They are definitely real.
We’ve posted on the issue now for years. And all sides use paid protestors too, unions, corporations, individuals, political parties. Such “protestors” are used to further policy goals and to help create media narratives. Sometimes the media knows (likely) that a group is hired and that’s where a crony element can seep in. There’s nothing wrong with hiring a bunch of protestors. But if a compliant media doesn’t identify the protestors as paid when they know they are paid that is a problem.
In this case it is alleged that a “pay for protest” company is actually just cutting right to the chase and looking to spin things directly for itself in a shakedown situation. The whole situation looks ugly.
We post the attached article because the story is interesting, but also because in telling the story the LA Times shines a bit of light on a tool often used by crony players. People should be more aware of “pay to protest” projects and companies.
(From The LA Times)
“Defendants are pursuing a campaign of harassment, defamation, and interference in the business affairs of Zdenek Bakala, which they have expressly vowed to expand unless he pays them millions of dollars,” Bakala’s attorneys wrote in the suit, which names Krupa, Crowds on Demand and Swart as defendants.
In a statement, Krupa Global Investments spokeswoman Barbora Hanáková called Bakala “an untrustworthy person” and implied the U.S. protests against Bakala have been “inconvenient for him” and have ruined “his attempts to whitewash his reputation.”