[Noisebridge-discuss] proposal for noisebridge membership changes

Dan Cote terminationshok at gmail.com
Tue Oct 1 22:40:13 UTC 2013

Seconded. ~3-6 months?
I actually just proposed this in a direct message. I felt I should send
something quick and actionable after I sent that wall of text.

On Tue, Oct 1, 2013 at 3:32 PM, Praveen Sinha <dmhomee at gmail.com> wrote:

> Can't make it to consensus tomorrow night due to a meeting... BUT I think
> this a very very fine line, and I think it may be good to experiment with
> it first.
> First, having to have sponsors to come into the space can for sure
> adversely affect our openness to new and totally legit people.  I recently
> had an experience in Berlin where I wasn't allowed into C-Base because the
> only 2 people at the space did not feel like hosting any outsiders at the
> time.
> I personally think our commitment to openness is what makes Noisebridge
> truly unique and special and valuable -- frankly on the whole damn planet
> as far as hackerspaces go, and I'm willing to go through a lot of pain to
> keep it that way.
> That said, I do see your pain points with shit walking out the door Jake,
> so I wouldn't neccesarily block... But is there some way that we can have
> an experimental period?
> On Mon, Sep 30, 2013 at 2:10 AM, Jake <jake at spaz.org> wrote:
>> Last week it was proposed that Noisebridge make changes to our access
>> policy.  The basic idea is that if someone is a Member or Associate Member
>> of Noisebridge, they are allowed to be in the space at any time (with the
>> usual exception of leaving when asked for conflict resolution purposes)
>> Further it should be that if someone who is not a Member or Associate
>> Member of the space, they can be in the space if they are the guest of a
>> Member or Associate Member who is present.
>> In most ways this will cause only a subtle ripple in the way Noisebridge
>> has been working until now.  If a person is in the space and the person who
>> let them in has left, if they are not doing anything objectionable it is
>> unlikely that anyone will even ask them if they have a sponsor.
>> However, if someone is being unexcellent and there is no one present who
>> is their sponsor, it is now possible to ask the person to leave due to no
>> fault of their own.
>> This is very valuable, because up until now it has been necessary to wait
>> until someone does something fucked up, and then try to use that as a lever
>> to get them to leave.  This generally leads to unpleasantness, especially
>> since you are inherently asking someone to admit to wrongdoing by the act
>> of leaving voluntarily.  This has been nothing but trouble the whole time,
>> and 90% of the time when someone is being shitty, our response is to let it
>> continue because the alternative is getting in an argument with an asshole.
>> From now on, with this new arrangement, Noisebridge is by default open
>> only to Member and Associate Members and their guests.  Of course anyone
>> who rings the doorbell is very likely to be let in by a Member or Associate
>> Member, and is sponsored by the person who lets them in until that person
>> leaves or ends the sponsorship (in case of a bad fit for that person at
>> noisebridge).  If a person without a sponsor is present and a problem comes
>> up, any Member or Associate Member can volunteer to be their sponsor if one
>> thinks they should stay and continue hacking (after solving the problem
>> with their new sponsor's help).
>> I see this as a win for all visions of Noisebridge access policy, since
>> it takes away nothing from what we can choose to do, and it gives us so
>> much more freedom to do what we need to do without insulting people who
>> need to leave.
>> I think the most important aspect of this arrangement is the concept of
>> Accountability.  If a Member or Associate Member does something
>> questionable at noisebridge, there is definitely a way to contact that
>> person to discuss the situation, and almost certainly a friend of theirs
>> who is also a Member or Associate Member who can help facilitate problem
>> solving.  This is how we maintain the excellence of our community and
>> environment, by Accountability.
>> With Guests, there is no inherent accountability.  When someone walks in
>> the door and is greeted by no one, and answers to no one, they have been
>> told no rules and there is not even a person who they can ask questions
>> about what is appropriate for our space.
>> With this new system, every person who is let in the door is likely to be
>> introduced to a specific person who will explain, "You are my guest here,
>> and if there are any issues such as with another person, you can come to me
>> or use my name as your sponsor, as long as I am here." This means that
>> every new person is immediately granted accountability to our network
>> through a Member or Associate Member as their proxy server.
>> Any guest who, for example is told that they should not be sleeping on
>> the couch in the library, will either answer by correcting their behavior
>> (hopefully), or they will involve their sponsor somehow (perhaps by
>> invoking their name as a defense of their activity).  At that point their
>> sponsor, who as a Member or Associate Member has accountability to the
>> community, can be asked to solve that problem in a productive way.  When
>> they come to their Guest and affirm that their invitation did not extend to
>> permission to sleep in the library, the guest sees it coming from the same
>> person who originally let them in and thus has the right to make them leave
>> if they don't stop fucking up.
>> If the person sleeping in the library isn't able to produce a Member or
>> Associate Member who is present at the time, and none who are present want
>> to sponsor them at that time, they can be asked to leave due to no fault of
>> their own, but simply because it is noisebridge policy.
>> One justification for this policy is that Noisebridge Members and
>> Associate Members look out for one another by protecting the space and the
>> people in it from those who are not excellent enough to attract a sponsor.
>> We do that for each other so that we can benefit from the improved culture
>> and environment, as well as decreased entropy and theft, that resluts.
>> I am out of town so i won't be able to participate in the meeting,
>> but two things I wanted to emphasize are:
>> 1:  I don't think we should do it this way part of the time, i think we
>> shoud be this way 24/7 all the fucking time.  anyone who comes in the door
>> gets introduced to a person who will sponsor them at that time, or
>> alternately give them a quick tour and then an invitation to come back
>> another time, or perhaps there are no members in the space who want to
>> sponsor a guest at that time and the person doesn't get to come in.  I
>> think this last option will happen very infrequently but if it does, I
>> don't think we're losing anything.  If a person was going to come to
>> noisebridge but there was nobody there who wanted to give them a
>> tour/introduction, they are better off coming back another time.
>> 2:  Remember that this is a subtle change.  The biggest practical effect
>> is that it makes it possible to tell someone (who has NO sponsor) that they
>> have to leave due to no fault of their own, but simply because of policy.
>>  This is a problem-solving feature and a de-escalation strategy of which we
>> should recognize the value.
>> So, come tuesday, pass the fucking thing and don't limit it to certain
>> hours.
>> -jake
>> P.S. the typo was on purpose to see if you were paying attention.
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