[Imc-uk-process] Fork decision and attempts to block retroactively
mara at aktivix.org
Sat Apr 23 06:09:19 PDT 2011
The fork was agreed in Bradford, and at the time we never discussed what
would happen if one of the groups would run into problems passing
through the New Imc process. The thought never really crossed our minds.
Group B decided to not try and go through New Imc. We wanted to focus
our energies on making a good website, and getting back to local
organising, and not have to worry about process.
Now when we, group B, took active steps to make the fork happen, there
were two emails trying to stop this process. The first, "Deadlines and
Ultimatums", came at a time when the Mayday collective still had a crack
at getting through New Imc. The second, a block from Birmingham, does
not even give any reasons, it only claims that the agreement was not
"honoured", without explaining what they mean by that. It claims to
block a decision that was made 5 motnhs ago, when Birmingham people were
present throughout the whole meeting and agreed to the decision just
like everyone else. I have never heard of an instance where a decision
was blocked five months after it was made.
Birmingham claim that the agreement has not been honoured. This is a
strong accusation to just throw out there. They do not state which point
of the agreement was broken or how. For this lack of explanation alone,
I would not accept such a block.
The block is questionable from a second perspective: Indymedia UK such
as it was, was dissolved at the network meeting in Bradford. The 5
months period to shut down the site was merely a practical issue, to
allow for the time needed to prepare the new sites and the archiving of
the UK site. In this sense, there is no body in which to raise a block.
The only reason I can see that any members of the Mayday group could
have to try and stop the fork, is their failure to successfully complete
the New Imc process in time for the fork. This means that they will not
have an indymedia.org subdomain on 1st May. (See below for some
explanation about the New Imc process)
I understand how frustrating it must be for Mayday to not be able to
launch with their desired domain. But the past year has been a terrible
time for all of us. Noone was able to actually do what they want and we
just kept getting into each others way and exerted too much time and
energy, fighting about countless issues on email lists. We were, and
still are, pretty much deadlocked. This is why we all, grudgingly,
agreed to fork.
Nothing has changed in this respect. We are still deadlocked. If
anything, positions are even more entrenched than before. If anyone does
see an alternative to the fork, please do point it out. I really don't.
The Mayday collective has acquired a domain a while ago at
maydaymedia.org, where they are announcing the launch of their site for
1st May. I do believe they also have access to servers and any other
resources needed to go ahead. If the Mayday collective lack access to
practical resources, I am sure we can sort this out.
It is very unfortunate that Mayday have not been able to get the domain
they desired. However, as there does not seem to be an alternative
solution to our conflicts, and, seeing how there is no practical issue
stopping the fork from happening, I do think we need to go ahead with it.
At this point, the option of getting the Mayday collective through New
Imc in time for the fork does not exist anymore.
Taking a quick step back, this is how I understand the New Imc process
(I'm not a liaison, so please correct me if I get something wrong).
After a new Imc sends in the initial application, a member of the New
Imc working group volunteers to be their liaison. The liaison helps the
New Imc to prepare the documentation needed to pass, such as editorial
guidelines, mission statement... They help the applying Imc through the
process. When they are satisfied that the application is complete, they
propose the Imc to the New Imc list. There is a three day deadline on
objections or blocks from within the New Imc working group. After the
deadline, the application is passed on to the global process list. There
is a seven day deadline on objections or blocks from affiliated Imcs in
the global network. When this deadline is passed, the new Imc is
welcomed to the network and can request their domain, which is included
in the global cities list.
We now have exactly 7 days left, so even if there were no objections, it
would be impossible for the Mayday collective to pass through the
process in time.
When Mayday sent their application in February, two months after the
agreement to fork, there seems to have been a back log of applications
for the New Imc working group to deal with. As the members of the
working group seemed busy and noone stepped forward as liaison for the
Mayday collective, btm volunteered. Two members of the working group
showed an interest in the application and asked further questions of the
On 19 April, btm proposed the Mayday collective to New Imc. This was
just in time for the application to go through both deadlines for 1st
May. However the proposal was blocked, as one of the working group
members did not feel that his questions had been answered. His
objections mostly revolve around the Gateway 303 feature, and he seems
to be concerned how the information for this article was gathered.
Noone from group B has interfered with the application. Btm, who is part
of group B volunteered as New Imc liaison.
The issue that is stopping Mayday from completing the process at this
point is not related to the fork as such, nor were there any objections
by anyone from group B.
I don't see what we can do at this point. From the looks of it, and the
tone that communication has taken on New Imc, I get the feeling that it
will be weeks before Mayday have resolved their issue with New Imc.
We never could guarantee anyone to go through New Imc. It's an
independent working group of global volunteers. We never thought there
would be issues with the application, and did not discuss it at the
I do hope that the Mayday collective will honour the agreement and
participate in the fork. There does not seem a feasible alternative.
After the fork, they will be able to work out their issues with New Imc
without the pressure of a tight schedule. Maybe this will help relax the
situation and they will succeed in getting their desired domain in good
Again, if there are practical issues, please bring them up now, and we
can try to help. But we cannot interfere with the autonomy of the New
Imc working group.
Please, lets not escalate things any further. It will only harm
Indymedia, globally and locally. Lets try and take this painful step
with a semblance of dignity. For the sake of everyone who has ever
contributed to Indymedia, in UK and globally, let us not make them deal
with our mess, our mistakes, and our failure to work together.
Mara - one of imc london
On 22/04/11 23:44, penguin wrote:
> Hello all
> I hope you're all enjoying the weather at at the moment.
> What's the sticking issue here?
> If we all did what we could to support Mayday being an independent IMC
> as soon as possible, would that resolve everything?
> I speak as someone with no vested interest in Group A or Group B.
> But I would like to see Indymedia in the UK move forward.
> Peace, love, and sun.
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