In my expirence the flowering of the indymedia networks followed by the first years of climatecamp were the high points of activist culture. The end of climate camp was the low point of activist culture, after this the drift to NGO and fashion was wide and dissipating.
Occupy was a break in activist culture, it was the first mass “internet first” on the ground manifestation that happened disconnected to the past of activism because of the use of #dotcons tools as prime organising space. The old couture has been discredited by the failings of climate camp, the new dotcon tools had been celebrated and used well by Ukuncut etal. Were Ukuncut was a reboot of old climate camp crew, Occupy was a project of the #failbook generation in all its wide reflective madness.
Were are we now? The old left is rebooting with a broken mix of the blairite right and the Stalinist/toxic left both pulling at the radical liberal centre. Alt media content is being rebooted but the network it needs to build, to stop its drift to NGO burn out is missing. The right is ideologically bankrupt and visibly grasping, but stronger than ever.
In activism currently we are full of the biter taste of occupy and NGO worshipping of dotcoms and careerism. The working of the 21st century is potentially different to the workings of the 20th century the are groups, networks and individuals that embody this and a larger group/individuals who fight for the past century working practices.
The “certainties of the 20th century” are grasped in our frail and trembling hands, the first stage of a “network” reboot is to let go of these “certainties” one constructive path to this is to fill in the gaping activist memory hole by looking at what works and what dose not. The lost and flailing progressive alt needs foundations bridging this gap to build on.
The IS NO SHORT TERMISM HERE but the is speed and nimbleness, plenty of fun, creative motivated building to be done. Many of the foundation problems can be built in parallel as a “network” so it can happen faster than most can imagine.
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”
Am currently working on two projects to take steps to medate the issues I ouline here:
A DRAFT (copy and paest of a chat useing realmedia as an example)
this needs a edit for sense, but my back ach dusent alow this so out it goes
We need an Executive summery of why visionontv failed.
- we didn’t de-brand fast anufe
- we went nimble anufe to be relaverent.
its going to be a struggle to reboot grassroots media with out highlighting both of these
its fine for brands to be "periphery"
the is no excuse for lack of nimbleness.
We built generations of p2p tech against the flow of failbook and its activist NGO takeup.
Now - we can only aggregate YouTube videos
yes but that's ok, in the interim, As our tools are broken
If we could spread the realmedia WP install up this would be easer to explain the p2p side of OMN
With out working tools - we can only build proxy sites to hold space.
Youtube play's list are one
Q. The question is: what can people do NOW
Its a chicken and egg - we have to use the tools we have while making clear the tools we need.
Yes YT embeds are a tool we have – Q. but they should not be attached to the 1400 video account of a particular media project
A. Get embeds from the visionOntv noid of the OMN with an explanation why is far from perfect.
Q. it looks like we're doing it to promote our work?
OK this is interesting
we're not, but that's what it looks like
need to avoid the whole branding thing for this
in terms of the interface, what's the difference between an embedder (of an aggregator) and an aggregator - is it a completely different UI or a different use of the same UI
Q2: If I as an aggregator like RealMedia's agregation, it would be natural to merge the two - or why don't I just add to RealMedia's? In other words, isn't there a desirable and natural tendency towards centralisation?
Other way up - as an aggregator, I like RealMedia's aggregation, minus their videos about endangered animals, so I take those tags out, and become a subset
Then I add a few tags which I think are missing, creating a new and I think better aggregator
but Real Media has a publicity budget, so no one knows about mine....
etc etc etc
Yep to last one, you can create a new aggregated but each stage in the line adds a delay. So Realmedia embeds will update before your one.
Its also based on trust - which you gain by doing.
Why trust a site that is slow and dues not add anything
The can be a badging syteam
I am adding stuff - taking away dross IMHO and adding content
Our site has 233 embeds, imports 124 feeds and exports 23 feeds etc
why don't we have mother ship that any aggregator has access to?
The new site will have lots of low numbers.
But the same content, 10-20 min to a few hours later.
Q. so the first and biggest always wins?
Only if the put huge amounts of real value into tageing and moderating.
Which had s work. With out that a smaller sight will be faster and better.
why wouldn't i want to better use my time by helping RealMedia's or mother ship's aggregation rather than creating my own?
You can - the is a tendency to specialise thus the will always be a better site than general news sites if you are pashernate (and peopulr who put the work into aggregation will be pashernste)
So Realmedia will likely stay a nich site for its subject - I can't read it for example.
but why don't people build their aggregation inside another aggregator?
The OMN has a "market" mechanism of checks and balances built in. Will be very hard to stop geeks "improving" these out...
If the aggregate allows it users (embeds) to retage with no or fast moderation then you can build a aggreater inside an aggreater. Just like we can post our stuff to failbook and theurtube.
If your passionate build your own.
The is a server/bandwidth/moderation cost for every RSS feed you add.
Q. archive.org has a centre - how is OMN different from that plus some aggregation tols?
so it's about shared cost
And trust and shared passion - the whole is bigger than the parts.
Its a leep for the verticals... Thus the resistance.
Like the open internet
"a leap for the verticals" - Im clearly trying to establish "a leap into what exactly?"
(btw i find realmedia's content incredibly dull as well!) but i was hyposthetising
ok im going to assume for now that this can't be explained
This n the 4 opens...
Which is the opens that the regional internet was built on
Portals are pre web.
Pre web is a failed strategy...
no one is thinking pre-web
Q. ok the data soup - stuff gets in there by api?
so it's add your stuff, and get the ability to filter out other peoples'
ok the aggregator closest to source is best....
closest to the general soup
Have been thinking about this
People think the is a centre yo the OMN that will look after things. The is none.
You are Completely responsible for who you link to and the data. The is no centre to take care of you or this.
The is massive redundant linking and data storage.
The is roll-back if things go wrong
You can put a feed on moderation if you aren't sure. But this will increase your workload and slow your updates so better to be sure.
Its a trust network.
Trust and risk are yours. The is no centre to meditate this trust
If you can't build trust then you will have a uphill struggle making aggregation work for your media project.
This is the hard jump for verticals.
Imperfection - is. Roll back in a complete failer or retag for a miss step.
Things happen you react to them. Rather than you reside first before things happen.
Its the original IMC of publish then moderate.
Of courses "verticals" can still use it, but they will be slow and plodding.
Just put everything on "moderation" and don't trust.
Or if your sensible a mixture of the two.
A good site will link well and let the data flow. Tweaking here or their. Unlinking if trust is broken and not addressed.
I find it hard to understand the verticality view point thus dearly directly address it.
Hope the helps, interesting for me to glimps the vertical view
To recap verticals can and will play a roll in the OMN but the exciting sites will be the ones that let the data flow through good linking based on trust.
The latency of layers of aggregation will push sites to specialise in subject - the best sites will be a group of trusting focused sites that each specialise.
Feeding a trusted middle site.
Top sites are easy to build but very hard to add value.
Bottom subject sites are harder to build and add a lot of value.
Easy to add value.
The latency is important as its the driving force to link to the site closed to the bottom you can trust
You can have a easy to site that has perfect content but is late to update.
Or you can have a fast updating middle site on a subject.
I would look more at middle sites
My mum would look at a top site.
So to recap the skill in running an aggreater is to link as close to the bottom as you can trust. For you core news feeds then maybe get tag based feeds off middle sites to widen your coverage into full news feed.
A valence of building trust/handling/moderation.
Archive.org is a top down categorisation of knowledge in a signal place. The is little flow.
It has no need for trust
Its an archive not a news site.
Do you rember the crap conversations we had about the hive website were they got rid if the network and whent vsck to a signal site. That's archive.org were is the value of a network, its hard for verticals to see.
On the subject of the OMN YouTube account - somebody would be responsible.
Q. With your top, middle and bottom sites, you're implying a topography, which can be drawn as a graphic, presumably
It's a hierarchy, without value attached to different ranks - hmmm
Yep the value is nebulous, just like the original internet nobody thought it would work because it had NI identity, no security and was completely based on open trust
Much like early indymedia
You could explain the projecting a way that verticals will understand. With moderation though out ect.
No centre/nobody responsible/built on trust
Its a good idea that's needed and will likely work well
Its hard to understand that the OMN is just open standards... Everything eles is up to the users/producers. The OMN dose/is nothing.
The outcome is a framework for linking, taging and outreach.
The framework is just structure, no content.
Q. so where is the content soup?
Yes it shapes how people cooperate. It Push greed and selfishness to the edges as much as it can
Q. what does?
The framework bounded by the 4 opens.
Its stored across hundreds of sites around the work, its backed up in many university's, archives and on your local hard rive if you wont it.
World (thousand, hundreds of thousands) and some one in this will keep a surviving backup. Thus nobody is responsible to do it. Though they can and will because that us what some people do
Couldn't be simpler
Has complex outcomes though...
Just like the internet.
Torrents already do this to an extent. But as the content is mostly stolen nobody keeps it.
Thus is fades.
This is of courses the text content and meta data. The video/audio/images
Would be more complex, a bit more "centralised" but still completely diy.
Can boot strap by yseing wikicomns and aracive.org so can be put to back of mind for s year or two.
Because storing lots of text in a database is easy. Big media needs more work.
Not impossible but hard to boot up the project and deal with it in the same diy way.
So aggregation is text and meta data. Media is still stored on original servers. Can build sine simplistic caching in to keep it running and scaling at boot up as needed.
That become a issue if we are very successful, nice problem to have.
Media storage of video/audio/images are left "more centralised" in partner silos - wikicomes/archive. Just to start otherwise we gave bug technical issues of scaling at the front end.
Keep it KISS
For example archive can seed torrents so can be the bases if torrent streaming. But that's later. Just use youtuve vimio embeds to kuckstat. Don't make people jump to meany hoop to soon. And all thus stuff can run in parreral anyway.
OMN is much less centralised than torrents. But we keep media in cirpurate silies and friendly NGOs to help boot up.
In that the media will be more "centralised" than torrents
Can do torrents at the same time but s distraction for me.
This idea is based on computers and storage getting cheaper each year so people can host big databases. This is what's happening.
Thinking. The most underplayed part of the OMN is the 4 opens...
The rest is just KISS RSS aggregation
Q. How do you stop porn appearing on your site. You link to a site you trustvnot to put porn on your site
Hard sell... But visionOntv has and real media have both proven it can be done etc.
Planing a trip - On Sunday.
Forcast is - Fog clears 9-10am some mist 11 low wind
low tide at Sheerness 9.36am
- we should leave 30-60 min before low tide to clearer the Medway.
High tide at London bridge 15.19
- best to arrive before the tide turns
This gives us 7 hours which should be fine no rush.
We will have to leave between 8-9am earlier better so we ain’t rushing at the other end. So the first hour or two might be in mist or fog (not good) we can navigate fine by GPS and the radar reflector will make us visible to other boats but we are limated to AIS to see them. We can use the GPS to stay at the edge of the shipping lanes.
Talked to the harber master and the local marien police they both think we will be fine if we stick to the edge of the shiping lanes.
We are booked into Bow Lock between 3-4pm
TODO in the morning for the trip
* mount radar reflector on the roof
* Tie down solar panels
* check anchor chain rope is untangled
* shorten flue
* check tie down wood on roof
* wipe windows
* ratchet stove in place
* train crew in roles and equipment
* lifejackit and man overboard
* pump bilges (done)
We started the trip on time in heavy fog, navigating by GPS and AIS was fine. though when we got into open water we had a fog related navigation panic and found our self doing loops before we realised this.
As the day went on the fog did not clear, come 12.00 we started to worry, agreed to drop the anchor just before Canvey island and wait for it to clear. Called VTS to tell um we were anchor, they had been watching us on radar good to know the radar reflector was working.
An hour later still no sign of it clearing we had to make a decision to push on or stay anchored. The further we went in land the more chance the was that the fog would clear so in the end we tried to pulled the anchor up, It was stuck, after tiring a few times we shortened and re-tied the anchor rope so that it was near vertical then gently powered over the anchor to free it, this worked with out fouling the prop.
We gave the job of steering to a boater who hadn’t had a go yet so that he could get used to it before the channel narrowed. he lost control I had to take over after circling 5-6 time and it took me 5 minutes to bring the boat back on courses. Its hard to navigate/steer a courses with no visibility, you soon learn to steer by compass Bering.
Called VTS to tell them the situation they were helpful with radar directions, at one point they called us to tell us we were heading starate for a line of groween - that soon loomed out of the mist as we turned away from them.
We headed out more into the centre of the channel using AIS to tell us when a big ship was coming past, we would scoot as far as we could into the side. the biggest one came up behind, was a 33,000 ton bulk carrier, its fog horn BUMING lowed behind us was disconcerting - when it finally went past we were hit by 5-6 2M waves from it's wake that made the boat jump and everything crash about inside, no harm done.
It was nearing 3.00pm and the turning of the tide, we would have already missed the tide window for Bow Lock that we had booked so called CRT to cancel it. Limehouse lock was closing at 4.30 so it was looking like we could not make that one. If we continued past the tide turning we would be lucky to make 2-3 knots punching the tide so decided to drop anchor agen just past Deapford Creek. On the map the was a anchor point there.
Making sure the were no big boats on the AIS we crossed the channel to find comeing out of the fog a line of yachts anchored up there with 3 empty buoys on the end we missed the first and tied up to the second, that was us for the night.
In the morning the fog still had not cleared so we waited for the tide to turn at 12.00, past 11.00 the fog started to lift, we slipped the line for the buoy and it was easy the rest of the way to Limehouse in light mist.
DRAFT (needs links)
Many boat navigation tools for coastal cruising are available as smart phone apps and laptop programs.
OpenCPN gives you a large screen navagation map with live GPS location and heading of your boat.
BTGPS sends the smart phone GPS location to the laptop map in OpenCPN
Speedview give a live speed over water view, useful for an idea how well you are doing against tides and wind
Findship gives a live updating map of AIS a internet radar like location and heading and speed of big ships around you.
Anchor lite is an GPS alarm to tell you if your anchor is dragging.
Tide Times gives you a local high and low tide time to plan your coastal trip
BBC weather gives you a 7 day weather forecast with wind speed/rain/fog. If in doubt I use a number of sources to back this up.
Open data – is the basic part of the project https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_data with out this open it cannot work.
Open source – as in “free software” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_software this keeps development healthy by increasing interconnectedness and bringing in serendipity. The Open licences are the “lock” that keep the first two in place, what we have ain’t perfect but they expand the area of “trust” that the project needs to work, creative commons would be the start here.
Open “industrial” standards – this is a little understand but core open, its what the open internet and WWW are built from. Here is an outline https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_standard
Open process – this is the most “nebulous” part, examples of the work flow would be wikis and activity streams. The project is built on linking trust networks so open process is the “glue” that binds the links together. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Process
This is the first stage of the Open Blogging Network. Currently you have to have a blog on the OMN server, but a bit of programming will enable any blog (vier a RSS feed) to be a part of the network.
Don't be a spectator, be part of the conversation. If you post to your blog on your public page, it is automatically syndicated out to twitter, facebook, and any sites that embed the news aggregator. Just add the relevant tag when you publish (such as frontpage, grassroots, globalviews, friendlyfire, plugandplay, headmix).
Matthew Paul Foster