I’m not sure that I saw the same nobility on display that you did, but I am a very skeptical (perhaps cynical) person. I think the simplest answer is that we should use Watchtower training or tactics against Watchtower.
For one, ringleaders should have a solid résumé in the religion. It’s hard for anyone to take seriously an apostate who was not very active or sincere and is now speaking out. It plays better publicly to put at the forefront those who really believed and lived the lie and makes it more difficult for Watchtower to discredit them. It would be easier for apostates like me to believe that folks with a substantial track record are not chasing personal glory. Figures of this caliber also do much more to grab the attention of curious JWs. Think of how carefully vetted anyone used in Watchtower publications is. This would require that too many folks currently “spearheading” the movement stay in the background, which I think will be an impossible sell. No one wants to feel their value is increased on the sidelines, especially those seeking attention for their activism. I’m not saying people shouldn’t tell their stories, as some find it therapeutic, but some could be a bit more tame or altogether absent from events where media is present.
For me, the biggest issue is the amateurism about the ordeal. I don’t want to hear that “it’s a start” anymore, especially considering this very protest had been in the works for years and that some of the organizers were elders who had previously helped organize much larger events, I’m sure.
A clear theme should be selected, and signs should be designed accordingly and collectively approved. The theme should be something that is easily understood by non-JWs and pulls at their heart strings.
A dress code should allow for the comfort of the protesters, while not detracting from their message before an ultra-conservative audience hung up on dress and grooming.
A wide available, exact time, location, and itinerary would perhaps whet the appetite of those on the fence about attending.
Don’t protest in front of HQ. It’s a waste of time. Print out informative tracts like Watchtowers and blitz Warwick going door to door and inviting other community churches along. That’s a story a newspaper or local news channel can get behind. Encroaching on the JWs’ self-proclaimed trademark might be the only thing that could rile the feathers of the HQ brass.
I also think Morpheus has a great idea. Why not choose a date significant to all JWs that doesn’t require taking a day off work? The first Saturday of October would see a lot more JW traffic and may sow seeds in the mind of some AM attendees.
There’s much more that could be done to legitimize the spectacle, but I really don’t see the current ringleaders whose efforts are counterproductive taking one for the team and stepping aside or allowing for a more democratic approach.