info learned how to predict future detentions of civic activists and what was sought by the creators of a political betting system.
Tatalitaryzatar (totalitarian totalizer) was launched in late April, just before the World Ice Hockey Championship, so that the arrests of activists, which have become a routine, would not go unnoticed.
Yuliya Liashkevich, an advertiser and author of the idea, said that activists are so predictably often detained in Belarus that there was an idea to create a political betting system. The idea was supported by former political prisoner and a record holder in the number of prison terms Pavel Vinahradau, the implementation was helped by designer Stas Karpau, assistance was provided by Anastasia Loika, Aliaksei Kazliuk and the organization Freedom House, which paid for the hosting. And Tatalitaryzatar started working.
Hooray! You can bet on live people!
However, many people, when filling in Tatalitaryzatar, had unpleasant feelings. People say that they do not like making such bets. The author of the political betting website notes that it should not be liked:
“The project was created so that you [people, Belarusians – Ed.] felt uneasy. Betting on the tote is nothing more cynical than what the authorities are doing, and no more cynical than our silence. Tatalitaryzatar perfectly fulfilled its role, it attracted the attention of many people, those who sincerely sympathize with those who was in the square on December 19, 2010, who knew nothing about the arrests and preventive detentions during the 2014 World Champ. It was after the Tatalitaryzatar appeared that they began to pay attention to the actions of the government and suddenly realized that this was not a joke, that young people were arrested for no reason, and more are yet to be arrested. It was such a deliberate provocation,” says Yuliya Liashkevich.
A magic “kick in the butt” for the Belarusian ghetto
When the Tatalitaryzatar design was already made and the activists were in the process of programming, the first people were arrested, including Dzmitry Dashkevich – one of the most visible political figures. Then Yulia saw that the detentions of activists were hardly ever covered by the media. That is why the creators of Tatalitaryzatar did not close the vote on Dashkevich. And during the first two days of the website’s work, Dzmitry reached the 2nd place.
– This is a terrible thing, when a person is arrested, and people do not know about it. Judging by my feed on Facebook, I can say that those who in 2010-2012 reacted to arrests and detention, do not do it now, now no one reposts, no one shares information.
They say there is the Belarusian ghetto, which does not need to be convinced of anything. I think it’s time to do something for the ghetto, as it has gone flat and wilted, it needs a strong push: hey, you guys and girls, are you mad? Wake up, show at least some solidarity!
Even if we have one person illegally arrested, it is an occasion to fight. This is the reason to say something, to disseminate information,” excitedly says Ms. Liashkevich.
Yuliya Liashkevich believes that at the moment people do not remember the names of all the eight political prisoners and it is the shortcoming of our and your work.
And can you right now name all the eight political prisoners in Belarus?
You can read here the first part of a conversation with Yuliya Liashkevich, an advertiser, indifferent citizen, who initiated several bright campaigns in support of political prisoners during the World Ice Hockey Championship.