" The Metagovernment project invites all people to participate in governance as much or as little as they wish. It is the system which will run a series of governments using a scored, versioned website as the medium for legislation and bureaucracy under the principle of open source governance. This implementation is similar to the concept of "wiki government," but with a sophisticated scoring system to avoid potential downfalls of a completely open editable system.
Initially, metagovernment and its derivative governments have no power and no authority. They gain these only as people and existing governments voluntarily decide to grant them power and authority." (http://www.metagovernment.org/)
The mission of the Metagovernment project is to support the development and use of Internet tools which enable the members of any community to fully participate in the governance of that community. We are a global group of people working on various projects which further this goal. We expect governance software to be adopted first in small communities, and then to spread outward with the potential to gradually replace many institutions of representative democracy with a new kind of social organization called collaborative governance. We conceive a world where every person, without exception, is able to substantively participate in any governance structure in which they have an interest. We envision governance which is not only more open, free, and democratic; but also which is more effective and less fallible than pre-Internet forms of governance. Read more... Participating projects
There are a number of active projects, among many similar projects, that are being developed by members of Metagovernment:
- Adhocracy — A drafting and (delegated) voting tool for small and medium-sized groups
- Candiwi — Wiki software based on consensus, synthesis, and a distributed framework ("candid distributed wiki").
- DemocracyLab — Software using participants' posts and votes to build a dynamic map of political thought designed to facilitate consensus and solve problems.
- Dynamic Democracy — An experiment that lets its users suggest and vote on bills that they wish the government was considering.
- Eudemocracia — Argentinian NGO. Same mission as Metagovernment, although activism oriented.
- Indaba Application Network — The platform running WeVote (on Facebook) and ChoiceRanker.
- NationBuilder — The platform running The White House 2, and a growing number of other systems.
- Openpolitics — Canadian wiki based project for deliberation on political issues.
- Telematics Freedom Foundation — Promotes democracy, including media and global democracy, through the promotion of telematic solutions (see linked page for list).
- Vilfredo goes to Athens — Software which uses mathematical formulae to help participants build a consensus on an open question.
- Virtual Parliament - UK site allowing anyone to suggest and vote on policies.
- Votorola — Software for building consensus and reaching decisions on local, national and global levels.
- Votetocracy — US site allowing citizens to vote on bills in Congress and send those votes to representatives.
"Government of, by, and for the people
Anyone may contribute to any open source government. Significant efforts will be made to enfranchise those who are unable to contribute to a government. Efforts will include conducting regular public meetings and promoting dissemination of internet-access technologies (such as the One Laptop per Child project). Openness in everything
All aspects of governance will be as open as possible, under the principle of radical transparency. All software and systems used to run governments will be open source software and systems. Rating-based weighting
Contributions are weighted by a rating-based scoring system. Generally, the more one positively contributes to a particular topic, the higher one's score in that topic area. All ratings are themselves weighted by the score of the person casting the rating. Without consensus, there is no law
Unless consensus can be reached on how a law could address a problem in society, then there will be no law on that issue. Consensus through synthesis
When opposing views are presented, preference is always given to synthesis rather than either conflict or compromise. Geographic distinctness within a global community
Everyone in the world is allowed to contribute to any region's wiki. However, people who reside in a geographic region have a much greater say on issues affecting their region than do others." (http://www.metagovernment.org/)
On the transition strategy:
"All open source governments begin with no power and no authority, and are initially formed as nonprofit institutions or private clubs. Things which are referred to as laws are not enforceable, and open source governments begin with no power to use force or collect taxes.
Periodically all existing governments at every level will be asked to cede power to the websites pertinent to their region. At such time as any government cedes power to the open source government, the laws of the various levels of open source government which affect the region governed by the ceding government become real and enforceable to the extent that they are not forbidden by a higher level of government which currently has established control of that area.
It is not expected that governments will cede authority in the immediate future. The intention of the metagovernment and its associated websites is to gradually make a set of laws so superior to the status quo — and so compellingly, unprecedentedly democratic — that the people will want to change to this form of government. In states which claim to be built on democratic principles, the people there should be able to peacefully transform their government by using the mechanisms of that government. In less democratic states, the transition may take longer, but open source governments innately are protected from brutal force, as they do not have a single leader or a single physical presence. Over time, if the metagovernment is successful, scored websites will be the universal form of government.
Until such time as an open source government has the power to collect taxes or otherwise raise funds, users will be invited to donate to the nonprofit institutions which act as the initial stewards of these governments.
The initial nonprofit institutions are to be viewed as transient and goal-oriented. Each institution will incorporate into its bylaws a part of its associated website, referred to as a continuing resolution. That continuing resolution can amend the bylaws as necessary, and can also cease continuance. In the latter case, the institution is then required by its bylaws to dissolve itself." (http://www.metagovernment.org/)
- Metagovernment Project Home page http://www.metagovernment.org/wiki/Main_Page