The Fourth Estates

We need to do better. In the battle of open vs closed we failed as much as they won. We have power over OUR own failer we only have liberal wish fulfilment over THEIR control.

Key areas I am thinking and acting on:

* horizontalish “governances” process and coding to make this real.
* openmedia based on “trust” rather than power and scarcity and the coding to make this real.

Worth thinking about this old issue https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fourth_Estate as it illustrates our current problems.

The clergy, the nobility, the commoners and the press

* Yes do worship the #deathcult, so religion is still a social force and the economists are the priests and “sound money” the offering.

* The nobility are the increasing divide between the rich and the poor, they are rooted to capital and fame – rather than land and titals.

* The “commoners” are us.

UPDATE

We live in oligarchy.

“Democracy arose from the idea that those who are equal in any respect are equal absolutely. All are alike free, therefore they claim that all are free absolutely… The next is when the democrats, on the grounds that they are all equal, claim equal participation in everything.

It is accepted as democratic when public offices are allocated by lot; and as oligarchic when they are filled by election.”

The “liberal fig leaf” we put in front of our opensource foundations will fall off the first time the wind blows.

Yes it is easy to run down this hill, yes you can force this into place, few people will try and stop you.

But before you do this please think – Do we in the #fedivers want to live in oligarchy or are we actually building something different.

We need to think about this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Governance

The fedivers – We need to now not fight like we always do

Let’s look at tech politics for a moment, all technology is based on political and economic assumptions.

The fedivers is born outa “stupid” anarchism

There are a crew pushing for cooperative socialism

The is the #mainstreaming of common-sense capitalism

We have our athoratern side but it has little focus

All of human history has been mediated by struggle around these issues. And what is happening now has a long inhumane history, look back to the Spanish Civil War for an easy-to-understand example.

We keep making HORRIBLE mistakes.

The #fedivers in its decentralization is at its roots an anarchist project, yes we have our remnants of feudalism in ???? As king and a few growing “influencers” princes. What we do not currently have is strong socialist roots, just the crew and structures around #activertypub which touches on socialism and capitalism with a anarchist undercurrent.

We need to now not fight like we always do http://hamishcampbell.com/?s=process and look with open eyes at what to build from. The first #ESF article is a good example of the mess we could be heading for.

That would be a battle worth of a saga

Challenges the #fedivers faces and were next.

The #twitter #bluesky thing comes from #blockchain crap – but don’t think it will end there – they will likely come up with a “new” standard that will #fashernista flash then promptly be forgotten.

Would be interesting if they tried to colonize #activertypub we would see a wholesale selling out balanced with a community fightback – think the selling out would win, but this would kill the value in the standard, so everyone would lose. If #bluesky and the #dotcons go for #activertypub and the community wins the fight for the standard in long bloody trench warfare vs the #fahernista sell outs funded by the #dotcons then you see the possibility of real social change.

That would be a battle worth of a saga and a story to tell your grandchildren siting in front of the camp fire.

“When you are old and grey and full of sleep,
And nodding by the fire, take down this book,
And slowly read…”

If you want to have a hope of having a good outcome with a CONTROL battle with the #dotcons you need to build structures that are attractive we have this with #activertypub AND they must have no hard structures that can be captured to take CONTROL, this is counterintuitive as people feel they need harder structures to stop capture. This feeling is obviously a trap and needs to be strongly mediated 🙂

I start outlining a workable path to think about with a good outcome in mind http://hamishcampbell.com/index.php/2021/03/13/bluesky-thinking-of-a-governance-body-of-the-fedivers/

Censorship on the fedivers is different to censorship on the #dotcons

A lot of people talk about censorship on the #fedivers without much understanding how this is different to censorship on the #dotcons The fedivers instances voluntary federate to other instances of the fedivers, its part of the open network that you can choose not to federate with some instances. This is not censorship as each instance has its own TOS and ethos and is happy to share information with other instances that share this world-view and not to share federation with instance that don’t, this is the point of a voluntary network.

Users who do not feel happy with the instance they are on can simply move to an instance that shares their world view. The is no “censorship” in the American sense of blocking #freespeech the reposabilerty is placed onto the user to find a place where their speech fits. If they cannot find such a place they have the freedom to set up their own place. Then instance can choose if they will federate with them or not.

It’s kinda annoying that the #rightwing #trolls and the “progressive” conspiracy crew CRY #censorship without this understanding as it take up space and focus. I mostly just end up blocking them or de-federating from their instance if they cannot understand and keep throwing shit thinking into my spaces. On the #openweb its simple don’t be a troll please.

Bluesky thinking of a “governance” body of the fedivers

“A resource arrangement that works in practice can work in theory”

What exists already?

The is a pretty sorted #activitypub crew, then some organizing sites/forums, the yearly conference. MOST importantly some “kings”, “princes” a bit of a tech/influencer aristocracy who currently hold much of the “power”.

Where do we go from here?

On online “governing body” to be a VOICE for the #fedivers – all done #4opens in social code:

For background on this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sortition

We have a yearly voting/consensus (online) body made up of “stakeholders”

Who are the bulk stakeholders-representatives:

  • One voice one instance – if you run an instance you get a vote – put the URL in as long as it’s online last year your vote counts.
  • The is then an equal/matching number of votes based on a “user” lottery – have to opt in by adding your account name. This is refreshed every year.

Then we have other more “affiliate” stakeholders that have to be “ratified” through the body

  • Codebases – could be factored by installed based on instance registered above. Over a basic threshold and the body agrees.
  • fedivers events – any group that regularly runs events gets a “stakeholder” vote based on them doing it last year. If the body agrees to this.
  • fedivers support organizations get a vote if the body agrees to this.
  • activitypub standards crew – get votes through all the rest and can have a vote as a  founding fedivers org.

Groups and individuals could get more than one vote – which is fine.

This would give us

A representative “stakeholder” body that could accept proposals and make decisions.

How would the body work?

#techshit all ready has way to much LOOK at ME look AT me. I don’t like competitive elections as the shit float to the top

Let’s do a LOTTERY- from these “voters” that makes up the body a lottery decides 3-5 as #spokespeople then leave um to get on with it. There is a tick box to opt out of being in the “spokespeople” lottery, so you have too wont to do the extra work if you don’t want to, its opt out rather than opt in – this is important.

They have the power to speak for the body and thus the #fedivers and can make policy decisions on consensus minus one process. Or put policy directly to the body to be voted (majority vote) on by the stakeholders.  (of course they would be subject to recall/impeachment if they fuckup too much, say proposal and 2/3 vote of the body)

Levels of “voice” anyone with an #activertpub account can put in a public proposal to be voted on by the stakeholders – if it jumps that hoop then it can be edited/pushed by an open group of stakeholders though a semiformal #4opens online process to jump to an agreement. Agreements are acted on by the “spokespeople” up to them to take these ideas forward? If non are interested better luck next year with your agender and new spokes people.

Q. what dose digital online Community “democracy” look like

If it does not have elephants running around throwing paper planes it’s likely the wrong structure.

NOTE: of course these alt-ideas have been tried in the offline world, and they generally DO NOT work. But this is no reason to go down the dead end of “liberal” foundation governances that also does not work. People are trying these ideas in Citizens’ assemblies so no issue not to try them online.

Lotteries take the “power” out of power politics… likely worth an experiment.

Compost and shovels are needed.

The power of the voice

  1. User proposals are excepted by anyone who has an activertypub account- just an idea – this can become a group.
  2. User groups – a part of the process, these come from ideas getting a level of support of the stakeholders.
  3. User agreements come out of groups these can then be enacted by the spokes people if they are interested.
  4. Spokes people can start groups to reach agreements and can enact agreements.
  5. Consensus of spokes people (-1) makes agreements body wide.

What are the risks:

* need basic security and checks – to see if an instance still exists and is real. If a member account is actively posting or a pulpit – all of this can be done with flagging some of them by code some by people – flags stuff goes to the “security group”

* Groups can be captured by agenders – being open to all stakeholder members mediates this – we solve swamping by having a dynamic short non-voting time based on the number of new members in the group.

* Bad group of spokes people, it’s a lottery, it’s up to the groups to influence and as a last resort “impeach” if one goes a new one is chosen by lottery.

* The actual number of spokes people are dynamic depending on the number of stakeholders but between 3-5 is likely a good number.

UPDATE

  • The body is made up of stakeholder one for each instance – you wont a voice you run an instance and register it. This is clearly the voice of the #Fediverse as they are the people running it.
  • This is then balanced dynamically by the same number of “users” who are interested in the process, they are chosen by lottery from the registered accounts. Your choice to register or not your account as a possable stakeholder.

On registration the is a box you can untick if you do NOT do this then you are in the lottery to get “governing positions” Sortition – Wikipedia for a background on why this path.

Only people who want to be part of the governing body AND play an active role are enrolled in the lottery.

You second point “common voice” comes from the working groups, agen are made up of ONLY people who are interested in playing a role.

“serving the humans trying to communicate.” we get out of the way and let the humans work it out – we provide structer for the groups, we don’t define the groups.

SocialHub though an interesting tool has strong tech aristocracy which is not surprising as this is how almost all open source project run – the fedivers is something different which is why we do so badly at governance. Let’s continue to use the SocialHub for #activertypub organizing and possibly governance though it has no tools that I have found for the governance.

The money is a subject up for discusern, am just using https://opencollective.com as example.

Help would be needed to do the proposal and #UX

UPDATE

The work flow would be:

Sign up for the site, then don’t untick the box for “do work” if you become a “stakeholder” every time a position opens the lottery picks a stakeholder to fill it if it is you and you would like to do the job – get to it. If you do not wont the job then resign and the lottery will pick a new person.

If you are not picked by the lottery for a job opening the is still a meany things you can do as a stakeholder in the groups. If you are not picked as a stakeholder you can still put ideas for the stakeholders to make into group decisions.

The outcome is something much more representative of the #Fediverse than we can currently think about let alone implement.

The is #nothingnew in this idea or implementation, some examples from Wikipedia

Examples

  • Law court juries are formed through sortition in some countries, such as the United States and United Kingdom.
  • Citizens’ assemblies have been used to provide input to policy makers. In 2004, a randomly selected group of citizens in British Columbia convened to propose a new electoral system. This Citizens’ Assembly on Electoral Reform was repeated three years later in Ontario’s citizens’ assembly. However, neither assembly’s recommendations reached the required thresholds for implementation in subsequent referendums.
  • MASS LBP, a Canadian company inspired by the work of the Citizens’ Assemblies on Electoral Reform, has pioneered the use of Citizens’ Reference Panels for addressing a range of policy issues for public sector clients. The Reference Panels use civic lotteries, a modern form of sortition, to randomly select citizen-representatives from the general public.
  • Democracy In Practice, an international organization dedicated to democratic innovation, experimentation and capacity-building, has implemented sortition in schools in Bolivia, replacing student government elections with lotteries.[23]
  • Danish Consensus conferences give ordinary citizens a chance to make their voices heard in debates on public policy. The selection of citizens is not perfectly random, but still aims to be representative.
  • The South Australian Constitutional Convention was a deliberative opinion poll created to consider changes to the state constitution.
  • Private organizations can also use sortition. For example, the Samaritan Ministries health plan sometimes uses a panel of 13 randomly selected members to resolve disputes, which sometimes leads to policy changes.[24]
  • The Amish use sortition applied to a slate of nominees when they select their community leaders. In their process, formal members of the community each register a single private nomination, and candidates with a minimum threshold of nominations then stand for the random selection that follows.[25]
  • Citizens’ Initiative Review at Healthy Democracy uses a sortition based panel of citizen voters to review and comment on ballot initiative measures in the United States. The selection process utilizes random and stratified sampling techniques to create a representative 24-person panel which deliberates in order to evaluate the measure in question.[26]
  • The environmental group Extinction Rebellion has as one of its goals the introduction of a Citizens’ assembly that is given legislative power to make decisions about climate and ecological justice.[1]
  • Following the 1978 Meghalaya Legislative Assembly election, due to disagreements amongst the parties of the governing coalition, the Chief Minister’s position was chosen by drawing lots.[27]

“blue sky thinking”

UPDATE

Some stats

population ~ 4.152.753 accounts

active users ~ 1.192.023people

servers > 6.828 instances

Let’s be optimistic and say half the instances signed up that would be over 3000 instances stakeholders and thus 3000 user stakeholders for a total of 6000 and a number from affiliate groups. This number is likely too much, so we can put a limit to 100 chosen by lottery from the stakeholders instances, this is then matched by 100 from the user stakeholders for 200 stakeholders + 5-10 affiliates it’s up to the admin group to choice the right number to build a working community, if you don’t have enough good workers open the pool up if the is to much dicushern close the pool down, try different approaches.

UPDATE

Looking at this in conversation it becomes clear it is a 3 way split of stakolder groups: instances/users/builders&supporters with the last group in big groups could be the size of the others so just to higlight they would be treted in exactly the same way if they are over the number of the body then they would be chosen by lottery just like the others.

 

External discuern

https://socialhub.activitypub.rocks/t/organizing-for-socialhub-community-empowerment/1529

https://socialhub.activitypub.rocks/t/what-would-a-fediverse-governance-body-look-like/1497/2

 

Doesn’t OMN need to fit into some economic relationships?

The big #fedivers is run in the voluntarist economic model of patron and donations to cover basic costs. The technical federation allows this to happen at a humane scale. This was how #indymedia was run for 10 years – not without stresses that we do need to mediate. at the #OMN we have seed funding for 3-4 years and looking for sustainability here.

We are building “grassroots” at #OMN the is a role for #mainstreaming journalism and media. Projects like @novaramedia etc. they can be funded in different ways. Diversity is always a good thing, its were real humane power lays.

Let’s talk about the journalism

How do we move the #indymediaback project forward.

let’s start with history. The editorial workflow of #OMN is based on #indymediaback which is based on basic grassroots journalism growing from radical anarchist traditions.

The newswire is made up of original content published to the site and aggregated flows from a trust network of #4opens sites built out of a community of interest/affinity groups.

Using the #5W and #4opens we start the step away from “post truth” by grounding this flow in a community of action bounded by physical locations.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_Ws

The “news” value of “this happened” Who, What, When, Where, Why.

From this a feature flow is built by the core affinity group to show the #5W storeys from different views as a “consensuses” centre column articles.

These articles are then aggregated to other subject/geographic instances newswires.

In this the small streams/flows build a strong river of “social truth” that feeds into seeding a more humane world.

The wider #OMN network, using the fresh newswire and aggregated features to build wider features – these “social truth” networks links the humane world from a grounded real grassroots action/communities.

We build society from the bootem up rather than the old top down of #traditionalmedia/governances.

This itself shifts and moves solutions by aggregation and drives social economics to #4opens humane agender. In the end we play/build a new more humane/ecological world.

To move this part of the project on:

We need “news” a flow of subject/geographic 5W newswire posts on the 3 test instances – then we need to cross-link these by turning the instance based flows into feature articles.

These are aggregated across to the other instances and pushed out to the #fedivers for comments and feedback which then flows back into the #indymediaback instances to the newswire. This new flow needs to be cross-linked into articles, all linking back to the source.

From this we can flesh out the training resources and start the outreach of the project properly, build the power of different voices.

 

Churning of pointless tech projects

Almost everything made in alt-radical tech is obviously pointless and only feeds #fahernista churn.
Why #indymediaback is not a pointless radical tech project.
#nothingnew mediates the churning of pointless tech projects by building things that already work.
In the #fedivers we use this tradition to replace existing #dotcons projects as new #openweb projects
This replicating the #dotcons with #openweb versions has its limits. All code is “ideology” so bringing in the #deathcult to the #openweb by direct copying has its own issues to work through.
We mediate this problem by recreating a widely used radical tech project #indymedia with good existing workflow and embedded in wide radical social networks/agreements.
The value balance in #indymediaback is not in the tech though that is needed. It’s in the #nothingnew social side of the project, without this continuity we have a pointless tech project.

Food for thought.

The #geekproblem is not actually interested in the #openweb as a human value network. Instead, they often feed off the current mess in different unhealthy ways. Feeding off the dying #openweb is bowing down to the #deathcult

Looked at it this way the need for change becomes more obvuse and active carrot and stick work important.

The #OMN is a shovel to compost this inhuman mess.

The banning of trump and gab on #dotcons

We are talking on the #openweb about what to do with the waves of shit that will flow onto our projects from the perging of the far right in the #dotcons
We have widely spread moderation – the instances with committed crews will grow and the ones with flaky mods or large number of users and few mods will be swamped. This is a normal outcome, we can help to mediate this by brining in more mods into the instances we care about and value.
Having clear communication tools for mods to support each other will help, would setup chat rooms and maybe start a BBB weekly meeting for sysadmins and mods to compare notes and best practice.
The tools to solve this wave are human, we need to build “trust” links that bring the “good” #fedivers together, so it is strong anufe to shead off the shit, in this, shit makes good compost, lets take this time to plant flowers and grow vegetables.