Protocols for P2P Democracy in Distributed Networks

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= this page is maintained by Helene Finidori et al. at debategraph, where you may find updated versions



Protocodes of p2p democracy in and between distributed networks:

We are trying to identify and compile static and dynamic protocols, codes, rules, rituals which work and allow healty flow -generation, implementation, destribution and dessolution- of transformatory social power in and between distributed and scale free p2p social networks. ​

Within a p2p-distributed network:

  • All have the information about and access to All in the network
  • All information is accessible and open to all the nodes in the network
  • No node has an apriori and continuous position that gives it a power over other nodes, any one has the space and right to report such situation to all others
  • No abuse is tolerated to be hidden, all nodes are obliged ethically to announce any abuse, with supporting evidence, on a public space desigend as notice and discussion for such cases
  • Local hierachies of skill and experience and deficiencies of skill or experience are respected.
  • By abuse we mean attempts to coerce, manipulate or otherwise impose meaning, value or some form of righteousness
  • We recognize a spectrum of strong to weak versions of commoning.
  • Modelling strong versions of commoning is a key element of research into commons development.
  • Awareness of the process/practice, the ‘how’ of relating is of parallel importance to content dissemination.
  • It is important not to let the intensity of our concerns mean that we never ask -what is missing here?
  • Re 9 and 10 - on occasion for any participant to step into ‘process watcher’ role can be a self-governance asset.
  • Another element of process watching is checking out ‘contribution rate’. ‘Seductive over-teach’ and bringing rich lists of initiatives or proposals can be an inadvertent way of skewing the power dynamic of a group.
  • At least in the strong versions of commoning, people will know each other as persons, people with a life and a history that can contribute both bonding and distinctiveness. Developing this probably requires some level of confidentiality, contracting and face to face presence.
  • An open question - to what extent such bonding can be achieved and sustained in groups bigger than 7? - 12? This seems to point to networks consisting of multiple nodes of small groups.
  • A way of appreciating the overall value of 9-14 above is that they enable the building of ‘safety’ in the node groups. Safety appears to be essential for the full honouring of difference and a mix of support and challenge.
  • I assume that the nodes of a commoning network have membership boundaries. Boundaries matching the distinctive focus of the node, ie allotment association or health care cooperative.
  • So far as affinity groups form they will be entitled to agree what counts as a participant boundary, however parallel with this, setting a culture where anyone can begin an affinity group and develop a node seems essential.
  • Functioning outside the dominator hierarchies of command and control can be very time-consuming, while the formed nodes can be very responsive, establishing them takes time, measured perhaps in months and years.
  • Sustained commoning, at least in its strong versions seems to require an adequate level of ‘emotional competence’, especially having an appreciation of how our experience of parenting can be unhelpfully reproduced in dominance/victim adult social relations.