Just started thinking about cooperatives I'd like to start or have already tried to start IRL and it made me very sad. I've tried…

Bike Shop
DIY Garage
Coffee Shop
Wireless ISP
Hackerspace
Truck share
Bike share
Outdoor gear share
Land share
Community garden

With 0 success. I think the problem with community run organizations is that you have to already have a community, or have some way of reaching a large audience in your local area. How do you actually find people?

It probably doesn't help that I live in a very suburban area and the only way any of my neighbors communicate is with Facebook and the very idea of signing up for any social media again fills me with anxiety.

Follow

On the plus side, various platform/online-only co-ops I've tried to start are chugging along at the impossibly slow pace of most co-ops I've ever been a member of, so maybe one day they'll actually be functional. Just to continue the list, those are:

Instant Messaging
Code hosting
Tech freelancing / consulting
Various cooperative software projects

@sam People who start co-ops are “community people” who see a shared unmet need and maybe a business-based solution organize around meeting it. Mostly on a volunteer basis. People who organize “regular” platform businesses are friggin barracudas with very specialized management and/or technical skills who will just short of kill to meet their financial goals.

@beckett by platform I mean platform co-ops like social.coop, but yah, I'm with you in general. Sadly, I apparently have no idea how to do either.

@sam I think your call on the countervailing forces is on the mark.

@sam There is a reason new stuff often starts in cities. Density really helps finding a critical mass of an initially obscure idea.

Maybe that can change now with social media and the like. But if the coop idea is for a physical location, it will probably require first building a large local/regional network. Or find a digital coop idea.

On the plus side, co-ops are not just slow to start. (They have so many relationships to spell-out in contracts). They are also more conservative with financial risk, and less likely to fold in a crisis. For example, see reports on credit unions weathering the 2008 stock-market collapse. @sam #coop #finance

Sign in to participate in the conversation
social.coop

The social network of the future: No ads, no corporate surveillance, ethical design, and decentralization! Own your data with Mastodon!