Activists marching from Occupy Wall Street's Zuccotti Park encampment to Washington, D.C. will camp in state parks and other occupation sites on their two-week journey, but they're also going to take advantage of the kindness of strangers they found through the website Couchsurfing.org. It seems odd that members of a movement with the kind of web presence Occupy Wall Street boasts would have to go on a routine traveler website to book lodging -- don't they have a massive network of supporters? Thousands of Twitter followers who could answer a call for help? Yes, but despite the marching group's unweildy size, using Couchsurfing actually worked out better than a Twitter blast because it limited the pool of those with whom organizers had to swap emails.
Couch Surfing International, which operates the site, is nothing new, but it's usually used by travelers who swap hospitality as they tour alone or in small groups. Members have profiles describing themselves, their travels, and their hosting restrictions, including the maximum number of couch surfers they can host. The Occupy the Highway march departed Zuccotti Park with 25 people on Wednesday, and organizer Kelley Brannon said via telephone they expected more to join along the way.