Ming the Mechanic:

The NewsLog of Flemming Funch
 Disappearing2002-05-01 14:44
by Flemming Funch

Well, I was really planning on starting to point my newslog outwards, to the rest of the world, rather than talking about internal NCN stuff all the time. But I guess the energy is flowing a little different.

For years I've wondered what kind of role I ought to personally take for NCN that would best help things actually working. Because I noticed early on how I easily became a bottleneck or even an obstacle in making things happen.

It was a big surprise to me at first. The beginning on NCN was a call for a group of people to work together on the problems of the world, creating alternative solutions. I did not at all have in mind that I would be its leader or spokesperson, or that I somehow had to come up with the plan of how it would work. I had no idea how to do it. I just sort of trusted that the right kind of people would come together, bringing different kinds of expertise.

At first there were no communication mechanism other than a mailing list discussion group. At first that was completely open and anybody could post whatever they wanted to everybody. But after a few horrible flamethrowing matches between people who didn't agree with each other, I made it a moderated list where people sent it through me, and I passed it on to the list, or gathered a few things together and posted them.

But that meant that I obviously became the bottleneck that all of it had to pass through. And I was surprised when it first became obvious that people were waiting for me to sort of come out with the blueprint for what we ought to do. Which was the complete opposite to what I had in mind. I thought the participants would figure out how to come up with something between them. But that didn't happen, except for in a few instances, such as the New Civ Foundation workgroup.

What also happened was that many more "regular" people were joining. That is not meant as an insult to anybody. But the initial few hundred people who joined were mainly people who were quite established visionaries and system thinkers. I.e. people who had written books, who had organizations, who spoke to large groups of people; experts, PhDs, architects, engineers, etc. But gradually more people joined based on, for example, having read Celestine Prophesy, and looking for any kind of positive group out there. And that was often people who join and then want to know: what is the program here, we're ready, what do you want us to do? But who didn't have any particular expertise in designing alternative societies. Very good people, don't get me wrong. But also many of the more established doers started falling off, as they didn't really see any useful collaborations happening.

As to servers and websites, there wasn't any at first. But at some point Max Sandor and I formed the vision that there would be many different nodes that would form the New Civilization Network. Different people in different countries would run different servers, and they would have some mechanism of sharing data between them, and the whole thing would be fault-tolerant and impossible to shut down, because it wasn't centrally controlled by anybody. Max started it off by setting up the first server, which he called "server1" in the expectation that there would be many more. ... But that so far didn't happen, and a few years later Max was tired of maintaining the server, so I took that job over.

And, oh, there are many more details to the story along the way. But today various ideas have coagulated about what NCN IS, which don't really have much to do with what it was intended to be. The people who come to this site probably consider it a monolithic website. A few people think that I'm somehow holding on to a dictatorial control of NCN because I happen to be the webmaster of the one existing NCN website. And various people along the way have accused me of being a bad leader, letting all of these good people down, because I'm not coming up with a common plan for what we're going to do. And various other people have accused me of being a dictator, because I refused to turn NCN into a multi-level marketing scheme, or a paid membership website, or a political lobbying group or something.

There are various faces of NCN. The people who hang out in the mailing list discussion groups don't commingle with the people who come to the member area on the website. And the people who come to my face-to-face events in L.A. usually don't do either.

At any rate, my own aim hasn't really changed. OK, it has maybe shifted from merely calling together a group of people who will change the world, towards trying to find out how such a group can possibly work in a self-organizing way, and what tools need to exist to support it.

Either way, it is completely opposite to my intention if I end up being the perceived authoritarian leader of such a movement. I've worked hard to get out of such a role. And if I had in any way predicted that possibility at all, I would not have suggested NCN in the first place.

So, I'm considering various options for getting myself back to where I was headed.

I'm considering writing myself out of the story. Reconfiguring NCN so that it really is just something you do on your own. Like, if you go and set up a workgroup at Yahoo, you don't spend any energy wondering whether the president of Yahoo is authoritarian or democratic, or whether you think he's such a nice guy, since he let's you do it for free. You just use the facilities and go to work.

And I'm considering working for myself, rather than for what I think people might need or want. It is hard to keep everybody happy, and maybe I should rather concentrate on my own needs. Yes, I know, most people who read this are probably happy with what is here, and very appreciative. Thank you for your support and your love and your participation. But I also get tired of the few, but persistent, people who always seem to be there, who are accusing me of an assortment of evils, since the environment isn't altogether perfect, or I don't let them be part of the NCN government or something.

It is also frustruating to have to pose as the neutral and diplomatic webmaster all the time. OK, I'm naturally fairly diplomatic. But I also have strong opinions about many things, and I have work to do. So, it doesn't entirely work for me to always have to be the friendly, neutral host. And even if I try hard to be that, there will always be some people who will put a lot of weight on little things I say or do, and who will get hurt or angry or disappointed or whatever.

Sometimes it is funny, but in the long run a little tiring, to see what kind of sinister intentions and conspiracies people find in what I do. My nickname "Ming" was originally a joke, to avoid that people tried to abbreviate my name as Flem (Phlegm). So I suggested that if they had to cut short my name, at least they could use the last part of my name instead of the first. But several people seem to think it is because I see myself as a tyranical emperor who's sitting watching the earth on big monitors and plotting evil schemes.

My point here is, I guess, just to express some frustration. To indicate that I sometimes get tired of running into the same walls for years.

I never give up. But I sometimes change my approach or my focus. So I'm saying that I might possibly withdraw from active participation here. I have put an extraordinary effort into particularly this member area for the past year. I might possibly re-think that.

More importantly, I might choose to be more invisible in here, and more visible in other places.

[< Back] [Ming the Mechanic]



1 May 2002 @ 20:41 by bushman : The watchers?
Well I think the NCN is fine , and you should follow your heart, not like I have to tell you that. Everything evolves, we do, what we do, because thats what we do, I spend alot of time in here just reading and watching, if I had a few million to spend , I would buy servers and mirror this site, but all I can do, is what I can do. A tyrant would ban people from the site if they didn't agree with the doctrin, but so far Ive seen only good. I see everyone as equels but I also know the majority has seen more life and lands and way better educations, none of that maters as long as you are doing what you do. Accualy the name Ming would bring you respect and protection, if this was on the old mplayer, lol. Maybe it's time , time to build a colony on real land in real time.
Have you ever read the books of enoch?
Heres another version
the secrets of enoch

1 May 2002 @ 23:38 by b : God bless Ming
God Bless You Ming.  

1 May 2002 @ 23:45 by shawa : For Ming
Thanks for this clarifying post. And you know, some people still won´t understand the situation! As for myself, the way you do things is perfect for the creation of something "new"; it might not be an entire civilization, but it´s certainly carving a new path through the jungle! I would love to do that in Europe (other server?) except I´m a near zero technically speaking. Good parents know that the best is to be behind the scene, and let the kids make their errors, and savour their own victories. I do understand your position, and congratulate you for it. Also - I´ve met a great bunch of people in here, and we´re doing something really worthwhile. In my opinion. We´re learning to be on-line peace makers, world servers, we´re learning communication skills, relationships develop, in just the right way to be of use in the great crisis that the world is going through. Even the "Far West" gives us the opportunity to hone new attitudes, new behaviour, new strategies. I think that some part of NCN is really inventive and creative, and growing. It functions as a mirror, though, you get out of the machine what you put into it. So, that points towards responsibility, response-ability, not just freedom. Thanks again.  

2 May 2002 @ 00:51 by jstarrs : Ming...
...don't feel trapped by your own creation. There's a process here going on and I echo Shakti's comments. I often think how much I/we owe you for this opportunity. I hope it keeps evolving & I hope you'll continue to be part of it, invisble or not.  

2 May 2002 @ 06:24 by shawa : Over at "Shakti Ma´s Diary"...
(an older entry of mine, "Attempt at New Project Flaundered")... there is an extensive discussion that might interest you, dear reader, about the above mentioned subject.  

2 May 2002 @ 10:31 by jazzolog : Branching Out
‘A network is different from a hierarchical structure that has a ruling “station” at the top and a descending series of positions that play increasingly subsidiary roles. In a network, theoretically, you can enter at any nodal point; all locations are equal as far as the potential to “rule” or direct the flow of information.

- Candace Pert - Molecules of Emotion

Thanks to Kay for reminding me of Candace today, over at Brainbow.
There are some tremendously positive aspects to Ming's entry. For one thing, possibly it signifies that NCN has become so big, in population, that it defies the original concept of organization. Who are all these people, and what are they doing here---or not doing here? He also implies that there are areas or connecting tubes to activities that not everyone knows about. How does one get invited to such exclusive doings...or remain content at work without concerning oneself?

Maybe there are 2 branches to the network: the Visionaries and the Regulars. Nothing wrong there, since most large social groups find such self-organizing happen. What seems possible now, however, is developing some kind of link between them...some way of communicating back and forth, when necessary. Is this like the House and the Senate here, or similar bicameral setups in other civilizations? One wants to beware of hierarchy, however, as Dr. Pert defines.  

2 May 2002 @ 12:28 by sharie : Do What You Love...
I respect your work Fleming, and all you've created here for all of us. I encourage you to do whatever you want to do.

When critics lash out at someone's productivity, and you see no validity in their attacks (I can't) then take it as words of encouragement that you're making an impact. It's up to each individual whether your impact is neutral, constructive, or self-destructive.

Thank you for all you've provided for us in this movement toward a new civilization.

with love,

2 May 2002 @ 15:05 by finny : Making a Difference
Perhaps I'm reading between the lines, but the mood I'm getting is frustration about not feeling like you are really making a difference. Perhaps I'm projecting as it is something that haunts me from time to time. The internet is limited, the community it co-creates is a cyber one which is in my mind very different from face to face. NCN is a admirable site, but perhaps what it can achieve is limited to networking, information sharing, conversation, long distance cyber friendships, and the odd visionary group process. Community building and organising activism cannot be done on the Internet alone, there is still the vital need for us to meet face to face in order to meet the challenges of our time. NCN is a vital tool for the bigger picture work. For providing, that I commend you and thank you.  

2 May 2002 @ 15:08 by jazzolog : ATTACKS
Dear Friends,

Please note: for the last several weeks a number of us members have been involved in discussions, sometimes quite heated, here, there and everywhere among the logs and workgroups, about the ongoing of the Network. From time to time, Ming has registered frustration with the arguments and with those of us expressing them. BUT at no time has he ever used the word "attack" to describe what is transpiring. Correct me if I'm wrong. "Attack" changes the atmosphere and attitude of discussion totally. When that word is injected as descriptive of what's going on, a subtle change registers in an undiscerning reader's mind. I believe the writer above of Do What You Love... knows that and uses the word "attack" carefully and accordingly. A few of us have had to become discerning of when she does it, because we learned the hard way. In fact, as I recall, my concerns about conflict resolution and individual representation at NCN all began with her use of that word "attack." "Lash" is another interesting word.

Read carefully and with love,


2 May 2002 @ 15:38 by sharie : feeling love's pain

What I've experienced from a few NCN members feels like attacks. When I first witnessed the attacks, they were being launched at other NCN members, and I avoided the abusive person.

When the hurtful words were directed at me, I experienced them as "bashings" and "insults" and "accusations" that were completely unwarranted. That's how they felt to me. That's my feeling. I'm an emotional and intellectual and spiritual being. When people launch an assault upon me, I feel like I'm under attack. It's painful emotionally, and impacts me physically and mentally. My immune system becomes debilitated, leaving me vulnerable to every micro-organism that decides to eat me alive, so it because excruciatingly painful physically. I'm a whole being. My feelings are not separate from my physical body or from my mind. Some people like to imagine that I shouldn't feel any impact when I'm falsely accused and insulted. They seem to think I have no right to any feelings at all. They think I have some agenda because I express my hurt feelings. They think I'm an ogre and join forces against me - - at least that's what one of them wants me to think.

When I've witnessed other NCN members being insulted, accused, or lashed out at, I feel it just as painfully, and am just as outraged as when they're bashing me.

When I witness verbal abuse or mental abuse or emotional abuse directed at others in public, I feel pain also.

I don't think I'm wrong to empathize with the person being brutalized, and I don't think I'm wrong to be aware of the damage I endure when the abuse is directed at me.

I've never threated to sue anyone here and I've never told anyone to hire a lawyer; I asked the gentleman to no longer concern himself with me. Instead, he has chosen to be obsessed with me for months, he chooses to twist my words, and to imagine he must warn others about how villanous I am.

He's outraged that I have the same rights here as everyone else.

Yes, many people have been raised to suppress their feelings, to stifle their emotions, and to belittle others who reveal their vulnerabilities. I choose not to pretend I have no feelings, because I know that I do.

If you abuse me or someone else I feel the pain. Maybe you don't realize you are twisting a person's words to feel justified in your verbal abuse, maybe you think it's "normal" to be caustic and abrasive. I have no such people in my personal life, and when I see such behavior I am appalled and in shock. If you think it's normal, I'm one person who will say it's unhealthy, it's abusive, it's hurtful, and it's dysfunctional. You can defend your words all you want. And I defend my right to call it as I see it.

I wish everyone well. I hope everyone is happy and healthy, and thriving to their full potential, manifesting their dreams, and living true to their heart and soul.

with love,

2 May 2002 @ 16:20 by scotty : Like Topsy
'she growed and growed and growed '
Thankyou de tout coeur Ming because here I've learned and am learning so much and my inner self has growed !
I'm sure you'll never know where this particular path is going to go...
but you are the guy who laid the first signpost - thankyou  

2 May 2002 @ 17:29 by ming : Network
First of all, thanks for all the nice words, guys.

Yes, my main concern for myself personally is really to be as effective as I can in making a difference. I can care less what anybody acuses me of, if I feel I'm getting somewhere. So, it is only to the degree that a focus on me, or some mis-perception, stops things from happening that I'm getting really frustrated.

NCN was intended as a network in the sense Candace Pert is quoted with. I.e. there would be equal nodes, and no central place that is in charge of everything. So, my frustration is in part related to how that hasn't happened. Oh, it is to some degree like that here inside the member area. Anybody can make their own workgroups and newslogs and stuff, and they're equal. And it is a pretty nice and freeing environment.

But what I had in mind was primarily a network amongst physical groups and organizations. And for the Internet component, between multiple servers, websites, etc. So, it would be like: "Those guys over there are working on solar power; those guys over there have an organic farm and their produce is available; these folks here are setting up a wireless communication system amongst us; that group over there is working on codifying principles for social interaction in a new society; that guy is an architect making better buildings; these folks are making their own bank; etc.". So, a communication network and a shared infra-structure amongst the doers who truly are building a different world.

In earlier times it pretty much felt like that's what we were doing. But that was actually before the existence of this on-line member area altogether.  

2 May 2002 @ 17:49 by ming : Regulars and Elites
And, even though it might be unpopular, there are different levels or modes that people work at. Not in terms of hierarchy, but in terms of how they work and what they need. Part of what probably has gone wrong in the past is that the doers collide with the talkers.

It is perfectly alright that this site is a good place to come and hang out and read interesting things and discuss what's on one's mind with other people. No problem at all. But I also think that the most valuable and effective doers probably don't have time for that sort of general hanging-out kind of thing. If you're working day and night on this new anti-gravity device that you almost got working, or you're a doctor on the West Bank patching up people with missing limbs, you're probably not going to want to hang out here all day and hear what people are arguing about. You probably just want to go to work, and you might have some very specific communication needs, with people you're specifically working with.

So, if anything like the bigger network is to happen, it is vitally important that there are tools and an environment that supports people who are very busy and very skilled and doing something important. Not that they're necessarily better human beings, and not that they have to be in charge, but they have special needs, and we probably all need the work that they will put forth.

And, although I'm fond of most people who come here, and everybody can and does make a difference, be aware that my basic focus is on helping create a network amongst the people who are actively building components of a different world. For real.  

2 May 2002 @ 19:16 by bushman : Doer's
The stuff is here, all they have to do is use it. And I belive that corprate connections have been made in the true spirit of the NCN. People need to see a place like Epcot center, to be impressed enough to join in on the real civilization building, no mater how it works the fact is a civilization must start as a nomadic tribe and then create the village, if the people like it they move in and if the conditions are right they become a town or even a city. This is the patern NCN should follow to achive that NCN we all seem to envision. I've been studying housing developments and its the model that sells the rest, so like bio-dome we have to show it works or we arn't going to mars. We can't make the doer's sign a contract to use the NCN as thier only resorce and we can't just let anyone get on the network if they don't have the NCN ideals at heart, maybe our job is to research companys who join this portion of NCN, they prove they are a doer, then we ask them or invite them to a seperate doer only area, that way they can say, Im looking for a good carpenter and have a list right there of people who will be able to work the job at hand. I envisioned class rooms as well for those that would like to be retrained into a NCN technology. Maybe your right, it's time to get serious with the members that are doer's, the ones who have money to burn, or find some that do, buy the srevers that we need, get a real time chat area like mplayer had, and recrute them outright to build the new civilization, it could be done. We are 1 lotto ticket away? lol. A Non-hostile take over of the infastructure we already have through education, I'm telling you it could be done. I wonder just how many people there are out there that don't have a price, people who won't sell out to the machine thats in control right now. I don't have a price, but then I don't have the wealth either because of it. But I know they are out there, all we have to do is find them and put them on the same page.
Dude, we are right there on the edge, maybe it's time for that circle of elders to call up the aprentices, see what companys are worthy and list them, A to Z.  

2 May 2002 @ 22:39 by ming : Discerning
I wish for a better way of knowing what is what. Yeah, we need to prominently display some models of better ways. Showing people something that works better. But even that is rather hard to discern on the Internet. It is not easy to see who really has something working, versus who's just fantasizing and don't know what they're talking about. We need both, as new stuff sometimes comes from crazy people who didn't know it couldn't be done. But I'd really like to know the difference. I'd like a spotlight on the Doers.  

3 May 2002 @ 00:02 by shawa : Yep, me too!
I am doing both, Doing in my real life (Earth Sanctuary, an ecovillage project) and Talking (in here). Both are needed, at least as I see it. We´re working on a website for the Earth Sanctuary right now - so that we´ll have some suggestions at its right moment. By being together, a group of 15/20 buddies, for a long time (15 years, since the Harmonic Convergence) we came up with some pretty useful thinking (doing) for a new civilization, on lots of surprising levels.
And best of all, not in any doctrinal, dogmatic way - rather like your view of things, Ming.  

3 May 2002 @ 00:55 by jazzolog : Moi Aussi
I had dropped out in the 70s, working fringe and poverty projects, building and planning alternative schools; but when Dana scooped me up in the 80s, she was on the frontlines in public education, battling administrations and modeling brilliance in the design of her programs for disabled children (her class MAKES money for the school system!). Her family, while earning its wages from professoring at Ohio University, had gone back to the land on a 120-acre farm, made soap, kept bees, livestock, woodstove, the whole bit.
Slowly I came back in to tackle the establishment again, and now find myself surprised to be doing something I never thought I'd accept again as employment: working in the public school system, and seeing again that it is the prime battleground for the hearts and minds of the civilization. Heroic visionaries doing this work? You bet your ass! Sure, some of the best teachers I've ever known gave it up to live in a tepee in Arizona, or offer psychic readings in Switzerland. It's true that, of so many of the people we know and friends we have, Dana and I alone still hack away at "regular" jobs---undercover agents wrestling to assert the truth we see directly on the minds that still run the power structure of this world.
More than Dana, I try not to disparage the efforts, plans and thoughts of my buddies, like the BushMan, to take over the world with a whoop and a holler. But I know an assistant principal who would flick him away like a piece of dust---and since BushMan has been in the inner city and done agency work, he knows just what I'm talking about. That's why we advocate folks still getting up on their hind legs at board of education and city council meetings and doing political party work and organizing, just like it's been done before. Just like the Founding Fathers (and Mothers) did it at the Constitutional Convention. Is there room for us and our approach at NCN? There better be! Not among the Elite maybe; I tend to lose my manners when I even hear that term. But we don't mind being Regulars. Not a bit. Those are the foot soldiers of the Revolution. And we'll continue to fight toe-to-toe against the SUV gas guzzlers with whom we somehow manage to maintain dialogue every minute of every working day. And we'll do it 'til we drop.  

3 May 2002 @ 01:46 by ming : Room
Of course there's room, Jazzolog. Nothing here says you've gotta live in a teepee and give psychic readings to be a good NCN member. As a matter of fact, I'd much rather you were president of the United States. Our puzzle here is just in how we make our different approaches and different things to focus on all fit into a bigger organic whole, without having to make one approach or the other the RIGHT one.  

3 May 2002 @ 02:33 by jazzolog : Missing Piece
That's the puzzle all right, and it's a shame we dissolve into splinter groups so often, while the "opposition" coalesces around its altar called the Bottom Line. But there is a single-minded purpose upon which we all agree, around which we join hands and sing a chorus of affirmation, toward which we all Work, and from which draw sustenance. What is it?  

3 May 2002 @ 06:35 by shawa : The Bottom Line, too!
What´s the Bottom Line for us ? What´s the Bottom Line for you, Richard ? For each one of us ? If you can´t beat them, join them.
Could it be SURVIVAL?...  

3 May 2002 @ 06:51 by istvan : The nissing link is FOCUS
There are mountains of treasures buried under mountains of mindtrips within our network and more within the harddrives of the worldvide web.Sometimes i feel like a miner digging for a treasure not knowing it's shape ,color or feel only knowing it is there somvhere, not "knowing", but feeling it's presence.
I could write, or talkabout this for eons, just to make it short i think we have to learn to focus on the basic tenets of NEW CIVILISATION by focusing on what civilisation is in the first place and what the sinchrinicity of individuat talents mean in the web of social interactions. Eventually we have to make choices where we are the most efficient contributors to a new civilisation, and most effective co-creators to the common good of all beings.
Of course it takes a lot self knowledge, to be able to do that and even more knowledge of each other and knowledge of the environment we function within, generally called the cosmos.
Within our bodies buried the energy of millions of atomic bombs and can be activated for good or bad by the mind's ability to focus this scattered energy.
Doing anything by the philosophy of doing whatever i feel like and and whenever i feel like doing it will not accompish anything but eventual confusion.
I suggest turning the network more and more into a dinamic database into which we contribute and take whatever we need for our individual needs toward our works of furthering more enligtened wisdom based, diverse societies.
This may require some agreements to set up guidelines. There seems to be a general fear of getting stuck in rules and regulations, hovewear
if the guidelines are stated and seen as dinamic, there is no way would be binding to follow "isms" and "idiocracies".
I would like to see people, after some self searching, focus their attebtion to self chosen subjects in their newslogs for areas they fel the strongest syncronicity with, and stay within that self discipline until the spirit moves into another field of expertise. naturally and without any struggle.
"Do not search for the truth, only cease to cherish opinions" for truth is ficle and deceiving and only leads to being stuck.  

3 May 2002 @ 07:22 by bushman : The all seeing eye.
lol, jazz, I was flicked away many times by the assistant principal, lol. But they didn't squash me.
This line ming, We find our own guidance, and we discern our own truth. We have to have faith that we will know who's a doer.
Jazz you may have something there, heres the puzzle,
maybe thats the message, whats missing?
So theres this symbol of an all seeing eye, masonic. It's a triangle with an eye in the center, we are that eye, we are a neutral force with in the 3 sides of this triangle, each side represents it's own reality and has to exist, spirit, government, the people. At the points these things come together, maybe it's our job to interpit what we see at these points, or maybe translate that connection point so that energy or the do the doer's do is manifest and flows freely. No matter what, we have to stay neutral in all that we do. This is why the all seeing eye works, we don't have a price, we can't be swayed with the carnal part of humanity, this is how we decern the truth, it's what gives us the faith that the decisions we make for the new civilization are good ones. And at the very least gives us the strength of spirit that suports the structure of the triangle, the foundation of the triangle is spirit.  

3 May 2002 @ 11:01 by scottj : something awesome could happen here?
Having read through most of the posts in this thread I will just say that I have a feeling that something really signficant could come out of this.

If you can get to this; it sounds to me like a group of magical musicians tuning up for a session. But not just any session, there is a tune to play here, a tune we all know but it can only be expressed through improvisation.

There is nothing so powerful as an idea (tune) whose time has come ..........  

3 May 2002 @ 12:11 by jazzolog : Stirred Up
Well, we got the band, we got the minstrels, the actors, poets and visionaries...looks like we're ready to hit the road!! What, no itinerary? Oh well, so what! Nothing has moved me so much in recent days as this from Anne Frank that just turned up as a recent thought for the day~~~

"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world."  

3 May 2002 @ 12:51 by scottj : Right on Richard, there is
always something that can be done.

Billions of choices are made by billions of people every minute of every day. These choices translate into the actions which create the reality-world we live in. To improve the world all we have to do is make different choices. It really is that simple......  

3 May 2002 @ 14:00 by ming : Tune
Hm, sounds indeed like there's the makings of an improvised tune there. Some promising themes developing there: The search for our bottom line - do we here share a common bottom line, different from the corporate profit motive, or do we all share a similar bottom line, of survival, which we're just expressing in different ways? How do we see more clearly, how do we focus? An interactive database of what we've got. Who needs what, where is it? Discovering that we might already have all the pieces. But what is the theme that ties them together - what is it that makes it suddenly be for real - making the thin ice suddenly carry us? Its the mystery element cooking in the soup. I hear a few bars of it here and there, but I can't grasp on to it.  

3 May 2002 @ 16:10 by scotty : It is working Ming
even 'Me' i've changed since being here - I've grown am growing still - I've learned am learning still - and it doesn't just go away when I switch off the computer - all that has been shared here has gone with me into my flesh and bones world and this is letting me 'See '
My 'world' is also benefiting from this place and the people who share my world with me
Your dream IS working my fine friend ..slowly ...but surely.

4 May 2002 @ 14:14 by ov : Disappearing
This subject has been on my mind for a couple of weeks now. The disappearing that is. Not so much as people getting bumped off, but of websites being shut down. All of a sudden this great network of background material we've been building up for the last few years is gone. The people that we used to talk to are no longer reachable. I've already noticed a lot of links that contain information I want but the links are dead. Legislation is in place to shut down sites with libelous content, and then there is always the terrorist excuse.

We need to move towards both centralized and decentralized. This involves working at multiple levels. We need to have a way to stay connected, but at the same time have the data dispersed and replicated. That way we can stay connected, and we can tell when somebody goes missing, and if they shut down a site it will pop up somewhere else.

I'm thinking that we need to have "buddy circles" where backups are kept by somebody else. This is also a preventive measure since there is less chance of a site being shut down if it will simply reappear with a higher level of crediblility. To make this easy perhaps a protocol could be put together for the backup material, perhaps a packaged download.

I like the idea of a network of a lot of discussion sites. Places small enough to keep the flamers and trolls from preventing constructive discussions. Plus for the paranoica perspective nobody really cares what we talk about, they do care about the size of our audience. These small places fly below the radar, and also over time people establish their reputation. Which is why I think we need to have more places networked together and have members actively work together guiding people to the site where they will fit best, or are most needed, whatever. Then I see these working groups reaching out by collectively publishing on public channels, such as IndyMedia, or submitting to existing e-zines, or even starting a new zine. Maximum exposure without have the hoards come in and flame the place down. This is the audience/community question once again.

But I think we should seriously look at the buddy system, for website backups.


5 May 2002 @ 15:51 by ming : Indestructibility
Yeah, I think it is important to find a way of backing each other up, and making sure that different sites have a close enough relationship so that they can cover for each other, or take over from each other if necessary. I would very much like to work out relationships like that with several other friendly sites.

I might die tomorrow. I'm not planning to, but life is fragile. And there's no contingency plan in place for what happens to this site and its database. There should be, of course, preferably a plan for how it would continue without interruption. At the very least a way for somebody to contact all the members and say, hey, from now on we'll meet over there..

All sorts of things can happen to individual people and websites. Some people just get tired of what they do one day, shut their website down and forget all about it. Or they might get arrested, or deported, or lose their job. Or the server goes down and they didn't have any backups.

So, yes, whatever we can do to gradually build an indestructible network of discussion/collaboration/networking sites, with some kind of built-in redundancy, I'm for it. All these precious people connections and thoughts and history - it is just too valuable to risk losing it based on any one person's misfortune or change of heart.  

30 May 2002 @ 15:05 by magical_melody : Ming this is important stuff!
I am sorry that I just got to this page today. I have not seen it til now, as there is so much to track in here. In hearing your vision about what you thought this would be in terms of the connectivity and sharing of resources between sites and various groups, well that is what I have been seeing here coming in the future. I think it is coming Flemming. I think all of the sites being built that have been experiencing this disappearing phenomena is confusing, because it may simply be a timing thing. I have a sense that within the next couple years, that networks like this being here, will become active, as people's needs and projects grow. I am thinking that people are out doing the do, and as culture becomes more ready to shift as a whole, this network will be for the culture the resource network enmasse. These may look like empty rooms for now, but I have an intuitive sense that the network will be alive and thriving in days to come with people in moving into significant need for the connectivity this and other servers will provide. Thanks for all you do and have done to both provide and grow this space. Blessings, Alana  

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2003-06-06 21:05: Blocking
2002-12-30 22:39: A Little Server History
2002-12-20 16:10: I'm not that far behind
2002-12-18 18:16: Comments

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