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[liberationtech] Any opengov loving/Facebook app experts out there?

Steven Clift clift at
Sun Dec 15 05:54:28 PST 2013

We have a Google Doc you can request access to help us crowd source some

It is clear to me that a growing number of everyday local residents are
actually offended or at least peturbed if you ask them to use something
other than Facebook to engage in their local community online. This rings
true with many of the key friendly talkers and community networkers.

The problem with single platform via FB is that you lose non-FB users. That
would be 30% of our users perhaps. I don't want to exclude the over 50
crowd that prefer email and say, they'll die first anyway.  On the other
hand if we don't connect with more of the under 30 crowd we'll die first. I
believe in inter-generational neighborly connections and civic engagement.

So our ability to keep an independent,  non-profit, open source, creative
commons, online community base means we must push multi-tech integration
further.  This is a crucial alternative to having online groups locked into
Facebook, Google, etc. on one side and being completely inacccesible design
wise to everyday net users by using open source Mailman.

Fyi - more on the platform we are using: see links on top

We are working on a big redesign right now, and then this Facebook
integration stuff will matter more.

Also, while mySociety and Open Knowledge Foundation use open source for
their elists (Mailman) and CfA and Sunlight use Google Groups. I have the
dream that we will get the global open gov and civic tech movement to meet
half-way with GroupServer or some other open source group tool so we could
generate some tech collaboration to build new features we can all
collectively use in our local communities. I find it ironic that those
seeking to engage the public online with fancy tools often use mailing
lists behind the scenes. There must be a lesson in there. :-)

Steven Clift - clift at
+1 612 234 7072

Steven Clift - clift at
+1 612 234 7072
On Jun 19, 2013 9:55 AM, "Yosem Companys" <companys at> wrote:

> From: Steven Clift <clift at>
> At E-Democracy, we need a "go to" person who can answer strategic
> questions about what you can and cannot do with Facebook.
> In general, we need our open source open gov/civic tech apps/site to
> reach more people via Facebook so we don't end just having to use
> Facebook completely to actually engage with folks and therefore lose
> tons of control over the democratic nature of the features we need.
> Long story short, our *open source* platform's atom feeds feed
> Facebook Pages we set-up manually and we allow people to simply pull
> their Facebook information over when they register. We don't use
> Facebook login, or give people the option to cross-post their public
> forum comments automatically to their wall. We want to explore that
> and other ideas you might have for Facebook integration.
> As an intergenerational project, many 20 somethings are saying they
> want to interact completely via the Facebook interface and the over 50
> crowd say we love email, don't take that option away.  We believe in
> connecting all neighbors in a unified experience. So, we have lots of
> questions about what is even allowable under today's Facebook terms.
> Suggestions on people to connect with?
> Steven Clift -
>   Executive Director -
>   Twitter:
>   Tel/Text: +1.612.234.7072
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