I will post a few conclusions from my recent experiment about using the fediverse as an organizing medium. Each conclusion will be a separate toot, posted as I figure them out.
This might take a day or three. And then that will be the end of my planned experiment.
I spent a week in Karrot. Didn't have anybody I work with there, so the experience was limited, but it seemed ok and @nicksellen is serious.
One diff between me and maybe everybody I talk to about these issues, especially @mike_hales , is I am on the scent of integrated information and want to see how it can happen and what it can enable. And I could always be wrong. But I think Mike's pal Ward Cunningham is pursuing the same scent...
@organizingInFedi will only boost your posts with group hashtags if you are following that group. Or at least that's how I think it works...
I visited Karrot but had a strong sense that, whatever it is for, it's something that I don't have a lot of interest in. Some kind of chatting gossip ad hoc match making? Something somehow different from my own sense of what *organising* is. Something 'values based' or some club?
Odd I should say that, having just spent a month in a dating site, and found an absolute perfect companion! But then, I was conducting a campaign, not just wanting to chat!
If you were not either part of those networks or at least in their geographical region, it might not have been so compelling.
@mike_hales can I check you're referring the Karrot that is accessible at https://karrot.world ? I can't relate to your description very easily, so firstly I actually wonder if it's a different thing entirely you came across! If it is the same Karrot, then I'd be very interested to hear what gave you that impression? Thanks!
Hi Nick, yes that was the instance.
I think the thing is, what I saw in Karrot seemed to be groups and individuals wanting to hook up with kindred spirits, kind-of 'affinity group' fashion. And this didn't resonate with me, as something I would want to be doing as an organiser. 'Too open'?
Righly or mistakenly, I think it triggered feelings I have about some green networks, or 'transition' networks, where there may be a search for friends and moral kinship, while failing to engage with some brutalities or complexities of aligning action across fierlds that don't necessarily engage easily with each other. This is a stereotype I'm sure, but I've seen instances.
One more para . .
I guess I feel that 'anything goes' openness of exchange is probably not productive, and some moderately sharp focus is called for, to justify infrastructure effort. A contradiction! But there's a difference between a movement organisation and a free market in conversations loosely organised by 'shared values'. Social media can do THAT (at a cost).
@mike_hales to my mind, we exactly focus on many of your critiques of the green networks :) ...
It's not primarily a chat platform, but a more-specific-organising tool, "who is going to do what when", accountability around that, democratic agreement features, conflict resolution, roles, understanding how people come in/leave the group, become responsible, step back...
We're evolving an understanding of how groups can organise in a commons/democratic way.
@mike_hales it might be that the time you spent in Karrot was in the "meta" groups, which perhaps are people who are exploring and networking around ideas and this kinship thing?
But the actual groups themselves are often doing some very effective commons resource organising, of which Karrot is just one tool available they might use.
@mike_hales I think we might need to grow towards the friends/kinship aspect, as an important part of the wider network. The pathway between that and focused organising is an important bit to understand.
What can happen is groups organise on general purpose chat platforms, and if they want to organise more specifically, they move to corporate/domination-based tooling that does not embody their values.
That's what we try to be an alternative for.
@mike_hales one aspect I increasingly feel is to not put my longing for our salvation in the tooling (or any one thing). The transition into another way is a deep process, and I want to avoid the sense that if we make Just The Right Tool that it will lead us there :)
There is a lot of learning we've got from how the groups use Karrot, which isn't visible externally as much as would be nice, although we're hoping to get some of that work supported one day.
@mike_hales I'm not actually far from Brighton now, so in the spirit of hooking up with a kindred spirit, I would cycle that way and suggest to hang out and chat more about this, but alas my route/schedule will take me up to London instead.
Hope that gives a bit more help/understanding/context!
It would be great to meet and chat. When you can land in Brighton (or some place within say 10 miles). Meanwhile, it's good to have provoked your further ifnromation and reflection, thanks.
Yes, I think I was in the meta levels, and didn't commit a lot of time to discovering the scope of what's being done in Karrot.
The thing about 'Salvation thro Just the Right Tool' is very familiar. We face it in meet.coop too.
Regarding how groups use the platform, we've now embarked on our programme, commons.hour. We reckon on a year, before we might be in a position to really make a proper relationship between devs/admins and users, and really facilitate our users commitments.
I could see that live organizations doing collaborative work were using Karrot for some coordination.
I was just not part of any of those orgs. If I had been, I would have gotten much more of the experience.
The orgs seemed to be local to some place. We are talking to some local groups about some organizing and may get our own experience some time soonish. Will probably try Bonfire because we want federation, but Karrot could be in the running.
Our next work is to look at "breaking the silo", understanding they are not closed groups of specific people, but in a wider network, with fluid, permeable boundaries between "in" and "out".
The fedi potentially supports that, but the people are on Telegram/WhatsApp. I like the idea of public shareable links for more open access (like etherpads and jitsi use).
I''m done with my experiment altho I am still thinking about conclusions and may add another toot or three.
So I could attend the social.coop happy hour you have in mind, especially if we do one of those doodles or something to arrange a date and time.
> Is there a use case you can describe in which this type of functionality would be applicable?
1. I want to try to use the fediverse to do some organizing where we live.
That example continues in the next toot...
Which got me thinking, how can fedi be improved so that such activities can be coordinated here?
Wasn't there some rumors /news about Discourse connecting to the fediverse? That could make a difference (to me, anyway).
I'm shooting for integrated information. I can tell sad stories when it ain't. And happy stories when it is.
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