[Imc-uk-process] PROPOSAL; legal support organisation should be a co-op
mayler at linuxmail.org
Fri Nov 19 05:10:09 PST 2004
* 1. That a group of activists form a co-op and offer web hosting services to grassroots media organisations such as the unconstituted IMC UK group.
* 2. That the coop and any clients remain seperate entities, clients such as UK IMC could choose whether or not to use the services made availible by the co-op.
* 3 That the membership of the co-op is open and that decision making is on a one member one vote basis.
* 4. That the decision making of the co-op is done on a email list by a clearly defined set of procedures.
* 5. That the co-op is a limited liability co-op registered by the Industrial & Provident Society (society for the benefit of the community)
* 6 That we need to consult Co-operatives UK about the management structure that best reflects the consensus decision making process.
Further info on this proposal can be found here:
I cannot find a agreed decision making process for this list so here is my suggestion for how this should go. I'm assuming we are working with 'passive consensus'.
1. We have two weeks ending 03/12/04 to discuss and amend the proposal on this list and get advice from Co-operatives UK about the proposal (i am happy to liase with them unless anyone objects).
Assuming that there are no 'blocks'- people who are really unhappy with the proposal and do not want it to proceed, (as opposed to clarifications or amendments, which are I hope self explanitory)
2. Each UK IMC should discuss and 'consense' on the proposal, I suggest that we try to get each regional IMC to do this By January 15th.
3. The liasions (that's us) should call meetings in Early January to facilitate that process.
If there is, in fact a agreed decision making process please let me know.
Consensus info http://seedsforchange.org.uk/free/consens
Consensus in a flowchart http://seedsforchange.org.uk/free/consflow
Co-ops in a paragraph:
Co-operatives are democratic structures run on the basis of one member, one vote. They are open to all (though they have the power to veto new members). They confer limited liability on their members (Liability is limited to the value of the (normally) £1 share members receive on joining. Co-ops are able to receive donations. It is normally necessary to appoint a secretary and treasurer as a minimum, however co-ops can run with out a management committee - the general meeting normally being the decision body in that case. There are examples of co-ops who rules allow them to make decisions by electronic means such as mailing lists etc.
My responses to zcats comments:
> ok first off the legal entity would have NO say on the way any indymedia
> collective works just like jebba didnt
Except in the case where they are threatened with legal action and decide that in the interests of not getting sued to remove the article/ shut down the website.
They would have ultimate responsibility for the website hosting, and therefore the content of the website- this is a non trivial matter.
> secondly we rely on people donating bandwidth and server space anyway (how
> else could we have 5 million hits a month) so the logical conclusion (imho)
> is to have better ties with the peeps who donate .
There are two issues here
1, The contracts that IMC uk are planning take out with commercial providers will be a legalistic relationship.
2. I agree that we need to do much more to support and encourage those that donate bandwidth and emergency back up home mirrors
> and my understanding is to have a body that fundraises and donates
> serverspace and bandwidth to indymedia uk but is not linked directly to
> imc-uk only the fact that it is its 'patron' and in some cases the people
> involved in the 'legal entity' may well be also indymedia volunteers
> and if its a legal entity with members then when 'the shit comes down' it
> isnt only one person who deals with it like jebba who had the contract with
> rackspace, the legal entity would sign contracts with isp's
I understand the need for a organisation such as this and agree to it's formation. we must however appriciate that this organisation will have ultimate responsibility for the website hosting, and therefore the content of the website.
It is important that this organisation is open and works on principles as close to consensus as possible.
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