Current status of the crews

RVE Renaud Van Eeckhout Public Seen by 623

EN :
When newcomers join our crews, they often ask about other crews. Which ones are active? What do they do? Do they have many members?

These questions are difficult to answer, because information lacks. It's not a communication issue, it's about making information public, available. In one word : transparency. One of our core values since... always.

Therefore I wanted to know about the crews. Which ones are active, have meetings, where are the meeting reports to be found, etc.

FR :
Quand des nouveaux/elles pirates nous rejoignent, nous avons souvent des questions à propos des autres crews. Lesquelles sont actives ? Que font-elles ? Ont-elles beaucoup de membres ?

Il est compliqué de répondre à ces questions, à cause du manque d'information. Il ne s'agit pas - j'anticipe - d'un problème de communication, mais de rendre l'information publique, accessible, en un mot : la transparence. Une de nos valeurs fondamentales depuis... toujours.

Je souhaitais donc que nous partagions ces informations ici. Lesquelles sont actives, organisent des réunions, où peut-on trouver les rapports de réunions, etc.

Crews alive:
* Pirates de Liège (5-10)
* Crew BW (about 10)
* Crew Waremme (3)
* Crew La Louvière (?)
* Crew Antwerpen (5-10)
* Crew Gent (7-10)
* Crew Mechelen (6)


Renaud Van Eeckhout Tue 10 Jan 2017

EN :
Crew Liège (named : Pirates de Liège)
Members : around 5 people at each meeting, but we have gained members recently, so we should be around 10.
Our meeting reports are here : on the wiki

FR :
Crew Liège (nom : Pirates de Liège)
Membres : environ 5 personnes présentes à chaque réunion, mais comme nous avons des nouveaux membres récemment, nous tournons plutôt autour d'une dizaine de membres désormais
Nos rapports de réunions sont sur le wiki


HgO Tue 10 Jan 2017

I think that the information you are looking for is already on the website, no? Morever, that would be faster if we could list crews that we know (e.g. Waremme) although we might not get as much information (number of pirates inside the crew, and so on).

Je crois que cette information se trouve déjà sur le site web, non ? Ceci dit, ce serait plus rapide si on pouvait lister les équipages que l'on connaît (ex: Waremme), même si nous n'aurions pas autant d'information (nombre de gens dans l'équipage, etc.)

Crew BW
Members : about 9 people (see our non-exhaustive member list), and about 5 at each meeting
Our meeting reports are on the wiki

FR :
Crew BW
Membres : environ 9 (cf. notre liste des membres non-exhaustive), et environ 5 à chaque réunion.
Nos rapports de réunions sont sur le wiki


Renaud Van Eeckhout Tue 10 Jan 2017

Well, if you can tell me where I can find meeting reports for Ghent, Antwerp, Mechelen... I'd be glad to know :D


HgO Tue 10 Jan 2017

Antwerp has updated its wiki page recently.
Mechelen seems to keep its wiki page up-to-date : https://wiki.pirateparty.be/index.php/Crew_Mechelen

However, I can't find their meeting reports for both of them. At least, we have names to whom we can ask such information :D

I have no information about Ghent, that's a mystery whether they are alive or not :no_mouth: (Shrödinger's Ghent?)

Now, I know for sure that Crew Waremme is alive and publish their meeting reports on their loomio group. I know that Crew West-Vlaanderen is alive as well and keeps its wiki page up-to-date : https://wiki.pirateparty.be/index.php/Crew_West-Vlaanderen Finally, I had news about Crew La Louvière : they are well alive :) , but don't update their wiki page at the moment.

Crew Brussels is almost dead, but Pascal is hoping to resurrect them (they should call themselves Crew Zombrussels, I guess (sorry)).

That's all I know about crews...


Renaud Van Eeckhout Tue 10 Jan 2017

For Antwerp, their member Jan said on Facebook they would put the meeting reports on the wiki, "if all agreed upon".

Yes some crews update their wikis, but no meeting reports except : Liège, Waremme, BW

(notice the contradiction when you said the information is on the website (I read : "Gent : 70 members") and what you comment here based on the wiki, which is you don't know if they're alive or not)

It's sad to have to beg for something that should be automatic and obvious. It makes us look like we're a group of liars, and unless the remaining crews have excellent reasons to do so, we can't deny this accusation.


HgO Tue 10 Jan 2017

Ah nice :)

I agree that I am in contradiction with myself :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: The fact is that only trust wiki :D But all the information isn't there, sadly :( The website gives you information about number of members for each crews, and maybe useful links. Regarding Ghent, since I don't live there, I can't tell you for sure that they are alive, although I suspect them to be.

That's a real problem, indeed. That's why I added a list of members on the Crew sidebar (wiki), because I think it's important to be able to contact individuals from a crew. That can just be a nickname, I don't really care.

But what should we do ? We can't force them... It's a in the statutes that every crews must publish its report meeting on the wiki, so...

Ah cool :)

C'est vrai, je suis en contradiction avec moi-même :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: Le fait est que je ne fais confiance qu'au wiki :D Mais toute l'information ne s'y trouve pas, malheureusement :( Le site te donne des informations sur le nombre de membres, et aussi sur des liens utiles (page facebook, etc.). Concernant Gand, comme je ne vis pas là -bas, je ne peux pas être certain qu'ils sont encore vivant, même si je les soupçonne de l'être.

C'est un vrai problème, en effet. C'est d'ailleurs pour cette raison que j'avais ajouté une liste des membres pour l'infobox des crews (wiki), parce que je pense que c'est important de pouvoir contacter les personnes au sein de l'équipage. Cela peut être juste un pseudo, ce n'est pas très important.

Que peut-on faire ? On ne peut pas les forcer... C'est déjà écrit dans les statuts que chaque équipage doit publier ses compte-rendus de réunion sur le wiki, alors...


Sandrine Debatty Wed 11 Jan 2017

A Waremme, nous avons deux membres effectifs et un sympathisant. Nous sommes tous les 3 présents à chaque réunion. Les comptes-rendus se trouvent sur le wiki: https://wiki.pirateparty.be/index.php/Crew_Waremme/R%C3%A9unions


Christophe Cop Thu 16 Feb 2017

Crew Antwerp re-activated Januari 2016, and are now having 3 meetings a month:
1 pirate drink, 1 crew meeting and 1 'navigation table' which is our do-meeting.

We have between 5 and 10 active members, depending on how you count them, and what you consider as active. Our internal email goes to 17 people who wish to receive them and consider themselves a pirate or at least heavily affiliated.

I did some minor updates on our wiki. I may do this once in a while.


Pat Seynaeve Sat 18 Feb 2017

Ghent is alive and kickin' …
They are very active (and pity enough only) on facebook
Every month we have one meeting where mostly 7 to 10 members are present and one drink where 20 to 30 people are coming.
Meeting reports are published in slack for internal purposes, and I will ask and propose to put them on the wiki.


HgO Sun 19 Feb 2017

Are those minutes private, aka not meant to be public ? Would it be possible to have access to this slack, please ? :) I won't participate, but I'd like to have a look at how you work :)


Pat Seynaeve Thu 16 Mar 2017

Well, I've proposed to put the meeting reports on the wiki on the last meeting.
The group voted negative, 1 positive.
But I can tell you how we work.
We sit around a table or in circle and we go round from person to person so that everybody can speak with a limited time, unless the group wants to go deeper into a item
The moderator (M) start to ask to every one in the group in what mood he/she is (difficult day, tired, grumpy, good), to know the background of the person reaction.
Then M ask from person to person to formulate in maximum 2 words what item(s) he want to put at the agenda. M make a list.
M give the word to the first person to explain deeply and make that the others can not interrupt.
After we go round so that everybody can give his comment, without interruption from another
If somebody want to interrupt he raise the hand.
Then we vote.
That way everybody can give his opinion while the others have to listen.
You need a strong moderator who can decide how long the person can speak and who can stop a speech when it's too long or when irrelevant and who stimulate that everybody can speak freely. Participants can give signs (crossed arms) to time out the person that speak too long.


Thierry Fenasse Thu 16 Mar 2017

Thanks for the sharing.


HgO Thu 16 Mar 2017

Thank you ! Did they explain why the minutes cannot be made public ? Because, it seems to me that you don't respect our statutes or core values (transparency), that's why I'm asking ^

Let say I want to attend one of your meetings, could you tell me what is the procedure for that ? :)


Valerie D. Thu 16 Mar 2017

Well maybe it is not that the minutes cannot be made public but they prefer to keep the way they are reporting now (slack I think?). Isn't it?

Crews work the way they like, but transparency is indeed mandatory... so what I would rather expect/propose is that the wiki page of the crew gives the link where to find the reports and the dates of the future meetings. This way you can keep using what you want and have to bother only once with the wiki, to make sure people who are looking for info know where to find it.

I hope this can be accepted by the crew? Or if not, they should explain all this on the wiki... ;-)


HgO Thu 16 Mar 2017

You are right, I misread what Pat said : they voted on putting the minutes on the Wiki.

I don't see any problem if they keep the way they are working, provided it is easy to attend the meeting and to find the minutes (so indeed some links on the wiki would be enough).


Renaud Van Eeckhout Sat 18 Feb 2017

As you mention meeting reports and the wiki, @hgo has improved the wiki a lot recently. There is now a form that allows you to create very easily pages for meetings. And if you use that form (please do so!), then the meeting will automatically appear in the "Meetings" section of your page (Antwerpen. It also will appear automatically on this general Meeting page.

And this will even allow having your events in a calendar that can be used in Thunderbird.

All your past meetings (at least those @hgo and myself have found on the wiki) are already adapted to fit to that model. As you can see, we've registered more than 400 meetings. The tool is easy to use, and improves transparency a lot, so it would be really great if you could use it.


Thierry Fenasse Sun 19 Feb 2017

:champagne: :fireworks: :revolving_hearts:

How do you dispaly the scheddules in Thunderbird?



Thierry Fenasse Sun 19 Feb 2017

Found it here

And the answer is : copy/paste this link as a New Network Calendar in Thunderbird.

Works with Thunderbird, Icedove, and maybe any iCalendar supporting tool.


HgO Sun 19 Feb 2017

Thank you for those good news, @christophecop and @pattico ! :D

Ah great @tierce :) I was just writting some explanations ^ Yes, it should even work with google calendar. As you said, you must copy/paste the link "Export for iCalendar" on the wiki. It can be from the Event category, or from your crew's meetings if you don't want to follow more events than those from your crew ;) You can also create several calendar and pick crews and workgroups that you would like to follow.


Renaud Van Eeckhout Sun 19 Feb 2017

I tried in Google Agenda and I received a generic "Failed to add imported calendar" every time.

Apparently the problem is due to the length of the URL (if it's longer than 256 then it won't be valid).

Conclusion : to have the pirate agenda of your wish, copy the URL from the wiki, paste it in a URL shortener (e.g. https://goo.gl/ ) and you can add it to Google Agenda.

Note that apparently, the google calendars refresh once every 8 hours.


Patrick Installé Sun 19 Feb 2017

Bravo pour l'agenda !


[deactivated account] Sun 19 Feb 2017

Yeap, well done!


Renaud Van Eeckhout Thu 16 Mar 2017

Crews work the way they like, but transparency is indeed mandatory

And even if it wasn't mandatory, I just try to imagine how a citizen from Ghent can see that Pirates are different from other parties :
- no contact address to ask for meetings information and meeting reports
- no clear agenda to access next meetings
- no meeting reports anywhere to find since almost 2 years
- rare answers when someone asks here on Loomio...

As a gentse citizen, I don't see how I could trust local Pirates (and therefore the whole Pirate Party) if they can't prove their honesty about transparency.

It's a big issue and I still don't have answers to why there is no transparency in Ghent. Tools exist and are now particularly easy to use.


Pat Seynaeve Thu 16 Mar 2017

There is something strange going on with the crew in Gent: I've put some items on the agenda about to respect the values of pirates, but they didn't give me the time, because the group decide to give the word to a member who introduced his 'plan' the whole evening.
I've defend the transparency, but they argument that our 'enemy's' don't have to read our plans. I've said that we don' t have to follow militair strategies as the "leader" now served in the army and I wonder what give them fear and paranoia.
I regret that way of working and some people don't come anymore to the meetings, Sarah is no more captain and stays away to spend more time to the civilian lists.
For the moment I'll stay in the crew to defend our principles and values.
Next meeting I'll repeat the item to use the tools like loomio and wiki and will be better prepared. I will propose what Valerie writes.
Every month we have a drink. There they invite only (new) people to come to the meetings who seems to have capability's and they communicate only using fakebook.
I'll try to come to the lab.


Renaud Van Eeckhout Thu 16 Mar 2017

Thank you @pattico for these details.
Is there something Pirates can do to help you improve your internal transparency?


Pat Seynaeve Thu 16 Mar 2017

Not fot the moment. We gonna try to discuss first internal.


Pat Seynaeve Thu 30 Mar 2017

The next meeting for the crew of Gent is monday 3/04 starting at 19.30 at Sophie van Akenstraat 3C, 9000 Gent.
So far, there is no procedure. It seems that everyone can invite somebody to participate. If anyone is interested, I'll can invite him, at risk for ex-communication.
I will take that risk to make it more transparant.
Is the information on the wiki accessible for everyone?
Because that was the barrier to publish the meetings, saying that no outsider has to know the internal plans of a pirate crew.


Thierry Fenasse Fri 31 Mar 2017


One interesting question (for me) is :

Considering «by default» an outsider as a person who have the right to read an information.

The ousider can be a common folk, a citizen, a political adversary, a corporate business angel, or whatever, the list is not exaustive. In other words :
* a human being or a computer algorithm,
* who/wich have access to internet,
* who/wich can read and understand (or translate) what is written.

What kind of internal plan (information) does not have the right to be read?

Reminder : we talk about a pirate crew, not an individue and its intimacy.


Une question intéressante (pour moi) est :

Considérant «par défaut» un inconnu en tant qu'une personne ayant le droit de lire une information.

L'inconnu pouvant être une personne commune, un citoyen, un adversaire politique, un investisseur entrepreneurial, ou quoi que ce soit, la liste n'étant pas exhaustive. En d'autres mots :

  • un être humain ou un algorithme informatique,
  • disposant d'un accès à internet,
  • ayant le droit de lire et comprendre (ou traduire) ce qui est écrit.

Quel genre de plan interne (information) n'a pas le droit d'être lue?

Rappel : on parle d'un équipage pirate, pas d'un individu et de son intimité.

Nederlands (te vertalen)

Kunt u me helpen on te vertaalen ? : https://pad.pirateparty.be/p/droit_de_lecture


HgO Thu 30 Mar 2017

Thank you for the updates, @pattico :) Unfortunately, I couldn't attend this meeting, as I already planned to come to a debate organized by pirates from LLN that day.

I know that you are willing to make Gent's meetings more transparent, so thank you very much for that !

First, can we add this meeting on the (public) agenda, or do you think it wouldn't be a good idea considering the current situation ?

Yes, everything on the wiki is public ! Well, I'd like to remind them that our statutes clearly say that a crew must publish a report of every meeting. (It is also said that each crew must keep their wiki page updated...)

More importantly, in our Basic Text, it is written that:

Pirates advocate a more direct democracy: an open, pragmatic, dynamic, realistic and transparent system in which citizens have the opportunity and receive the right to participate, and are encouraged to do so.

Should I recall that Gent was a crucial actor of this Basic Text ? I know that the current members of the crew aren't the same, but still...


Alex Borghgraef Mon 10 Apr 2017

Member of crew Gent here.

Regarding the basic text:
"Pirates advocate a more direct democracy: an open, pragmatic, dynamic, realistic and transparent system in which citizens have the opportunity and receive the right to participate, and are encouraged to do so."

It means that this is how we want the political decision making process of society and the state to function: transparently, directly, and accessible to every citizen.

It does NOT mean that every group of people meeting towards a common goal should publish every discussion online, or that privacy should not be respected.

It does NOT mean that everyone with an opinion should be able to insert themselves into any work being done by a group of people under the guise of 'participation'. Imagine trying to build a website that way: skill and trust matter, it is NOT universally inclusive. Also, remember that even on a Pirate GA, not everyone who shows up has voting rights. Only members do.

And it certainly does NOT mean that majority decisions by the group should be disregarded by individual members, or that random people should be brought in from the outside to overrule those decisions, as it seems to be implied here.

Finally, if we're talking Pirate principles, maybe the concepts of 'bottom-up' and 'local' deserve a bit more respect. Crew Gent has done a lot of work in the past, and has a number of fairly work-intensive projects in the pipeline. We are trying to structure ourselves to organize this work, and as everybody here can appreciate, creating structure can be messy in the Pirate world.

If not everybody is happy with this, that's unfortunate but also to be expected. I would prefer to see more constructive attitudes, but shit happens. In any case, this is an advantage of bottom-up thinking: if you don't like it, nobody's stopping you do do it better.


Pat Seynaeve Mon 10 Apr 2017

Wow, pretty aggressive …
About the basic text: you are right.
But there are the statutes of the pirates that defining a frame of reference within pirates crews should be able to work. I think this has been democratically voted in a larger body of the various existing crews. Those statutes are in collaboration to achieve better national action and to inspire other crews.
That's why I found the question relevant.

About the constructive attitude, that’s relative: I try to be constructive as well local, as well in the bigger picture. It’s quite strange that when being constructive for the national group, that I am accused to slow down the Ghent crew.
Pirates have a critical, constructive mind, so as I am for quite a time member of Gent, I have the right to defend some values of pirates, even if I am the only one in the group.
Since this item is not too important for me personally, I’m just the messenger, who could bring a pirate from another crew to the meeting, cause other members bring their unannounced invitees in too.
But maybe it is a sign that the statutes has, once more, to be discussed.
Last meeting, we started the meeting with 5 persons, so I’ve bring the item in discussion. The result was a lot of frustration by the others, and the day after, I was asked to leave the crew.
When bottom-up democracy don’t tolerate critical minds and don’t respect early made agreements, then something is wrong.


HgO Tue 11 Apr 2017

I also find your reaction aggressive...

You can interpret the basic text as you want, although I can't understand how you can promote transparency in politics if you don't apply it within your crew. We don't ask you to report everything from the meeting, but just the minimum needed to follow what was said and prepare themselves for the next meeting.

About privacy, are you talking about the address of the meeting ? Then maybe it would be a good idea to find a better place, no ?

I don't know what you are doing inside your crew (actually, nobody knows, that's the problem), but I doubt you are building a new website. Unless you think people are stupid, I don't know why they couldn't bring their contribution, help and opinion in your meetings.

I don't know what you are talking about when you say:

random people should be brought in from the outside to overrule those decisions, as it seems to be implied here.

Regarding the statutes, currently you are not respecting them. So, in case we change them, explain me why I would myself respect them ?? This is too easy. Either you respect our statutes, or you don't and you assume the consequences of your decision.


Tim Van Oosterwyck Tue 11 Apr 2017

Added crew Mechelen data.
At current our meeting minutes are shared among crewmembers but not yet to everyone. However, they can be looked into on simple request! So pelase ask if you're interested. We're currently considering to put the future meeting minutes in an embedded pad on the wiki. Therefore I'm curious on how to make a meetingpage on the wiki and possibly link to our crewpage. Is this in the tutorial?

Our meetings are usually every other Tuesday with a beer in between. Beers and meetings are shared on the wiki and on the website. Everyone is welcome to attend any of these! Our usual location for meetings is Expression and for beer it's kafee Zapoi.


Thierry Fenasse Tue 11 Apr 2017

@hgo and @vanecx did a lot regarding those events / links to crew's wiki pages. I know he is busy / a bit in pirate holidays for «the moment». Maybe he can help? If not I can have a look but not before a few days.

And / or as a reminder, wiki pages keeps every versions if they are edited/saved, so if someone around you want to give a try ... and mess the Mechelen'crew page, it is easy to restore a previous version (as any pages of a wiki).



HgO Tue 11 Apr 2017

Those information aren't in the wiki guide yet, so I'll explain here :)

You can use this form : https://wiki.pirateparty.be/Special:FormEdit/Meeting_event
It will create a new page for the meeting.
Then, you must add this code on your crew page : {{Events|Crew Mechelen|type=Meeting}}
The new meeting will then appear on your crew page.

After this, you can click on the "Duplicate this meeting" link to create new meetings for this workgroup.


Alex Borghgraef Tue 11 Apr 2017

The statutes mention the existence of a core team, which hasn't existed in years.
The statutes mention democratic decision making, yet the democratic decision to create a VZW at the last GA still hasn't been put into practice. Maybe PPBE should fix its own flaws before meddling with the internal workings of other crews?
And furthermore: it is not your place to tell us where we can and cannot hold our meetings. Respect for privacy is not a statute matter, it's a human decency matter, and it's most certainly a pirate matter.


Alex Borghgraef Tue 11 Apr 2017

Also, WE wil update the wiki if and when we find the time. Content will be a group decision, not an individual one.


HgO Tue 11 Apr 2017

Is this a joke ? oO Some part of the statutes aren't up-to-date, so you throw everything in the garbage ?! No, this part of the statutes is very clear, and it was there from the beginning. Nobody except your crew questionned this.

Oh, I'm not telling you where you should do your meetings, because I don't care. You can hold them on a desert island if you wish, this is not my problem. This was a suggestion, since privacy seems to be very important for you, maybe doing all your meetings that are supposed to be open to the public (statutes) in a private address is not a good idea. But if you think this is the best thing to do, good for you.


Thierry Fenasse Tue 11 Apr 2017

Are you sure about the vzw?


Renaud Van Eeckhout Mon 23 Apr 2018

I am currently admin of the Facebook page and the Twitter account for the Waremme crew, which is non-existing since many months now. Is it ok if I simply delete these accounts (and the gmail account associated to the twitter account)? They're useless, and if some pirates want to have a social network presence, they can build one on Mastodon or another one more fitting to our values.