[Noisebridge-discuss] amendments to membership proposal - associate members and 24/7 hours

Jacob Appelbaum jacob at appelbaum.net
Tue Oct 22 09:09:04 UTC 2013


Jake:
> tl;dr at the end of this post is the amended consensus item for this
> week
> 
> I just found out that an excellent hacker was working on stuff late
> at noisebridge last night, and was asked to leave at 11:00PM.  This
> is terribly sad and should not have happened.  I consider it to be a 
> serious bug in the system.

Indeed, why ask them to leave? As a matter of closing the space to
people in the out group? It seems bad to create an out group that could
ever include a productive, excellent hacker that isn't actively
misbehaving in a way that is negatively impacting the space...

> 
> I tracked down the cause of this crash to the horrible mutation of
> my last proposal, specifically, making the members-and-guests policy
> only take effect after 23:00 (11PM) until 10AM  (I had wanted it to
> be 24/7)
> 
> With this current borked policy, people continue to come into 
> noisebridge without meeting anyone, without getting a sponsor, no
> tour and no introduction.  And regardless of whether they're hacking
> or abusing the space, they are asked to leave at 11PM by the same
> anonymous unfriendly mystery that let them in.  This is total shit.
> 
> So, I think we need to end the limited-hours policy and change it to
> a full-time policy, something that we can maintain at all hours.  If 
> members of the space want to ask people to leave at 11PM (or 2PM or
> noon or anytime), they can still do so, if those non-members are
> without a live sponsor at that time.  Importantly, this means that
> Members and other people who understand the policy will explain it to
> people coming in the door, regardless of what time they came in.
> That way, if someone is working on stuff and it starts getting late,
> they will be able to ask someone to sponsor their continued hacking
> rather than just be carelessly booted out.
> 

I'm confused by your statement.

Are you saying that the policy results in the suffering of folks who
shouldn't be suffering, so you'd like that policy to be an all-hours
policy? That seems less than ideal. If people are otherwise excellent
and then they're asked to leave, regardless of the time, it strikes me
as a bad policy.

> In order for us to move to full-time Members rule, there need to be
> more Members.  I have a solution for that which should be less
> objectionable than the proposal i've put out there for this week.
> 

This is really depressing here Jake - full-time Members? Next up, we'll
have partial members?

> I propose that we add a tier of membership, called Associate Member, 
> which is a person who has been consensed upon to be an Associate 
> Member.  Their duty to noisebridge does not include a mandatory cash 
> donation but a general "regular contributions to Noisebridge".
> 

I can't tell if this is trolling. Is this serious? We've always had a
way for starving hackers to contribute to Noisebridge - some of our
first members were full Members even though a number of them could not
afford any money for Membership. I remember a certain hacker who was
sleeping in the space before we had an idea of proper security
considerations for the 83c space. His contributions were worth more than
money - his time was amazingly well invested and kept some important
equipment safe.

There were others who could not afford to contribute money to the space
and they were not marginalized as a matter of funds.

> Associate Members will not be able to block consensus items.  But
> they will be able to sponsor guests while they are present in the
> space, like full members can.

Membership is about participation in consensus and about having a
specific legal role. It is not about privileges generally. We rejected
the NGO style "membership" that isn't legally worth anything - this is
not the membership of joining say, the World Wild Life Fund - capital
'M' Members are legally in control of the power structure. They can
legally throw the board out, they can legally do all kinds of things and
have actual power. This is by design.

> 
> At the same time I propose that we remove the time restriction on
> the policy of Members and their Guests only.  This may sound like it
> will create a problem when there are not enough members around the
> space, but in practice it should encourage members and guests to get
> to know one another at all times, rather than only at 11PM when
> guests are being asked to leave (which is how it is now)
> 

Yes, it sounds like a problem. It sounds like there is already a problem
and you're attempting to solve it by making the problem a permanent
state of problem. A New Noisebridge Normal.

> When it is normal for every guest to be introduced to a Member or 
> Associate Member, when night falls and the membership wants to ask
> some people to leave who are without sponsors, there will be enough
> awareness of the guest sponsorship policy that guests who want to
> continue to stay will be aware that they can ask members to sponsor
> them so they can continue hacking.  This is the intended goal - to
> increase the connection between guests and members (not to just kick
> out non-members all the time)
> 
> the amended proposal should be worded as follows:
> 
> A new Tier of Membership to Noisebridge shall exist, called
> Associate Member.  People can become Associate Members through the
> normal membership process.  Associate Members are not required to
> contribute to Noisebridge financially, only to "contribute regularly"
> to Noisebridge.
> 

Please don't do this - it is absolutely revolting.

> Associate Members, while present, can host non-members in the space
> just like Full Members.  But Associate Members cannot block consensus
> like Members.
> 

They're not Members by law - they're literally a different legal group.
It is a meaningless class - there are two classes of power - inside
Noisebridge as capital 'M' Members and those who are merely visitors,
guests or people otherwise unaffiliated with the space. The board is
specifically designed to be a position of liability, not a position of
legal authority that is free to decide things without the general will
of the Membership. Changing this dynamic has legal consequences but it
also has a major social impact.

> Also the policy of Noisebridge as a space open only to Members and
> their guests shall be changed to 24 hours a day instead of 23:00 to
> 10:00. This means that at any time, a person who is without a live
> sponsor in the space can be told that if they cannot find a new live
> sponsor promptly they should pack up and come back another time,
> perhaps Tuesday night.

This policy nearly completes the full circle of turning Noisebridge into
Hacker Dojo. Without the good parts, I might add.

> 
> The spirit of the last paragraph is not to exclude people but rather
> to encourage a connection between each guest of the space and at
> least one Member of the space at all times.

That is rather Orwellian. Though George would have said it more concisely:

"Consensus rations have been raised to zero for all lower tiered members."

All the best,
Jake


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