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[liberationtech] Inclusive Social Media - Digital Inclusion for Community Voices

Steven Clift clift at e-democracy.org
Fri May 4 09:26:21 PDT 2012


As noted here before, my non-profit by design restricts participants based
on different democratic values than the individual right to essentially
attack other participants, engage in name calling, avoid accountability by
using an alias, etc.  Of course we are doing this voluntarily as an
expression of our right of assembly not as something required by government.

While our neighbors forums are hosted in a relatively free and safe
democracy, I think lessons from our 60 page evaluation might be of interest
to anyone wanting to -build- stronger community, engagement, democratic
society local up, etc. beyond protest or after the revolution.

Our pilot neighbors forums involved one Minneapolis neighborhood that is
over half Somali refugee/immigrant and another with a plurality of Hmong
residents.

Access the evaluation here:
http://blog.e-democracy.org/posts/1420

One of our biggest challenges is that those with extreme often racist or
anti-immigrant views dominate online political speech on local newspapers
online making any form of public online engagement suspect among diverse
communities. We think our approach is a middle way between abused freedom
and hyper control.

I'd be interested to hear what other think?

Having spoken some in places like Libya, Lebanon, Mongolia, etc. I am very
interested in how extremely local online public spaces can be designed to
influence both local officials (and keep them accountable) but also get
local people to take collective actions or simply unleash neighbors helping
neighbors.

Steven Clift
clift at e-democracy.org  - +1 612 234 7072
http://stevenclift.com - @democracy
http://e-democracy.org - @edemo
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