Occupy Boston's National & International Communications Group
The purpose of this working group is to expedite connectivity between Occupy Boston and other occupations, in the US and worldwide, to foster a global village which flourishes from the benefits of local cultures, while leveraging international connectivity.
Group Concept Ideas:
- Share “best practices” and local occupation talking points.
- Help coordinate National and International Days (marches, movements, strikes, etc.) between Boston’s working groups and those nation wide.
- Expedite communication between occupations in emergency situations.
- Facilitate and keep a repository (though transparent) of correspondence with other Occupations, as well as important documentation from other Occupations.
- Build relationships and good will between OB and other occupations.
- Help people learn how to start new occupations.
- Be a point contact group for visitors from other Occupations and help guide them to other interested working groups within camp.
- Expedite communication between other occupations seeking contact with specific Boston working groups.
- Travel, as possible, to other occupations to observe their methods and report back to OB.
Meeting Notes - 11 Nov 2011
11.11.11 7:15pm Attended by: Sarah B., Farhad, John, Ravi, Martin, Eden, Bobby, Erica, Matt, Scott, Sean, Kat
1. A quick review of the agenda for the meeting.
2. We discussed the movement of the InterOccupy wiki page that occurred earlier in the week (note- the wiki page was moved by user OneKarma to a sub category under arts, making it difficult to find). We all agreed that the page is now back to its normal location. Most of us felt that as long as it stays put then no need to proceed in finding OneKarma or demanding answers. It was noted that this is not the only page that was moved and rearranged and that we may need to delve into this further if it happens again.
3. Introductions: We all introduced ourselves, spoke briefly of what other working groups we participate in and some made a quick statement of what individuals feel InterOccupy should encompass. Ideas
a. Sharing best practices. b. Traveling to visit other Occupy s for personal connections. c. Synchronizing with other Occupies. d. Building strength with better communication nationally and internationally. e. Working to build sharing platforms with other occupies. f. Building more solidified communication.
a. Best Practice – Contact Sharing: We discussed using google docs vs. any other spreadsheet sharing program for our contact list/data base. After hearing some concerns for using google, those members involved with tech spoke and felt that it was safe to use. We agreed that this document will not be public and created, edited and maintained only by those in the InterOccupy group. Sarah shared a format that she created with the group. The format was passed with one addendum to add a column for each person adding to sign their name in the spirit of transparency and accountability. Sarah will be working on beginning this document and will post it by 11/13/11 to all group members with a password.
b. Best Practice – File/Photo Sharing: We referenced Anna’s emails about the working groups pages. We need to look into this and connect with Anna on expediting this idea. Sarah said she would research this and reach out to Anna.
c. Best Practice – Fielding Incoming Inquiries: It was suggested that we create an email (separate from the list serve) so those from other occupies, from Occupy Boston but not on our listserve and the general public can reach this working group. Sarah sent an email to Anna and Obit the morning of 11/11/11 requesting this. In the meantime we decided to use a temporary gmail address to get started. When obit assigns the email address, we will forward all information onto it. Five people volunteered to check this email and make sure it is processed in a timely fashion: Sarah, Farhad, Matthew, Bobby and Scott. These same five people are all administrators of the list serve. No one person is a “leader” and the admin responsibilities are now spread between five people.
d. Presenting Intercept to the GA: We will request to be on stack at the GA on Sunday, 11/13/11. We will present ourselves, discuss some of the national and local Occupies we have visited and give a brief overview of our goals. We will also ask for more group members and try to engage those that do not use email and may not know that we exist (namely Logistics and DA). Anyone in the group is welcome and encouraged to join in this. Farhad volunteered to be one of the speakers, more are welcome.
5. Specific Topics 1:
a. National Calls: Ravi spoke of some frustration with the national calls that have been occurring, citing that some introduction times can take up to 45 minutes and that the calls generally do not address main issues within the Occupy movement. We passed the idea to offer to host the national call from InterOccupy in Boston. We want to set up an IRC chat and promote, educate and train users in advance of the call. During the call the purpose will be to take one hour and make the specific connections needed between occupations so that the discussions and shared practices can be continued after the phone call has ended, making lasting connections between Occupies. Ravi will contact the national call group and find an available date to do this.
b. International Requests and Process: A process is needed to field incoming requests and calls from International Occupations. We will promote our new email address as the main contact for these types of requests and connect these inquiries with the correct working groups within the camp. Through the process we will remain an active part of it, supporting both the international request and the correct working group. IE- A request for solidarity marches for specific reasons will be forwarded to DA & Outreach. InterOccupy will work on making that connection and that help to promote the event in solidarity. We will forward ALL inquiries to start and see how intensive this becomes. This practice may need to be revisited if requests become out of control.
c. Side Conversation on Google Docs: Does google save previous copies or edits? Someone should save the contact doc every few days onto a hard drive to ensure nothing is lost. Ravi and Farhad will explore google docs further.
7. Specific Topics 2:
a. Local Occupations: It was proposed that for the beginning of the group we will deal primarily with the Occupations that are camping. This was approved by the group with an amendment that we will continue to gather contact info for a couple people from smaller, non-camping Occupy s to request their presence if needed for marches, police raids, etc.
a. Defining the WG Focus: It was proposed that we, to start, define the focus of InterOccupy to deal primarily with the sharing and learning of “Best Practices” with and from other Occupy groups. That InterOccupy becomes a central place for communication and facilitation with outside people and groups. This was passed but with the amendment that we will also work using our contacts to coordinate marches, support for raids, other important information as requested by other Occupies and to support OccupyBoston’s marches and needs. We can do this by:
i. Calling or emailing various other Occupies and conducting a series of “interviews” with them on best practices.
ii. Researching if this sort of practice is already being done and is under utilized. If so take their platform and try to expand and grow it.
iii. Begin a public page (on interoccupy.org or otherwise?) to share related “Best Practices” PDFS, graphics, links, etc. Also an idea to develop a page like a combination of Facebook and Reddit that will include tactics, voting and tools. (If such a thing does not already exist).
b. Twitter: What are the benefits of starting a Twitter Account for InterOccupy?
i. An official Twitter Account gives us more creditability to use as individuals in a group rather than personal accounts.
ii. It will be used to reach out to other Occupies and gather information and contacts.
iii. It will be used for members traveling to other occupies to make contact with the Occupies.
iv. We will use it to update when we add “Best Practices” to our website and relay information.
v. To start, our Twitter account can be used by all members of InterOccupy. Sarah will set up the account and email the name and password. If this is abused or becomes a concern we will readdress.
c. Suggested Way to Communicate: If we are communicating “best practices” with other Occupations it’s suggested that we develop our notes (working with the appropriate WGs) and volunteer them to other Occupations for their own use and ask for their ideas, suggestions, edits. This was received well and the group felt that this was a communicative and productive way to start conversations.
d. IRC Chat Room: Is there a national one being utilized? Is IRC free? The FSU is building a website that may be able to host this.
e. National Tech Call: Thursday 11/17/11 there is a national Tech call at 10pm. If you want to join please contact Ravi.
9. NEXT MEETING: FRIDAY 11/18/11 AT 7PM. MEET AT GHANDI.
Email (Best Contact): email@example.com Twitter: @InterOccupyBos
- Sarah sarah.barney at me dot com
Useful InterOccupation connectivity info
- OccupyUS@googlegroups.com. There are 24 cities joined Nov 1.
- www.interoccupy.org, which holds phone call meetings w/other cities.