[FoRK] Politico Quandry

Lion Kimbro <lionkimbro at gmail.com> on Tue Oct 30 15:41:12 PDT 2007

On 10/30/07, Tom Higgins <tomhiggins at gmail.com> wrote:
> Action, thats the tough nut. How do we, in small and large ways, break
> the nightmare cycle we seem to be suck in?
>
> Hey, another question, I bet there is an answer in this list somewhere.


  I have a "small way" answer, that could, in the very long term,
  contribute towards the large way.

  I like to work on communication and collaboration software.  A big
  part of that is relating with groups of people.  "Social Software" like
  blogs and wiki are good at bringing around a community of people
  to talk, and such.

  I've recently been thinking, "Could there be some Political Software?"
  By "political software," I don't mean software for running political
  campaigns-  rather, I mean software that connects 1,000s or 10,000s
  of people, rather than connecting 10s or 100s of people.

  Usenet is *used* by god-I-don't-know-how-many people, but it doesn't
  really *connect* (not quite the word I'm looking for...) them in a meaningful
  way.

  Dunbar's # is quite real (Tipping Point, Goretex, "150 people to a
  community,") beyond that point you have political realities:  voting
  and what not.

  My thought is that if we have political software, then we have grounds
  for experimenting with voting techniques, liquid democracy,
  transparencies, mechanisms for collective speech and representation,
  and so on.  I think we could create a society of a few thousand people
  on the Internet, who were knew the ins-and-outs of these techniques,
  were comfortable using them, and then come to expect them, have
  confidence in them, and can explain them.

  I've collected a few ideas about this at:
    http://communitywiki.org/en/PoliticalSoftware


  This won't fix our country, by itself.  But, when I ask myself,
  "Lion, what can *you* do about this," this is what comes to me.

  Presently, what I do, is share this idea with people.  I may start
  working more seriously on filling out this idea, and step up the voicing.

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