Loomio
Wed 10 Apr 2013

Number of users in a group

I
iacocoba Public Seen by 525

Which is the affordable number of users wich make discussions work? Do we need a limit? Usually tools gets overwhelmed by comments overdose.

I

iacocoba started a proposal Wed 10 Apr 2013

20 people maximum per discusion (40 per group) Closed Fri 12 Apr 2013

This doest mean we have to limit the number,.. but is important to know where is the limit when things go crazy.

Results
Agree - 1
Abstain - 1
Disagree - 1
Block - 1
10 people have voted (1%)
I

iacocoba
Agree
Wed 10 Apr 2013

I'm not shure lets see what people think and go on with a more aproximated proposal

RG

Rafael Gomes
Disagree
Wed 10 Apr 2013

I don't agree with limit of users, no matter number.

FGP

Francisco George PP-ES
Disagree
Wed 10 Apr 2013

No in general. This could be a future options on a group by group if they find usefull to limit groups. Anyway on you own installation of Loomio on own server you should have the options as when you ask to Loomio admins to create a new group

JS

Jeff Swift
Disagree
Wed 10 Apr 2013

I don't think there should be a cap on participants. This issue would be better addressed by optimizing the discussion feature for larger groups (threaded discussions, hyperlinked comments, etc.)

Z

zack
Disagree
Wed 10 Apr 2013

This defeats the purpose of online participation tools: to involve more people in decisions. If you want to limit the number you can bring them in a room and lock the door.

MS

Megan Salole
Disagree
Wed 10 Apr 2013

I think that we should research the optimum group size and recommend to the person initiating the discussion that adding people more than 'X' number means a decrease in participation. But in some instances group sizes need to be big.

AT

Aaron Thornton
Disagree
Thu 11 Apr 2013

Not our goal at present, lets wait for some metrics on optimum group size for engagement before we make any rash decisions.

LB

Laurent Bassaler
Disagree
Thu 11 Apr 2013

Why having limits in life?

NW

Nicolas Wormser
Disagree
Thu 11 Apr 2013

I see enabling discussion between very large numbers of people as one of the essential roles of loomio.

VM

vivien maidaborn
Block
Thu 11 Apr 2013

I love the impulse to ensure people are able to easily contribute, but limiting groups is the worst way to do it when we know large groups are doing really well right now

MPR

Miguel Prados Rodriguez Wed 10 Apr 2013

Well there is a feature that could help to manage larger group decisions and it is the possibility to rank comments and those ranked highly could be on top of the rest, just like this software http://www.question2answer.org/sites.php that could help to manage larger groups. Also the autojoin (no registering process needed) will help to broaden the groups.

RG

Rafael Gomes Wed 10 Apr 2013

IMHO. The tool should handle this. Providing a good exhibition.

In a discussion with limit of participant can limit all the discussion, because the fast guys will participate instead other with better ideas.

My English is sux, I know that :)

VM

vivien maidaborn Wed 10 Apr 2013

Interesting that at the moment group engagement is very good in the largest groups we have. I agree that we should be working on features that make larger groups more effective though

ST

Simon Tegg Wed 10 Apr 2013

In the next couple of days I was going to run a model on optimum group size and other factors which correlate with engagement. I'll report back to this discussion on my findings.
But to restate Vivien's point, the largest groups have the best engagement. I think this is because there's a critical mass of activity to 'pull 'people in, but I agree that this can be overwhelming.

MB

Matthew Bartlett Wed 10 Apr 2013

I wonder how the number of subgroups a group has affects engagement?

AI

Alanna Irving Wed 10 Apr 2013

I'm not sure (maybe @simontegg can verify) but I suspect Loomio users activity follows a power law distribution, where a small percentage of users represent most of the activity.

It's interesting to keep in mind that there are different types of "engagement" - some more obvious than others. For example, the user who rarely comments, but often reads the discussions and chimes in at key moments with important ideas. Or the user who never comments but notices when things are getting heated and speaks to people personally behind the scenes (on or offline) and brokers compromises. Or someone who doesn't enter most discussions, but is very active on the subject matter where they are an expert. It's not only the "loudest" people that make valuable contributions.

In order to have a diversity of personality types and perspectives, sometimes it's better to have a large group, even if only a small percentage are very active in an obvious way.

NW

Nicolas Wormser Thu 11 Apr 2013

I think it is our role to make conversations with a lot of people possible. At a time when thousands of people can Occupy a place and make decisions together, I think Loomio should enable even more people to do so.

The challenge is to develop the software so that the discussions is still possible with that many people (when it usually fails in large real-life public gatherings)

I

iacocoba Thu 11 Apr 2013

When you have a big group with just a few very active people, you've got BUROCRACY. Just very active people can follow the arguments. Big groups need liquid democracy.

RDB

Richard D. Bartlett Fri 12 Apr 2013

@yagoabati I wonder if you can explain what is the problem you've seen on Loomio that makes you think limits are necessary? And/or what are the qualities you think liquid democracy (i.e. vote delegation) would contribute to the platform?

I

iacocoba Fri 12 Apr 2013

First of all @richarddbartlett :) I don't want to limit loomio group members i just what to debate around "effective number of users".
I understand discussions are not practical with infinity users. If you start a discussion and then you have 8 comments, that's affordable. If you have 25 it starts to be difficult to manage and if you have 75 that's really impossible.
If you have 100 members and just 25 participate that's not cool. Only "very active people" are taking part in decisions: that's bureaucracy, that's not representative.
From my point of view Loomio is very usefull for groups of "active people" around 3 to.. 40? just as normal assemblys.
For more people i prefer mixed systems with delegation.
:) some thing between "Loomio" and "Agora Voting".

I

iacocoba Fri 12 Apr 2013

@richarddbartlett there is no problem with Loomio. I love loomio. But i want to understand the limits. I know people don´t like limits but i think is very usefull to know where limits... to fight against them! :). I'm shure there is a limit of people where everything gets impossible to manage. That's the question!!!

I

iacocoba started a proposal Fri 12 Apr 2013

What is the limit of active participants for which a discussion is manageable? 30? Closed Sat 13 Apr 2013

That's not about limiting loomio.. that's about understanding the limits. Just debate!

Results
Agree - 1
Abstain - 1
Disagree - 1
Block - 1
4 people have voted (0%)
I

iacocoba
Agree
Fri 12 Apr 2013

I think is around 30 ...

FS

Filipe Silva
Disagree
Fri 12 Apr 2013

RG

Rafael Gomes
Disagree
Sat 13 Apr 2013

IMHO We don't need limit for discussion.

Z

zack
Disagree
Sat 13 Apr 2013

I

iacocoba Fri 12 Apr 2013

Please we need multiple options!! :) (not always ..Yes, No, abstain) :)

PB

Petru Botnaru Fri 12 Apr 2013

15

RDB

Richard D. Bartlett Fri 12 Apr 2013

@yago there are lots of problems with Loomio, it is our job to figure them out together and make it better :)

I don't necessarily agree that 25 participants out of a group of 100 is a 'bureaucracy'. For me the important thing is that people have the option to engage meaningfully with the decision-making process. To me, enforced participation is not much better than enforced disenfranchisement.

In fact, in a highly-functioning group, low engagement can indicate a high degree of trust between the members. That doesn't mean you want to remove the non-active members!

I agree that there is a natural limit to the size of an effective horizontal organisation, but I don't feel like it is a problem I've seen in any Loomio groups yet.

FGP

Francisco George PP-ES Fri 12 Apr 2013

@yagoabati If you ask our PP-DE friends LqFB has become totally unmanagable. Indeed they are looking for a new platform right now that would be able to manage over then 10.000 party affiliates.

Exactly the same will happen with Agora Voting.

Plus, personally I'm against any form of delegation of vote. Especially In Spain people have to be educated to participate in democracy and not continue with the bad habit of thinking "What the heck someone will vote for me"

It is this attitude that helped actual spanish politicians to be in control of what they call "Democracy"

Z

zack Fri 12 Apr 2013

even with a large number of users, Loomio shows discussion summary and decision at the top of the page so new joiners have information needed for a vote without needing to read all comments. And the votes are aggregated by the pie chart. one question which I have for a long time regarding all systems is how comments and replies can be aggregated more efficiently and linked to each other.

I

iacocoba Sat 13 Apr 2013

@richarddbartlett "In fact, in a highly-functioning group, low engagement can indicate a high degree of trust between the members." yes and also can indicate a high degree of boredom among members who do not participate. or also can indicate that many members don't have time to follow the debate, etc... How can we know why people don't participate.
I'm not speaking about a teoretical question. In equo we have been using our own tool called equomunidad (a short of social net) and most of people have abandoned becouse of this two reasons i have told you.

I

iacocoba Sat 13 Apr 2013

@richarddbartlett "I agree that there is a natural limit to the size of an effective horizontal organisation, but I don't feel like it is a problem I've seen in any Loomio groups yet."
That's normal! Active people don't usually feel there is a problem about that. They usually think passive people don't speak because they are agree with them (false). I'm going to tell you a story that happened in my "horizontal" assembly in Madrid: there was a debate to limit comments to a finite number o words (in our equomnunidad). Two very active persons were against that normative. There were an open debate and these two guys spoke a lot so finally we thought our group was against this normative. After the debate we voted and just these two guys were against the normative. That illustrates the empowerment of active people (burocratas we called them) .

RDB

Richard D. Bartlett Sat 13 Apr 2013

@yagoabati I have no experience with equomunidad so I can't judge where its problems lie. There are so many factors that contribute to a group's rate of participation: some of them are about technology and some about culture.

I don't believe we could predict all the problems that a group might face, and then plan the perfect system from the ground up. My hope for the Loomio design process is that we identify the most pressing problems, and fix them one by one, always guided by the principle of 'making it easy for anyone to participate in decisions that affect them.'

Autonomy means people can participate or not, as they like. Accessibility means everyone has the opportunity to participate.

I wonder what the most pressing problem is for Loomio right now?

I

iacocoba Sat 13 Apr 2013

I'm nor speaking about disenfranchisement or limiting... I'm speaking about changing ways of managing groups with different orders of magnitudes.

I

iacocoba Sat 13 Apr 2013

@richarddbartlett I'm sorry .. i don't what to loose your time. It's true that this is not the most pressing problem. For me is just a very important question that has to be with bigger groups. Loomio for the moment is working with smallers groups. :) Thanks!

I

iacocoba started a proposal Sat 13 Apr 2013

What is the number of users for which the rules should be changed? Closed Sat 13 Apr 2013

For example .. a different way of ordering comments.

Results
Agree - 0
Abstain - 0
Disagree - 0
Block - 0
0 people have voted (0%)
I

iacocoba started a proposal Sat 13 Apr 2013

What is the number of users for which the rules should be changed? 30? Closed Thu 18 Apr 2013

For example a new way for ordering comments...

Results
Agree - 2
Abstain - 2
Disagree - 2
Block - 2
6 people have voted (0%)
I

iacocoba
Agree
Sat 13 Apr 2013

RG

Rafael Gomes
Block
Sat 13 Apr 2013

IMHO you should presents the rule first.

Z

zack
Disagree
Sun 14 Apr 2013

FGP

Francisco George PP-ES
Block
Mon 15 Apr 2013

NW

Nicolas Wormser
Block
Tue 16 Apr 2013

I don't see any value in letting this proposal open for 11 more days.

LP

Lachlan Priest
Agree
Tue 16 Apr 2013

Seems like a fair number.

DS

Dean Satchell Sat 13 Apr 2013

@yagoabati I don't believe this is a valid proposal. You could propose that "The rules should change when the number of users exceeds 30". However, in my view you should first discuss how the rules should change when the numbers exceed 30... outline your problem and your solution. This might induce constructive debate.

AI

Alanna Irving Sun 14 Apr 2013

@yagoabati we believe in empowering groups to use Loomio in the best way for them. They can make decisions about who to put in their group, when exactly the the positions mean (such as block), what level of participation they expect, etc. Number of people per group is exactly the same. If a group thinks limiting the number of people is a good idea, they can create subgroups with limited numbers. I don't see the point in limiting the software for everyone because groups can already implement this if they chose using the software as it is now. It's up to groups to make their own choices about how to use Loomio.

NW

Nicolas Wormser Tue 16 Apr 2013

Could you please close this proposal and reformulate it so that it actually becomes a proposal @yagoabati?

AI

Alanna Irving Tue 16 Apr 2013

Hey @yagoabati I don't think this proposal needs more time. Would you move the closing date up, or is it OK if I do it?

JCG

Josir Cardoso Gomes Fri 12 Feb 2016

Is there a limit of number of users in a group ?

On the FAQ section, it show a 1000 users limitation but it's not clear that a group can have more than that.

RDB

Richard D. Bartlett Sun 14 Feb 2016

I'm pretty sure there is no maximum size for a Loomio group. However, there is a limit on how fast you can send invitations out (to stop people using Loomio as a spam generator).

JCG

Josir Cardoso Gomes Mon 15 Feb 2016

Hi Richard,

due to the FAQ note, some of our members are very afraid that Loomio will stop to work if there are more than 1.000 users.

https://loomio.gitbooks.io/manual/content/en/frequently_asked_questions.html

Do you have any evidence or proof that Loomio can handle more than that ?

RG

Rob Guthrie Tue 16 Feb 2016

There is no limit to number of members you can have in a group. As a developer on Loomio, I can confirm this. There used to be a limit, it was a real pain, so we removed it.

There is a rate limiter, which prevents a user from preforming actions (like sending many invitations, or creating many groups) at robot speed, but that should not affect real people.

JCG

Josir Cardoso Gomes Tue 16 Feb 2016

Hi Robert, thanks a lot for your attention.

I trust your affirmative as well Richard statement. But there are some guys on our group that is trying to delegitimize Loomio based on this written documentation. As I am a huge defender of Loomio usage, I am trying to convince them that there is no such limitation.

Is it possible to remove this reference from the FAQ page ?

AR

A. Renato Tue 16 Feb 2016

Hi Josir! If you need any help on talk about Loomio to your community, since we live at the same city we can do it together during some meeting when we have the time to attend.

JCG

Josir Cardoso Gomes Tue 16 Feb 2016

Thank you!

But I will wait for the FAQ to be modifed. After the FAQ modification, I think they will be convinced :)

AR

A. Renato Tue 16 Feb 2016

Nice : )

RG

Rob Guthrie Tue 16 Feb 2016

Ok it is removed. :hammer:

There is a topic floating around about how larger Loomio groups share their learnings, which I'm following and hoping to take some kind of action on when the time is right.

JCG

Josir Cardoso Gomes Thu 25 Feb 2016

Hi Robert, the FAQ text was introduced again :(

G

GasparI Wed 6 Apr 2016

Too many users currently cause problems with the amount of comments. E.g. look at the introduction forum. I simply can't write there because the comment field is always getting moved down if I scroll down.
Is there no way to sort comments new to old?

GC

Greg Cassel Wed 6 Apr 2016

You mean an option which allows users to sort comments so that the newest comments in a thread are at the top of the page, right?

I think that would be somewhat helpful for the problem you're indicating.

Another issue with busy threads is that it's hard to follow who is replying to who. One thing which could help tons IMO, but may be hard to code, is if Loomio could create visual navigation clues to link "Replies" to the comments which they're replying to.

DL

Daniel Lewis Wed 6 Apr 2016

Each comment has a unique id. It should be as simple as making an "a" tag with that as the href/url. Though you may want to use the whole url in case someone copies it.

G

GasparI Wed 6 Apr 2016

Exactly. Actually I think it is a grouping issue - comments threads by topic would be helpful.

Coursera forum with thousands of participants suffer a similar fate, so hard to scroll down to finally make your comment. Comment replies there are indented, that is helpful at least.

Another aspect: look at chat applications Whatsapp, FB, etc. If you have more topics in the chat, you're lost. People often forget to answer questions that are just a few lines above if some other topic is also discussed in parallel.

RG

Rob Guthrie Tue 16 Feb 2016

I just reviewed it.. The number is not a technical limitation, but rather a very rough indicator about what kind of processes we've seen be successful with the tool. It's more about an order of magnitude than the number itself.

I would back that up by saying that you should consider designing your engagement around groups of manageable, knowable numbers of people. Depending on the use case it can be a good idea to divide bigger groups into smaller ones each discussing the same topic, the outputs of the discussions are then reported on to all members.

But there is no hard rule to this though, and there is certainly no software defined limit on the number of members that a group can have.

I'll bring up changing the FAQ with the team tomorrow.

RDB

Richard D. Bartlett Tue 16 Feb 2016

:heart: :smiley:

RG

Rob Guthrie Sun 28 Feb 2016

@josircardosogomes.. Did it? I can't see where.

RG

Rob Guthrie Mon 29 Feb 2016

@josircardosogomes .. sorry about that. Fixed now.

AR

A. Renato Mon 29 Feb 2016

BTW, it must be out of the translations too. However, since the help section isn't in transifex anymore, it'll take a little longer to be fixed.

RG

Rob Guthrie Mon 29 Feb 2016

I've taken it out of all the translations of the help manual too.

AR

A. Renato Tue 1 Mar 2016

:rocket: that was fast : D

PLG

Purple Library Guy Thu 7 Apr 2016

Ability to sort newest-first sounds useful. Also threading . . . many web setups for managing discussions allow you to opt between threaded and unthreaded, as well as to expand and collapse groups of replies to a post. All that stuff is probably useful.

In the long run, unwieldy group sizes leading to unwieldy conversations is going to happen. Rather than solving that through delegation, I think it would be better to solve it by dispersal--hiving off manageable sub-groups to deal with different concerns. Keep things horizontal rather than vertical.

Thinking of which, it seems to me that Gaspar's proposal for sorting and the discussion emerging about threading really constitute new, separate proposals and discussions from what this ongoing one seems to be about. And at that, proposals that are rather more concrete, useful, practical, and decidable than what was previously under discussion. Should we start something new, or perhaps a couple of somethings, to deal with them?

G

GasparI Thu 7 Apr 2016

New feature: convert comment to new topic :smiley:

PLG

Purple Library Guy Thu 7 Apr 2016

That also sounds handy.

PG

Pedrojuán Gironés Thu 5 May 2016

I think we should go beyond the plausible limits of a Loomio discussion and face the real problem of a social debate with hundreds of millions of people involved. The construction of such a debate, is possible, would completely change the paradigm of the social narrative, giving (not returning) control to the people.

I have been working for a while in this concept and I think that we should have a sytem by which opinions and ideas are weighed by the number of people who support them. This is not the same that likes or dislikes, because if you are reading through the thread a contribution with one thousend likes takes as much readers attention as the following, may be with the same amount of dislikes.

There are a number of concepts to be explored. The first one is the grouping of people by afinity with respect to the idea at stake. Their position can be discussed in subthreads. The main thread is build by the agreed subgroup opinions, be it by consensus or delegation. The length of the thread would be limited to a size proportional to the number of group members, and each subgroup would have a corresponding proportion of "words" in the thread.

Subgroups reaching consensus would take up more of the debate, truly representing the formation of majorities. Groups would then tend to negotiate their position with other groups in order to be heard by the rest. Ultimately this would lead to the construction of the social narrative, including discrepancies.

One of the ideas I find most attractive is a system of delegation in which the people who delegate, empower someone, will be informed automatically every time their voice or vote is used, and they can withdraw their support. I.e. delegation implies trust, but this system is treason proof, because ultimately is the user who is in control.

At any rate I believe THIS is the social algorithmic problem that we need to solve in order to achieve true democracy. How can we ALL discuss constructively? How can we make decisions TOGETHER?

DL

Daniel Lewis Thu 5 May 2016

Love this mode of thinking.

I had an epiphany with @joshuavial and @alanna the other night and it is that you can split delegated read and write. Practically this would be the ability to delegate to someone to listen (read) and report back to you/the group and than speaking (write) for the group in a representative way.

Why this matters: i think (please debate this point) there is a dependancy on delegated reading from writing. Ie you cannot delegate your vote without the ability to recieve information back. Where as i think you can have delegated reading. In fact though functioning with a lower trust point i think this is what journalism is/used to be.

For example i am very keen to delegate the "following of" some loomio threads to others with the expectation that they will provide the information i need. Obviously i would like to delegate my vote. But that can be phase 2

PG

Pedrojuán Gironés Sat 7 May 2016

I believe delegation is essential in order to achieve large scale democracy. Write delegation implies de-facto read delegation, since the contribution that anyone may make on your behalf must be based on a previous read /documentation. The bottom end question is that in a large system no one can read everything, so, more than read delegation what you need is systematic REPORTING.
If you imagine a topic being discussed by one million people there would be a large number of subthreads (subgroups) that no one would be capable to keep up with. There is a need for read delegation, for a way to sum up the content of the subthread discussion and let the key points come up to the surface and become visible.
Now, a reader who is not active in your thread cannot trustfully delegate on the reporters, because the to lack of time required to check on them. However, active members can control the reporters without effort. They read the thread, so, they can at a glance approve or disapprove the report or summary. May be what we need is a “thread summary” function, where summaries can be exposed and these summaries be voted. Delegated writers could contribute all the votes they have been trusted with to support or elaborate these summaries.
If you imagine a tree like subthread structure where the top trunks /branches, are only elaborated by delegates with the strongest support you would see the most popular ideas coming up and create the social narrative upon which ground laws and democratic decisions.
At any rate, this may not be the solution, but it is definitely the problem.

L

Lucas Sun 8 May 2016

Dear Daniel, we have been working on this theme at our collective, Guilda. We are working on a prototype that we call Entrust. It addresses the point of exchanging delegation for curation, within circles of trust.

GP

Genevieve Parkes Sun 8 May 2016

Thinking about reporting and summary features in Loomio is really interesting for me, thanks for taking the time to put your thoughts into words!

PLG

Purple Library Guy Sun 8 May 2016

I agree that delegation, in some sense, is important. But when we think of "delegation", we tend to think in terms of people at "upper" levels having the power to decide things on behalf of people at "lower" levels. The people at "upper" levels get to decide about things with broad scope (on a broad range of issues), and people at lower levels can decide either nothing, or get to decide about things with only local scope (on a broad range of issues).
That, I don't think is necessary. The problem is that there are too many things for everyone to decide on all of them. The problem is NOT that only a special breed of decision-maker person should be dealing with the big things. So it can be solved by distribution rather than some sort of levels, which become a form of hierarchy no matter how well-vetted.
So if you've got a really big organization using Loomio-style decision making, you'd have a bunch of groups handling different aspects of organization-wide policy. Most people wouldn't be in most of them, but everyone would be in a few, and there would be some overlap. In a really big organization (nation-state?) there would be sub-groups nested within broader groups, going more and more specialized. I don't think there's a need to keep everyone constantly informed about all the decisions they all make--leads to information overload, again, and people ignoring most of what's in their inbox.

But you do need a mechanism to stop little decision-making groups from doing whatever they want and becoming little fiefdoms, bringing unaccountable power in the back door. I envision it working vaguely like this: First, as usual for Loomio style groups, membership is self-selected, so if a group starts doing weird stuff that impacts the rest of the organization a bunch of people can join and get a voice. Second, possibly there should be a certain amount of duty to be in a few groups randomly, so there are always a few people in every decision-making group who aren't there because that's their special interest, and so have a different perspective. Third, there should be an option like "blocking" which says a decision is too big and its impact too broad for the group to make it on its own, and so the proposal should be kicked out to the broader organization or at least a bigger subset. This should only take a smallish minority to activate. The principle then is broader, larger groups override narrower subgroups. Egalitarian principles are retained without everyone drowning in information overload.

This still brings us back to the need for, some of the time, decisions to be taken with a whole lot of people involved.

PG

Pedrojuán Gironés Mon 9 May 2016

With respect to delegate, I do not think one should get tangled with the semantics. A delegate is also a representative, some one who acts on behalf of, and it is in this respect in which I use the word. However, the second meaning is quite interesting, because I believe that the decision makers should be understood as people who work for the community, for the people who have delegated them with their share of power, and hence endowed with the ability to decide. In my head the voter is "top" and the president is "bottom" of the decision making power piramide.

I totally agree with your idea of the subgroups. In particular I like your idea of kicking a problem out to the larger group, which I had not think of.

One of the key points for me is that in a nation state size group, most people do not want to spend much of their time in the running of the "res publica". However, they have the right to, and will eventually want to, have a say in a particular issue. For the rest of the time they can either:
1) delegate in absentia, i.e. trust that the group of people dealing with the subject are reliable
2) delegate explicitly, i.e. chose to be represented by someone who:
a) wants to spend more time on “politics”
b) has an alike point of view in that particular subject.
Indeed, in a really large group you can envisage a tree like structure with subgroup and subgroups of subgroups which may allow everyone to have a say and be active only as much as they want.

On the other hand, this introduces the fact that you should not need to chose among parties all of which you may disagree partially with. You could chose a different party, individual or group in every different part of society.

GC

Greg Cassel Sun 8 May 2016

Fascinating perspective @purplelibraryguy ; thanks for sharing! I probably agree on 90% of the stuff you said.

In contrast-- not necessarily contradicting you-- I'm quite critical of "collective identity" per se, organization-wide policies, and the ways that pepole use pooled resources. I think most shared objectives can be pursued in what I call an "intercommunity" (inter-networked) way. I think big groups are really important, but should be as simple as possible. (Probably, for the same reasons that you advocate delegation.)

PLG

Purple Library Guy Mon 9 May 2016

I suspect that while we're defining or identifying things differently, the functional nature of the sorts of things we're thinking of is not so far apart. I myself am a fan of decentralization--but there are things that need to be thought about on a broader level. It is a bad idea for every community to have a different gauge of railroad track. It is a bad idea for ten different communities in a watershed to have ten separate ideas about water use. So on and so forth.

DL

Daniel Lewis Mon 9 May 2016

Well said.
Making a distinction between the tool and the method I think is very important. It is not to say we cannot have an opinion on how the tool we create should be used, rather that others are not "wrong" for using it differently.

I also think we are moving into a conversation on some sort of delegated democracy rather than "number of users in a group" and think this would be better in a new thread. So am going to start one and reference your comments here.