Who Causes Graffiti?
Taggers
Taggers seeking underground recognition and fame cause almost all of the graffiti in Eugene-Springfield. "Tags" take the form of often unreadable words or initials, elaborate designs or bubble-style letters. Tags can derive from a unique name, street name or moniker. Taggers' tools are spray paint, large-tipped pens, devices that etch glass, or adhesive material used to apply tags to a surface. A group of taggers are called a "crew," and a common value among crews is non-conformity to rules or authority. Taggers often refer to themselves as "street artists" or "writers" and to their tags as "art." They don't view their acts as unlawful, believing that tagging is self-expression. However, their acts of vandalism to public and private property add up to thousands of dollars in restoration costs every day.

Gang Graffiti
Graffiti is a gang's means of identifying "turf," proclaiming superiority over other gangs, and issuing challenges and threats to rivals. Unlike tagger graffiti, this type of graffiti will commonly spell out a gang name, their geographic area or a numeric identifier. It can sometimes show an entire list of gang nicknames called a "roll call" or "roster."

Skinhead/Hate Crime Graffiti
Rather than using graffiti to claim turf or intimidate rivals, racist skinheads use graffiti to spread racist and neo-Nazi beliefs. Their intimidation also targets Jews, people of color, gays and lesbians.

Whether it is gang related, hate crime or tagger graffiti, the result is the same: decreased property values, vandalized public assets, and increased fear and anger among residents, business owners and other citizens.

Show All Answers

1. What Is the Law on Graffiti?
2. Who Causes Graffiti?
3. What are the Effects of Graffiti?
4. What is Eugene Doing to Fight Graffiti?
5. How Does Public Works Remove Graffiti?
6. What is the Huckleberry Patrol?
7. What Can I Do About Graffiti?