It's a long story, but in Spain the occupations came long before the recent mass demonstrations. Today, following the protests last week, los indignados in Madrid and Barcelona have resumed occupying buildings as "hotels" for evicted people. In the words of Isaachacksimov: the hotels are "200 stars, free and include controversy."
Here's a rough translation of an excerpt from El Pais.
Two occupied buildings,one in Madrid and another in Barcelona, remain as a legacy of the great mobilization that took to the streets Saturday to tens of thousands of people brought together by the 15 of May movement. Near the Puerta del Sol, in a old hotel, the indignants yesterday debated how to use the building: assembly-space, shelter, hospice, home of Cuban dissidents camped outside the Foreign Ministry or simply as a social center. Or all at once. ....
For hours the issue was addressed in assembly. "It should be clear that the occupation is temporary," one speaker, a member of the 15-M, said with a megaphone. The veteran "indignado" explained that the first 48 hours of an occupation are the most important, because that's when the police can carry out an eviction without court approval.
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As I post this, the police have arrived at "Hotel Madrid" in an attempt to remove those who've occupyied the place. From the standpoint of "los indignados," confrontations of this kind are useful to the influence of the larger movement, revealing the injustices of the current social, economic and political system.
For those curious, here's a recent picture of Isaachacksimov.