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The 1st May 2011 UK Indymedia Network Fork

Mayday Indymedia | 02.05.2011 22:56 | Indymedia | Birmingham | Sheffield



Mayday Indymedia

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Mayday Indymedia New IMC Application Timeline

09.05.2011 04:07

Following is a timeline of the Mayday Indymedia's attempt to pass through the New IMC process in an attempt to be awarded the mayday.indymedia.org sub-domain to host the www.indymedia.org.uk on for the 1st May 2011 deadline in the Bradford agreement.

This timeline has been taken from the wiki, you might find the original version easier to read as the blockquotes have a different colour background.

December 2010

The original application which had been submitted to the global New IMC working group in the name of the autonomous UK Indymedia collective on 10th Dec 2010 was withdrawn on 11th Dec following the Bradford meeting fork agreement. Implicit in the fork agreement was that Group a, a.indymedia.org, later to become Mayday Indymedia, would have passed through the New IMC process by 1st May in order to have mayday.indymedia.org to move the www.indymedia.org.uk site to on 1st May 2011. Two members of the New IMC working group were present at the Bradford meeting, Jimdog and Bou, both from b.indymedia.org, the other half of the fork, later to called Be The Media.

January 2011

The UK Indymedia collective had arranged it's next meeting for January 2011, at it's 20th November 2010 meeting (though it was subsequently shifted a week) and it wasn't till this face-to-face meeting that the collective agreed to be called the Indymedia Mayday collective, other options had been considered, see the meeting notes.

February 2011

Following the January meeting, on 1st February the implications to any delay in New IMC applications from the UK was clearly spelt out by Chris:

it's hard to see how the decision to fork the UK IMC Network can proceed if any New IMC applications from the UK, made before 1st May, do not swiftly proceed since the agreement depends on these going through

The application was resubmitted on 3rd Feb 2011 in the name of Mayday Indymedia with a critical date having been added, 1 May, 2011.

The application contained the following:

Please write an introductory statement about why you want to participate in the Indymedia Network.

We already do participate in the Indymedia Network; all of our present members have been Indymedia volunteers for several years. However we have never gone through the new-imc process, because when our site began, there was no such process. We believe it will strengthen our collective to go through the process. Also, since most other collectives in this region have gone through the process, our present condition is an anomaly.

This collective has been formed as a result of decisions taken by the entire UK Network in Bradford in December 2010.

It is important that the site be maintained by a properly constituted collective that has regular open meetings and transparent membership, and this application is being made in pursuit of that goal.

What kind of resources can you contribute, in terms of server/bandwidth/technical and organizing skills?

We use and help administer the Mir server called Traven, and our members made a significant contribution to the purchase price of that server. Traven is shared by many Mir collectives around the world. Our bandwidth is purchased from Riseup. We have an established network of mirrors. A number of us are capable of administering a Linux server.

What kind of outreach have you done to bring together a diverse group of people?

Our group is not nearly as diverse as we would like. We are geographically scattered, and we recognise that we face challenges in terms of outreach. However, we hope that once our collective is properly constituted we will be in a better position to recruit and support new members. We believe that we cannot reasonably expect new members to join us until the fork of uk indymedia is successfully completed. Nevertheless, unlike most new imcs, we are in the position of already looking after a busy newswire which is used by diverse individuals and groups and we therefore already have the potential for recruiting new collective members. We propose to add an invitation to our publish page for site users to get involved with mayday indymedia. This will be put in place once the fork has been completed, reaching out to existing site users who may be interested in becoming more involved in the collective running of the site.

Many marginalised groups and individuals have engaged with our newswire over the years and continue to do so. Some of them have also written features for our middle column and our topic subpages. We will invite these groups and individuals to our mailing list with a view to meeting physically as part of our ongoing outreach. In just five days this month (April 2011), news items posted directly to the uk site we are currently looking after have included the following topics: anarchism; anti-nuclear; animal rights; anti-fascism; anti-cuts; feminism; environment; deaths in custody; social centres; unemployment; benefits claimants; health and disability; surveillance; freedom of speech; ocean defence... and the following geographical locations: locations across Britain and Ireland including: Brighton, Cardiff, Lampeter, Cambridge, Rossport, Glasgow, Birmingham, Oxford, Sheffield, Portsmouth, London, Dublin, and elsewhere including: Ivory Coast, Yemen, Nigeria, Venezuela, Italy, Palestine, Europe, US. This sample indicates that the site we intend to continue under the name 'mayday indymedia' has the potential to generate a diverse collective membership with diverse interests.

Members of the collective will be promoting the open newswire and the mayday site in their local communities. To improve inclusivity, collective members will commit to outreach work with interested parties both within and outside of their local areas.

We intend to make the site work better for people using mobile devices.

How does the makeup of your collective reflect the diversity of the local community (e.g. in realtion to gender-, sexual-, spiritual-, and/or cultural-identity)?

We are from a variety of backgrounds, but do not reflect the cultural, sexual and spiritual diversity of the general population. We have members from Wales, Scotland and England.

If your group currently does not represent the diversity of the local community, particularly in relation to groups who are underrepresented in mainstream society and denied access to vehicles of expression, what steps will be taken to address this on an ongoing basis?

Our collective uses open mailing lists and public meetings for organising. We intend to organise public events such as film screenings to accompany our public meetings, and hope by this means to draw diverse groups of people into our activities. We intend to hold our public meetings in a different city or town each time. We aim to encourage minority groups to use our site to publish their news and we will offer support to enable them to do this.

We aim to extend the involvement of marginalised groups through collaboration on features, inviting groups to meetings, and outreach at events and protests on an ongoing basis.

We propose to add an invitation to our publish page for site users to get involved with mayday indymedia. This will be put in place once the fork has been completed, reaching out to existing site users who may be interested in becoming more involved in the collective running of the site.

Members of the collective will be promoting the open newswire and the mayday site in their local communities. To improve inclusivity, collective members will commit to outreach work with interested parties both within and outside of their local areas.

We intend to make the site work better for people using mobile devices.

We have a diversity statement (currently in draft: LINK ImcMaydayDiversity).

What steps will be taken to involve individuals in workfields new to them? What measures will be taken to overcome a gendered work division?

We plan to have training and skill-sharing sessions where there will be the opportunity for existing and new members to learn new skills. For example, we hope to organise training and discussion for new people who are not familiar with consensus decision making and to explore ways of avoiding non-transparent hierarchies in apparently horizontally organised structures. We also plan to organise technical training sessions to share skills and build technical competence across the collective. We intend to work collectively on aspects of writing, site maintenance etc., enabling less experienced members to participate in the work of the collective in a supportive environment. We hope to be able to offer of one-to-one 'buddying' by women members of the collective for new women joining, to encourage them to learn new skills, especially technical skills in a supportive environment.

Mayday Indymedia heard nothing from New IMC for 9 days, so an email was sent on 12th Feb 2011:

We requested on February 2nd that the new-imc application for uk-collective be reawakened, noting that we had updated the database record in the contact database. http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-February/0203-u1.html

We haven't heard from the new-imc working group, and there don't seem to have been any objections on the new-imc list. It's now ten days on, so we presume the application should now be reawakened, and sent to the global process list.

Bart replied that day:

could you please send the renewed application form to this list?

...

I have a question to your collective and to the Sheffield collective. There has been a debate going on about IP logging and I'd like to know the position of both collectives on this subject.

The background is that I heard you want to continue using MIR in the future (correct me if I'm wrong) and IMC linksunten has published a communiqué on this subject on the 31st of January [1]. Furthermore, IMC Nantes, IMC Northern England and IMC linksunten have proposed a privacy statement for the PoU which is currently pending on imc-process [2].

In the past, IMC linksunten has rejected the New-IMC application of IMC Binghampton in February 2010 [3] because (among other things) they temporarily wanted/had to log IPs. But IMC Binghampton only had technical issues and we welcomed them as a new IMC [4] as soon as these issues were solved. This time, I'd like to clarify this point before your application passes on to imc- process.

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-communication/2011-January/0130-b8.html

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-February/0209-yu.html

[3] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2010-February/0225-hw.html

[4] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2010-June/0620-82.html

So the application was submitted again on 12th February 2011.

On Feb 15 Mayday replied to Barts questions:

The Mayday collective cannot answer your questions on behalf of Sheffield IMC.

Indymedia UK uses Mir, and the Mayday collective intends to continue running a largely similar site, using Mir, for the time-being (we have not made plans to change CMS).

The Mayday collective supports the Principles of Unity as currently stated.

Furthermore the Mayday collective approves of the 2005 Sydney IMC proposal to amend the Principles Of Unity, as reiterated by Nantes IMC in January 2011. We intend to operate in accordance with these proposals and thus our practice would also be in accordance with the Linksunten proposal of January 2011 [1].

We note, however, that the POU continue to exist only in draft form and have never been ratified. We think that this is unfortunate.

We hope this helps.

[1] https://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-January/0131-t1.html

The Sheffield Indymedia New IMC application is documented here.

On 16 Feb Bart replied, quoting the email he was replying to:

Furthermore the Mayday collective approves of the 2005 Sydney IMC proposal to amend the Principles Of Unity, as reiterated by Nantes IMC in January 2011. We intend to operate in accordance with these proposals and thus our practice would also be in accordance with the Linksunten proposal of January 2011 [1].
very well, I'm glad that we agree on this matter.
We note, however, that the POU continue to exist only in draft form and have never been ratified. We think that this is unfortunate.
Yes, we should maybe formalise this. Nevertheless, every IMC has to agree to them when going through the New-IMC process. So maybe this is only a bureaucratic question copied from "big politics"?
The Mayday collective cannot answer your questions on behalf of Sheffield IMC.
Sorry, I did not mean to suggest that the collectices are not independent from each other. I only wrote one mail as I wanted to ask both collectives the same question.

ps. Once again, I rejected your the copy to imc-process as my question to your collective was answered satisfyingly (at least as far as I am concerned) on the new-imc list where I posed the question.

On 16 Feb smush noted that Mayday didn't have a New IMC liasion. In order to pass through the New IMC process a new collective has to be guided through by a laision, the laision must be a member of the New IMC working group and not a member of the collective which is making the application. The two members of the working group from the UK, both Be The Media supporters did not volunteer for this role nor did they offer any support for the application during it's progress.

March 2011

Because there was no indication that anyone on the New IMC working group, was interested in being the liasion for Mayday, Mayday Indymedia approached behindthemask from Nottingham Indymedia (who was also present at the Bradford meeting and another Be The Media supporter) to ask if he would join the New IMC working group and take on this role in order to ensure that the 1st May 2011 deadline was met.

He accepted the invitation and on the 10th March behindthemask sent a roll call to the list to say he would like take on the liasion role:

I would like to assist the IMC Mayday collective to achieve IMC status.

On the 10th March he sent a further email about this:

I would like to put myself forward as liaison for the proposed Mayday IMC: http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-February/0212-cm.html

I believe their application was made some time ago and they are still waiting for someone to take on the role of liaison and I am happy to fill that role.

On 16th March smush asked:

thank you btm for offering to be the new-imc liaison person for the IMC Mayday Collective.

Are you - IMC Mayday Collective - for btm to be your liaison person?

The same day Mayday replied:

Are you - IMC Mayday Collective - for btm to be your liaison person? in solidarity smush (imc aotearoa)

Oh yes.

We're very grateful - we asked him to step up to the plate, and we were a little disappointed that nobody from the established membership of the new-imc collective had the time or energy to do the work. No matter - if btm is good enough for you, he's certainly good enough for us!

Thanks btm, and thanks smush. We're very pleased to see things moving forward.

BTM: if there's anything you want or need from us, you can get all of us on our mauling list, which you evidently know about. It's a public list, with public archives; so if you want to talk to us privately, you can email me, and I can forward your emails to the other collective members. But we prefer to do our business in the open, if possible.

The following day behindthemask asked Mayday:

I have read the Mayday new IMC application and would be interested to know more about how, specifically, Mayday IMC intend to do outreach and involve members from the very large geographical area that it intends to cover. I think the application should include some more detail on how this will be achieved.

Without wanting to drag up too much of the politics behind the collapse of the UK network, I would like to know how the Mayday IMC intends to maintain transparency (and users' trust) around the use of anti-abuse capabilities in the Mir CMS. I don't bring this up in order to re-open discussions of whether use of anti-abuse measures is or isn't appropriate, but merely to ensure that there it is clear to users of the site what the policy of moderators is.

On 20th March Bart emailed the list:

I learned from a mail forwarded to the public mailing list of the mayday collective [1] that there exists "some kind of collusion" against the collective and that I am suspected to be part of this conspiracy. Do you really wonder why you have had problems to find a liason when you backbite like this?

I'd like to know what is going on in UK. Unlike btm [2] I do want to drag up "the politics behind the collapse of the UK network" as long as it affects the New-IMC working group. I feel embarrassed that the new-imc process is treated as a bureaucratic evil which can be more or less ignored because "the agreement [to fork the UK IMC Network] depends on [any New IMC applications from the UK, made before 1st May] going through" [3].

I'd like to know from the mayday collective:

  • What collusion are you talking about?
  • Why do you think I am part of it?
  • What agreements have been made concerning New-IMC applications from the UK?
  • What are your plans concerning anti-abuse measures regarding the new POU 4? (cf. [4])

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-March/0318-vi.html

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0317-9g.html

[3] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-February/0201-tg.html

[4] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-February/0209-yu.html

On 21st March Mayday responded:

Thank you for your email. Following an irc meeting this evening regarding your concern, we can state that the opinions expressed by Mr. D are not shared by other members of the May Day collective, therefore we have requested that Mr. D conciliates the points he raised on the May Day collective working list with yourself personally, since in that email he is not speaking as a liaison for the May Day collective.

We are concerned that you believe the reason the May Day collective have not found a new imc liaison (since our new-imc process began on the 3rd February) is due to some form of back-biting. One of the members of the May Day collective has reviewed every individual email sent to the imc-mayday-collective and the new-imc list, but prior to Mr D's email of the 18th March they found no emails which in their opinion could be interpreted as back-biting. Nor did they find any communications which would suggest that members of the May Day collective are treating the new-imc process with anything but the utmost seriousness. In light of this we invite you to raise any concerns you have, in the instance that there are any issue(s) which we have overlooked. In reply to the points you raised which we can collectively respond to, please find the May Day collective's responses below:-

Agreement made concerning new imc application

It was agreed at the Bradford UK Network meeting in December that following a successful new imc application by the May Day collective, the Indymedia UK network will be dissolved, the existing UK website (at www.indymedia.org.uk) is to be archived, and the project will fork into two separate projects with their respective websites, both of which will be linked to in a message on the website at www.indymedia.org.uk. The UK network expected that this work would be achieved prior to the 1st May 2011.

Draft Principles of Unity point 4, and the May Day collective's plan for anti-abuse measures

The draft Principles of Unity point 4 was amended by IMC Linksunten in January 2011 to subsume the POU 11 proposed by IMC Nantes:-

All IMC's, based upon the trust of their contributors and readers, shall utilize open web based publishing, allowing individuals, groups and organizations to express their views, anonymously if desired.

All imc's shall be committed to protecting the privacy and anonymity of their users. The logging of internet protocol (IP) information about users shall be kept to the minimum necessary to maintain control over the server (i.e. in the event of an attack). In the event that logging is necessary, details of the logging shall be made publicly accessible, including duration of logging, what information was stored, and actions taken as result of the logging. Collectives are encouraged to have a public policy on IP logging.

In a previous email to yourself ( http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-February/0216-oe.html ) we stated:-

The Mayday collective supports the Principles of Unity as currently stated.

Furthermore the Mayday collective approves of the 2005 Sydney IMC proposal to amend the Principles Of Unity, as reiterated by Nantes IMC in January 2011. We intend to operate in accordance with these proposals and thus our practice would also be in accordance with the Linksunten proposal of January 2011.

To elaborate, anti-abuse measures would be used only when the website is under attack, and we will post the time and duration of storing user agents in volatile memory on the moderation list, and what the outcome of the anti-abuse measures were. Furthermore, this policy would explicitly be stated in our editorial guidelines, and on the publish page. We also intend to educate users that their anonymity on the web is relative, that users should make the assumption that their communications are monitored upstream, and that tools like Tor can be used to reduce the likelihood of interception, but those tools are not without flaws.

We hope that this response is satisfactory to you. In the hope of making swift progress with our new imc application, we kindly request that you assist and help us in any challenges we may face in achieving new imc status. We look forward to hearing your response.

On 23rd March Bart emailed the list:

first of all: there has been no collusion by the new-imc working group against Mayday or Sheffield collective (or any other collective) that I am aware of. In my opinion, there are not enough activists participating in the working group but I think it's unfair to blame those who are active and try to help new collectives.

Both the Mayday and the Sheffield collective are related to the IMC UK split which is difficult to understand form the outside. I can really understand smush saying: "i fear, tbh, that anything related to UK stuff is beyond my capabilities and we really need some experienced new-imcistas helping there." [1]

I tried to give some support by explaining how the new-imc process works [2]. I reacted to mails by Jimdog [3], Mr. Demeanour [4] and Chris [5]. The consequence was that one of my mails has been added to a wiki by Sheffield without my consent [6] and the new-imc working group being suspected to conspire against Mayday [7].

I feel really uncomfortable with the pressure that accompanies these two applications. I won't accept that the Sheffield collective keeps my mail in a wiki which tries to document a conflict that I am not involved in. In fact, I cannot feel the solidarity and will to find consensus which should be a basis for all IMCs.

I still have concerns that the issue of IP monitoring is resolved by both collectives. I have asked a couple of questions concerning this topic and the answers are in my opinion not satisfactory as they lack a reflection on the trust that has been compromised by sentences like "In the early days of Indymedia UK, which recently celebrated it's 10th Birthday, site admins believed that they would never be able to gain the trust of posters, if the range of anti-abuse measures were made public." [8]

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-February/0216-aq.html

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-February/0216-0a.html

[3] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-February/0213-mg.html

[4] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-February/0216-z9.html

[5] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-February/0202-gg.html

[6] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcUkSheffieldNorthern

[7] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0320-dl.html

[8] http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/regions/birmingham/2011/01/472560.html

On 24th March behindthemask emailed the list:

To elaborate, anti-abuse measures would be used only when the website is under attack, and we will post the time and duration of storing user agents in volatile memory on the moderation list, and what the outcome of the anti-abuse measures were. Furthermore, this policy would explicitly be stated in our editorial guidelines, and on the publish page. We also intend to educate users that their anonymity on the web is relative, that users should make the assumption that their communications are monitored upstream, and that tools like Tor can be used to reduce the likelihood of interception, but those tools are not without flaws.

That certainly satisfies my question regarding anti-abuse measures.

On 25th March Mayday emailed the list:

Apologies for the delay in replying to your email.

We discussed your question about outreach in our IRC meeting on Monday.

BTM wrote:

I have read the Mayday new IMC application and would be interested to know more about how, specifically, Mayday IMC intend to do outreach and involve members from the very large geographical area that it intends to cover. I think the application should include some more detail on how this will be achieved.

We intend to meet at least quarterly, in different cities or towns each time and to include some form of outreach at each meeting. Earlier in the year we met in Brighton, and organised a film screening there. This weekend we are meeting in London and will be leafleting some of the start points. We would also be available to speak to groups who are considering setting up. We are also open to other suggestions of ways in which we can expand our outreach.

On 27th March the Mayday collective had a face-to-face meeting and agreed:

We plan to send an email on April 1st to imc-uk-process

We agreed the following text:

We note that there is a month till the 1st May 2011 deadline for the agreement made at the last UK Indymedia collective meeting in Bradford [1] and that the Mayday new-imc application still hasn't been agreed at a global level. We are concerned if the application hasn't passed by this deadline that the agreement will be void, through no fault of our own.

Mayday Indymedia.

[1] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/UkNetworkMeetingBradford2010Minutes

On 30th March behindthemask emailed the list:

I just wanted to confirm that my concerns about Mayday IMC's application have been satisfied by the collective's responses [1,2] to this list.

Are Bart's concerns[3] still outstanding, or can this application be passed on to imc-process?

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0324-lh.html

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0326-ad.html

[3] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0323-g0.html

The same day Bart replied:

Are Bart's concerns[3] still outstanding, or can this application be passed on to imc-process?

in my last mail I tried to clarify my concerns and describe the unpleasent atmosphere that has been created by the urge to push this application forward. Unfortunately, my mail was rejected and I don't see that my concerns have been addressed.

I still have concerns about the IP monitoring. I can't see any reflection on the spying that has been done during the last ten years by IMC UK. I want to know what has been logged on the site that you want to continue with, what has been done with the data and why we should trust you that you won't do it again. "We agree with POU4" is simply not enough.

Another issue is the structure of the Mayday collective itself. I tried to find protocols of Mayday meetings but could not find any. I don't know how the collective is organised, I don't know how it works. For me, this lack of transparency is a problem and due to the first issue I don't trust you enough to ignore it.

Thus, I don't agree that you move on to the next step of the New-IMC process.

April 2011

On 1st April the Mayday collective had an irc meeting, these are the notes from it:

1. Anti-abuse measures

These were discussed and reference was made to the previous discussion at the meeting in Brighton.

We agreed that the site should state that temporary saving of latest posts IP addresses in memory was a possbility that we reserve the right to use, in self defence, when the site is under attack.

We can't change the site or the practice until we have our autonomy. Until then, it has to be status quo, because there isn't a consensus on changing the policy in the UK Network.

We agreed to have this on the agenda for the Sheffield meeting in May.

2. IRC meetings

We agreed that for this meeting and future IRC meetings we would post notes from them to the email list after the meeting.

We agreed to mention this in reply to Smush's email:

http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0401-x7.html

But don't seem to have agreed on who would send a reply to him (perhaps our liasion might reply?).

We agree to rotate note taker alphabetically.

3. Email proposal to imc-uk-process

http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-April/0401-5h.html

The email was agreed apart from the last paragraph and there was no conclusion reached about what, if anything, to replace it with.

Following the meeting the an email was sent to Bart on list:

To recap, in the email the Mayday collective sent dated 21st March ( http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0324-lh.html ), we took steps to engage with you in a spirit of reconciliation by answering your concerns, and invited you to raise any further concerns you had. We anticipate that this was reassurance for you that the Mayday collective fully trusts the new IMC working group. You replied stating your further concerns regarding anti-abuse measures and the IMC UK fork ( http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0323-g0.html ).

In your email dated the 30th March ( http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0330-l7.html ) you stated that we had “rejected” your previous email; we understood this to mean that we have not yet collectively responded to the email you sent last week. We apologise for the delay in responding to your concerns, however in the past week we have been pre-occupied with developing outreach material which we distributed at the anti-cuts protest on the 26th March, which was a mobilisation attended by over 500,000 people from right across the geographical area covered by mayday collective, and thus an important opportunity. We also held a face-to-face Mayday collective meeting on the 27th March where we discussed your email in detail and made the first draft of this response. We are sorry and will endeavour to respond more promptly to your future emails, and we hope you are able to offer the same assurances. We find it unfortunate that there is a scarcity of activists involved in the new IMC working group, however we appreciate that you are taking the time to look into our application in such detail.

Fork

Regarding the planned dissolution of the UK network and the website fork, the Mayday collective has members actively involved in three local collectives in addition to other volunteers who have contributed to IMC UK over the years but are not affiliated with a local collective. Furthermore, members from other local collectives with members not directly involved in the May Day collective have pledged support outside of the agreement at the UK network meeting in December 2010 in Bradford. Mayday collective members have also collaborated in feature writing with SchNEWS, (www.schnews.org.uk) a Brighton based activist news collective, and Corporate Watch (www.corporatewatch.org.uk), a research group supporting the campaigns which are increasingly successful in forcing corporations to back down.

The other group involved in the fork has developed a website to aggregate content, and includes members from four local collectives, in addition to other volunteers who have contributed to IMC UK over the years but are not affiliated with a local collective.

Anti abuse measures

On the 23rd March you stated:-

I still have concerns that the issue of IP monitoring is resolved by both collectives. I have asked a couple of questions concerning this topic and the answers are in my opinion not satisfactory as they lack a reflection on the trust that has been compromised by sentences like "In the early days of Indymedia UK, which recently celebrated it's 10th Birthday, site admins believed that they would never be able to gain the trust of posters, if the range of anti-abuse measures were made public." [8]

On the 30th March we held a quickly planned IRC meeting to discuss your requests, including anti-abuse measures on the Mir CMS. Here are the reflections of some Mayday collective members which were found to be common ground across the collective:-

“When I joined Indymedia, it was a long time before I discovered what the anti-abuse measures were for”.

“I did not understand the implications of the anti-abuse measures”.

“The anti-abuse measures and the unspoken policy of secrecy pre-dated my involvement.”

Since the beginning of the Indymedia UK network, many local collectives across the UK have shared a CMS, the current CMS being Mir. The decision to implement anti-abuse measures on the Mir CMS, allow usage of those anti-abuse measures, and to not inform the end users of those capabilities was not a decision taken by members of the Mayday collective. Upon becoming a member of a collective and gaining admin to a CMS, members are expected to respect the status quo of the UK network, and any changes to that status quo require a consensus to be sought. Members of the Mayday collective had raised concerns about the secrecy, firstly at the UK network meeting in Nottingham in 2008, and most recently in proposing a feature to make the anti-abuse measures public in 2010, unfortunately consensus was not reached on either occasion. Ultimately, we would like you to appreciate that members of the Mayday collective should not be held responsible for the creation of a scenario pre-dating their involvement, especially given that some of their members proposed full transparency.

On the 30th March you stated:-

"I want to know what has been logged on the site that you want to continue with, what has been done with the data..”

The anti-abuse measures when switched on record the IP addresses and user agents of the most recent posts in volatile memory, but are not written to disk. When switched off the data is lost permanently. This feature has historically been used when the website is under attack. Mir allows filters to be configured to automatically either hide or flag posts originating from particular IP addresses and user agents. These have been used to block or flag users who have been discovered to persistently abuse the website.

Structure of the Mayday collective

On the 30th March you stated:-

Another issue is the structure of the Mayday collective itself. I tried to find protocols of Mayday meetings but could not find any. I don't know how the collective is organised, I don't know how it works.

The Mayday collective has regular IRC meetings and has face to face meetings every three months. These are organised on the publicly accessible imc-mayday-collective list and in IRC. At the beginning of our meetings we create an agenda, and during meetings we have discussions on each topic and use consensus decision making. Minutes are posted to the publicly accessible imc-may-day-collective list. If you require any further information regarding our organisation and structure it would be helpful if you could assist us, for example providing us with links to documented protocols drafted by other Indymedia collectives.

Next stage

We are willing to provide you with any answers and information you request relating to our new IMC process, and will endeavour to do so promptly. We hope that you are also able to engage with us promptly to improve our application, in which case we are confident that we can work together to achieve new IMC status before the 1st May 2011. We once again request your support in assisting us with any challenges we face in improving our new IMC application.

In response, on the same day Smush emailed the list:

Kia ora tatou,

thank you Mayday collective - it was good to read your response to Bart's email.

in terms of Bart's use of the word 'protocol': When Bart writes: "I triedto find protocols of Mayday meetings but could not find any" - i think he means 'minutes'. Correct me if i'm wrong here Bart! ('Protokoll' in german is 'minutes' in English).

Bart, there are some minutes posted here http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-March/0330-x1.html of a Mayday meeting 27th March. They don't reveal a lot about the collective, given that they are quite brief etc. But they are minutes none the less.

Bart, when you write about "the structure of the Mayday collective itself", could you maybe clarify what information you want from the group so that they can respond. Are you, for example, interested in if the makeup of the Mayday collective reflects the diversity of the local community (e.g. in realtion to gender-, sexual-, spiritual-, and/or cultural-identity)?

i would like to know from both the Mayday collective and from the liaison (btm) where you think you are at in terms of the new-imc process. Have a look at https://docs.indymedia.org/Global/NewImcHowTo - - there are 8 steps/points before we get to an internal new-imc proposal (and pass if no-one blocks). i see some of you are getting frustrated on your email list about this new-imc process and obviously you seemed to have set yourselves a deadline to complete this task. But are you, in your respective views, satisfied that you have completed the first 8 steps?

Thanks in advance for answering my question.

This was followed on the same day with an email from Bart:

sorry about the my wrong translation. Indeed I meant minutes when I did write protocol, thanks smush.

During a New-IMC process it's normal that we read the public mailing lists and public wikis try to find out about the structure, plans and decisions of the collective who wants to become part of the Indymedia network. It's one possibility of getting to know a new collective.

Another one are mails by the New-IMC liaison or by the collective itself in which the progress of the organisation process is documented. I think your mail from 13:11:35 today is a step in the right direction and we should continue this path.

On the 5th April Bart sent a further email:

I have more time now and so I'd like to respond in more detail. I think it's necessary for a collective which wants to go through the new-imc process to document its organisational status and progress. There are different ways to do this, the most common are public mailing lists and wikis. I'd like to ask BTM to help the Mayday's new-imc process by documenting it in more detail.

IMC linksunten, for example, documented its one year new-imc process in numerous Indymedia articles [1] and a public wiki [2]. (I mention this because you asked for an example and I am part of this IMC, not because I want to suggest that this is the only or the best way to do it.) Only after we've been affiliated to the Indymedia network we started to work on a website. So it's not a prerequisite to have a website before going through the process, as the new- imc process is mainly about organising.

I see that you are in a hurry but I'd like ask you to slow down a bit. The structure of your collective, your way to make decisions, the way you work is not transparent as you have documented nearly none of your f2f nor your IRC meetings. I think it's a better and more solid way to first organising and documenting the progress and then becoming part of the network. It also helps new people to get in touch with your collective if they can find a well documented history of your IMC. The new-imc guide that smush mentioned [3] really helped us to form a collective.

I still think that the wiki Sheffield maintains [4] is a really bad example of a wiki documenting a new-imc process as it focuses on conflicts rather than progress. I think the wiki and the reactions to the criticism show a blatant lack of solidarity. As I learned that members of the Sheffield collective are also members of the Mayday collective I'd like to ask the Mayday collective on its point of view about this issue.

[1] http://de.indymedia.org/2008/09/226255.shtml

[2] https://www.autonome-antifa.org/imc

[3] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0401-x7.html

[4] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-January/0122-lv.html

On the 5th April Chris responded to the concerns Bart has raised about two Sheffield Indymedia wiki pages:

Myself and a number of other UK Indymedia activists have endured numerous unsubstantiated public attacks and personal abuse over the last few years from a number of Northern Indymedia activists.

This is on-going, in the last few months we have been called "Fuckers" and refered to as "the soiled underpants and to foil hat brigade" [1], previous baseless accusations have included ones of "personal off-list abuse, spamming and mounting a denial of service attack" [2].

The unsubstantiated allegations have not been withdrawn, explained or apologised for and, as a form of self-defence, I started documenting these attacks on a couple of wiki pages [3].

Attempts at mediation with the people making the unsubstantiated public attacks has failed, most notably when a supporter of IMC Northern started a process in March 2010 [4] which was supported by myself and the others who were suffering from the attacks.

At the Bristol UK Indymedia meeting in April 2010, in reference to this, it was noted that there "is also a mediation process ongoing dealing with more personal issues" [5].

However the two people, from Northern Indymedia, who had been making the bulk of the unsubstantiated public attacks, refused to take part in this process [6].

Sheffield Indymedia has discussed this matter over many meetings, at our meeting in December 2010 we agreed that "the questions and accusations raised have never been answered, and in the interests of openness it was best to leave the story online" [7] and in March 2011 that:

Those pages will remain until the parties making those false accusations and slurs account for their actions. This, we feel is reasonable. [8]

That numerous unsubstantiated attacks on other activists have originated from Northern Indymedia was known at the time of their New IMC application and one of the wiki pages was pointed to [9], yet they passed the process.

There seems no reason therefore, that the two IMC's whos supporters were the victims of the unsubstantiated attacks should have their New IMC applications delayed because Sheffield Indymedia has agreed that the documentation of the attacks from the Northern Indymedia activists shouldn't be deleted.

So, can things please be progressed with the Sheffield Indymedia application, this was submitted on 18th January 2011 [10] and there appears to be no issues raised with it apart from the matter of the wiki pages, but nobody has said they will block because we have chosen to document the attacks we have suffered.

Furthermore can those who think that the Sheffield wiki pages should hold back the progress of the Mayday Indymedia New IMC application please respect the autonomy of Sheffield Indymedia and address your concerns to Sheffield Indymedia not the Mayday Collective.

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-February/0213-az.html

[2] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcUkSheffieldNorthern#Crazy_summer_days

[3] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcUkSheffieldNorthern https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcUkSheffieldDisinfo

[4] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-northern/2010-March/0326-69.html http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-northern/2010-March/0326-hw.html

[5] https://we.riseup.net/imc-uk/imc-uk-network-meeting-17-april-2010-minutes#northern-indymedia-new-imc-application

[6] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-network/2010-July/0712-i1.html http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-network/2010-July/0712-f3.html

[7] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-sheffield/2010-December/1208-6d.html

[8] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0321-fe.html

[9] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2010-March/0301-yj.html

[10] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-January/0118-u4.html

On 8th April the Mayday collective had a irc meeting, these are the notes from it pertaining to the New IMC application:

8 members of the collective attended this meeting.

(2) NEW IMC: REPLIES TO SMUSH, BART AND LONDON

After some discussion it was agreed that a single reply could be sent to Bart and Smush to deal with points raised in their emails.

Smush's email: http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-April/0401-al.html

Bart's last email: http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-April/0405-m7.html

Radicale volunteered to draft a reply to bart and smush. will post to list once draft is ready. [ draft is now here: http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-April/0408-au.html ]

We discussed the London-imc email sent to global process and communications lists: revised version here: http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-communication/2011-March/0330-21.html

We already have a draft response, which has been agreed except for the last paragraph: http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-April/0401-5h.html.

Discussed inappropriateness of London-imc sending this email to two global lists but not to uk-process.

Discussed whether responding at all would somehow legitimise an email which was out of order, and whether not responding would be taken as tacit agreement with the contents of the email. There was a suggestion to reply stating that London's email was out of order. We have yet to reach consensus on action on this.

(3) EDITORIAL GUIDELINES AND MISSION STATEMENT

We had already agreed these as imc-uk collective. Revisions have been made to take account of our change to becoming the mayday collective and are now here:

https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMaydayEditorialGuidelines https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMaydayMissionStatement

The current versions were agreed by all present as acceptable working documents for the time being which we would hope to review and improve on in the future.

(5) NEW-IMC LIAISON

Agreed we need to try to improve communication with btm re. new-imc process, progress etc. - we've only had email contact so far.

Radicale has btm's phone number. Proposal to phone btm and suggest a meeting in irc. Agreed. Radicale agreed to do this on Friday 8 April and find out when btm might be available for a meeting.

(6) AOB - HOW TO GET OTHER GROUPS AND INDIVIDUALS INVOLVED IN MAYDAY COLLECTIVE

Discusssed this in relation to new-imc requirements. Joining mayday collective is not an attractive proposition while the fork is happening, but we need to think more about how to involve more people afterwards and how to do effective outreach across our whole geographical area.

On 9th April Bart emailed the list:

I'd like to continue the discussion about "anti-abuse measures".

On 23.03.2011, I wrote: [1]

I still have concerns that the issue of IP monitoring is resolved by both collectives. I have asked a couple of questions concerning this topic and the answers are in my opinion not satisfactory as they lack a reflection on the trust that has been compromised by sentences like "In the early days of Indymedia UK, which recently celebrated it's 10th Birthday, site admins believed that they would never be able to gain the trust of posters, if the range of anti-abuse measures were made public."

On 01.04.2011, Radicale answered: [2]

On the 30th March we held a quickly planned IRC meeting to discuss your requests, including anti-abuse measures on the Mir CMS. Here are the reflections of some Mayday collective members which were found to be common ground across the collective:-

“When I joined Indymedia, it was a long time before I discovered what the anti-abuse measures were for”.

“I did not understand the implications of the anti-abuse measures”.

“The anti-abuse measures and the unspoken policy of secrecy pre-dated my involvement.”

Since the beginning of the Indymedia UK network, many local collectives across the UK have shared a CMS, the current CMS being Mir. The decision to implement anti-abuse measures on the Mir CMS, allow usage of those anti-abuse measures, and to not inform the end users of those capabilities was not a decision taken by members of the Mayday collective. Upon becoming a member of a collective and gaining admin to a CMS, members are expected to respect the status quo of the UK network, and any changes to that status quo require a consensus to be sought. Members of the Mayday collective had raised concerns about the secrecy, firstly at the UK network meeting in Nottingham in 2008, and most recently in proposing a feature to make the anti-abuse measures public in 2010, unfortunately consensus was not reached on either occasion. Ultimately, we would like you to appreciate that members of the Mayday collective should not be held responsible for the creation of a scenario pre-dating their involvement, especially given that some of their members proposed full transparency.

It's good to hear that there are people who do not agree to the use of the IMC-UK MIR system as spyware. Nevertheless, I find it hard to believe that the quotes above are "common ground across the collective". I talked to a member of your collective who is admin on IMC-UK and who defended the spying. He believed that it was a just cause to monitor users for the sake of retaliation against the cops. To be honest: I do not trust your reassurances as they lack reflection on the betrayal against the users of IMC-UK.

On 30.03.2011, I asked: [3]

I still have concerns about the IP monitoring. I can't see any reflection on the spying that has been done during the last ten years by IMC UK. I want to know what has been logged on the site that you want to continue with, what has been done with the data and why we should trust you that you won't do it again. "We agree with POU4" is simply not enough.

On 01.04.2011, Radicale answered: [2]

The anti-abuse measures when switched on record the IP addresses and user agents of the most recent posts in volatile memory, but are not written to disk. When switched off the data is lost permanently. This feature has historically been used when the website is under attack. Mir allows filters to be configured to automatically either hide or flag posts originating from particular IP addresses and user agents. These have been used to block or flag users who have been discovered to persistently abuse the website.

How come that SchNEWS was able to present a list of articles posted by a certain IP? Who collected this data? What did they do with it? Do further dossiers exist? Are the person responsible for this betrayal designated admins of mayday.indymedia.org?

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0323-g0.html

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0401-jj.html

[3] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0330-l7.html

On the 12th April the Mayday collective had a irc meeting:

Discussion of the new IMC application and improvements to it

draft diversity statement discussed and proposed to be put on our wiki:

https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMayday

Document the stages of our new IMC application

Update the https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMayday wiki page with details of how to get involved in the IMC Mayday collective.

Discuss and document a collective response to https://docs.indymedia.org/Global/MembershipCriteria and https://docs.indymedia.org/Global/PrinciplesOfUnity

proposal to finalise the draft of mayday imc's 303 statement

Honouring the Bradford Network meeting between Groups A and B

The agreement made in Bradford stated that we would be supported through the new imc process and that our successful new imc application was dependent on the fork happening. Both groups agreed this agreement and group B (bethemedia) said they would help us through new-imc so that the fork could happen.

We therefore object to the closing down of imc-uk mailing lists on the basis that this deal hasn't been honoured yet.

we agreed we would not take up a temporary DNS

We will reply to London's email where they attempt to change the terms of the deal brokered in Bradford.

On 17th April a further irc meeting was held:

An emergency IRC meeting was held to discuss the consequences and strategy if Bart from new-imc BLOCKs Mayday's new-imc application, which seemed likely given the slanderous tone of Bart's unsupported by any evidence accusations that members of the Mayday Collective were involved in 'spying' on the users of IMC UK and that this was an act of 'betrayal' by un-named members of our collective.

Only 4 members could attend the meeting and so no actions were sanctioned, instead we discussed:-

The consequences of the proposed closure and archiving of the UK site on May the 1st along with the e-mail lists needed to run open publishing on indymedia.org.uk.

The contents of the "splash" page were read.

Some points about the design of our new site were discussed, e.g. the need for a new banner.

What could be done to ensure that Open Publishing on a UK wide site could be maintained on an "indymedia.org" domain.

What lists needed to be set up in order to continue supporting open publishing UK wide on an "indymedia.org" domain.

What e-mail responses were needed in order that Mayday could pass through new-imc to become a fully constituted IMC within the global network with an "indymedia.org" domain.

Various drafts in response to on going issues with our liaison and new-imc were discussed and edited accordingly, with the new drafts sent to members of the Mayday Collective off list and on the various 'docs' pages.

Various strategies and scenarios were discussed, but no actions were sanctioned.

On the same day a reply to Smush was sent:

We have organised and undertaken three IRC meetings since we received your last email. We have taken your suggestions on board regarding creating more detailed meeting minutes. We decided that the best course of action would be to condense future IRC scripts into key discussions, proposals, and decisions. The minutes would then be posted to the imc-mayday-collective email where amendments can be made by all other collective members. In order to provide full transparency, we will also post links to all the meeting minutes on the IMC Mayday collective wiki page here: ( https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMayday ) so that all the meeting minutes are easily accessible without it being necessary to navigate the imc-mayday-collective email list archive.

All Indymedia collectives are autonomous, and therefore have the freedom to operate independently. The Mayday Collective intends to respect the autonomy and decisions of Sheffield Indymedia, and focus on the task at hand which is the Mayday Indymedia new IMC application.

New IMC process stages

You asked us to document the stages of our new IMC process. We have created a wiki page at https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMaydayOrganisationalStatus and have documented our progress through the new IMC process.

Once again, thank you for taking an interest in our new IMC application.

The following day, 18th April, behindthemask emailed the list:

It has been some time now since Mayday IMC proposed their new IMC to this list [1]. The application seems to have reached an impasse, due to Bart's objections [2]. In order to try to facilitate the process through which Mayday achieve IMC status, I would like to try to clarify Bart's position.

Bart, are you blocking Mayday's application as it stands? If so, could you please elaborate why exactly that is and what the collective can do to overcome your objections? I will take what I think are the most important objections from your most recent email [2] and ask you to clarify what you mean by them.

"I do not trust your reassurances [regarding the use of anti-abuse measures] as they lack reflection on the betrayal against the users of IMC-UK."

Is this sufficient to make you block the proposal? If it is, what will be sufficient for you to withdraw that?

"How come that SchNEWS was able to present a list of articles posted by a certain IP? Who collected this data? What did they do with it? Do further dossiers exist? Are the person responsible for this betrayal designated admins of mayday.indymedia.org?"

I would like to ask Bart to clarify whether the answers to these questions will be critical in deciding whether Mayday become an IMC or not. If they are, I would request the Mayday collective to respond to these questions.

I hope that people will be able to respond quickly in order to get this process moving again.

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-February/0203-u1.html

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0409-zf.html

And Bart replied that day:

I probably found the answer to my question concerning the list of articles from a certain IP by reading the Mayday wiki [1] which was linked in the last mail by Radicale [2]:
"(12) The UK Mir site uses an IP filter all the time to flag posts made on the website. This filter can be controlled from the Mir admin interface and can be accessed by all Indymedia UK Mir admins. It filters 'posts' to the website from IP addresses which have been manually and independently added via the web interface."

I think my questions [3] are critical for the Mayday application. I have chosen the word "betrayal" carefully because based on my current knowledge the UK Mir website has been used as a spy tool without notification of the users. If this is true then (even the old) POU 4 has been violated:

"4. All IMC's, based upon the trust of their contributors and readers, shall utilize open web based publishing, allowing individuals, groups and organizations to express their views, anonymously if desired."

If this is the case then from my point of view there mustn't be a "keep it up" but a thorough and transparent analysis and reflection on what has happened and who is responsible for it. Up to now, I cannot feel the willingness to do so.

I try to condense my concerns to a single question: If you try to bury the past then how can we trust you in the future?

[1] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMayday303Statment

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0417-gb.html

[3] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0409-zf.html

And sent a PS:

ps.
If this is the case then from my point of view there mustn't be a "keep it up" but a thorough and transparent analysis and reflection on what has happened and who is responsible for it. Up to now, I cannot feel the willingness to do so.

One of the reasons for my doubts are mails [1] which suggest to brazenly disregard the New-IMC process:

I'd like to suggest we also attempt to bypass the non-functional new-imc group by asking imc-process to approve us before 1st May.

Chris

The same day behindthemask replied:

Thanks for your quick response Bart.

If I understand your email correctly you would like to see a "thorough and transparent analysis and reflection on what has happened and who is responsible for it".

I think that this would be a useful document for the prospective Mayday IMC to draw up - for critical self-reflection and to explain their perspective to site users and other IMCs. I'm thinking that something similar to Nottingham IMC's statement [1] would be appropriate.

[1] https://nottingham.indymedia.org/articles/921

And also on 18th April Mayday blocked the closure of imc-uk email lists due to concerns that the fork agreement couldn't be completed in time:

The Mayday Collective notes the various emails from nab [1], Bristol IMC [2] and London IMC [3], and from Listwork [4].

1. We object to the closing down of lists that we are using for newswire moderation. We suggest that closing the uk-process list on May 1 appears to be premature, since the fork agreement seems unlikely to be completed by that date. We block the closing of the uk-moderation, uk-features, and uk-process lists.

2. At the Bradford meeting it was agreed that the fork of Indymedia UK would be conditional on the successful new IMC application of the Mayday collective. Therefore if IMC Mayday does not achieve new IMC status by the 1st of May, then the fork will not happen. If the new IMC application of the Mayday collective is not successful by the 1st of May, we are not willing to move to a temporary URL on May 1. We are therefore blocking the proposal that any changes should be made to the UK Indymedia site, until such a time as our status as an IMC has been properly resolved.

The omitted footnotes were sent in a subsequent email on the same day:

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0411-nj.html

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-tech/2011-April/0411-g5.html

[3] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0411-1v.html

[4] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0408-u9.html

The following day, 19th April Chris replied to Bart:

On Mon 18-Apr-2011 at 04:58:43PM +0200, Bartolomeo wrote:
mails [1] which suggest to brazenly disregard the New-IMC process:
I'd like to suggest we also attempt to bypass the non-functional new-imc group by asking imc-process to approve us before 1st May.

Is the New IMC group functional?

The Sheffield application [1] was made 4 month ago and although Sheffield Indymedia has been up and running almost 8 years now there has been no progress made with this application as no New IMC member has come forward to be a liaison. The process doesn't appear to be working for Sheffield.

The suggestion to go straight to imc-process was originally made due to fustration with the lack of progress for Indymedia Cairo who didn't have a liasion. their application was submitted on 13th March 2011 [2] and on 7th April they wrote to new-imc:

It seems since no one jumped forward to be our liaison, I see no other way than following the steps ourselves without a "helper", so we will be writing to IMC-Process and IMC-Communication and waiting for their response.

http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0407-ou.html

The quote Bart forwarded to the New IMC list was written in this context -- if no progress can be made on new-imc with New IMC applications then perhaps the New IMC process isn't working.

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-January/0118-u4.html

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0314-gb.html

And he sent a subsequent email to the list:

On Sat 09-Apr-2011 at 08:30:26PM +0200, Bartolomeo wrote:
It's good to hear that there are people who do not agree to the use of the IMC-UK MIR system as spyware. Nevertheless, I find it hard to believe that the quotes above are "common ground across the collective". I talked to a member of your collective who is admin on IMC-UK and who defended the spying. He believed that it was a just cause to monitor users for the sake of retaliation against the cops. To be honest: I do not trust your reassurances as they lack reflection on the betrayal against the users of IMC-UK.

UK Indymedia hasn't been "spying" on it's users, in this case the only people we can be accused of "spying on" is the UK Government -- this is the "user" that was being tracked and clearly they don't count as a legitimate user.

UK Indymedia has been using filters to track posts from specific UK Government IP addresses which activists in the UK knew were being used by the Police to attempt to disrupt and derail activists campaigns -- it was due to several reports on activist web site about abuse from gateway-202.energis.gsi.gov.uk and gateway-303.energis.gsi.gov.uk that filters were put in place to flag up any comment of article that originated from these addresses.

This was done in self defence -- the police in the UK have used articles and comments on UK Indymedia as evidence against activists in court cases and to justify Indymedia server seizures and raids on activists homes.

Sheffield Indymedia, Birmingham Indymedia, Oxford Indymedia and the Mayday Indymedia collective all argued that the 302 and 303 posts, which are made up of attempts at divide and rule, gloating about sentances for activists and classic agent provocateur postings seeking to incite illegal activity, should be made public. Nottingham Indymedia also too this view:

Indymedia admins had a responsibility to share the information they had collected with the wider activist community. To fail to disclose the strategies of systematic disruption, smearing and incitement that had been connected to one particular government gateway would have been to fail the very people who rely on Indymedia.

http://nottingham.indymedia.org/articles/921

However telling activists about the posts originating from UK Government IP addresses was blocked by London Indymedia, London Indymedia is still involved in the admin of the UK Indymedia site. London Indymedia wanted to keep the abuse by the police a secret and also to remove the ability for the posts from these IP addresses to be tracked.

It was a relief when SchNEWS, in effect, broke the block (which didn't in any case apply to them) with the publication of their article:

INTER-NETCU http://www.schnews.org.uk/archive/news755.php

Once the story was public, Birmingham and Sheffield Indymedia took the view that there was no point in continuing to respect the block to the story from London Indymedia since it no longer made any sense -- the story was now public -- it wasn't a secret any longer.

Birmingham Indymedia published the feature article about the police abuse that London Indymedia were and still are, blocking from being published on the UK Indymedia front page:

Advocating Domestic Extremism - Cops on Indymedia - An Exposé http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/regions/birmingham/2011/01/472560.html

Later that day Sheffield Indymedia also published a feature article about the case:

Gateway 303: Police Disinformation on UK Indymedia http://sheffield.indymedia.org.uk/2011/01/472575.html

And the following day the full list of articles and comments that the filters had flagged up as originating from gateways 202 and 303 was also published:

Full list of Gateway 303 and 202 posts to IMC UK http://sheffield.indymedia.org.uk/2011/01/472619.html

This was done because we believe it is important that activists are aware of the extent of disinformation and attempts at on-line disruption that originate from the state. It is nice that there has finally been some limited coverage of this aspect of the information war in the corporate media, for example:

Revealed: US spy operation that manipulates social media

Military's 'sock puppet' software creates fake online identities to spread pro-American propaganda
http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2011/mar/17/us-spy-operation-social-networks

The need to protect the internet from 'astroturfing' grows ever more urgent

The tobacco industry does it, the US Air Force clearly wants to ... astroturfing – the use of sophisticated software to drown out real people on web forums – is on the rise. How do we stop it?
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/georgemonbiot/2011/feb/23/need-to-protect-internet-from-astroturfing

We consider that the filters to track the postings from the UK state constitute legitimate self-defence of independent media.

How come that SchNEWS was able to present a list of articles posted by a certain IP?

SchNEWS didn't publish the list of articles and comments from 202 and 303, this was done on UK Indymedia.

Who collected this data? What did they do with it? Do further dossiers exist? Are the person responsible for this betrayal designated admins of mayday.indymedia.org?

What "betrayal" are you talking about? The "betrayal" to abide by the attempts of London Indymedia to hush up the Police abuse and keep it secret from activists?

The same day Jimdog from Be The Media emailed the list:

Not getting involved with this, I'm on this list to work, however just needed to clear up an inaccuracy:

The proposal to publish those articles was also blocked by Northern England imc (not just London) as insufficient protection was offered to a server admin who, after taking legal advice, was identified as being in a vulnerable position should it be published as it was proposed (and subsequently published). We also asked for it to be made clear that the practise of ip filtering applied only to the UK site in order to lift our block.

And Bart sent a futher email:

I think I should explain what I mean when I am talking about betrayal. I am neither talking about insufficient surveillance of admins by admins [1] nor about the circumstances under which the spying on users done by indymedia.org.uk has been revealed [2]. I am talking about the spying itself.

It may be true that some or even all of the articles and comments that have been flagged by the UK MIR system have been written by the police or other government agencies in order to provoke readers of Indymedia UK, to authorise repressive measures or to serve as proofs in court trials. But how can you be sure that all of them have been written by agents provocateurs?

You are talking about legitimate self-defense but from my point of view flagging all postings coming from a certain IP which is known to be a state-run exit node of some obscure network is an abuse of anti-abuse measures.

Furthermore, I think it is highly questionable to publish a list of articles and comments originating from a certain IP without being sure none of these postings has been written by activists using the government network. Because they go to school or because they are in hospital. I can think of a lot more reasons why activists could use an IP belonging to a government network.

I have found none of these considerations in your argumentation. Did you choose to ignore them or did you not even think about them? But as we are now talking about it: why are you sure that all postings flagged as 303 by indymedia.org.uk have been written by agents provocateurs?

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-April/0418-05.html

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-April/0419-a8.html

And Chris replied:

On Mon 18-Apr-2011 at 04:24:34PM +0200, Bartolomeo wrote:
I have chosen the word "betrayal" carefully because based on my current knowledge the UK Mir website has been used as a spy tool without notification of the users. If this is true then (even the old) POU 4 has been violated:
"4. All IMC's, based upon the trust of their contributors and readers, shall utilize open web based publishing, allowing individuals, groups and organizations to express their views, anonymously if desired."

The UK Indymedia site has filters in place to flag up posts that originate from the energis.gsi.gov.uk secure geteways, there is a list of these here:

http://www.robtex.com/dns/gateway-303.energis.gsi.gov.uk.html

We don't consider that the UK state, with it's long history of conspiracy to perpetuate it's class based rule, hierarchy, participation in imperial genocide and ecocide amoungst a massive litany of crimes against humanity, constitutes a legitimate "individual, group or organisation" as far as UK Indymedia is concerned -- they are one of the enemies in our struggle to "to work for a better world".

To regard the UK state as a legitimate contributor to the site, one who's anonomity should be protected, when they have a documented history of disinformation and the employment of agent provocateur tactics would clearly constitute a betrayal of the pupose of Indymedia.

I try to condense my concerns to a single question: If you try to bury the past then how can we trust you in the future?

We are not trying to "bury the past" and the only breach of trust of the legitimate users of the UK Indymedia site has been in the on-going attempts to keep the story about the state abuse a secret -- London Indymedia are still blocking the publication of a UK feature about the government posts to the site dispite the fact that it has been run as a global story:

UK Police Agent Provocateurs Exposed http://www.indymedia.org/en/2011/01/945189.shtml

The Mayday Collective has only been in existance a short time, it was originally constituted as the IMC UK Collective in November 2010 [1] and renamed following the December 2010 UK Indymedia meeting in Bradford.

The use of anti-abuse, self-defence measures by the UK Indymedia site predates the existance of the Mayday Collective by around 7 years.

And Chris replied again:

On Tue 19-Apr-2011 at 01:59:44PM +0200, Bartolomeo wrote:
why are you sure that all postings flagged as 303 by indymedia.org.uk have been written by agents provocateurs?

Because we were following them as they were posted, have spent a lot of time thinking about them, have studied them and furthermore have noted that they stopped as soon as the whistle was blown on them.

these postings has been written by activists using the government network. Because they go to school or because they are in hospital.

What evidence do you have that there have been any legitimate posts originating from gateway 202 or 303? If these were posts from teachers or hospital staff why have they stopped? And why have the (lame) appeals for government employees who use these gateways for activist activity failed to generate a response?

Of course, over the years, we did consider all possibilities, here an anecdote which reflects this:

One Friday morning, a couple of year ago, I was checking the UK IMC web site and saw that a new article had just been published that was hopless in terms of the information it contained:
4th July - Shut Kingsnorth Milli-Band | 26.06.2009 07:29 | Climate Chaos | South Coast https://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2009/06/433178

There was no information about who had called the demo or why or the times, also it had come from gateway-303.energis.gsi.gov.uk -- why were the police posting about a demo at a power station? Perhaps some copper really did want their grandchildren to have a habitable planet to live on? I, briefly, gave them the benefit of the doubt...

So I did a bit or googling and found out that it was a protest called by Greenpeace, so I posted this as a comment and promoted it, so that the article made some sense:

https://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2009/06/433178?c=all#c226819

I also chatted with another admin about this odd post -- what were the cops up to?

Then it all became clear, when they posted a comment to their own article:

"No - stuff that - SHUT the place"

"Let's not all stand around like lemmings - lets shut the place!"

"Bring ladders and wire cutters."

https://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2009/06/433178?c=all#c226820

They were posting about the protest, which hadn't been on Indymedia before they posted about it, in order to incite illegal activity. Perhaps to encourage more heavy policing of the event, perhaps to justify their existance, who knows...

So, the article and both comments were hidden -- we are not interested in playing their games.

And due to some IMC admins wanting to hush up the police posts to the site and the fact that they were being tracked I have been prevented from publically telling this story till now, and it feels good to be free to tell the truth at last!

http://sheffield.indymedia.org.uk/2011/01/472575.html?c=on#c263459

There are several other stories about the 202 and 303 posts which we can't go public on because the activists involved don't want the private information that the police posted about them, which was removed from the articles and comments, being made public, but surfice to say there is no doubt that information only available to the police was posted to UK Indymedia from these Government gateways.

And Chris replied again:

On Tue 19-Apr-2011 at 12:26:57PM +0100, JimDog wrote:
The proposal to publish those articles was also blocked by Northern England imc (not just London) as insufficient protection was offered to a server admin who, after taking legal advice, was identified as being in a vulnerable position should it be published as it was proposed (and subsequently published).

This admin was offered the opportunity to step away from their role as a server admin but they declined to do this.

There appeared to be no way forward, there were no suggestions about what "protection" this admin needed and their legal advice was never presented so could never be considered.

Therefore I welcomed the publication of the story by SchNEWS.

We also asked for it to be made clear that the practise of ip filtering applied only to the UK site in order to lift our block.

There was never an issue here -- nobody was claiming that this applied to any site other then the UK Mir site.

It's interesting to note that a default install of Hyperactive will result in users details, OS, Broswer, screen resolution (if they have javascript enabled) etc being written to the database -- London and Northern use Hyperactive.

And Chris replied to Bart again:

On Tue 19-Apr-2011 at 01:59:44PM +0200, Bartolomeo wrote:
from my point of view flagging all postings coming from a certain IP which is known to be a state-run exit node of some obscure network is an abuse of anti-abuse measures.

We have had our servers taken and our homes raided by the police that use this gateway, it is in no way abusive of our legitimate users to track the abuse of which originate from the state, it is legitimate self defence and the tracking of this abuse falls within what is allowed under the new PoU? 4:

4. All IMCs, based upon the trust of their contributors and readers, shall utilize open web based publishing, allowing individuals, groups and organizations to express their views, anonymously if desired. To ensure privacy and anonymity, the logging of information about users shall be kept to the minimum. The logging of internet protocol (IP) information about users shall be kept to the minimum necessary to maintain control over the server (i.e. in the event of an attack). In the event that logging is necessary, details of the logging shall be made publicly accessible, including duration of logging, what information was stored, and actions taken as result of the logging. Collectives are encouraged to have a public policy on IP logging.

https://docs.indymedia.org/Global/PrinciplesOfUnity

And Chris replied again:

On Tue 19-Apr-2011 at 12:26:57PM +0100, JimDog wrote:
Not getting involved with this, I'm on this list to work

The first Northern New IMC application contained:

By becoming imc Northern England we seek to compliment and not replace the existing city based imc's in the region and fill in the current gaps of coverage between the areas that provide news for imc's Manchester, Liverpool, Sheffield, Scotland and the current Leeds/Bradford. We also pledge to encourage any area that develops a desire to set up their own imc in this area to do so, will fully support them with this and make every effort to have positive and productive engagement with them for the benefit of the global Indymedia movement.

http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2009-June/0626-ru.html

You have not offered to support or assist with Sheffield Indymedia's New IMC application (Sheffield is in Northern England), rather you are assisting a IMC, Siberia, in another country, so your claim to be "Not getting involved with this" and being "on this list to work" don't add up for me.

And on the same day, 19th April, behindthemask proposed Mayday Indymedia's appication be passed to the imc-process list:

Given Mayday Indymedia's well-documented and thorough new IMC application [1] and adequate responses to my queries, I would like to propose that the Mayday collective become a new IMC.

[1] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMayday

And on the same day Bart blocked it:

Given Mayday Indymedia's well-documented and thorough new IMC application [1] and adequate responses to my queries, I would like to propose that the Mayday collective become a new IMC.

from my point of view, the New-IMC application is not well-documented as the Mayday collective started to document their (mostly virtual) meetings not even a month ago (except for one meeting in January) [1]. I explained in more detail why I think this is necessary [2].

I asked quite a lot of questions about the anti-abuse measures applied by indymedia.org.uk [3] and I am not satisfied with the answers. I asked for a thorough and transparent analysis and reflection on the 303 case [4] and did not even receive a response from the collective yet. I consider the Mayday draft on this topic [5] to be insufficient.

I welcome the contributions by some members of the Mayday collective in the last two days [6]+[7]+[8] but the discussion is still ongoing, at least I have more questions and some of my questions have not been addressed at all. I am deeply worried about some of the answers as they foreshadow that the abuse of these measures could continue in the future.

Therefore I BLOCK the application of the Mayday collective until the above issues are resolved.

[1] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMayday

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0405-sc.html

[3] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0409-zf.html

[4] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0418-ey.html

[5] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMayday303Statment

[6] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-April/0418-05.html

[7] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-April/0418-s1.html

[8] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-April/0419-tp.html

The following day, 20th April, behindthemask responded to Bart's block:

from my point of view, the New-IMC application is not well-documented as the Mayday collective started to document their (mostly virtual) meetings not even a month ago (except for one meeting in January). I explained in more detail why I think this is necessary.

As you will be aware from reading the documentation, the Mayday collective is older than its name. The Mayday collective were previously the UK collective [1] and there is a link to their documentation and minutes of meetings on the Mayday page. The change was one of name and circumstance, and nothing else.

Mayday's members are geographically distant from one another. That is why it has been difficult for them to have many face-to-face meetings and why IRC meetings have dominated.

The members of the UK collective have all been centrally involved in running the UK Mir site, and have been members of local collectives, for a number of years. I think it is unreasonable to treat the Mayday collective, with their long experience of being involved in Indymedia collectives, in the same way as a genuinely new IMC.

For all of these reasons I ask you to reconsider the completeness of Mayday's documentation. I think what they have provided is reasonable given the circumstances of their inception. I am asking you to withdraw this objection.

I asked quite a lot of questions about the anti-abuse measures applied by indymedia.org.uk and I am not satisfied with the answers. I asked for a thorough and transparent analysis and reflection on the 303 case and did not even receive a response from the collective yet. I consider the Mayday draft on this topic to be insufficient.

I tend to agree that a more reflective account of these events from Mayday would make a better document. I have asked for the collective to produce this and I am confident that you will see one soon. I hope that you will then withdraw your block.

I am deeply worried about some of the answers as they foreshadow that the abuse of these measures could continue in the future.

I would ask you to substantiate your very serious accusations about the Mayday collective's 'abuse' or intention to 'abuse' IP monitoring, 'betrayal' of site users and use of their CMS as 'spyware' [2] or to withdraw them.

[1] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcUkCollective

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0409-zf.html

Bart replied to behindthemask in an email dated 21st April:

As you will be aware from reading the documentation, the Mayday collective is older than its name. The Mayday collective were previously the UK collective [A1] and there is a link to their documentation and minutes of meetings on the Mayday page. The change was one of name and circumstance, and nothing else.

[A1] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcUkCollective

it's true, I don't know how to classify the Mayday collective in terms of length of existence. I asked questions about the past of the collective [1]. The answer was that the Mayday collective was formed only half a year ago [2]:

The Mayday Collective has only been in existance a short time, it was originally constituted as the IMC UK Collective in November 2010 [B1] and renamed following the December 2010 UK Indymedia meeting in Bradford.

[B1] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcUkCollective

I explicitly asked if the admins who are responsible for the flagging of UK IMC postings by IP addresses were designated admins of mayday.indymedia.org but I did not get an answer yet [3]. Responsibility for anything before the end of 2010 was denied [2] by a member of the Mayday collective:

The use of anti-abuse, self-defence measures by the UK Indymedia site predates the existance of the Mayday Collective by around 7 years.

Of course I know that members of the Mayday collective have long experiences within the Indymedia network. I'd like to honour this experience but it comprises responsibility for one's own actions in the past.

I would ask you to substantiate your very serious accusations about the Mayday collective's 'abuse' or intention to 'abuse' IP monitoring, 'betrayal' of site users and use of their CMS as 'spyware' [C2] or to withdraw them.

[C2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0409-zf.html

Although I pointed out [4] that not all postings coming from the 303 network necessarily originate from agents provocateurs (which btw. is no news [5]) one member of the Mayday collective answered [6] that he considers flagging all postings from that network as "legitimate self defence" in accordance to POU4 [7]. Actually, he even asked [6]:

What evidence do you have that there have been any legitimate posts originating from gateway 202 or 303?

This reverses the necessity of legitimisation: not the one criticising the tracking of users needs evidence that the measures have covered users who did not abuse OpenPosting?. The opposite is true: the admin who compromises the anonymity of users needs evidence that no legitimate users have been tracked. There does not seem to be any such evidence and this suggests a violation of POU4. This is one reason why I am talking about betrayal: users of indymedia.org.uk thought that the website was maintained according to the POU which guarantee anonymity. But it was not.

Futhermore, the same admin suggests [8] that this pratice was not only legitimate in the past but that is also legitimate in the future:

the tracking of this abuse falls within what is allowed under the new PoU? 4

Therefore, it is highly plausible that mayday.indymedia.org would continue spying on its users. There does not seem to be any consciousness for the great responsibility that must come with great power.

Another important topic to be discussed regarding the Mayday New-IMC application - perhaps the most relevant topic in respect to the New-IMC process - is the process of decision making. As stated in POU6 [7] every IMC must "be committed to the principle of consensus decision making and the development of a direct, participatory democratic process".

The 303 story has been leaked to SchNEWS [9] which was a breach of a block within UK IMC and a violation of POU6. I think it is a problem when a member of a group which is based on consensus decision making welcomes [10] a disdain of this fundamental principle.

More importantly, the decision to flag postings coming from certain IPs has not been taken by consensus. Some UK moderators (who are also admins of MIR due to the lack of any permission management [11]) did not even know about it [5]:

If you look at the list of posts published, the earliest comments date back to August 2008. This means some admin has been keeping information about Indymedia contributors for at least 29 months. It is unclear where this information was kept. Other UK Indymedia admins were not aware of this happening.

This lack of information has been confirmed by IMC Nottingham [12]:

In 2009, one of our collective came across articles and comments flagged as having come from Gateway 303 and asked Mir techs about what was going on. Those asked were open about the filters that were in place to identify such posts and hoped that the suspected police posting would be exposed some time in the future.

Who turned on IP flagging without informing the UK IMC collective? Who is responsible for this abuse of power?

[1] https://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0418-ey.html

[2] https://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0419-lr.html

[3] https://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0409-zf.html

[4] https://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0419-qx.html

[5] https://northern-indymedia.org/articles/1313

[6] https://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0419-yj.html

[7] https://docs.indymedia.org/view/Global/PrinciplesOfUnity

[8] https://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0419-1e.html

[9] http://www.schnews.org.uk/archive/news755.php

[10] https://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0419-sa.html

[11] https://linksunten.indymedia.org/en/node/33099

[12] https://nottingham.indymedia.org.uk/articles/921

The block from Bart had ended the chance that the Mayday New IMC application would be completed by the 1st May 2011, critical date that was contained in the application.

On 26th April Nottingham, London, Bristol and Northern the Be The Media collectives all published the same feature article at the same time all announcing:

On 1st May 2011 Indymedia UK will give birth to two new projects. The Indymedia UK website will be archived, it will stay were it is now, but you won’t be able to publish news. In its place there will be two distinct projects: Mayday will provide a non-regional site with open publishing and Be The Media will present the best of radical news across the regions, including Bristol, Northern, Nottingham and London.

Sheffield Indymedia blocked the fork from proceeding on 24th April:

Sheffield IMC supports the position of the Mayday Collective with regard to the proposed closure of both the indymedia.org.uk site and its associated mailing lists, necessary to maintain the site, on May 1st 2011 and BLOCK these proposals. The BLOCK will remain until IMC Mayday gain full IMC status when the proposals will be reviewed by Sheffield Indymedia.

12 members of the Mayday collective met in irc to discuss the matter on 27th April, the notes of this meeting:

This meeting was attended by 12 people and it was devoted to discussing and fine tuning a statement to be sent to the global imc-process list, the only decisions made in the meeting was around this statement so there isn't much else to add apart from the statement, which follows.

There was a discussion about what to do in the event that the imc-uk-* lists are shutdown without agreement -- it's not clear that they will be as Scotland might block the shutdown.

There was also a discussion about what might happen if BeTheMedia decised to break the UK Indymedia site by switching off open publishing and archiving it without agreement.

No decisions were reached on these items, we will wait to see what BeTheMedia decides to do.

The follwoing text to be sent to the imc-process list once it's been translated.

Indymedia Mayday Statement to the Global IMC Process List

We are, in effect, the stewards of the UK Indymedia open-posting newswire, we stated this at the UK Network meeting in Bradford in December 2010 [1]. This service is threatened by the way the Bradford agreement to fork the site [2] is being interpreted by the BeTheMedia group (B) and within New IMC. We ask the global network to suspend any working-group actions that would interfere with our ability to operate the site until the issues are resolved, specifically the shutting down of lists or alterations to the DNS or any alteration the UK entry in the global cities list — we would like the current status quo to be maintained until the agreement can be completed properly.

Some points we would like to make about the current situation:

1) We are all long standing Indymedia volunteers.

2) Our primary aim is to run an Indymedia website for the UK that provides an open-posting newswire; we have demonstrated our commitment to this aim.

3) We have compromised by agreeing to move to a new Indymedia domain even though this will be disruptive for site users.

4) B group is claiming there was consensus on forking and going ahead with all changes on 1 May irrespective of our status at that time, we dispute this, the agreement was based on a.indymedia.org and b.indymedia.org — our understanding of the consensus was that the fork depended on us having an indymedia.org sub-domain to move to. If B group don't want an indymedia.org sub-domain that's fine, but our position is that we do, and at the Bradford meeting we agreed to the fork on that basis.

5) We are keen to proceed with the fork once we have achieved new IMC status.

6) We think forcing the site to move outside of Indymedia is unreasonable.

7) This can be sorted out fairly quickly — we can work together to resolve the New IMC issues — get New IMC status and an indymedia.org sub-domain and fork. However, a hold should be put on changes to the status quo to allow the New IMC process to progress.

8) We don't think mass expulsions from Indymedia is in the "spirit of Indymedia" — in addition to the UK newswire the indymedia.org.uk site hosts several regional IMC's.

9) There is nothing preventing group B from launching their new site and advertising it on UK Indymedia in the meantime.

[1] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMaydayFoundingStatment

[2] https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/UkNetworkMeetingBradford2010Minutes

https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMaydayGlobalForkStatement

And then the following day the statement was sent to the list.

On 29th April Sheffield Indymedia published a feature article, The Attempt to Shutdown UK Indymedia, which concluded with:

What will happen next is unclear, but if there are attempts made to shut-down the UK Indymedia newswire or the UK Indymedia lists without agreement then the status quo, which should apply when there is not consensus, would have been broken and point 6 of the global Indymedia draft Principles of Unity would have been ignored:

6. All IMC's recognize the importance of process to social change and are committed to the development of non-hierarchical and anti-authoritarian relationships, from interpersonal relationships to group dynamics. Therefore, shall organize themselves collectively and be committed to the principle of consensus decision making and the development of a direct, participatory democratic process that is transparent to its membership.

As would this aspect of the global decision making guide:

Everyone's opinion counts. Everyone belongs to some kind of minority. And every minority has particular concerns or needs that want to be respected, no matter what the majority opinion. It shall be the network's aim to promote this understanding and eliminate oldfashioned concepts of minority exclusion, top-to-bottom structures of decision making and bottom-to-top allocation of responsibility.

If the UK Indymedia open publishing newswire is shutdown without agreement then Sheffield Indymedia will support whatever necessary steps that have to be taken to keep the newswire up and running — it's a vital resource for the UK activist community and we don't want it shutdown.

On 30th April, the eve of the deadline, an additional block to Mayday Indymedia's New IMC application was issues by Nick:

This application is sufficiently far outside the realm of new-imc applicaitons described here: http://docs.indymedia.org/view/Global/NewImc

that I can't let it pass. I think it is already blocked, but I am sending this one because it was for a different reason.

And also Scotland Indymedia blocked the fork implementation deadline of 1st May for 3 weeks:

IMC Scotland wishes to delay the proposed closure on 1st May 2011 of both the indymedia.org.uk site and its associated mailing lists, necessary to maintain the site, and BLOCK these proposals. The BLOCK will remain until at most 3 weeks time, 21st May 2011, when it will automatically expire unless reviewed and reinstated by IMC Scotland again, once IMC Scotland meet fully to discuss issues in light of any further internal discussion, external developments & especially when IMC Mayday gain full IMC status.

May 2011

At around 00:20am on 1st May 2011 Be The Media started to archive the UK Indymedia site, and London Indymedia announced:

Indymedia UK Forked

Following the Bradford agreement, we have made the changes to the UK Indymedia site that are required for the fork.

However, as there is no indication that Mayday have kept their part of the agreement, we have not yet turned off publishing. In line with the agreement, there will be no more features published on Indymedia UK. We are concerned that Oxford Indymedia, who were expecting to find a home on the new Mayday site, may become homeless.

Therefore we will wait another week before disabling publishing to the UK Indymedia site, or any point before, when Oxford inform us that they have their own site set up.

Now that Indymedia UK no longer exists, we ask for all Indymedia UK lists to be closed down immediately, except for imc-uk-moderation, which will be closed on 8th May, or earlier when publish is turned off. This is in line with a decision made at the last Indymedia UK meeting, where Mayday, Birmingham and Sheffield delegates agreed. There were no Indymedia UK meetings after this. No one but the Indymedia UK network can decide about the closure of the Indymedia UK lists.

Minutes of the last Indymedia UK meeting: http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2010-December/1211-v5.html

Imc London for group B, Imc Bristol, Imc Norhtern England, Imc Nottingham

In the early hours of 1st May the Mayday collective migrated the site to a new server and repointed the DNS into order to prevent the UK Indymedia newswire from being shutdown. A longstanding member of IMC Sheffield, who is also a moderator of the global imc-communication list sent the following to the imc-uk-process list in response to the "Indymedia UK Forked" email:

it seems to me that the Bradford consensus decision is invalid on two counts if it was the intention, deliberate or otherwise, to expel Group A from the global network.

a) If it was always the intention of the Bradford consensus to denounce Group A and expel its members from the Indymedia network then Group A would never have agreed to this and therefore the so-called "consensus decision" is insecure, or

b) if it was never the intention to excommunicate Group A then the "consensus decision" must also now be invalidated (as moving forward will result in the proscription of Group A), and the global network needs to work quickly to establish the Mayday collective as a new IMC.

I believe that either of the above options calls into question the validity of the decision reached in Bradford.

A fork signifies - by the very image suggested by the implement if nothing else - that two projects would go forward. A fork without two halves is merely a spike, to labour the metaphor.

On 2nd May Jimdog emailed the list:

Sorry for the strange email. I need to ask advice as to whether there has ever been a precedent for a *.indymedia.org address to be granted for a group that has not passed through the new-imc working group (excepting those that were granted before this working group was set up of course).

The reason I ask is that on 1st of may, the mayday collective who were recently blocked by this working group took control of the domain name and site for www.indymedia.org.uk, removed any access to these resources and logins for everybody else in the UK network who is not a member of their collective and so have effectively 'stolen' all of the resources of the UK Indymedia Network.

In an earlier irc conversation with a member of the mayday collective it was stated that they will not hand back these resources or implement the compromise agreement reached in the UK network last year until they get the domain name mayday.indymedia.org

I am at a loss for what to say and so need advice. My understanding is that they would not be able to get this URL without going through this working group (irrespective of the fact that I imagine no-one would wish them to be able to get a URL in this manner anyway). I need a definite position though in order to assist any future negotiations with the group. If I have a definite precedent and/or decision made here then I can categorically state one way or the other whether this would be possible.

I'm not entirely sure what to do as I had never imagined this scenario occurring. Any advice would be very helpful.

On 3rd May 2011 btm announced his intention to stand down from his role as liasion:

Due to the complex situation that everyone from the UK has been plunged into due to rival claims for the UK Indymedia domain, I feel that I can no longer continue to act as liaison for the Mayday collective.

However, as I do not want them to be without a liaison I will continue to act as liaison until a new volunteer comes forward to take on the role. I would appreciate it if another member of the working group would volunteer to be Mayday's liaison soon.

And the same day Bristol Indymedia emailed the imc-process list:

the hijacking of indymedia UK

uk.indymedia.org and indymedia.org.uk are no longer under the control of the volunteers who have maintained UK Indymedia since its inception. A faction within UK Indymedia, Mayday, composing of individuals who are not members of any full IMC, and who currently have a new-imc application which has been blocked, have taken control of the DNS for the domain of indymedia.org.uk, pointed it to a new server and deleted the access of all non-Mayday volunteers from the system.

This includes expelling the access of volunteers from accredited imcs including Bristol, Northern England, London and Nottingham [1] along with individuals not associated with any collective and members of Oxford Imc, a group currently going through the new-imc process.[2]

Bristol Indymedia asks that the global Indymedia community request that control of the domain indymedia.org.uk be handed over to the Global IMC DNS working group as a neutral party not involved in the current conflict forthwith.

Following this unprecedented and unfortunate action we also propose that all members of the Mayday group have their admin privileges, membership of key lists such as tech-lists, listwork, control of documents servers, indymedia server root accounts and the like be revoked pending resolution of the situation.

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-tech/2011-May/0502-b9.html

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-tech/2011-May/0501-4l.html

On the 5th May Chris replied to an email that Jimdog has sent to the list but which the moderators hasn't allowed though:

On Wed 04-May-2011 at 05:02:30PM +0100, JimDog wrote:
Since there is a current proposal on the imc-process list that members of your group be suspended from all access to indymedia resources whilst investigation into the acquisition of all of the UK network assets is taking place, I feel it would be inappropriate to assess the application of Sheffield (consisting primarily of the same members as the mayday collective) at this time, though other members of this working group may feel differently of course.
Can you clarify if you are now blocking the Sheffield IMC New IMC application before we even have a liasion?

And on the same day, Bou from Be The Media left the working group and behindthemask asked Nick to explain his block and suggest a way forwards.

Also also that day London Indymedia emailed the imc-process list:

Request for immediate emergency action

Following the recent events that have occurred as part of the long-standing UK conflict, London Indymedia requests the global Indymedia network to take immediate action to remove all technical privileges from Chris (a.k.a. chrisc), the principal tech volunteer from the Mayday Collective, pending further investigation. This includes access to traven, chavez, sarai and list master passwords, indymedia 'cacert' certification, as well as any other privileges we may not be aware of.

We expect this to be done within 24 hours, and we request that confirmation of such actions is sent to imc-tech.

As a reiteration, please note that this is an emergency action until such time that the global network has made a definite decision on how to deal with the events outlined below.

Background

There has been a long standing conflict within the UK network. An externally facilitated meeting came to a consensus to 'fork' the project on 01-May-2011. [1]

During the last few weeks before this deadline, the 'Mayday' collective (a.k.a. "group A") claimed the decision was invalid and refused to work with other members of the network to implement the fork (see the various imc-uk-* lists). In the early hours of 01-May-2011, a static html page was placed on the front of www.indymedia.org.uk indicating that a fork was going to happen. [2] The site was not archived, however, as several of the regional collectives within the UK had not finalised what would happen to their sites.

Later that same day, control of the DNS was seized by Chris. In doing so, he 'locked' all the other Indymedia volunteers out of the DNS control and redirected the domain to a server that no one outside the Mayday collective has access to. [3] As a consequence, the site is no longer under the control of our trusted sysadmins. [4]

The Mayday collective also disabled all Admin and Moderator logins for everyone not part of the Mayday collective. [5]

Our viewpoint

These actions mean that we currently can not trust Chris. We believe he has abused his technical powers for political ends. We are concerned that he has access to 'sarai', the indymedia listserver - and that, therefore, there is potential to access private list archives of other UK collectives. We do not know what other infrastructure he has access to beyond those listed above, but believe he should not occupy any positions of trust within the Indymedia community.

As a reiteration, at this point we request emergency measures. They are to last until the global network has had time to investigate events and make a decision on how to proceed.

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2010-December/1211-v5.html

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-April/0501-c4.html

[3] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-tech/2011-May/0501-3i.html

[4] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-tech/2011-May/0505-nz.html

[5] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-May/0502-og.html

On 6th May Bart emailed imc-process on behalf of IMC Linksunten proposing an additional block on Mayday and Sheffield on being allowed through the global New IMC process, with a 2 week deadline:

There have been doubts [6] about the commitment of Mayday and Sheffield collectives to POU6 [7] (consensus decision making). After the recent developments these doubts have unfortunately been confirmed. Therefore we don't think those collectives should become affiliated IMCs.

[6] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0421-qh.html

[7] https://docs.indymedia.org/view/Global/PrinciplesOfUnity

And also on that day Bart emailed the imc-process list on behalf of his IMC linksunten:

we have agreed on the following mail before we learned about the latest mail from IMC London [1].

We support the demands of IMC Bristol [2] and IMC Germany [3] to request that the control of the domain indymedia.org.uk be handed over to the global IMC DNS working group. The Mayday collective has stolen [4] the domain of the now dissolved UK Indymedia network of which Mayday was only a faction and they have expelled the rest of the network from the UK site. We are angry and think this behaviour is unacceptable.

We also support the withdrawal of all privileges concerning Indymedia infrastructure and all Indymedia resources for all members of the Mayday collective. This comprises root access and admin privileges on Indymedia servers, membership of global working groups, control of infrastructure and the like.

Regarding the question asked by listwork [5] we think the Indymedia UK mailing lists should be deactivated since the former UK network has ceased to exist.

There have been doubts [6] about the commitment of Mayday and Sheffield collectives to POU6 [7] (consensus decision making). After the recent developments these doubts have unfortunately been confirmed. Therefore we don't think those collectives should become affiliated IMCs.

We would like to point out that one member of the Mayday collective has root access to (at least) the listwork server. We don't trust this person as he has abused his powers as a tech volunteer. We think this person should lose root access for all global Indymedia servers and especially to the listwork server as we are worried that he might use the sensitive data he has access to as a weapon against other Indymedia volunteers.

Therefore, we propose:

1) root and admin access of the listwork member in question to all global Indymedia servers are suspended immediately and all global listwork passwords are changed to prevent abuse until a decision has been taken

2) root and admin accounts of the listwork member in question to all global Indymedia servers are deleted and the listwork member quits the listwork working group with a deadline of two weeks time

[1] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-May/0506-5t.html

[2] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-May/0503-ar.html

[3] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-May/0505-ns.html

[4] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-tech/2011-May/0502-um.html

[5] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-May/0502-v8.html

[6] http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-April/0421-qh.html

[7] https://docs.indymedia.org/view/Global/PrinciplesOfUnity

And on 8th May Northern Indymedia also emailed imc-process:

A proposal that control of the DNS entry for the domain indymedia.org.uk be handed to the stewardship of the global DNS working group made by IMC Germany has passed the deadline for consensus on this list.

We recognise that this process should begin immediately, but the details of the handover will take a little time to administer. We are also aware that IMC Oxford (currently preparing new-imc application) are heavily affected by recent events in the UK and so time is needed to inform them of changes taking place. We therefore propose the following:

* That a deadline of one week from today is made for completion of the handover of the domain indymedia.org.uk to the global DNS working group

* That the IMC Oxford collective are informed at all stages what is happening throughout the process and given chance to participate

* That should the deadline pass without the domain being handed over, all further access to global indymedia resources including mailing lists, irc, docs.indymedia.org and DNS is denied to the group currently holding the domain (the mayday collective) until this handover has taken place

Chris
- Homepage: http://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMaydayNewImc


Comments

Hide the following 241 comments

More than one side to each conflict

03.05.2011 01:58

This feature only mentions one aspect of a complex process in indymedia uk, involving meetings, external moderation, serious consensus-decision-making, minutes and lots of emails.

For the mayday collective, the fork was an attempted disruption that they prevented by taking direct action.
For many other collectives in indymedia uk, the fork was the implementation of a consensus decision which evolved in a long and painful process.

I was not part of this process, but read about it on the publicly archived indymedia mailing lists. I get the impression that it was from all sides about saving indymedia uk as an important resource of the activist community, and that it was difficult and painful for everyone involved, including the mayday collective and those involved in be the media. One person wrote:

"(...) we agreed the fork (...). We agreed to a resolution (...): None of the involved parties win, we
all lose, but split up and go our separate ways. We do not like this compromise. We have many strong ideas for what we want to do with Indymedia UK. We love this project. But we agreed to the compromise, because we do not know of an alternative."
"If someone wiser than us can think of an alternative, we welcome your advice. We don't know what to do after going through a mediation process and agreeing to a compromise that breaks our hearts. Only to see the compromise cancelled by the other side."

This was written by someone involved in be the media. To me, it doesn't sound like someone who merely wants to disrupt the indymedia.org.uk website.

While I assume that everybody in Indymedia UK acts in good faith, it seems weird that this is already the second middle column feature on indymedia.org.uk which only acknowledges the assessment of the mayday collective and was not proposed and discussed on a dedicated mailing list. I wonder if this is the way indymedia.org.uk will be run under the auspices of the mayday collective?

ionnek


When consensus fails to get you what you want...

03.05.2011 07:41

...why not just grab the site for yourselves and lock out everyone else.

Just compare the picture that Be the media put up for the fork to the one that Mayday used to demonstrate their block:  http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2011/04/478397.html

This is direct action in the same way that Rupert Murdoch buying up all the papers is direct action. It is concentrating power in the hands of a few.

This action is a hostile takeover.

Soon to be labelled an enemy and added to the files


take over

03.05.2011 08:29

in fact, it looks like a very small group has taken over indymedia.org.uk to me.

xxx


"secure the site"

03.05.2011 08:31

Is this now newspeak for a takeover? excluding 5 indymedia collectives from Indymedia.org.uk is "secure the site"???

hello


Ignored blocks and escalated conflicts

03.05.2011 09:48

ionnek:

You quote an email where the author states:

"We do not like this compromise. We have many strong ideas for what we want to do with Indymedia UK. We love this project. But we agreed to the compromise, because we do not know of an alternative."

In another email the same author wrote:

"If you really cared about Indymedia, you would avoid escalating the conflict at all costs. Any escalation will go at the expense of Indymedia users and contributors, as well as at the expense of the global Indymedia network and active Indymedia volunteers."

And yet that same person was part of the group that insisted on going ahead with the fork before the preconditions were met, and who wasn't prepared to give Mayday collective time to get all the preconditions met. By proceeding with the splashpage in the teeth of vocal dissent and the lack of active consensus the author played their own part in "escalating the conflict at all costs" and showed scant disregard for the users of the site or other active Indymedia volunteers. Right now people can continue to use the wire and will be able to continue to do so. That is because direct action was taken to secure it.

ionnek wrote:

"While I assume that everybody in Indymedia UK acts in good faith, it seems weird that this is already the second middle column feature on indymedia.org.uk which only acknowledges the assessment of the mayday collective and was not proposed and discussed on a dedicated mailing list. I wonder if this is the way indymedia.org.uk will be run under the auspices of the mayday collective?"

You responded to a start page special which was put when we became aware that rumours that indymedia uk had been "hijacked" by "persons unknown" started flying around. In the only feature written about the affair, a full link to the BeTheMedia article was included:  http://london.indymedia.org/articles/8854

In other words readers were invited to read the words of BeTheMedia on a BeTheMedia site.

_________________________________________________________________________
Soon to be labelled an enemy and added to the files wrote:

"Just compare the picture that Be the media put up for the fork to the one that Mayday used to demonstrate their block:  http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2011/04/478397.html"

Yes the second one says "Blocked". Blocks were ignored and thus the stakes were raised. The alternative was to allow the site to continue to run and for the global Indymedia processes to be engaged with in order to keep the site within Indymedia. But BeTheMedia insisted the fork happen on May 1st - and it has.

As to a "hostile takeover by a small group" , it is exactly the same group that the BeTheMedia proposal said should run the site. What isn't in place is the name change which is a direct result of BeTheMedias insistence on proceeding immediately without preconditions being met, and in the face of numerous blocks.

________________________________________________________________________
hello asked:

"excluding 5 indymedia collectives from Indymedia.org.uk is "secure the site"???"

It isn'r clear what 5 collectives you are referring to - but the terms of the Bradford agreement were that the site at indymedia.org would be archived (which has happened) and that a full copy would be taken over and run by the Mayday collective. That proposal came from BeTheMedia and it is what is happening.

Scotland, Sheffield, Birmingham and Oxford all have log-ins to the site.

ftp


You've stolen imc-uk

03.05.2011 10:13

The Mayday collective may call this '"taking direct action". In fact, and after reading the public lists, it looks more like theft to me. It seems quite obvious that a small number of imc-uk volunteers gathered under the banner of 'Mayday collective' have stolen the third longest running imc in the world and kept it for themselves. They have locked everyone else from it, changed servers, re-pointed DNS, etc ... ignoring the agreed arrangement the whole imc-uk network reached by consensus in the Bradford meeting of December 2010.

Therefore, this website is now a rogue IMC, no matter how many more emails and responses Mayday members keep writing.

fact!


Bourgeoisie facts

03.05.2011 10:37

"it looks more like theft to me"

"A person shall be guilty of theft if he dishonestly appropriates property belonging to another with the intention of permanently depriving the other of it."


It belongs to all of us! One side wanted it to host a splash page and archived site. The other wanted the uk's Indymedia national open publishing to continue without unnecessary disruption . BeTheMedia used disputed consensus to try and get their way which would not have been good for a site that many of us have contributed to over the last seven years. BeTheMedia are now threatening to have Mayday permanently excluded form the Indymedia network through the use of blocks. So that they can make claims like this:

"this website is now a rogue IMC, , no matter how many more emails and responses Mayday members keep writing.

If the Indymedia consensus has become so narrow that it now excludes activists who have been part of the Indymedia movement for years, then it may be one of the first of many more to come.

On the other hand it may just be that members of BeTheMedia are incapable of being part of a consensus that is inclusive of diversity. They do seem to have treated process as a way of forcing their own vision through. Had they listened more we might not have been having this conversation.

ftp


Don't feed the trolls

03.05.2011 10:40

Looks like the BeTheMedia trolls are commenting furiously whilst licking their wounds.

Your grand plan failed didn't it? Did you expect a group of committed activists to concede to your bullying? Do they concede to bullying from corporations or the police? What makes you any different? You're morally and politically bankrupt.

You also forgot to consider the people, the users, who actually contribute to the site! It's clear not many people are interested in all the ins and outs of this conflict, they just want to be able to read their news and contribute it to their site. That site is still imc uk and always will be.

Long live imc uk!


Media ownership

03.05.2011 10:53

What is probably of interest to the readers of this site is who is making the political decisions about how it runs? Who is deleting articles and comments? Who is promoting them?

From what I can make out of what's just happened these processes have been transferred to a small group of people with quite a narrow political viewpoint.

Food for thought


Leave it how it is

03.05.2011 10:56

Indymedia isn't broken! It does the same thing it did for me 10 years ago - it keeps me in the loop and i read some half-decent stuff people occasionally post up (admittedly there's some crap too). If some other people want to change Indymedia completely then continue to operate this new alternative BeTheMedia website and see what people prefer. If people switch to BeTheMedia and prefer it then so be it.

a


@Food for thought

03.05.2011 11:13

"What is probably of interest to the readers of this site is who is making the political decisions about how it runs? Who is deleting articles and comments? Who is promoting them? "

Pretty much the same people who have been doing so for ages. As of now the same open lists are being used to report hides (deletes are extremely rare and there hasn't been one on the site since it moved)

"From what I can make out of what's just happened these processes have been transferred to a small group of people with quite a narrow political viewpoint."

Its exactly the same group that it was agreed would continue to run the live version of the website after the fork. In effect the adminning of the site had already been delegated to that group as people were busy working on getting their own sites up and running. We aren't a closed group and can be contacted via the lists. We hope that more will join us.

ftp


head count

03.05.2011 12:13

the be the media side seem to be saying that they've been locked out of the site. from what i can work out that's london, bristol, northern and nottingham. sheffield and birmingham seem to be the ones that were involved in the take over and other indymedias are either inactive or seem to be staying fairly quiet. if that's the case then we've got:

mayday: sheffield and birmingham - running the uk site
be the media: london, bristol, northern and nottingham - locked out of the site
others: oxford, scotland

it seems like at least half of the active collectives have been kicked out.

worried


blahblahblah

03.05.2011 13:14

"Your grand plan failed didn't it? Did you expect a group of committed activists to concede to your bullying? Do they concede to bullying from corporations or the police? What makes you any different? You're morally and politically bankrupt."

Really? Really?

On the other side of the argument the mayday collective could equally be described as being similar to Gaddafi clinging onto power.

I think there's an over whelming paranoia on both sides here. The conspiracy on both sides that the other side is deliberately trying to ruin the website because they are evil or something when more likely everyone involved is just another average good-willed anarchist. This kind of paranoid rhetoric needs to stop on both sides. This mouses eat mouse bullshit is pathetic.

Both sides lay claim to wanting to change the website but someone on the other side blocking them.

From all the arguments on both sides the only conclusion I can come to is that consensus decision making is a load of bullocks but also that whoever hold the admin rights need to be elected on annual basis or something that will make them more accountable.

The geek adhocracy that runs indymedia on a global scale is undemocratic, unaccountable and a far cry away from being radical. It's a mess only emphasised by the messy design of the websites and non-uniform integration with other indymedia sites that makes the user experience a nightmare.

blahblahblah


Don't worry, be happy!

03.05.2011 13:17

"it seems like at least half of the active collectives have been kicked out."

The site is being modded in exactly the same way that it would have been if the Bradford agreement had been implemented with all the preconditions in place. BeTheMedia proposed it, and agreed it.

When groups split up, sometimes people react by complaining that they have been hard done by.

BeTheMedia insisted that the fork take place before the preconditions were in place. They didn't seem at all concerned about the negative impact that was likely to have on the site.

So, they insisted it fork before all the preconditions were met and now they are unhappy with that.

Examples of how they dealt with requests for more time so that all the preconditions could be in place:

The status Quo does not just continue after 1st May. The project will fork.
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0429-az.html

Anyway, the long and short of it is that the site needs to fork tomorrow so we can all go our separate ways. This whole email exchange is neither helpful nor fun for anyone. You'll be left to get on with your new imc application, and we will all continue to stay out of it. That puts the ball firmly in your court and the whole process will be yours to succeed with or not.
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0430-s8.html

The site is forking on may 1st, with or without your participation as agreed.
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0424-ns.html

It is pointless to think of not forking, because the alternative is
more of the same arguments that go round and round.
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0425-z8.html





ftp


Wow

03.05.2011 15:14

Radical and right on! Way to go man!

Tarquin


you are not affiliated to indymedia

03.05.2011 15:14

you have stolen the site from indymedia

chris


This stinks of a stitch up - and we all lose out

03.05.2011 15:17

For most of us out here, whats important is that news from across the UK turns up on the UK newswire. With newswire items from other UK IMC's until recently appearing on the Uk newswire this was fine - a look on the UK wire meant we could see whats going on around the country. For those of us posting onto bristol's newswire, it also meant we didn't have to post the same item in 2 different places.

Now it seems you are blocking items from the Bristol newswire, despite the tense situation we have here at present - with a police invasion, multiple arrests, and resistance. You have also chosen to completely ignore Bristol events on the featured upcoming events listing, even though a large number have been added to the UK calendar - this Saturday's Bristol Anarchist Bookfair (the 2nd largest in the UK, attracting maybe 1000 people) - being a case in point. Bristol this Saturday could be a semi- war zone, although personally i hope thats not the case and we have a peaceful and successful bookfair.

Your actions run the risk of appearing as sectarian, and you will lose any support from those of us feeling seriously excluded. Sort it out - it isn't about you or your little group, its about carrying the radical movements' news.

Bristol activist


stealing

03.05.2011 15:45

the Mayday Collective, as they call themselves, have removed the admin accounts of people from more then 5 local Indymedia Collectives. They have gained total control over the domain due to the power of one of their members.

They are not Indymedia UK, they are just abusing the name.

unclear


You choose

03.05.2011 16:35

"On May 1st 2011, there was an attempt by BeTheMedia to disrupt the Indymedia UK site. "

or

On May 2st 2011 BeTheMedia attempted to implement the fork that had been agreed some months ago by consenses in the UK Indymedia community. They were blocked by a minority element (Mayday) who had no intention of allowing their power to be diluted so they waited until a week beforehand and then raised spurious arguments around the meeting minutes to try and provide a justification for their theft.

Not fooled


RSS feeds need sorting out

03.05.2011 16:53

Bristol activist wrote:
"Now it seems you are blocking items from the Bristol newswire, despite the tense situation we have here at present - with a police invasion, multiple arrests, and resistance."

We aren't blocking anything. Our RSS imports aren't working after the move, are on our 'to do' list and we are working as fast as we can to restore the situation to normality, whilst also having to deal with a lot of questions, lists and a fair amount of BeTheMedia trolling on the wires.

In the meantime we would urge people to manaully post important stuff to this wire.

ftp


Informed choice

03.05.2011 16:57

Not fooled asks you to choose.

I think this email is essential in helping you think through the issues.

"However, it seems to me that the Bradford consensus
decision is invalid on two counts if it was the intention, deliberate
or otherwise, to expel Group A from the global network.

a) If it was always the intention of the Bradford consensus to
denounce Group A and expel its members from the Indymedia network then
Group A would never have agreed to this and therefore the so-called
"consensus decision" is insecure, or

b) if it was never the intention to excommunicate Group A then the
"consensus decision" must also now be invalidated (as moving forward
will result in the proscription of Group A), and the global network
needs to work quickly to establish the Mayday collective as a new IMC.

I believe that either of the above options calls into question the
validity of the decision reached in Bradford.

A fork signifies - by the very image suggested by the implement if
nothing else - that two projects would go forward. A fork without two
halves is merely a spike, to labour the metaphor."
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0430-cr.html

I can see that BeThemedia favours a spike. I am sure others will be able to see that a fork would be a good thing.

ftp


I find this all very worrying

03.05.2011 16:58

I had until now always believed that Indymedia was run on anarchist principles with decision making that reflected collective consensus. To discover that one minority group has abused these principles and simply 'taken' the site because they refused to accept the consensus is something I find deeply unpleasant and offensive.

I have taken the time over the past 48 hours to read the many emails on the list and quite clearly the Mayday collective is in the wrong and the Be The Media collective were attempting to follow the previously agreed decision.

Seeds for Change had facilitated an agreement and clearly some individuals within the Mayday collective who had been able to establish an informal hierachy in the old Indymedia set up were going to lose their 'status' and so they waited until the last moment before using a manufactured excuse to grab the site and lock out others including admins who had given long service to the site. By any measure this is unaceptable and the control of the indymedia.org.uk domain should be released and log ins reset.

Clearly the intention here is to simply keep on dragging the process out in the hope that the Be The Media collective simply gives up and goes away. I hope they do not.

Liverpool Anarchist


consensus vs mob rule

03.05.2011 17:02

Liverpool anarchist opined:

"I had until now always believed that Indymedia was run on anarchist principles with decision making that reflected collective consensus. To discover that one minority group has abused these principles and simply 'taken' the site because they refused to accept the consensus is something I find deeply unpleasant and offensive."

A minority group refusing to accept consensus means there isn't consensus. That's in addition to the email I posted above.

The other perspective is that BeTheMedia attempted to use process to get rid of dissent so it could get its own way.

That surely is more like Trot politics than anarchist ones!!!

ftp


My reply to 'ftp'

03.05.2011 17:20

You are simply in the wrong and I'm sorry you do not understand why.


Collective decisions cannot be made if one group has, or appears to have, all the power. If partners have respect for each other's abilities and potential contributions, power struggles should be avoided. Melaville, Blank, and Asayesh noted the importance of sharing power and responsibility within the collaborative:

"A collaborative is most effective when all partners exercise leadership. Partners need to work collegially instead of dominating those they perceive as less powerful. Partners ideally bring a variety of strengths and potential contributions to the table. Recognizing each partner's strengths and expertise lays the groundwork for genuinely shared leadership. It also begins to replace top-down, competitive notions of power and control with a new operating principle that sees the whole collaborative as greater than the sum of its parts. Leaders from partner organizations may experience difficulty in sharing power, but collaboratives will fail unless partners willingly cultivate a new style of leadership--partnership among equals."

Liverpool Anarchist


liverpool anarchist

03.05.2011 17:43

"Collective decisions cannot be made if one group has, or appears to have, all the power."

Well up until the takeover it seemed to be the case that BeThemedia thought they had all the power and were quite happy to use threats top back it up.

" If partners have respect for each other's abilities and potential contributions, power struggles should be avoided."

Thats true. Denouncing twelve people as a hostile minority or troublemakers wouldn't really happen if people were interested in avoiding power struggles.

We'll have to agree to disagree.

ftp


Pull yourselves together

03.05.2011 17:46

The comments by 'ftp' who I have been informed is a prominent member of the MayDay Collective illustrate better than I could have ever done what is wrong with Indymedia UK at present.

A small minority who represent nobody beyond themselves have hijacked Indymedia UK and are now trying to justify it. A brief read of the working lists shows they have blocked the admin log-ins for anybody that does not share their views (in direct contrevention of IMC working rules)

User of Indymedia


Political education needed

03.05.2011 17:49

'ftp'

Judging by your writing I assume you are both young and have a limited political education. I hope in the years to come you will understand better the folly of what you have done.

Good luck as you mature.

Liverpool Anarchist


Worth noting

03.05.2011 17:50

It's worth noting that if Mayday hadn't done what they did this web site would not be here at all right now.

IMCer


Bullshit

03.05.2011 17:57

"It's worth noting that if Mayday hadn't done what they did this web site would not be here at all right now."

Utter rubbish. If the fork had gone ahead there would now be two sites, one an aggregater and the other an open publish site. This site would be here and archived.

Don't lie

bullshit detector


Bullshit Detector

03.05.2011 18:12

"If the fork had gone ahead there would now be two sites, one an aggregater and the other an open publish site."

And the open publish site would be an Indymedia site as agreed at Bradford?

trolls ahoy


Proving my point - thank you

03.05.2011 18:24

"And the open publish site would be an Indymedia site as agreed at Bradford?"

Exactly it would have been mayday.indymedia.org. The "UK" part of the URL having been agreed to not be a part of either groups name.

The Mayday collective have stolen the indymedia.org.uk URL and have not used the one they agreed to use at Bradford because they made sure their new IMC application would fail by failing to answer the questions of the new IMC liason.

Bullshit detector


Bullshit Detector

03.05.2011 18:29

"Exactly it would have been mayday.indymedia.org"

Why does the picture of the splash page at the top of the page say www.maymedia.org

trolls ahoy


A More Balance View

03.05.2011 18:31

OK there's a lot of bitterness and hurling of abuse going on. It's sad but for the sake of those who don't know what is happened here is a hopefully more balanced view of things. Unlike many people involved with Indymedia I have no axe to grind with anyone. I can see both points of view but if pushed I will be honest and say I am a bit more on the Mayday side.


Two Visions
-----------------

For a long time there have been two visions for the future of Indymedia UK. Vision 1, from what was to become the Be The Media group, was to shut down the UK Indymedia site (this site - which would be archived) and start afresh with a new site on a new code base. In fact this vision is now a reality so you can see exactly how it is. It's www.bethemedia.org.uk and the old UK site now archived: www.archive.indymedia.org.uk .

The other vision was from what is now called the Mayday group. They didn't want the new site. They wanted to keep the UK site going and felt its Open publishing newswire was an important feature (bethemedia.org.uk only aggregates news stories from existing local sites). They had planned a number of planned improvements for the UK site but because of the ongoing disputes these were never implemented. Some are now active (modern servers now mean much faster publishing) but most are still in various stages of development. Some ideas can be seen at: www.redesign.indymedia.org.uk

No agreement could be reached which lead to the infamous Bradford meeting in December last year. Here a reluctant compromise was agreed. On May 1st UK Indymedia would be shut down and archived and Be The Media and Mayday would go their separate ways with separate sites.


What went wrong?
--------------------------

Well here's where things get a bit more complicated. Part of the agreement was for Be The Media to help Mayday achieve what is called 'New IMC Status'. What does this mean? Well out in the world wide web anyone anywhere is free to call themselves Indymedia. But of course that doesn't make them part of the global network of activist sites known as Indymedia. To be a part of that a web site collective has to be judged by going through the 'New IMC Process' to prove their commitment and their way of doing things is in line with the philosophy of the global network.

This means, like the UK site that Mayday planned to replace, they would be fully fledged members of the global IMC network and their site would be on the network url www.mayday.indymedia.org and linked to other sites around the world. Without this they wouldn't actually be part of the IMC network at all. (Be The Media didn't need or want IMC status since they are made up of local sites which had that already). Now seeing as all of the Mayday group had been longstanding members of UK IMC what no one foresaw was the length of time it would take for Mayday to get through New IMC status. What was really unfortunate was that one member of globabl IMC actually blocked Mayday's application which lead Mayday to become very suspicious and ultimately the current situation.

As May 1st drew closer Mayday wanted to postpone the Bradford agreement until they had full IMC status. For them if that had not happened they felt that they would have been effectively 'expelled' from the network they had worked for many years. For Be The Media the Bradford agreement still stood and the changes should go ahead regardless of Mayday's status. It was here that a difference in the interpretation of the Bradford agreement meant the consensus broke down.

The way Be The Media saw it they had kept their word by trying to help Mayday achieve full IMC status. The way Mayday understood it this part of the agreement was only fulfilled when they achieved full status. Mayday and several regional IMCs said they didn't agree and Scotland asked for a 3 week delay. For Be The Media this didn't count as they couldn't go back on the Bradford agreement and shortly after midnight on May 1st they implemented the first set of changes to the web site. When Mayday saw this they felt they backed into a corner with no way out. Except possibly…



Direct Action!
-------------------

Mayday felt marginalised and on the edge they were in a Do or Die situation. They had to act and they did something quite unexpected. They copied to entire UK site to a new server and repointed the domain name there. In other words they had taken full control of the entire UK site. Mayday doubtless knew that this would enrage Be The Media but they also knew it would force them back to negotiations which is where things are now.


The Present and the Future
---------------------------------------

However the site you are looking at now is what was to be called Mayday Indymedia and Mayday say they remain committed to that goal as soon as they acheive full IMC status. In the meantime I understand they are extremely busy trying to fix many things wrong with the site.

Hopefully everyone will soon calm down and reflect on what's happened. There are now two UK Indymedias. This one and 'Be The Media'. I think they both feel like the other side is the enemy. It's reminenscent of the Life of Brian where the People's Front of Judea hate the Judean People's Front even more than they hate the Romans. But if one steps back a bit in the grand scheme its pretty clear they are really allies. They are both passionately committed to alternative media and empowering ordinary people to have a voice. I would like to say a very big thank you to all of them.

Almost Independent


Fork situation being discussed within Indymedia

03.05.2011 18:35

Clearly the very serious situation of the Mayday Collective taking over the uk Indymedia URL and blocking access to any other moderators cannot be allowed to continue.

The world Indymedia working collectives have been informed of the situation and are discussing the best way to achieve an outcome that will ensure other collectives are involved in the running of the UK site.

IMCister


And once again proving my point - is this your first time in a debate ?

03.05.2011 18:42

"Why does the picture of the splash page at the top of the page say www.maymedia.org"

The URL at the top of this page says www.indymedia.org.uk

Are you sure you want to continue, the hole you are digging is getting very deep ?

Bullshit Detector


the part mayday isn't telling you

03.05.2011 19:05

open list


a little more 'balance'

03.05.2011 19:23

The problem is this.

The Bradford agreement simply didn't address the question: what if Mayday can't make it through new-IMC in time?

Mayday began acting as if there were an entirely new condition in the Bradford agreement, undiscussed and not part of the minutes: that the agreement is void if Mayday weren't through new-IMC by 1 May. (Bethemedia is not responsible for Mayday's failure to get through new-IMC, although Mayday will naturally assign the blame that way.)

That new condition is made up from whole cloth.

Bethemedia, recognizing this for what it was - a new condition being retroactively and unilaterally 'added' to the agreement - did not recognize this as part of the Bradford agreement. As they should not have, as it was not part of the Bradford agreement. Thus bethemedia carried their part of the Bradford agreement forward, including marking this site as "closed" on 1 May exactly as had been agreed to six months before by everyone INCLUDING MAYDAY. Well, not exactly: they marked it as "closing in one week" to give Mayday some time to make alternative plans.

Mayday then did the palace putsch you see here, removing the administrative access of everyone who was not part of their clique.


Lance Ba


The Net interprets censorship as damage and routes around it

03.05.2011 19:54

What broke?

This site is working OK.

The other half of the fork, seems to be running OK, though not having comments and only a limited selection of articles makes it rather dull.

The archive looks like it also works.

I can't be arrsed to read the details about what happened but I'm not sure I need to as it looks like nothing is broken and eveything works.

Keep calm and carry on?

A Jo


what broke was...

03.05.2011 20:50

The respect for consensus decision making. Basically, all of the power was concentrated in one set of hands - those of Chrisc from sheffield. He made a decision to steal the site and did so.

Every other IMC activist bar 12 have been kicked out of admin of the site, decisions on features etc are no longer open, they exist only within the mayday group. There is also now noone outside of that group who can monitor that the IP logging features of this site are not being used.

The whole point behind all of this is probably so that it can be turned into another 911 truth forum, expect more of that soon. Don't believe me? check out  https://indy.im/911truthnews and see who is one of the only two subscribers (mayday indymedia)

People are trying to get the site back so an open process and participation from others outside the clique can resume. Hang on in there.

reader


@A Jo

03.05.2011 21:01

of course you can comment the articles on bethemedia.org.uk, click on the articles and you get to the local websites, including comments and open publishing.

d


LETS BE HONEST

03.05.2011 21:02

A lot of comments claiming that the site has been taken over and admins have been locked out are entirely disingenuous. This dispute is NOT about control of this web site it's about control of the domain name and where it points to.

Had things gone according to plan the only difference I can see is that indymedia.org.uk would have pointed to the splash page fork and this site would have a different name and url. I don't want to belittle the fact that this has not yet happened and I'm sure Be The Media feel vexed and frustrated right now.

But the control of this actual site and admin access would be exactly as it is now, run by Mayday and affiliated collectives. And if that hadn't happened then this site would not be here at all and only the dead version of UK site, archive.indymedia.org.uk, would even exist.

atw


A reply to Almost Independent

03.05.2011 21:04

I enjoyed reading your overview. I would like to add to your comments regarding 'what went wrong' and mayday having their application blocked.

If you check the list archives and/or ask around it is clear that some members from the individual collectives making up 'be the media', sent emails threatening to block mayday's application IF they did not bow down to other demands in addition to the fork. One of these threats apparently occurred in early April.



ukradical


Reply to Lance Ba

03.05.2011 21:12

The thing is some of those in decision making and blocking capacities with respects to the new-IMC process, are some of those that are at the heart of this conflict and even members of be the media. As I replied to Almost Independent, there were threats from members of be the media to block mayday's application. There is also quite a bit of evidence that suggests members of be the media and others sitting in positions of power with respects the new-IMC process, had already been discussing blocking mayday for a while.

So, for mayday to think as you suggest is not entirely unreasonable. Are mayday's actions justifiable given this new information...that I don't know.

ukradical


to be clear

03.05.2011 21:45

imc-mayday's new-IMC application was not blocked by anyone in the bethemedia coalition, to suggest otherwise goes against the documents clearly available on the list archives

it was blocked by a guy on new-IMC named bart, and it was blocked over his own personal sense that he didn't feel imc-mayday had come clean on the IP-sniffing issue

bethemedia agreed in bradford that it wouldn't block or interfere with the imc-mayday application, only in late april, when imc-mayday began making it clear that it intended to inject a new condition into the previously consensed upon agreement or else it would consider the bradford agreement null and void, that bethemedia said that such a unilateral move against the bradford agreement would free bethemedia from the requirement not to block the imc-mayday application at some unspecified point in the future

again, this is all publicly available information and it does not match the imc-mayday version

clarificatorizer


pigheaded egos on both sides

03.05.2011 21:52

[IMCer not affliated with either side writing in a personal capacity]

The frustrating thing about this for me is that at *several* stages of the process there were opportunities for compromise that would have averted all this, but amid the entrenched bad feeling and mistrust, both sides refused to compromise at all.

If they could see past their own egos long enough to realise the importance of the indymedia network for the movement they would have been willing to compromise. I am well and truly sick of all of them.

Both sides see themselves as the legitimate owners of "Indymedia". They are both wrong. Indymedia belongs to the movement.

an IMCer


reply to clarificatorizer

03.05.2011 21:56

I didn't suggest bethemedia members blocked. I agree it was Bart that blocked. However, as you are so keen on 'the record', there is an email in the list archive that is an example of one of the threats and that email was early April, not late April. I would like to note that members of bethemedia are in influential positions and people DO communicate and do stuff through private communication channels. Much has occurred off lists and, if we are to be honest with ourselves, minutes of meetings are highly selective and often don't include the more sensitive issues.

ukradical


reply to an IMCer

03.05.2011 21:59

Some influential be the media members have openly stated that they wanted to challenge and ultimately bring to an end, the power structures of those running IMC-UK given the understanding that those running IMC-UK are a bit too hierarchical.

ukradical


my take on things

03.05.2011 22:09

@ lance ba

"The Bradford agreement simply didn't address the question: what if Mayday can't make it through new-IMC in time?"

Oh yes it did. Both sides recognised that if Mayday didn't get through new-IMC in time the agreement would collapse and there would be ongoing conflict. Members of BeTheMedia said in the Bradford meeting that they would support Mayday through the process to make sure it happened in time, to avoid such a scenario. But when it came to it, they didn't, and it looks more than likely that there was untoward influence used behind the scenes in new-imc to help make sure new-imc status was not achieved.

"Mayday began acting as if there were an entirely new condition in the Bradford agreement, undiscussed and not part of the minutes: that the agreement is void if Mayday weren't through new-IMC by 1 May."

The minutes state that the two groups will move to sites a.indymedia.org and b.indymedia.org. You can only be a.indymedia.org if you are accepted as a new imc. It was implicit in the agreement. Also, what I said above.

"Bethemedia, recognizing this for what it was - a new condition being retroactively and unilaterally 'added' to the agreement - did not recognize this as part of the Bradford agreement. As they should not have, as it was not part of the Bradford agreement. Thus bethemedia carried their part of the Bradford agreement forward, including marking this site as "closed" on 1 May exactly as had been agreed to six months before by everyone INCLUDING MAYDAY. Well, not exactly: they marked it as "closing in one week" to give Mayday some time to make alternative plans."

Well, that seems to be the BeTheMedia position. Mayday's position is as repeatedly stated. BeTheMedia claimed to have the power to force the closure in spite of blocks and requests for more time to allow the fork to take place in the way described and envisaged in the Bradford agreement.

The members of what is now called mayday collective arrived at the Bradford meeting proposing to run the uk indymedia site as a uk collective. This was opposed by members of BeTheMedia, resulting in a compromise agreement. The members of mayday collective would never have agreed to move off the uk domain onto a non-indymedia domain. The new-imc and associated indymedia domain were central.

Putting up a page that points to a non-functioning page for Mayday and announcing that the site will close in one week? How very generous of BeTheMedia to give this extra time! But they also sent this email:
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0430-n7.html
which makes it clear that the concession is solely for Oxford collective's benefit and that if Oxford made other arrangements sooner, the site would close at that point:

" We are concerned that Oxford Indymedia, who were expecting to find a home on the new Mayday site, may become homeless. Therefore we will wait another week before disabling publishing to the UK Indymedia site, OR AT ANY POINT BEFORE, when Oxford inform us that they have their own site set up" (my caps).

So this week was not intended to give Mayday time to make alternative plans.

OK, that's my contribution.

And my advice? Get on with using this site for reporting yer news from the streets. Have a look at BeTheMedia and if you like that better, use that. Or use both.

another subjective viewpoint


Grow up!

03.05.2011 22:31

This reminds me of a recent split in the Pogo Cafe, in which a "direct action" against comrades have caused a massive row and wounds that are not yet healed.

I like Indymedia as it is with all the shit, with the EDL morons and the police all expressing their contempt at us, I like the fact that crazy loonies from global research publish their moronic shit here and end up looking dumber each time, I like the fact you can just write a pointless article and publish it, where people will take the piss out of it, or criticise it, or even agree with it.
but this is more then 4chan, this isn't just some shit-hole for internet boredom, there is a lot of thought and effort going on to maintaining it, and these kind of conflicts are never good vs bad, no matter how aggravated you get, you must keep calm, you have a disagreement with comrades, but they are still comrades.

I'm glad the indymedia.org.uk is still up, but who cares if the exact format is moved to maydaymedia.org?
We are not big enough or strong enough to have splits like this, and these kind of "conflict resolution" makes us weaker.
We are also not a threat to anyone, an annoyance at best, so don't pretend you are some international superpower who's opinions are taken into account in the UN, you are just a network of activists providing both "people's media" and free forums, and as it happened, over the years the open publishing format created a conflict between those two aims, part of this conflict came through shit reporting (thanks GR), through EDL/BNP supporters stirring shit, and the police constantly harassing us, but if this is how we solve these conflicts, if you can't speak to one another after, then you do their job for them.
So we now have be the media to go to for a more news worthy site, and indymedia for open forums in our arsenal, this can make us stronger if we just stop sabotaging one another and work together. please just resolve this maturely.

We are still just ants trying to overthrow an elephant.


Couldn't give a fuck...

03.05.2011 23:03

… about all this bullshit, but I don't see why BeTheMedia want to take down UK Indymedia. Why can't they get on with their site and leave this one be? There site does not let you publish anything so is no replacement nor is it in anyway an Indymedia site as I understand it. Why should Indymedia UK have to be called Mayday Indymedia?

I don't get all the ins and outs of all this but why the fuck did Mayday agree to this in anycase? This stupid suggestion should have been blocked!

...Please keep this real Indymedia up by whatever means necessary! I don't give a fuck about consensus or any of that, providing Indymedia (ie. you can post and comment on all UK protest, activism news, etc) is here I am happy.

Just a normal user/contributor


get the bucket

03.05.2011 23:05

"Oh yes it did. Both sides recognised that if Mayday didn't get through new-IMC in time the agreement would collapse and there would be ongoing conflict. Members of BeTheMedia said in the Bradford meeting that they would support Mayday through the process to make sure it happened in time, to avoid such a scenario. But when it came to it, they didn't, and it looks more than likely that there was untoward influence used behind the scenes in new-imc to help make sure new-imc status was not achieved."

You know, this is just crap.

Look at the Bradford notes and there's no reference at all to what happens if mayday can't get through new-IMC. It just presumed that six months would be enough. Your "it was implicit in the agreement" is your acknowledgement that it isn't in the agreement text at all. And since there is no consensus that this is what was intended, and since bethemedia's version differs, and since the text itself does not support you, it's just a bucket of bollocks for you to say it's somehow so obviously part of the agreement that you can use this point - bethemedia's failure to honor a non-existant clause - as a pretext to power grab the whole site and purge bethemedia.

And the neutral facilitator/note-taker has posted to the list that the reason it's not in the notes is because it wasn't discussed.

Anybody who reads the new-imc list will see that bethemedia didn't do a damn thing to interfere with the mayday application, and it's a sign of just how fucked up things are that mayday continues to try to blame bethemedia for it's own difficulties getting through the new-imc process when anybody who can read the list can see it's just bart being in over his head and mayday failing to work with that.

o please


straight from the note-taker

03.05.2011 23:17

an email from the note-taker at bradford:


Hi,

after the validity of the Bradford notes seem to get challenged I had sent the following to the aggromedia list, and I've been asked whether I could forward this also to the uk-process list. Here it is.

greetings
clara
----------------

I was the one taking the notes. And just to be absolutely clear on this: The notes were agreed upon during the meeting. For some of the notes, the individual sentences were read out during the meetings to get the formulations right. The whole notes were read out in the end, and after some clarifications were made they were read again, before the whole room agreed on them. They were then sent out as email straight away.

The problem is that the meeting did not _discuss_ what would happen if the Mir collective would not get through new-imc - not that the discussion wasn't minuted.

My impression about helping out on the new-imc process: There was a mentioning that with this fork, the other collectives would have an interest in the Mir collective getting through the new IMC process, and would have no interest in blocking them. However this was not formulated as actively helping out. It was formulated as not throwing stones in their way. If anything there was an agreement that the other collectives would stay out of the way. And given the atmosphere in the room: any active involvement in somebody from another Mir collective in helping them along, would have been clearly been no option for either side. Just finding a way to stay out of each other's sight was the best that could be reached there and then.

---

Read it yourself:  http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0424-wf.html

straightener outer


Justice Straightener-Outer Presiding

04.05.2011 00:26


So we take it your Honour that you think the minute taker was neutral. And that because something wasn't discussed in her memory then it is irrelevant.

as is this:

We agree that it's great that there is a national site, and that goes
through new imc with a different site and name , and others go on with
their projects

because it can't possibly mean what it says?





There's no need for the Jury to retire
- Homepage: http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2010-December/1211-v5.html


aaaaagh they're all against me

04.05.2011 02:10

"So we take it your Honour that you think the minute taker was neutral."

Holy fuck.

Now, because the minutes turn out not to support you, the note-taker is retroactively declared to be against you. The whole fucking world is a conspiracy against mayday.

You people have absolutely no shame, do you.

shame


Bristol on the global process list.

04.05.2011 08:57

Bristol on the global process list.

uk.indymedia.org and indymedia.org.uk are no longer under the control of
the volunteers who have maintained UK Indymedia since its inception. A
faction within UK Indymedia, Mayday, composing of individuals who are
not members of any full IMC, and who currently have a new-imc application
which has been blocked, have taken control of the DNS for the domain of
indymedia.org.uk, pointed it to a new server and deleted the access of
all non-Mayday volunteers from the system.

This includes expelling the access of volunteers from accredited imcs
including Bristol, Northern England, London and Nottingham [1] along with
individuals not associated with any collective and members of Oxford
Imc, a group currently going through the new-imc process.[2]

Bristol Indymedia asks that the global Indymedia community request that
control of the domain indymedia.org.uk be handed over to the Global IMC
DNS working group as a neutral party not involved in the current conflict
forthwith.

Following this unprecedented and unfortunate action we also propose that
all members of the Mayday group have their admin privileges, membership
of key lists such as tech-lists, listwork, control of documents servers,
indymedia server root accounts and the like be revoked pending resolution
of the situation.

Signed imc bristol


[1]
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-tech/2011-May/0502-b9.html
[2]
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-tech/2011-May/0501-4l.html

POU6 in action
- Homepage: http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-May/0503-ar.html


Britain's Left Defeats Itself Again.

04.05.2011 09:01

On November 30th 1999 thousands of anti-capitalist/globalisation activists gathered in Seattle, USA to protest against and successfully shut down a meeting of the World Trade Organisation (WTO). A large part of their grievance was that the WTO was effectively operating in secret with no reporting of the decisions it was making and the effect those decisions were having across the world. So by way of a solution a group of activists set up the Independent Media Centre or "Indymedia" for short. The idea was create a network of un-moderated, open publishing websites so people from all over the world could share news about the decisions being made in the name of globalisation and the actions that were being taken to protest against them. The Independent Media Centre was probably one of the most successful ideas to come out of the Seattle protests and there are now 180 Indymedia sites across the world in places as diverse as Japan, Israel, Kenya and Burma making Indymedia the blueprint for the sort of "Citizen Journalism" that's become so fashionable recently.

In the UK Indymedia has been particularly successful with 11 regional sites publishing local news and a national site that gathers up all the news from the regional sites and adds to it international news. Although as always with open publishing the quality is patchy at best a lot of what is published on the UK national site is so high quality that it has begun to be used by the mainstream media as a wire service alongside Associated Press and Reuters. In fact a lot of the stories you may have read in national newspapers, especially the ones about Climate Camp and Mark Kennedy - the undercover policeman, have been lifted straight from Indymedia and then re-published with minimal editing.

Obviously this free dissemination of uncensored news coupled with the fact that the un-moderated, anonymous open publishing model makes it nearly impossible for the collective that runs the site to be held legally liable for it's content means that Indymedia is hated by the British authorities and there have been various attempts to shut it down over the years. These efforts have included multiple police raids and illegal seizure (read theft) of computer equipment but most recently have focused on police officers serving with a dedicated unit known as the "National Extremism Tactical Co-ordination Unit (NECTU)" either posting articles calling for more moderation or articles that are so deeply offensive that they cause others to call for more moderation.

At around the time that all those undercover police officers were operating within the UK activist scene these calls for tighter moderation took hold among the Indymedia collective fuelled by the usual mix of paranoia, ego and passionately held political beliefs. Eventually this led to two distinct groups forming within the collective. One known as the Mayday collective wanted to keep Indymedia pretty much as it is while the other known as the BeTheMedia (BTM) collective wanted to shut down Indymedia completely and replace it with a tightly moderated, isolationist site that would focus on British news for British people. Bizarrely these two groups reached a consensus decision that on May 1st 2011 the UK Indymedia site would gradually be wound down and replaced by two new sites; Mayday and BeTheMedia.

When May 1st arrived the BTM group insisted that the Indymedia site be shutdown immediately. This went against the consensus decision so the Mayday group locked the BTM group out of the running of the site and kept it going. There is currently a three week suspension on the site shutdown to allow the factions to meet in person to try and solve their differences. I expect that the Indymedia site will remain open after that because if the BTM group want to go and do something different then the Internet is a big place so there's nothing stopping them and they don't need to shut down Indymedia to do it.

Sovereign (repost)
- Homepage: http://watchitdie.blogspot.com/2011/05/britains-left-defeats-itself-again.html


Fork Denialists

04.05.2011 09:09

Trying to get my head around this, the fork clearly happened on 1st May didn't it?

There are now two sites, UK Indymedia and BeTheMedia - these sites are autonomous, BeTheMedia removed all content pulled in from UK Indymedia

But now, because BeTheMedia is un happy that the UK Indymedia site is still called UK Indymedia and still on the same domain name (they would rather people couldn't find it?) they are now looking like they are claiming:

"the fork didn't happen"

Is this going to get yet more absurd?

Is BTM gonna run to the Bourgeois Courts whining?

"We wanted to shut down UK Indymedia but some Indymedia activists did't want to and through we tried to ignore them, we tried to bully them, we did all would could think of against them, they still said they wanted to keep it running, so please Mr Judge can you support us and get the site shut down? I bet you don't like it either do you Mr Respectable Judge?"

forkavista


No Trust again

04.05.2011 09:39

Sadly, its the UK activist scene that suffers from the theft of this site. Had the agreement proceeded as there was consensus for, and had one group not gotten greedy and decided to take the site for themselves, what the UK would have got was two sites, both offering open publishing and both linked to from this domain in a fair and equal manner. The readers would have had the choice as to which they visited, and those that preferred the way this site looked and felt would have easily been able to find a carbon copy.

It's a real shame that this has now happened, since now the only likely outcome is that the person who was entrusted with the dns record for this shared resource of the indymedia network will now be forever ostracised from the global tech community. The betrayal of the trust that was placed in him by a network of activists numbering in the hundreds is akin to that of mark Kennedy. He too has lived amongst us and we have welcomed him into our network of trust, and in all that time we recently discovered he was monitoring the ip addresses of visitors to this site on a personal mission to 'expose' disinformation, compiled detailed dossiers on fellow activists in an attempt to undermine them and divide the movement, and has now stolen one of the most important sites in the global indymedia network so that his group has full control over the media portrayed here in a similar manner to Rupert Murdoch. It is worth noting that this conflict began in 2006 when the majority of UK indymedia activists wanted a moratorium on the flood of 9/11 conspiracy posts that were flooding the site, many written by Chris, and so he began to use the consensus process to block any decisions that went against his ability to control the site and its content.

Along the way, through a series of half truths, outright lies and scaremongering he has managed to collect a group composed mainly (in Sheffield at least) of 9/11 truth activists who are amenable to the conspiracy theories regarding other imcistas, and some others for whom the scary stories of 'losing their voice' unless they went along with his plans struck a chord, despite the fact that this was never on the cards until now. It is sad that they have been caught up in this and will now be towed along in the trail of destruction that Chris is leaving behind him, though it is not of course too late to get out whilst they still can.

As for Chris, I hope he enjoys the life of solitude and mistrust that he has now created for himself. Anyone who wants to see this person for themselves should go along to the Sheffield anarchist bookfair where he will be attempting to justify what he has done. I know of several groups who are now booting this event in protest at his presence and will be informing the organisers of this and explaining why soon. I would encourage people to go there and meet him for themselves, and then make a decision as to whether the site is now in good hands, or whether it should be returned to the open groups who met regularly and transparently around the UK, and who for some have done for over 11 years in order to build a resource that benefits the UK activist movement as a whole.

ashamed


anonymous threats on the internets

04.05.2011 09:54

"Anyone who wants to see this person for themselves should go along to the Sheffield anarchist bookfair where he will be attempting to justify what he has done.I know of several groups who are now booting this event in protest at his presence and will be informing the organisers of this and explaining why soon."

Nice one BeTheMedia!!!!



POU6 in action


the hijacking of indymedia UK

04.05.2011 10:35

uk.indymedia.org and indymedia.org.uk are no longer under the control of
the volunteers who have maintained UK Indymedia since its inception. A
faction within UK Indymedia, Mayday, composing of individuals who are
not members of any full IMC, and who currently have a new-imc application
which has been blocked, have taken control of the DNS for the domain of
indymedia.org.uk, pointed it to a new server and deleted the access of
all non-Mayday volunteers from the system.

This includes expelling the access of volunteers from accredited imcs
including Bristol, Northern England, London and Nottingham [1] along with
individuals not associated with any collective and members of Oxford
Imc, a group currently going through the new-imc process.[2]

Bristol Indymedia asks that the global Indymedia community request that
control of the domain indymedia.org.uk be handed over to the Global IMC
DNS working group as a neutral party not involved in the current conflict
forthwith.

Following this unprecedented and unfortunate action we also propose that
all members of the Mayday group have their admin privileges, membership
of key lists such as tech-lists, listwork, control of documents servers,
indymedia server root accounts and the like be revoked pending resolution
of the situation.

Signed imc bristol


[1]  http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-tech/2011-May/0502-b9.html
[2]  http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-tech/2011-May/0501-4l.html

Bristol Indymedia
- Homepage: http://bristol.indymedia.org.uk/


Why does the picture of the splash page at the top of the page say www.maymedia.

04.05.2011 10:42

"Why does the picture of the splash page at the top of the page say www.maymedia.org"

The answer is probably because the mayday collective has decided so, but the question is not what you show on your site.

The question is, why do I get only this page when I request indymedia.org.uk and not a splash page with both sites.

Mayday's answer is probably because they decided so, as a result of other people's actions; Bethemedia's answer is probably, because you stole the domain name.

Could you have done all this if you had not had the individual power to do so? Who entrusted you with that power? Where are they now? What do they think?

why am I served this when I request indymedia.org.uk


long road ahead

04.05.2011 10:44

Do you know what pusses me off. Well I'm gonna tell yer.

On a number of occasions I have wandered through the hidden posts/comments and found a lot of hard work and dedication put into a written piece only to be discarded for an individuals unapparent motives. I am here for free press. I am here for uncensored press. I am here for ALTERNATIVE press. I am also here for the hot bed of opposing ideas and views and the inevitable education endured by, following those threads.

I believe the problems could be satisfied for all parties in the current new format with a few simple tweaks, instead of 'that doesn't work the way we like it, so lets throw it away' and 'it's not our problem' attitudes, all to the detriment of the users of this site.

I have the utmost respect for all the people involved with the running of Indymedia. I just hope for some rational in favour of all participants within the collectives and those of us on the outer.

Ultimately an Open Newswire on a UK level is required.

Puss In boot


If Mayday hadn't done what they did...

04.05.2011 10:50

If Mayday had not hijacked the Indymedia site, it would still be here. But it would be under the control of the people that were entrusted with it, rather than under Mayday's sole control.

BeTheMedia clearly said that they were putting up the splash page with links to the different domains, but not touching the UK Indymedia site, as they weren't sure whether there was an alternative site set up. They expressed their concern that Oxford, who have been trying to stay out of this, would be homeless if the UK site was archived.

They also said that they would not do anything for another week. The UK site was working, there was only one page in the front, linking to the Mayday and BeTheMedia sites.

Instead of taking control and excluding everyone (including Oxford and other not involved Indymedia volunteers, who aren't part of Mayday), the Mayday group could have used that week to try and come to an agreement. Or find some way forward.

They decided that they'd rather use the power they had to lock out everyone who disagreed with them and effectively purge Indymedia UK. The result is that they are running this site illegitimately. They have no right to the web address or name of Indymedia UK.

So much for the 'defenders' of Indymedia UK. But what do you expect from a club that has formed around and former trot who has used his admin access to delete all evidence of previous political affiliation of Indymedia, when he was posting under his full name.

If you want to go on trusting those people, go for it. But be prepared that, should you ever dare to disagree with them, they will bully you and purge you, and generally fight you by 'all means necessary'.

whatever


'Fork' Is A Four Letter Word

04.05.2011 10:57

Looks to me like one side has a lot to learn about the nature of forks. Some things some people have said on the matter follow.

--------------------------------------

In software engineering, a project fork happens when developers take a legal copy of source code from one software package and start independent development on it, creating a distinct piece of software.

In free software, forks often result from a schism over different goals or personality clashes. In a fork, both parties assume nearly identical code bases but typically only the larger group, or whoever controls the web site, will retain the full original name and the associated user community. Thus there is a reputation penalty associated with forking. The relationship between the different teams can be cordial or very bitter.

 https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Fork_%28software_development%29

--------------------------------------

Forking has historically been viewed as a bad thing in free software communities: they are seen to stem from people's inability to work together and have ended in reproduction of work. When I published the first version of the Free Software Project Management HOWTO more than four years ago, I included a small subsection on forking which described the concept to future free software project leaders with this text:

"The short version of the fork section is, don't do them. Forks force developers to choose one project to work with, cause nasty political divisions, and redundancy of work."

In the best situations, a fork means that two groups of people need to go on developing features and doing work they would ordinarily do in addition to tracking the forked project and having to hand-select and apply features and fixes to their own code-base. This level of monitoring and constant comparison can be extremely difficult and time-consuming. The situation is not helped substantially by traditional source control tools like diff, patch, CVS and Subversion which are not optimized for this task. The worse (and much more common) situation occurs when two groups go about their work ignorant or partially ignorant of the code being cut on the other side of the fork. Important features and fixes are implemented twice — differently and incompatibly.

The most substantial bright side to these drawbacks is that the problems associated with forking are so severe and notorious that, in most cases, the threat of a fork is enough to force maintainers to work out solutions that keep the fork from happening in the first place.

Finally, it is worth pointing out that fork is something of a contested term. Because definitions of forks involve, to one degree or another, statements about the political, organization, and technical distinctions between projects, bifurcations that many people call branches or parallel trees are described by others as forks. Recently, fueled by the advent of distributed version control systems, the definition of what is and is not a fork has become increasingly unclear. In part due to the same systems, the benefits and drawbacks of what is increasingly problematically called forking is equally debatable.

--------------------------------------

10 interesting open source software forks and why they happened


A benefit of open source software is the ability to take the code base of an application and develop it in a new direction. This is, as most of you probably know, called forking, and is very common in the open source community. For example, many Linux distributions can be traced back to either Debian, Fedora or Slackware.

Much of the open source software that is in popular use today was born from other projects. We thought it would be interesting to take a look at the history of some of these software forks and find out WHY they happened in the first place.

We looked at the WHY because software forking is often seen as somewhat of a waste of development resources and isn’t considered a good thing. Sometimes the results can be great, though, as many of the examples below clearly show.

...

Judging from these ten software forks, common causes of forks are disagreements (sometimes purely ideological) and personality clashes, though more practical reasons are also common (such as the Webkit and Firefox examples). It is also interesting to see that many times the forks have surpassed the original software in popularity.

 http://royal.pingdom.com/2008/09/11/10-interesting-open-source-software-forks-and-why-they-happened/

--------------------------------------

Why Fork?

Answer – Because you cannot get the software to meet your needs any other way.

Just because you don’t like, or don’t trust, the core developers or custodians of the project is not a good reason to fork the project. Being worried that the core developers or custodians, at some time in the future, will do something you don’t like, is not a good reason to fork a project.

When To Fork?

Answer – When you have exhausted all other options.

Take a look a:

The publicly stated reasons for the Icinga fork of Nagios – Why A Fork?  http://www.icinga.org/why-a-fork/

The debate about whether to fork Compiere – Debate – Has Compiere Become Closed? Do We Fork? How?  http://red1.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=931&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

The letter from the Mambo developers before the Joomla fork – Mambo Developers Letter To The Community  http://www.troozers.com/news/latest/mambo_developers_letter_to_the_community.html

You can see from these pages that the decision to fork was not made lightly. It is clear there was much discussion and involvement happened before the idea of forking was considered. The reasons for the fork are communicated clearly, often with regret that a fork was necessary.

How To Fork?

Answer: Carefully and responsibly

Here are my step-by-step suggestions.
Step 1: Exhaust All Other Options

Communicate your frustrations clearly. Doing this in a private email will help reduce the chance of the core developers/custodians getting defensive.

Find out how other community members feel. If no-one else agrees with you, there is a good chance your frustrations are misplaced.
Describe what you feel would be the bast-case outcome, and how it would be a good result for everyone (not just you).
Do not threaten to fork the project at this point.
Give the core developers/custodians 2 to 4 weeks to react.

If you get no reply or a negative one, proceed to step 2.
Step 2 – Communicate Intent Privately

If step 1 fails, in a private email:

Communicate your disappointment that a mutually beneficial resolution has not been reached
Communicate that you have no option but to announce an ‘intent to fork’.
Again give the core developers/custodians 2 to 4 weeks to react.

If again you get no reply or a negative one, proceed to step 3.
Step 3 – Publicly Announce Intent to Fork

Publicly announce your intent to fork the project. Communicate that you have exhausted all other options. Specify the date at which the fork will occur. This date should again be 2-4 weeks into the future.

Create forum threads so that other community members can voice their opinions of the proposed fork. Participate in any discussions that starts up.

In most cases the community members who have pledged to follow the fork will spend the time between the public announcement and the fork date working on materials for the new project, such as the home page.
Step 4 – Fork

If nothing changes before the fork date arrives – fork.

When creating your new project choose a name that is different from the original project.

On your project web site make it clear that this is a fork, and why the fork occurred.

Do not remove the names of developers or copyright notices from any of the source files or documentation. Choose the same license type as the original project.

Make it clear which version or revision or tagged branch was forked.

Many Forks Are Avoided

By following the steps above forks can be avoided. I have been involved in situations that made it to step 2 in this process. In these cases, when the threat of a fork was seen as credible, the custodians of the project started to engage and a mutually beneficial agreement was reached. I am not naming these projects, that was part of the agreement we reached.

Bad Example of a Fork

Here is a bad case: In July 2007 someone tried to fork Pentaho Data Integration. The project was called ‘No Pentaho Pentaho Data Integration’. The reasoning given for this fork was:

No Pentaho Pentaho Data Integration is intended to take an early version 3.x of Pentaho Data Integration, remove most of the features Pentaho added and as such starting a new more stable version of PDI.

The apparent motivation for this attempted fork was that the trunk code for the next major release was, at the time, unstable. This was due to a significant re-write of the core engine, and the fork happened at a time then the instability was expected. None of the core developers or active community members supported the fork. To date this project has produced no downloads and has one anonymous developer.

This was clearly an unsuccessful fork that did not follow the steps above. The Pentaho Data Integration developers received no communication that anyone was frustrated with the running of the project. The developers had no opportunity to resolve any of the issues the member had. There was no privately or publicly communicated intent to fork. The fork just happened. Since then has produced nothing.

 https://jamesdixon.wordpress.com/forking-protocol-why-when-and-how-to-fork-an-open-source-project/

Fork Off
- Homepage: http://slashdot.org/tag/fork


ANALYSIS: WHY OPEN-SOURCE FORKING IS BOTH RARE AND BENIGN

04.05.2011 11:32

forking is... not only always an option, but is a vital safety valve in case the existing developers (1) stop working on the project, or (2) decide to stand in the way of progress. The fact that this can occur is A Good Thing.

Rick M.
- Homepage: http://linuxmafia.com/faq/Licensing_and_Law/forking.html


This is NOT the old UK site

04.05.2011 11:56

OK there is a lot of misunderstanding on this thread regarding this site and the specious claims that some people have been locked out and the site has been hijacked.

So lets be clear:

THIS SITE IS NOT THE OLD UK INDYMEDIA SITE

The old site is still there at  http://archive.indymedia.org.uk/ as agreed and none of the original site admins have been locked out. This site was cloned from that site but is already growing, changing and evolving from that.

If you have any doubts that this is not true there are differences you can see for yourself. Bristol IMC complained that their feeds weren't coming through. That's because on this site they are/were broken. Mayday intend to fix them (if not done already). Also you'll notice that newswire items and comments on this site arrive almost instantly. That's because this site is on a different faster server in a different place run by and paid for by the Mayday collective. If you are not part of Mayday or affiliated groups of course you don't have access.

Just as Be The Media don't have access to this site none of the Mayday group have access to the Be The Media server either. And why would they want access? It's not their project. This site is.

And it can also be accessed via  http://maydaymedia.org/ and  http://mdimc.org/ too.

Emphatic


Real forks only happen under dire circumstances.

04.05.2011 12:00

Whether forking in general does good or bad to society, is a complex issue and there's no simple answer. When philosophies and vision or methods between developers differ significantly, forking is probably the only recourse.

 http://xahlee.org/emacs/emacs_wiki_problem.html

In my opinion forks often happen when the leading developers get tired of people fighting for power and influence - and decide to take the code and walk away (in good compliance with the ideas that Richard Stallman preaches..). This is what it means when we say that "software wants to be free".

It happens when a project grows and becomes so succesfull that the community cannot stay one. When forces driving people away from each other, overpowers the opposite forces.

 http://drupal.org/node/31286

In the hacker world, forks are an interesting phenomenon.

 http://infomotions.com/etexts/gutenberg/dirs/etext04/freed10.htm

you should respect the fact that what forked from debian, was ubuntu and what forked from ubuntu, is linux mint. and those distributions are proper in their own right. If this concept is too much for you to fathom... then maybe you prefer being TOLD what computer to use, how it should look like, and how to use it; in other words, a mac.

 http://www.linux.com/archive/?module=comments&func=display&cid=1199337

In a fork, the person(s) creating the fork intend for the fork to replace or compete with the original project they are forking.

Creating a fork is a major and emotional event in the OSS/FS community. It similar to a call for a “vote of no confidence” in a parliament, or a call for a labor strike in a labor dispute. Those creating the fork are essentially stating that they believe the project’s current leadership is ineffective, and are asking developers to vote against the project leadership by abandoning the original project and switching to their fork. Those who are creating the fork must argue why other developers should support their fork; common reasons given include a belief that changes are not being accepted fast enough, that changes are happening too quickly for users to absorb them, that the project governance is too closed to outsiders, that the licensing approach is hampering development, or that the project’s technical direction is fundamentally incorrect.

Most attempts to create forks are ignored, for there must be a strong reason for developers to consider switching to a competing project. Developers usually resist supporting OSS/FS forks: they divide effort that would be more effective when combined, they make support and further development more difficult, and they require developers to discuss project governance rather than improving the project’s products. Developers can attempt to support both projects, but this is usually impractical over time as the projects diverge. Eric Raymond, in Homesteading the Noosphere, argues that a prime motivation in OSS/FS development is reputation gain through the use of a gift culture, and that forking significantly interferes with this motivation.

There are four different possible outcomes of a fork attempt, and all of them have occurred in the history of OSS/FS. These outcomes, along with historical examples, are:

1. The death of the fork (example: libc/glibc). This is by far the most common outcome; indeed, many forks never receive enough support to “die”.

2. A re-merging of the fork (example: gcc/egcs); this is where the projects rejoin each other (though one or the other may be the dominant source of the combined effort).

3. The death of the original (example: XFree86/X.org).

4. Successful branching -- both succeed, typically catering to different communities (examples: GNU emacs / xemacs, OpenBSD).

The ability to create a fork is important in OSS/FS development, for the same reason that the ability to call for a vote of no confidence or a labor strike is important. Fundamentally, the ability to create a fork forces project leaders to pay attention to their constituencies. Even if an OSS/FS project completely dominates its market niche, there is always a potential competitor to that project: a fork of the project. Often, the threat of a fork is enough to cause project leaders to pay attention to some issues they had ignored before, should those issues actually be important. In the end, forking is an escape valve that allows those who are dissatisfied with the project’s current leadership to show whether or not their alternative is better.

 http://www.dwheeler.com/oss_fs_why.html#forking

Forking isn't unique to free software projects, but also takes place in non-profit associations and political and religious movements. What happens is that a group of voluntary members walk away to form a new community. They cannot bring physical property with them, but the fork implies this sacrifice. Some startup companies, where physical property is not as important as management culture, are also subject to forks or spin offs. What's unique to free software projects in this perspective is the lack of physical property, so the only sacrifice is the loss of connection with the members left behind. Managing such projects to avoid forks requires more openess and tolerance, since the loss implied by a fork is smaller. However, even in free software projects there are some things that resemble physical property (in the sense that you have to leave it behind when you fork):

1. A good project name is a brand and can in some cases be regarded as a trademark.

2. A website with a wellknown URL to which many people have created links. This becomes very evident in the case of a Wiki.

3. A mailing list and its online archive.

4. A bug reporting database. (Does your software project use GPL also for the Bugzilla contents?)

Acrimony accompanies invocation of the right to fork only when a large portion of the developer community looks to follow a development branch maintained by anyone other than the currently recognized BenevolentDictator for that project. Such a move signals the rejection of the benevolent dictator's role in the project and perhaps the annointing of a new one.

The right to fork guards the project against single points of failure. For example, the right to fork is a powerful check upon the influence of the benevolent dictator on the project's work, and through the project's work, on the community itself. The presence of this right provides strong assurance for any participant in the community to contribute his/her efforts to the community, and lack of it calls into question the open nature of a BenevolentDictator's leadership of that community.

The right to fork also bears upon the "what if the project leader gets hit by a bus" question. Even if the project leader is competent, engaged, and respected, no one lives forever. Amicable exercise of the right to fork (as in the establishment of a port to a new architecture or another experimental venture) provides a venue in which successors to the benevolent dictator might gain crucial experience. (See also EnlargeSpace) A body of such people with such experience may be able to take on responsibilities that would otherwise fall to the benevolent dictator alone, providing some buffering for the benevolent dictator and working against burn out.

Independently of the project leader's role, the right to fork benefits the project in other ways. It makes the establishment of mirrors and backups trivial. In the case of a software project, this insulates the community from hardware failure, network failure, or unfriendly shifts in local legal climates.

Some say the right to fork is a destructive tool, that it should be put on the same shelf as civil war, and that it's far easier to exercise your RightToLeave  http://meatballwiki.org/wiki/RightToLeave .

Forking isn't a simple institutional democratic process where one party may impeach another. It's really democratic; down to the mob. When you fork, you really fork. There are now two paths that any user or contributory developer may choose, and thus the available resources are split. Plus, there is a tax now extracted in the ways of bitterness and resentment. Since many people contribute to FreeSoftware because it is fun, if the project is no longer fun but vile, many will no longer contribute. Indeed, those who haven't exercised their RightToLeave after a bitter fork, are likely hanging around because their emotional attachment is too strong. Without a check from those who don't take the project too seriously, the rift will grow and the fun factor will shrink unabated.

 http://meatballwiki.org/wiki/RightToFork

Forking Protects the Content

Forking protects the content against hijacking by CopyrightTraps, AbsentLeaders, evil GodKings, etc. If your host suddenly turns bad, anybody can take the content and StartAgain. Without the RightToFork, the new project would have to start from scratch.

Forking protects the content against dilution from new interest groups. If a large subset of the users want to change the topic of the community, then a fork will prevent a lot of bad blood.

In fact forking (or the right to fork) doesn't protect the content, it protects the interests of the members of the community. -- HelmutLeitner

Be Nice Instead of Forking

Why don't you ask them, whether you may use content from their pages? If you are on good terms with them, they will agree, perhaps asking for a "this page was created from a authorized copy of wiki:page". Of course, taking without asking is simpler, but it seems like bad manners. Look for a social instead of a legal solution.

The problem with that is it will not work if are either no longer on good terms with the other authors, or if you can no longer determine the other authors. In those cases, the content can no longer be used in other works.

You Cannot Fork a Community

To talk about "forking" a community is wrong, because you can't fork a community. It is wrong to assume that forks are like branches in a version control system. What you can do is to fork the content and to split the community, but this does not have the same effect as the forking of software. See JargonFile:fork: "This should not be confused with a development branch, which may later be folded back into the original source code base."

There are enough examples of major forks that did in fact split the developer communities. This is a very high price to pay for a fork. Examples: Emacs vs. XEmacs, Free BSD vs. Open BSD vs. Net BSD vs. Mac OS X. But consider the alternative: strife and bad blood within the community. A fork is one of the most radical ConflictResolution strategies.

Obviously, a community has other options than only forking to accommodate different opinions and structures (see BuildInTolerance). But forbidding a fork is not the cure. You loose the other benefits of forking mentioned above without solving the problem.

Forking is Unaffordable

As explained on JargonFile:fork, forking seldom happens, exactly because of the high price on the community.

This is why the threat of forking WikiPedia is very low: No one could afford it. They can barely afford it as it stands.

Therefore, forks that happened without acknowledged justifications will just die of disinterest. Real forks only happen under dire circumstances. Forbidding them does not solve the problem.

 http://meatballwiki.org/wiki/ForkingOfOnlineCommunities

Forked
- Homepage: http://meatballwiki.org/wiki/ForkingOfOnlineCommunities


Four Candles

04.05.2011 13:10

Four Candles in the wind

Bethemedia - like it, keep it for all collectives.
Maydaymedia - like it, keep it for all collectives.
Indymedia.org.uk - open newswire please.
An Audience - open newswire please with comments thank you.

May there Be, light!

One Ron


Keep it simple, stupid

04.05.2011 14:11

I wish the site stated how to access and participate in these lists via a route friendly to a more diverse range of the audience. I suspect the average reader would not side with the fork.

On the site, we prefer to sort the wheat from the chaff ourselves (in which this thread is an excellent exercise) as we are intelligent people who don't need protection by the kind of moderation that has come down like a ton of bricks recently. Don't patronise us.

BeTheMedia is an inconsistent, irrelevant and unoriginal incarnation for such an established IMC, and I fully support and thank Mayday for their efforts in securing Indymedia UK.

a lesser-spotted commenter


sanity check

04.05.2011 15:00

Just a reminder, if you want to do a sanity check on mayday's moderation, there's a simple way that they don't want you to know about.

All you have to do is go into a thread with comments, and then edit the URL so the part at the end that says "?c=on" now says "?c=all".

That is designed to allow the average Indymedia reader oversight into the collective's editorial principles, to keep things open.

However, mayday makes a practice of keeping this information from the general reader, because it does not want the general reader to really do any effective oversight.

remindman


The powerful elite will always rule the rest of us

04.05.2011 16:56

Clearly, people's egos and the misuse of power have come into being here.
Whilst the rest of us little people await the ruling class's decision on what to do with our site, a site that serves the community - not the rich and powerful select few.

anon


They say x... We say y... We say x...They say Y

04.05.2011 17:59

"This account is extremely one sided, and partial with Mayday, repeating their allegations that anyone wanted to shut down Indymedia UK. This is not true."

This is a fork in a group and it has not gone well. Mayday has no trust of BeTheMedia and vice versa.

The 'Italian option' would have been closing down the site and it was proposed by BeTheMedia several times.

There is enough room on the internet for both sites to flourish and choice can only be a positive thing.

Neither site has to be on top of the other.

"They say, We Say" is totally unproductive.

The fork has happened by default. Its time to settle up and move on with being Indymedia collectives producing news..

Viva diversity


nothing to see here, move along

04.05.2011 19:34

"The fork has happened by default. Its time to settle up and move on with being Indymedia collectives producing news.. "

In other words, IMCistas should stop with all the annoying questions and let us get on with the coup!

get on with it


Indymedia Uk is clearly needed

04.05.2011 19:51

where else would people discuss the issue if not on indymedia? Which shows that this site is absolutely needed as is the open publishing newswire.

dontwanttosay


as long as nothing changes there is no problem

04.05.2011 20:29

As long as the editorial stays the same there is clearly no problem - at least no problem for the users.

And the BeTheMedia people did not want to administer this website anymore anyway, so why do they complain that they have their administration privileges removed....? For which other purpose would they then need these if their aim now is different from before and they are no longer aiming to preserve, maintain and improve the site?

There are of course interesting political and philosophical questions associated with this break-up. But practically for the users, there is no problem. Most of the editorial work associated with the Indymedia UK website has been done by the Mayday lot for the last years anyways.
So maybe people could treat it as the theoretical political and philosophical dispute it is.

none


The Indymedia fork was an"inside job"

04.05.2011 20:34

I haven't seen this much of a bunfight since the "Beating The Fascists" epic on here. Both sides need to get round a table, sort out their "marital differences", and work to ensure that the IMC representation here continues to be a one-stop shop for news, actions, on-the-spot reportage and so on - with fairness and accuracy being the watchwords.

Yes to a good, indepedent news service - no to a service over-run by "truthers", plod, fash and 57 varieties of loon.

The Hand Of Glory


Memory loss?

04.05.2011 21:03

Are all these arguers agreeing that Indymedia is a news organisation and should not be putting forward ideas that might cause people to think for themselves?

Senile old fool


easy answers

04.05.2011 21:23

@The Hand Of Glory
Yes to a good, indepedent news service - no to a service over-run by "truthers", plod, fash and 57 varieties of loon.

Bring em on, we'll av em. Truth will suffice in the end.

@Senile old fool
Are all these arguers agreeing that Indymedia is a news organisation and should not be putting forward ideas that might cause people to think for themselves?

Yes, you are mistaken.

e z


so many comments

04.05.2011 21:26

whats going on, 2 days of liberation, everybody comes out for a say?

confused


Cambridge Calling

04.05.2011 21:56

The apparent Mayday collective attempt to seize control of the Cambridge Indymedia site was actually me suggesting they update the web design to contemporary standards and encourage in a little more PR professionalism among the local radicals, blended with an unconnected personal argument going back years.

Needless to say the whole thing was nothing more than paranoid ideation as the rest of us were sufficiently out of the loop to not even know about the current squabble.

Now we do know about it, we are unconcerned and are looking for more welcoming outlets for out spare time and enthusiasm.

We were offering our time and commitment -- only to be caught-up in someone else's truly pathetic egoism and get branded by the now opposing clique as "Mayday Infiltrators".

As I've said elsewhere, listen carefully and you will hear maniacal laughter coming from the bowels of some half-forgotten Whitehall basement.

Hunter S. Thompson


reply to Thompson

04.05.2011 22:16

I agree, I can hear that maniacal laughter 200 miles away. Lets see where we are in a month.

ukradical


They might not be laughing for long

05.05.2011 07:54

@ Hunter S Thompson

"you will hear maniacal laughter coming from the bowels of some half-forgotten Whitehall basement"

Well as long the two separate Indymedia projects keep going it's surely gonna double the workload for them. Two separate groups to infiltrate, two lots of servers to seize in totally different countries, two of everything - more when all the local IMCs are included. Surely a masive headache for them. I'd have thought that once the current mess is sorted the future of Indymedia in the UK is going to be better and more secure than ever before.

Parsnip


A quick question for Mayday

05.05.2011 12:03

Is there a technical issue with aggregating the feeds from Bristol, London etc into the newswire, or is it a political decision to exclude them?

imo, this site was at its best when the newswire had posts from all the collectives on it.

Someone who uses the site


RSS feeds we're working on it

05.05.2011 12:12

It's not a political decision at all to exclude the RSS feeds from Bristol, Scotland etc. They're were 'disrupted' during the transfer - we are working flat out to re-instate them. Please be patient.

mayday collective member


IMC Germany's Response to UK Situation

05.05.2011 13:42

--- english

Hi all,

the last few days, IMC Germany had been busy preparing and translating a
statement with regards to the UK conflict, in which the current proposal
from IMC Bristol had not been worked in.

Hence, we hereby want to say (in addition to our statement below) that
we support point 1 of IMC Bristol's recent proposal[1]: "that control of
the domain indymedia.org.uk be handed over to the Global IMC DNS working
group as a neutral party not involved in the current conflict forthwith".

We furthermore suggest a deadline for this to happen: Saturday, 7 May
2011, 12:00 UTC, due to the massive negative impact of the current
status quo on the work of imc-collectives in the UK.


With regards to point 2 of IMC Bristol's proposal[1], we understand that
Mayday are working on a statement and want to encourage them to resolve
the existing questions and concerns. if concerns about the way mayday
and its individuals use tech-power remain, privileged access to
indymedia resources as described in [1] should be revoked for those
individuals pending resolution of the situation.

In addition to what we say in our statement below, we want to point out
that as much as we wish the Mayday collective to continue being part of
the IMC network, we don't agree with the means that are being used by
them. We feel the strong need to prevent tech-power from being abused in
a way as it is happening in the moment.

[1]  http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-May/0503-ar.html


STATEMENT on the attempt to continue uk.indymedia.org

the collectives of de.indymedia.org have been observing the situation in
the uk for a while now. although we have not voiced our opinion so far,
we do very much care about it. we had hoped to see a collective network
(which is structurally similar to ours) enter a new stage. we are
saddened to see that this fork is inevitable, and appreciated the
attempt of finding a consensus with the help of an independent group for
mediation. unfortunately, the solution means the loss of a
well-established project in favour of two new projects.

we are appalled that the mayday collective has misused tech power to
continue indymedia.org.uk against a decision made by consensus, which is
is clearly against indymedia principles. the problem is that the global
network procedures for a new imc took much longer than expected and that
this was not provided for when the decision for the fork was made.
nevertheless, the mayday collective's abuse of tech power is completely
unacceptable.

at the moment, the features on the site only provide a biased view on
the events and in our view lack a willingness to find a joint solution
and only reflect the mayday collective's position.

on the other hand we do understand the worries of the mayday collective
to some extent, their fear of possibly not being able to be part of the
global network. however, from our outside perspective, the current
situation is different. the current block on mayday's application as a
new imc was only made by one collective, imc-linksunten, represented by
bart. we do not consider the reasons for the block to be related to the
fork discussion, and uk collectives were not directly involved in
blocking mayday's new imc process.

we would also like to remind everybody that indymedia wants to
accomplish decisions by consensus. we'd like to ask the mayday
collective to return to a consensus-oriented discussion. the fork should
be seen as independent from the new-imc process. there is no conspiracy
of any kind against the mayday collective and the block of its new-imc
process is not in bethemedia's interest. we are confident that
imc-linksunten's and bart's concerns can be resolved and that mayday's
status as an imc is not as far away as it may seem at the moment.
attempts to introduce new rules for the new imc process will not help,
48 hour deadlines on global mailing lists, for instance, are definitely
not appropriate.

we would like to ask the mayday collective to actively promote the
forking process and accept the consensus made as far as possible. in our
opinion, this includes moving to a new domain, especially since
www.maydaymedia.org already exists. the approval as new imc, as well as
linkage, etc. can still be made at a later date.

best regards and solidarity,
the collectives of the de.indymedia.org network

IMC Germany


@mayday collective member

05.05.2011 15:44

stop this bullshit of "disruption". the only group who "disrupted" something was the mayday collective. and stop calling yourself Indymedia UK, which you are NOT.

q


Gender politics...

05.05.2011 17:00

This is the actual notification given to the UK network when the Mayday collective stole the site. Notice anything wrong with their politics here?

An indymedia fairy tale
Once upon a time...

There was a princess in the house of Indymedia, Princess UK. She lived in a big palace. She had wonderful apartment rooms and wore beautiful dresses. Many saw her as the shining star of the house of Indymedia and many still came to visit her. Now the house of indymedia is very progressive: no arranged marriages, no beheading - it is all by consent. She had been wooed into the family 11 years ago and since then much had happened - much good. The influence of the house of Indymedia had spread all over the world, with new princes and princesses from around the globe welcomed into the family as it grew strong, sharing its riches with all.

But recently, back at Princess UK's palace, times had not been so good. Prince London had moved into his own room. It was Prince London who had wooed Princess UK 8 years ago when he was Prince UK, but now many visitors came more to see Princess UK even though her apartments had not kept up with the times. This made Prince London sulk. He wanted those visitors for himself. That was not Princess UK's fault - the princes in the place would not agree to her ideas for change. They had their own grand plans. Now despite visitors coming to visit Princess UK attracted to her wonderful apartments, Prince London and the other princes thought of her apartments as their own and they wished to replace them with a reception hall.

The situation made every Prince and Princess sad, especially Princess UK who did not want to leave her beautiful home. She still wanted to be part of the house of Indymedia as it afforded her many protections. Resolution seemed at hand when it was decided that Princess UK would become Princess May. She could no longer keep her UK apartments but she could move everything in them to her new May Palace. She would not longer have Prince London and the other princes in the UK household interfering in her life. It would take a bit of effort to move, but would be worth it. However, for Princess UK to become Princess May she needed to be admitted in to the house of Indymedia. 'But she is already Princess UK of the house of Indymedia!' you may cry. Alas, it was not so simple.

Since she had originally joined, the house of Indymedia had grown and it was now the case that all the other nobles of Indymedia palaces around the world would have to say if Princess UK could still be a princess. She did not think this would be a problem when she agreed to leave Prince London and her apartments at the UK palace for the new May Palace. She was led to believe that it would be a formality for others around the world to see she was a princess. 'Yes, of course we'll made sure you get your new palace,' they all soothed.

But their promises turned to accusations and threats. She was accused of spying on her guests, which went against the sprit of the house of Indymedia. It did not matter that she protested that these guests only came to her apartments to harm her other guests. As time went on, her May wedding day approached. It should have been a grand occasion as she entered her new palace. Instead, fearful of what might happen without protection of the house of Indymedia, she decided to stay in the UK palace, but the princes were intent on her leaving, and they started to chuck her things out. The many visitors she received were confused and distressed.

As Princess UK was being forced to her new home and in the process being stripped of her crown, Prince London and all the other princes said: 'We don't force anyone to do anything: you agreed to this.'

Princess UK cried in distress: 'This is not what was promised! I no longer consent to this, and NO MEANS NO!'

By the people now running this site
- Homepage: https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMaydayFairyTale


ffs

05.05.2011 18:08

That was a parody piece done by, I believe, an individual. Look, I think crying gender politics as the above poster does is utter bull shit and is a straw man argument. From reading the lists its not too hard to work out who has published it. I repeat, it is a parody of the situation and the fact that there was a royal wedding. In times of stress and emotionally charged events it sometimes helps to vent via comedy and parody.

ffs


@ By the people now running this site

05.05.2011 20:12

cheers for that, thats the first explanation of this thats made any frakking sense to me.

lipid


Indymedia is not forking

05.05.2011 20:59

There is no fork or split or whatever people call it. This is a fabrication made by trolls. We have repeatedly stated that Indymedia UK will remain as it was for the foreseeable future.

Futher information will be published in due course, but rest assured that we have no plans to fork the site.

Indymedia UK


@ IMC Germany

05.05.2011 21:05

I'm an outsider too, looking in.

I think what you are asking for (handing over tech control to a global group) is far too big a thing to ask of a group when there is such an atmosphere of distrust and recrimination. This seems to be not just amongst the UK IMC collectives from what I can make out, but includes behaviour from some other individuals involved globally.

Whilst the Bristol IMC statement seems quite reasonable and balanced, to me it in fact sounds disingenuous and partisan (of course along with much to do with this sorry affair from all sides).

I think also we need to try and understand a bit deeper what consensus means, without also getting into partisan versions of what the truth is.

I read somewhere that the proposal to fork was not pre-advertised and was presented at 5pm - if this is so, it's clearly going to be a bad consensus decision, and therefore will not stick (as has happened). I also read on some link from one of these discussions, Bart's highly doubtful grasp of what consensus means - he seemed to want strict rules in order to exclude, rather than to find common ground. I use these two examples not to get into a to and fro about what actually happened, but as examples to try to illustrate that consensus is not a perfect process, and needs to start from a place of trust. This was not the case within the people who made/make up UK IMC, hence it was going to come unstuck.

It's far too limited to just say "a consensus decision was reached, and now people have broken it". Though in theory it was reached it seems, in reality it wasn't and people weren't truly comfortable with it, hence what has happened (in addition to IMC domains not being agreed yet to move to, etc). So what that leaves is a new situation, and that is what we need (or you on these global lists) to get our heads round, and what to do now, not trying to rewind to a point in the past, or say one group has behaved badly and the other well. It's just pretty fucked up it seems, and we need to figure out a way of moving forwards from where we are now.

I hope BeTheMedia can continue as is and get better; I hope UK IMC at the present address can continue as is and get better. I hope each can try and live with that - as it's in the best interests of us, the general users.

Peace be with you!

IMC UK user


Fear and Loathing in the UK

05.05.2011 21:06

So, who's this Princess exactly? And where does London fit into all of this?
Doesn't no mean yes or maybe?

So So So many questions,
so little time.

Raoul Duke


Did the fork happen?

05.05.2011 22:37

If you look here:

 http://archive.indymedia.org.uk/

It says:

"UK Indymedia Archived on May 1st 2011

After 11 years of grassroots, radical media coverage, Indymedia UK is forking into two distinct projects:

A syndication of radical news in the UK is available at  http://www.bethemedia.org.uk and a copy of the UK Mir site has open publishing up and running at  http://www.maydaymedia.org

The archives for Indymedia UK are and will be available at the same place as before. But publishing will close soon."

Also London Indymed announced the fork:

"Following the Bradford agreement, we have made the changes to the UK
Indymedia site that are required for the fork."

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0430-n7.html

And indeed there are now two national Indymedia sites,  http://www.bethemedia.org.uk/ and  http://www.indymedia.org.uk/

It seems very clear that the fork that couldn't be blocked, happened, dispite the blocks, from Scotland:

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-April/0430-oq.html

A block from Mayday:

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0422-v2.html

A block from Birmingham:

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0421-0h.html

And a block from Sheffield:

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0424-x5.html

But now, it appears that those who said the fork couldn't be blocked, who started implemeting the fork and then announced that the fork had happened, now deny it took place!?

A straight question was asked of them:

"Has the fork happened in your view?"

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-May/0504-zj.html

They replied:

"Clearly no...

the fork did not get implemented. No, the fork has not thus happened"

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-May/0504-3t.html

Fork denial is bizzare.

Facts are stubborn things.

The fork took place, not exactly as they would have liked, but their insistence of pushing it through, when there was not a consensus to do so and there were blocks that should have stopped it from happening untill there was a consensus, were disregarded.

Get over it. The fork happened. Go produce some radical media or something and stop trying to deny facts.





Puzzled


@ puzzled

05.05.2011 22:49

Calling a coup a 'fork' doesn't make it a fork, any more than calling a cat a 'dog' makes it a dog. And your fait is not as accompli as you think it is.

cutler


The problem is...

05.05.2011 23:36

The problem is, again, you have concluded a situation that wasn't concluded and left no room for manoeuvre with any further interaction between parties. Good intentions, defensive reactions.

Google eyed Gonzo Gurnalist


Be The Media = Hate The Activists

06.05.2011 01:14

STAY AROUND DON'T PLAY AROUND
THIS OLD TOWN AND ALL
SEEMS LIKE I GOT TO TRAVEL ON
A LOT OF PEOPLE WON'T GET NO SUPPER TONIGHT
A LOT OF PEOPLE WON'T GET NO JUSTICE TONIGHT
THE BATTLE IS GETTIN HOTTER
IN THIS IRATION, ARMAGIDEON TIME
A LOT OF PEOPLE RUNNIN AND A HIDING TONIGHT
A LOT OF PEOPLE WON'T GET NO JUSTICE TONIGHT
REMEMBER TO KICK IT OVER
NO ONE WILL GUIDE YOU - ARMAGIDEON TIME
AD LIB VOCALS

It's Witchhunt Time


Lock On

06.05.2011 01:29

Mayday Say

Its a Direct Action
Its an occupation
It's for consensus and co-operation
Keep this space a shared social space
Not some corporate "I'm fekin lovin'" it space.

Anyway BYM respond with

Be The Media are spreading fearful stories on global mailing lists. You'd think they'd think of something constructive to move things along in a consensual and co-operative way, but not this lot they're all about "Pending Further Investigation" and "We don't like this behaviour" we are frightened and you all should be too. And then all the wailing about property rights to some url, fighting over the corpse like a bunch of vultures and appealing to the Global Authority and presenting their credentials of status.



Are you having fun yet?

Wotno Comments


Many paths.

06.05.2011 01:37

Isn't consensus the same as democracy? And is not democracy a denial of the truth for the many?

If you can't see it, you can't see it. It's as simple as that.

Splits are good, it's evolution.

Many flows.


A witch hunt is not a tea party

06.05.2011 01:58

cutler wrote:
"Calling a coup a 'fork' doesn't make it a fork, any more than calling a cat a 'dog' makes it a dog. And your fait is not as accompli as you think it is."

Only that is exactly what BeTheMedia were calling it when they thought that they had all the trump cards. They thought that they could lock Mayday out and live in the gated community happily ever after.

Their response now is to launch a witch hunt and demand retribution.

Witch hunts can easily backfire and cause damage to the hunters. And very public witch hunts can cause very public damage to the hunters.

One would think that you'd try and salvage the situation, rather than pouring petrol on the flames.

Seriously - you really need to try and be a little more creative



reltuc


More Forking Denial

06.05.2011 02:48

"The site was *not* archived"

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-May/0506-5t.html

What the fork is this then you silly forkers?!

 http://archive.indymedia.org.uk/

Please just fork off and get on with your forking site and leave us to get on with this one.

For forks sake!

Forkavista


if you become impatient and act without tactics, the battle is already lost

06.05.2011 03:14

If you are committed to consensus, then
you are committed to the idea that everyone's concerns need to be
considered, even the wacky ones. IMC decision making can be very
laborious, but ultimately it has the mechanisms to make great
decisions. You can't rush it or coerce it with threats to quit. At
risk of bastardizing Sun Tzu, I would counsel that you are in a battle
here and if you become impatient and act without tactics, the battle
is already lost.

forkbomb


Solidarity from Portland!

06.05.2011 09:45

I'm unclear what is being proposed here, so my response is based on my
impressions. Asking an IMC to change its url or name is absurd and counter
productive. I'm surprised that any IMC would even tolerate, let alone
cooperate with, such a request. Regional IMCs (and even topic IMCs) have
always been acceptable. There is nothing wrong with new IMCs starting up
and taking on whatever name and taking responsibility for coverage of
whatever area they wish. But there should be no expectation that existing
IMCs should make changes because of this (other than to add a new IMC to
the "cities" list, if they so desire).
I don't care what nonsense UK IMC agreed to (presumably under duress?
otherwise makes no sense). There should be no shutting down of anything
and UK IMC should be left to their own prerogative unless they are doing
something that makes them essentially no longer a real IMC (ie. disabling
open publishing but still actively posting articles or paying people etc.)
We are all here to promote the success of the Indymedia network and the
(still even by today's standards) revolutionary anti-authoritarian media
making model. False accusations of authoritarianism and egotistical turf
wars between IMCs do not serve that mission in any way. This is like
watching 8 yr olds try to play football(soccer). If we're busy trying to
kick the ball away from each other cuz we all wanna be the goal scoring
hero for mammy, then we just fucking lose the match & look like dumb asses
in the process. Same team guys, same team.

Solidarity,
Victory!
Portland IMC

We are all IMC UK!
- Homepage: http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-communication/2011-May/0505-re.html


@portland

06.05.2011 09:55

nice slogan, but missing the point.

we are "not all imc uk " anymore, as admin logins have been removed by the mayday collective, but they are still operating under the "imc uk" banner.

ex imc uk


Be the media failed to shut down imcuk

06.05.2011 10:31

it's patently obvious bethemedia tried to cajole and threaten the rest of imcuk into submission. They aimed to replace imcuk with the bethemedia site, which frankly looks like a piece of shite. It's not a surprise they don't have admin rights to the site now, since their intention all along was to bully people into submission and replace the site with an inferior alternative. Long live the open newswire and the middle column features. Long live IMC-UK!

Your witchhunts won't work you pathetic authoritarians! This struggle will be remembered every Mayday!

Direct Action gets results!

in yer face


ex imc uk

06.05.2011 11:42

"we are "not all imc uk " anymore, as admin logins have been removed by the mayday collective, but they are still operating under the "imc uk" banner."

No admins have been disabled on the archived site. The Mayday site admins are Mayday collective members, and Oxford has access to maintain it's own site.

Because blocks are being thrown around around like confetti to stop them using mayday.indymedia.org or even to be part of the network, Mayday have taken direct action to ensure the continuity of the open publishing wire, which you are currently posting to.

Right now the Indymedia network seems to be going through a rather authoritarian phase, and seems intent on turning itself into a gated community for approved activists. This does nothing to encourage diversity and clearly does nothing to protect the site that belongs to its users and those who have kept it going for the last few years as much (if not more) than it does to BeTheMedia who withdrew from active participation, have been persistently hostile to the open newswire, and have spent the time developing their hyperactive sites.

If the BetheMedia site is really what it sees as the "best of Indymedia coverage", then you may find that isn't a view shared by all site users.

Perhaps at some time you'll realise that you can't force Mayday to do anything. Mayday will continue to operate under the banner until it has an Indymedia domain to *permanently* rehome the open publishing newswire to. Having said that the Bradford consensus, made under duress, has patently fallen apart. You may force a position where its back to the drawing board for a whole new consensus. Oh what fun that would be!

Now go get on with your witch hunt. It can only go horribly wrong.....

ftp


Possession is nine-tenths of the law

06.05.2011 12:40

Possession is nine-tenths of the law is a concept meaning that ownership is easier to maintain if one has possession of something, and much more difficult to enforce if one does not. It has been described thus: "The suggestion here is that in a property dispute (whether real or personal), in the absence of clear and compelling testimony or documentation to the contrary, the person in actual possession of the property is presumed to be the rightful owner.

Wikipedian
- Homepage: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Possession_is_nine-tenths_of_the_law


mayday went back on their own agreement

06.05.2011 14:17

You know who agreed that there would be no more indymedia.org.uk?

Mayday collective. At Bradford.

That's the part they're not telling you: they weaseled on their own agreement.

Kinda changes things, doesn't it.

not weasel


Can someone clarify?

06.05.2011 14:59

People are allowed to change their mind and to withdraw their consent. Please clarify for me, do both sides agree that it was agreed at Bradford that one group have a site with a.indymedia.org and the other b.indymedia.org?

If this is the case that such a thing was agreed at Bradford, and that such a URL requires successfully going through new-imc process, then it does imply a condition to be met for the fork to occur; that is mayday being successful in their new-imc application.

If the URL thing was not in the Bradford agreement then I guess bethemedia are correct. Can someone clarify with a yes or no answer?

ukradical


Re: mayday went back on their own agreement

06.05.2011 15:03

The terms of the agreement came from yossarian of IMC London and BeTheMedia. The terms included this:

"We agree that it's great that there is a national site, and that goes through new imc with a different site and name"

and thats what BeTheMedia want you to forget.

They "care" so much about the national site they want it put onto a non-Indymedia domain. We say they have no right to ask this, and that it is a fundamental breach of the POU to try and do this.

Portland already get it. They think we were mad to make any compromise on the domain name.Other IMcs will too.

Mayday have constantly stated they will accept FULL implementation of the Bradford agreement, but as parties in BeTheMedia are now throwing blocks around to stop this happening, it can be said that BeTheMedia have gone back on BeTheMedia's agreement.

They appear to want an Indymedia movement that reflects their views and their views alone. They may even be able to get that.

But what they can't get is Maydays agreement to replace this newswire with their aggregator which does not have an open wire, and does not offer the opportunity to report on what is happening in most of the country.

So all they are doing is slinging mud around, revealing their authoritarian streaks and prolonging the situation. Personally, I think the longer they take to come to a view that FULL implementation of Bradford is in THEIR best interests (for the newswire it isn't) , the better because they maintain a stalemate and keep the terms of the agreement under close scrutiny. Right now they're starting to try and pick off individuals. This direct action was however definitely a consensual move within the Mayday collective and I think the witch hunt will spectacularly backfire on them.

Long live the newswire. Long live Direct Action. Fuck authoritarianism!

ftp


ftp

06.05.2011 15:25

Can you answer my question at all and clarify for me?

ukradical


@ukradical

06.05.2011 15:47

can't answer your question beyond whats written in the Bradford minutes.
What I understand: Both groups wanted to run an indymedia uk website under the URL indymedia.org.uk. Both groups realised that they would not get consensus of the other group for their respective visions. Thus the salomonic decision to share that precious URL: No group gets it for their own project. Instead, that URL links to both indymedia projects.

I would assume that it should be the responsibility of each project to take care of its own setup, which includes a new domain name.

comment


Re: Can someone clarify?

06.05.2011 15:54

> If the URL thing was not in the Bradford agreement then I guess bethemedia are correct. Can someone clarify with a yes or no answer?

YES, see the notes:

-----------

decision agreed at 18:59:

We accept to archive www.indymdia.org.uk, indymedia.org.uk and
uk.indymedia.org and indymedia.co.uk as static html with a banner on
top of each page that says along the gist of "this a archived version
of the site For a active version of this page go to [a.indymedia.org],
there is also the aggregator at [b.indymedia.org].
There will be splash page at / that links to the archive site, site
a.indymedia.org and b.indymedia.org

All page names with mir and open-mir will link to a.indymedia.org

 https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/UkNetworkMeetingBradford2010Minutes

-----------

What appears to have happened is that bethemedia.org.uk originally wanted indymedia.org.uk to point at their site:

-----------

At the meeting in London, we decided to go for the drupal aggregator. In
that sense there never was a discussion what url it would be at. The UK
frontpage is obviously indymedia.org.uk.

Asking whether the aggregator should be at indymedia.org.uk is turning
the whole story upside down.

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-tech/2010-November/1122-6s.html

-----------

But a group of UK IMC activists didn't agree and got together as the IMC UK Collective:

 https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcUkCollective

Started using a defunct list:

 http://lists.indymedia.org/mailman/listinfo/imc-uk-collective

And submitted a New IMC application form:

 https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/UkCollectiveNewImcApplication

They went to Bradford and read out an agreed statement from their collective:

 https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMaydayFoundingStatment

This was rejected at Bradford by the Be The Media side and they proposed the fork as a bottom line.

The reason the ImcUkCollective lot agreed to the fork was because they thought they could continue to run this site, as part of the global IMC network and as a peer of the other IMC's in the UK and without the interferance from the Be The Media people always blocking improvements to the site and trying to censor content, but this depended on the ImcUkCollective getting through New IMC.

So the ImcUkCollective changed it name to Mayday,  https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMayday and put in a New IMC application:

 https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMaydayNewImc

But it was blocked by Bart, so it couldn't be completed by the 1st May deadline.

So Mayday tried to block the fork implementation to allow more time, most importantly by Scotland IMC:

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-April/0430-oq.html

But the block was ruled as invalid by Bart:

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-April/0430-tg.html

And Be The Media proceeded to implement the fork, dispite the attempts to delay it, they announced "Indymedia UK Forked":

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0430-n7.html

And started to archive the site:

 http://archive.indymedia.org.uk/

So the activist running this site in co-operation with and on behalf the community, something which is well described here:

Ode to IMC UK: keep it going....
 http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2011/05/478939.html

Had a choice, allow consensus to be ignored and accept the shut down, which would result in this site not being where people look for it, and it would also have resulted in the site being expelled from the global IMC network, or to do something about it.

They choose to do something about it and as a result the site is still up and running.

Does that make it clearer?








the fork is a fact, facts are stubborn things
- Homepage: http://docs.indymedia.org/Local/UkNetworkMeetingBradford2010Minutes


Mayday Indymedia Founding Statement

06.05.2011 15:59

The following statement is the closest thing to a founding statement that the Mayday Collective has, it was originally drafted for the UkCollectiveNewImcApplication but it was agreed to omit it from the application.

The following statement was read out on behalf of the then ImcUkCollective (now ImcMayday) at the last UK IMC meeting in Bradford, some of this statement was also used in the Sheffield feature article on the fork.

We are a group of long term Indymedia activists who have been helping run and maintain the UK Indymedia site for many years, we include activists from Wales, Scotland and England.

Indymedia UK covers global topics and parts of the UK not covered by other IMC sites in the UK, via the open newswire and we support this and want to continue doing this.

Disputes in the UK Network around the approach to controversial issues have crystallized into two approaches for dealing with them. We believe that the use of critical thinking, reason and evidence based research and source checking is the best approach, rather than simply censoring these topics.

Our aim is to maintain an open channel for information in a world where the ruling class controls the main flows of information via the corporate media, public relations companies and the like.

One aspect of the open publishing model, which was not foreseen, was the extent to which it could be used and abused for the purposes of disinformation. Our approach to this is not to close down open publishing but to take active steps to remove disinformation and expose the tactics and politics of those behind it.

Indymedia is not only a journal of the revolution, it is part of the terrain that the Empire's information war is being fought across.

With the convergence of the crises, which gravely threaten the existence of life on earth, climate change, Peak Oil, resource depletion, Imperial wars, Fascism, ecological and economic collapse and starvation, a radical alternative future is urgently needed, now more than ever. We want to help to enable humanity steer a course to a future of co-operation, peace, sustainability, equality, autonomy and non-hierarchical community.

We are committed to non-hierarchical, consensus based decision making. We wish to go through the New IMC process in order that we can be globally recognised as an autonomous collective, with our own independent site, UK Indymedia, http://www.indymedia.org.uk/.

The UK Indymedia sites is, and has for many years, been well used by activists both nationally and internationally, to circulate reports, news, analysis, media and information that the corporate media doesn't cover. People know where to find UK Indymedia, it's at www.indymedia.org.uk, we hold with Tim Berners-Lee, that "Cool URI's don't change" and believe the UK Indymedia site should remain on its current domains, indymedia.org.uk, www.indymedia.org.uk and uk.indymedia.org. We wish to be listed in the cities list as simply uk, rather than united kingdom. We think the UK Network should have it's own entry in the cities list. We wish to remain in and participate in the UK Network as a peer of the other collectives.

We are open and welcoming to new and existing activists who wish to join our collective on the basis on which it was founded.

Our Mission Statment and Editorial Guidelines only differ from the existing UK Indymedia ones in so far as references to "United Kollectives" have been replaced with references to "UK Indymedia".

When we fully gain our autonomy we wish to roll out long developed improvements to the UK Indymedia site.

Mayday Indymedia
- Homepage: http://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMaydayFoundingStatment


So....

06.05.2011 16:02

If I am interpreting the minutes correctly it seems to me that the agreement does presuppose having an indymedia.org URL of some sort which, in-turn, implies successfully going through the new-imc process.

In sum this condition was not met and it is understandable that mayday took the action they did?

To the above poster helping me clarify, this a valid interpretation?

ukradical


uk radical

06.05.2011 16:04

I thought I had. It was agreed that a.indymedia.org (now known as the Mayday Collective) would administer a copy of the existing site on their own server. In fact this server was to be Traven which is an Indymedia server and which also hosts other IMCs iirc.

b.indymedia.org would run their own site and they are now BeTheMedia and have their own site.

The original version of the site would remain on indymedia.org.uk as an archived site with the splash page directing users to both sites. And the original site has indeed been archived with a splash page.

Passing new imc was discussed -"We agree that it's great that there is a national site, and that goes through new imc with a different site and name" and was an integral part of the agreement.

When the application got blocked , we asked for time to sort it out and were told the fork would happen with or without our participation. So we blocked and the blocks got ignored. Scotland also blocked - for three weeks to allow time to sort it out. That too got ignored and BeTheMedia bulldozed ahead with their splash page and threat to close down publishing within a week.

So Mayday took action to ensure the site remained on an Indymedia domain with minimal disruption.

As was pointed out in an email by chiapas the consensus was either insecure, or didn't exist - as we c/would not have agreed to effective expulsion of our group.

ftp


reply to ftp

06.05.2011 16:19

Yes you did clarify for me the first time :P Just in these matters it sometimes help to ask and say it twice, if you know what I mean. Sorry to ask you to go through that hoop.

It looks like bethemedia have little ground to complain and push for all these bans etc. I would be interested to hear from Bart regarding what he thinks to our interpretation of the agreement. Or is Bart really close to Jimdog and the others @ bethemedia?

ukradical


POH better for this kinda thing than POU

06.05.2011 16:31

Principles of Unity

Just a thought it looks like POU for BTM is like you must march in lockstep with our great leaders kinda stuff that is Points of Unity can be abused by "majorities" which isn't good for consensus because the "minority" get marginalised and therefore the POU are seriously flawed and inappropriate for this kind of split obviously if you're splitting you're not united huh?.

Principles of Harmony

On the other hand is a thing that allows for diversity and we all know diversity is a good thing. of course that kind of thing can be abused too, but only if you don't like discord. Personally I don't mind a bit of discord otherwise we end up in a kind of romantic Mantovani luuuurve in, which I would find nauseating.

Shouldn't Indymedia reflect on this coz under POH the fork could have been a harmonious celebration of a cool thing and not an us v them divide and rule kinda game?

20/20 Hindsight


@ukradical

06.05.2011 16:52

> In sum this condition was not met and it is understandable that mayday took the action they did?
>
> To the above poster helping me clarify, this a valid interpretation?

Yes.

the fork is a fact, facts are stubborn things


more to the story

06.05.2011 18:28

... an interpretation but not the only one.

Mayday had already bought a couple of DNS domains to use in case they didn't get through new-IMC in time.

One of them is maydaymedia.org.uk. Try it.

But then they decided that they had an excuse to scuttle the Bradford agreement and hijack the indymedia.org.uk domain name all for themselves, despite their previous agreement to let it go. And suddenly -- despite having purchased it -- the alternative name became OHH NO WE CAN'T DO THAT. Because as long as they claimed that was the sticking point, they felt they had a shot at keeping for good the indymedia.org.uk URL they had previously agreed to give up.

The view from global is much different than the one mayday is presenting here.

now try the truth


Re: "now try the truth"

06.05.2011 22:00

"Mayday had already bought a couple of DNS domains to use in case they didn't get through new-IMC in time."

We do have four domain names - maydaymedia.org. + org.uk and mdimc.org + org.uk

They were bought because they were similar to the Mayday name which we had just decided we were adopting, but the reason for buying them was mainly to make sure that spoof sites weren't set up.

There was never a consensus that they would be our domain names and I personally would never have agreed to such a thing.

BeTheMedia's cavalier approach to the site is highlighted by their idea that sites can be moved from url to url -we don't believe that site users want that. We didn't spend years in Indymedia to set up our own private site, and we don't think all posters would appreciate their indymedia posts being used by some private site. We do Indymedia because we are passionate about what Indymedia represents - although I am concerned that it has become complacent and lost its way recently.

"But then they decided that they had an excuse to scuttle the Bradford agreement and hijack the indymedia.org.uk domain name all for themselves, despite their previous agreement to let it go. And suddenly -- despite having purchased it -- the alternative name became OHH NO WE CAN'T DO THAT. Because as long as they claimed that was the sticking point, they felt they had a shot at keeping for good the indymedia.org.uk URL they had previously agreed to give up."

Now who is getting into conspiracy theories? It didn't occur to us that new imc would allow itself to become a weapon in this dispute and BLOCK a collective of long term Indymedia activists. We thought BeTheMedia would honour the spirit of the agreement, and in retrospect I was particularly naive for doing so when I knew what close links the key players in BeTheMedia had to that working group.

I have stated repeatedly that we have agreed to *full* implementation of Bradford. ie we go through new imc and the site is at mayday.indymedia.org. BeTheMedia says it didn't want to kill the site, but thinks it can be moved from url to url or have their aggregator put on top of it.

If we do get to keep the site for ever it will be because the agreement wasn't honoured, and Indymedia globally can't find a way to be inclusive, or to tackle the culture now residing at new imc. Or BeTheMedia decide to try and get it by using dirty tricks and attacking our members as seems to be their strategy at the moment.

The purchase of these domain names should not be taken as an indication that we at any point had the view that we would be happy outside Indymedia globally - we wish to be part of Indymedia globally and the being granted new-imc status and the mayday.indymediaorg sub-domain is something that represents membership and that we are considered a peer of the other Independant Media Centres globally"

"The view from global is much different than the one mayday is presenting here"

Yes - so far they have been listening to BeTheMedia spin. I understand consensus to work best when all views are taken into account BEFORE decisions are made and I hope that collectives outside of the uk will try to understand why we did what we did before they start making judgements.

Linksunten have been pretty disappointing in this regard and I think their email does nothing to prove Bart's ability to be impartial as a member of that working group. I hope that collective will have a discussion with us before making any blocks that could do long term damage.
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-May/0506-uz.html

ftp


Reply to comment one or.....

06.05.2011 22:34

I wouldn't say I'm wiser than anyone as we're all our version of wise aren't we. But I've got a suggestion for solving this, everyone involved put their egos and stubbornness back in there boxes and get on with doing what you did best and if this has arisen because of 'outside interests' please bear in mind their outside and I'll bet not of our interest so a meeting to find ways to continue without them?

cockneyreject
mail e-mail: anarchist67@gmail.com
- Homepage: http://aaa.status.net


the naughty step.

06.05.2011 22:47

'bad mayday! bad be the media! no dinner for either of you tonight and you both have to sit on the naughty step - together - until you sort yourselves out. No, I don't want to know who did what when, you've both been very naughty and you both need to calm down. And no, you can't keep her toy.'

you know what i love the most? when cliques call cliques cliques.... cracks me up every time...


in love, rage, transgression and straight shooting!

X

achronomimous


INDYMEDIA: FROM THE RUBBLE OF DOUBLE TROUBLE

06.05.2011 22:59

Regular (but inattentive) visitors to Indymedia, the internet’s stalwart purveyor of all things radical, might be a little surprised to find that the project itself is in jeopardy. Created for Mayday 2001, UK Indymedia has survived a number of shocks, including police seizure of servers, legal threats and a 24/7 barrage of lunacy. It has become a hub, meeting place and and a vital resource for the entire UK activist scene. The newswire fluctuates from wild-eyed conspiracy theorising to solid analysis via slanderous gossip - and the features aren’t much better. However this time the crisis has brewed up within.

For most activists, Indymedia just happens – but behind the scenes are groups of committed activists keeping the whole thing running. In the last few years, there have been serious disagreements about the direction of the whole project. In the red corner BetheMedia, who feel that Indymedia needs to update and transform itself into an aggregator site – something like Indymedia London has been for a while – with no newswire but a selection of articles pulled in from local Indymedia collectives and perhaps other radical news outlets.

In the other red corner are Mayday Indymedia – whose plan is simply keeping Indymedia UK going in its present form , 9/11 newswire nutters ‘n all.

Quite how these two gangs ended up at each others throats is not really any of SchNEWS business – suffice to say that it got quite nasty and personal (in an e-mail lists slanging match kind of way rather than any actual fisticuffs). An agreement to disagree was made in Bradford in late 2010 – formally on May 1st 2011 the two groups would split and migrate to different web domains – nobody was going to get to keep the www.indymedia.org.uk website, which was going to be archived. This was all supposed to happen on May 1st.

Both collectives planned to apply for IMC status (a complex global process) – however as of this week Mayday Indymedia have been blocked from achieving the status, largely following the revelations around the Gateway 303 postings (see SchNEWS 755 - er, sorry guys). The revelation that Indymedia UK moderators were able to monitor IP addresses in real time has proved controversial (although of course anyone involved in Indy admin over the last few years must have been aware of it.)

This failure to gain IMC status by the Mayday collective stymied the whole process, with the BTM team insisting that as the May 1st deadline had been reached then UK Indymedia had to be mothballed. In response the Mayday collective seized the whole site from under their noses by technical wizardry. This is of course about as far away from consensus decision- making as it gets.

So what are we, the punters, left with? On the face of it it’s worked out quite well – we’ve got an editorilaised aggregator site, providing us with the best of independent media Bethemedia.org.uk
Meanwhile good old Indy continues on its wayward path at www.indymedia.org.uk

Maybe it’s possible to bury the hatchet – or if that just can’t be done then just turn to www.schnews.org.uk where the collective operates with a frankly chilling level of cohesion reminiscent of a cloned hivemind.

SchNEWS
- Homepage: http://www.schnews.org.uk/archive/news7706.php


SchNEWS for the lazy

06.05.2011 23:05

On the face of it it’s worked out quite well

citations


Your own private site - you've got it now...

06.05.2011 23:30

"We didn't spend years in Indymedia to set up our own private site, and we don't think all posters would appreciate their indymedia posts being used by some private site."

Yeah well, that's exactly what's happening here, isn't it? You made a copy of the actual Indymedia UK site, which is still up and running here:  http://archive.indymedia.org.uk/en/index.html

But then you also stole the url, and pointed it to your own private site, that no one except Mayday approved folks have access to, duping everyone into believing that this is actually Indymedia UK. It is not.

It is the very own private project of Mayday, and neither affiliated with Indymedia UK, nor the global Indymedia network. But because you had the power, you just went for the name.

And now that you have the name you believe it's something more than your own private project?

private


thats the sound of the police

07.05.2011 00:23

"Yeah well, that's exactly what's happening here, isn't it? You made a copy of the actual Indymedia UK site, which is still up and running here:  http://archive.indymedia.org.uk/en/index.html"

Oh so we haven't stolen the site? You've still got it!!

Remember this?

"We accept to archive www.indymdia.org.uk, indymedia.org.uk and
uk.indymedia.org and indymedia.co.uk as static html with a banner on
top of each page that says along the gist of "this a archived version
of the site For a active version of this page go to ,
there is also the aggregator at ."

Your side proposed it - we agreed it. So how did we steal the site?

"But then you also stole the url, and pointed it to your own private site, that no one except Mayday approved folks have access to, duping everyone into believing that this is actually Indymedia UK. It is not."

And we have features and this never ending comments thread making that crystal clear. As for the url - that as we have stated was 'Direct Action' and as you seem unclear what that means let me offer you one description that fits really well:

"Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks so to dramatize the issue that it can no longer be ignored."

and I think the action has been very effective at achieving that. It's certainly wiped the smile of your face .

"It is the very own private project of Mayday, and neither affiliated with Indymedia UK, nor the global Indymedia network. But because you had the power, you just went for the name."

Once you've got over experiencing what it feels like to be on the side that is being shafted you might be able to start reflecting that it was your sides agreement to hand us the site as a.indymedia.org - and that we don't believe you had nothing to do with new imc while they were "in session", so to speak. You might also realise at some some stage that our request for more time to sort it out wasn't unreasonable, and that our blocks weren't just futile gestures - that we actually were saying "we are not prepared to proceed with the interpretation (wriggle) you are using to FORCE us out" with statements like :

The site is forking on may 1st, with or without your participation as agreed.
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0424-ns.html

nor with your threats:

There are four affiliated Indymedias in
group B. Any of them can decide to block your application. If you do
want to ever be part of the global network, do not stop the fork.
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-uk-process/2011-April/0425-tv.html

In that email mara is at such pains to say how unimportant our url is. Maybe she is less convinced by that now. And to your dismay we didn't stop the fork once your side started it. We completed it and now you know what it feels like to have an agreement without all the preconditions being met first. Now suddenly you don't think the fork happened ....

Indymedia is our media, we are all Indymedia and your attempts to turn it into a gated community will not wash with us.

"And now that you have the name you believe it's something more than your own private project?"

Yes, we believe it is an archive of important history, an important means of communication for groups, great at reporting actions. And that it should stay within the Indymedia movement. Not be buried under an aggregator or turned into a dead archive or a private site.

Its you that seems to think it is rubbish that you can just dispose of.

When you are ready to honour all the terms of the agreement we can sort this out - as peers.

[1]  https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/UkNetworkMeetingBradford2010Minutes

ftp


You will be ostracised

07.05.2011 00:54

Please keep your smile for another day or two. And then say bye-bye to the Indymedia network...

Lettin' loose around the world


outrageous

07.05.2011 01:04

bunch of semi-retired idiots with too much money and time on their hands.

anarchists will never be able to govern the country because they dither and get nothing done.
talk about designed by committee. Thats why having a leader who just makes a decision and doesn't faff about is so much better.

If you were running a company, it would be bankrupt by now

ex anarchist


You will be www.indymedia.org.uk

07.05.2011 01:21

and global Indymedia will be a members only club that represents a narrow easily scandalised spectrum of the movement ...

authoritarianism rocks (around the world)


Defintions

07.05.2011 07:25

"As for the url - that as we have stated was 'Direct Action' and as you seem unclear what that means let me offer you one description that fits really well"

That is fair enough as far as it goes, but isn't direction action understood as action taken *against* those who hold power? If the definition of direct action is stretched to include unilateral action by those who hold the power* where does it end? Is kettling police direct action? Is the result of kettling " a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue"?



*In this case control of the dns records. Ultimately the registrar of the domain name (Unless Nominet gets involved) since they carry out the transfer of a domain name to new dns server with their key, Without these two things the dns record could not have gotten pointed to a new server.

Corvus


direct action and power relations

07.05.2011 08:32

@ Corvus

"Isn't direction action understood as action taken *against* those who hold power?"

The language is, as almost always, ambiguous. 'Those who hold power' could more accurately be stated as 'those who abuse their power to dominate' or similar. BeTheMedia were attempting to abuse their power to make something happen for which there was no consensus.

We all have power, thank goodness, and on this occasion Mayday collective used the power that was in their hands to resist BeTheMedia's attempts to oppress and dominate. The comment headed 'thats the sound of the police' above is instructive.

crow


The user-base

07.05.2011 09:17

A couple of posters have mentioned the user-base at several points. I would like to ask, when you were all discussing at Bradford, did anyone think to ask us, the user-base, what we thought? Did any consultation occur?

It seems strange that this had been neglected as, at the end of day, its the user-base that should be considered, consulted and whose opinion really counts as to what direction should be taken. Having working groups decide, regardless of whether that decision is 'consensus' based or not, clearly places said working groups above the user-base. It is a bit paternalistic IMO and evidences a hierarchy.

I think the solution lays here; the user-base should be consulted and some type of vote on a number of options undertaken. This way decisions are lifted out of the closed (to most of us) decision making groups, who have shown themselves to lack the maturity to reconcile differences.

As a user of indymedia I think it crazy to drop the URL and the UK site. As an analogy, its like coca-cola dropping their logo and using the colour yellow instead.

ukradical


somewhat disillusioned

07.05.2011 10:44

I'd agree with the above poster about consultation with the users.

This smacks of the council doing a load of work on a council estate without bothering to consult the residence. Have you guys learnt nothing? Its run like an elitist dictatorship.

At the end of the day, an established website with a large user-base has a high perceived "value". (be it monetary, political clout, or otherwise). Basically, people pay a lot of money to be able to broadcast to a large audience, and Indymedia is no different in terms of valuation.

It sounds like the two groups are squabbling about ownership over this "valued" entity like a group of pirates. Its pretty sad and somewhat disgusting actually to listen to.

Max


alternative vote

07.05.2011 10:50

I think any kind of vote would be difficult to administer outside of the controlled circles due to the anonymous nature of this site. I think the vote could be measured in the traffic of the sites though. This last week appears very busy on here, can anyone confirm changes in volume of traffic? I as a user would be interested in helping the mayday collective if they are booted out in the coming days. I believe the potential of open newswire publishing is massive and quite possibly the last stand of free alternative media in this country.

Billy Goat


It's thanks to Mayday

07.05.2011 11:13

that this site hasn't been stolen from the USERS! without whom this whole movement would be nothing.

F. Orkoff


But who now runs the site is important

07.05.2011 12:17

It is true that as users we seem to have the same looking site to post to. But do we really have the same site as we had before.

I find these comments worth reading as they are showing me the type of people behind the project. My worry is that the people who have taken over this site 'on our behalf', are not very nice. The way they argue is bitter and twisted. They are so angry they say opposing things in their statements.

So where is this site heading. I have read some archives that show worrying attitudes to listening to others. We can still post but if the energy and openness of the project is gone where will it go now. This is a watershed moment for this site and i am not optimistic from the future.

Concerned


Again

07.05.2011 12:20

I'm speaking as an individual who has on my own behalf and as a representitive of various radical groups posted reports and comments to Indymedia UK over the past five years.

In my view, and in the view of several individuals who are users of Indymedia UK we find the 'theft' of the Indymedia UK domain to be disgusting. The 'Mayday Collective' it seems to us were in a position where they were unable to get their own way and realised that the centralised nature of their power base was going to be compromised so they took a unilateral action and a single individual techie moved the site to another server and disconected anybody who was not in his 'gang'.

To our my mind this is as far away from collective working principles as it is possible to get. An agreement in Bradford clearly documented what was supposed to happen, the Be The Media group worked toward the agreed conclusions and the Mayday group did nothing beyond a half hearted new IMC application that they knew would fail to justify their secret plan to simply block out anybody that is not part of their group.

For want of a better word this is theft.

From today my involvement with Indymedia UK is over.

Goodbye

doh!


flowers and unicorns

07.05.2011 12:27

If you think what the Mayday people say here is worrying, take a look at what they say on the imc-uk-process list, which is publicly archived at lists.indymedia.org.

The level of rancor and derision they display here is their public persona. And even that's pretty crap. But it's flowers and unicorns compared to their private one.

take a look


Sounds like no one is actually running the show

07.05.2011 13:25

Just seems like no one is in charge of the thing and its just flying off in random directions without any clear direction

anon


direction

07.05.2011 13:35

Oh, sure it's got a direction!

Read this thread --  http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2011/05/478695.html?c=on#c268796 -- and you'll see it's spiraling into crazy conspiracies and Jew-bashing. That's a direction, just not a very promising one.

take a look


re: user base

07.05.2011 13:37

yes the mayday collective raised concerns about the site users at all the network meetings I went to. Bethemedia's consulta is quite interesting in this regard, I didn't engage with it because I thought it was so flawed, but it doesn't once ask teh users of the site what they think. It's pretty clear that the users want the newswire and the site to stay where it is. This is one of the most active and radical newswires globally, why would anyone want to shut it down?

local collective member


User base.

07.05.2011 14:12

"Read this thread --  http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2011/05/478695.html?c=on#c268796 -- and you'll see it's spiraling into crazy conspiracies and Jew-bashing. That's a direction, just not a very promising one."

I have read that and it seems to me the "Jew Bashers " have just been decapitated. It is those who express "outrage" and "horror" at these anti-semitic comments, that are posting them.

As one poster says, its a stitch up.

So come on, it doesn't take a genius to work out that if you want to destroy something you need simply cover it in something repugnant, then express outrage about the smell.

Oldest trick in the book.

We are being taken for fools.

anon


that doesn't fly

07.05.2011 14:23

Well, you've got someone claiming that it must be Jews posting antisemitic posts, but it's completely without evidence.

And you've also got Indymedia UK failing to remove the antisemitic posts.

So "stitch up" is a failed explanation.

nope


cut to the chase

07.05.2011 14:40

There's a simple way to settle this, you know. Let's ask the Indymedia editors.

Hey, Indymedia editors - why are you leaving antisemitic posts up?

cutter


BeTheTrolls

07.05.2011 14:45

I find the comments left by BeTheTrolls stimulating, informed, well evidenced and politically spot on. At least they aren't just hanging around throwing mud and being negative :-)

So, we're busy. We have the site to administer and plenty of other stuff to do.We're the same people who have been modding for some time now, but I have been pretty much stuck on this thread. Haven't had time to trawl through comments.

If there are posts that need hiding, then email the mods list (we're still using  imc-uk-moderation@lists.indymedia.org) though we plan to switch to mayday lists soon. feel free to drop us the urls in an email, or post them to this thread - we just need the comment numbers

eg for this one:

 http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2011/05/478695.html?c=on#c268796 it's 268796

and we'll deal with them as soon as we can.

It isn't a surprise that people are going to test the water.

we'd welcome a discussion on how the guidelines should be applied.

ftp


right here

07.05.2011 15:03

 http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2011/05/478695.html?c=all

In that entire thread, which is full of nasty antisemitic stuff, there's been exactly one post hidden.

Why? Because it criticized Indymedia UK and its quite slack reputation on anti-Semitism - a reputation it earned the hard way in the great Mad Saxophonist debacle, in which editors including yourself came out hard in defense of an obvious anti-Semite.

Hiding that criticism is a bald statement of priorities. Slag off the Jews all you want, but criticize Indymedia UK and your post is gone.

not amused


Tactical anti-semitism, the collapse.

07.05.2011 15:06

"Well, you've got someone claiming that it must be Jews posting antisemitic posts, but it's completely without evidence.

And you've also got Indymedia UK failing to remove the antisemitic posts."

Utter garbage.

Nobody is claiming that Jews are posting these comments except you!

And as has already been explained, leaving these comments up is the best way to facilitate people being able to make their own minds up about just how sordid and repugnant the use of tactical anti-semitism is.

You sound like you are trying to remove the evidence!

anon


The final chapter.

07.05.2011 15:10

"Hiding that criticism is a bald statement of priorities. Slag off the Jews all you want, but criticize Indymedia UK and your post is gone."

And there it is. The essence of the complaint.

These people despise Indymedia.

anon


tactical nonsense, the vapidity

07.05.2011 15:11

Your entire argument consists of taking the anti-Semitic posts and tagging them as "tactical" in an absolute vacuum of evidence.

Now, maybe someone somewhere might fall for that, especially if they're easily impressed by raw assertion.

*rolling eyes*


More Conspiracy Theories?

07.05.2011 15:16

"Why? Because it criticized Indymedia UK and its quite slack reputation on anti-Semitism - a reputation it earned the hard way in the great Mad Saxophonist debacle, in which editors including yourself came out hard in defense of an obvious anti-Semite.

Hiding that criticism is a bald statement of priorities. Slag off the Jews all you want, but criticize Indymedia UK and your post is gone."

Its a real CT to think we sit here strategising to allow anti-semitic posts up so that we can be called anti-semites. Pretty absurd as well but obviously from someone with an axe to grind. It has long been claimed that IMC uk is a hot bed of anti-semitism, something I don't think is evidenced by reading the newswires.

I've hidden 268796 as discriminatory due to the " ....may be many things, not all bad" - which seems to imply mostly bad. I don't know if that was deliberate.

I'm off to read the whole thread.

BeTheTrolls - wouldn't your time be better served getting your website looking spectacular?



ftp


Cross-eyed fool.

07.05.2011 15:21

"Your entire argument consists of taking the anti-Semitic posts and tagging them as "tactical" in an absolute vacuum of evidence. Now, maybe someone somewhere might fall for that, especially if they're easily impressed by raw assertion."

As has already been pointed out, the evidence is writ large all over the pages of Indymedia. But of course for you it doesn't exist, no matter how strong or self-evident it is.

Raw assertion is the best and most convincing way to disseminate the truth.

But you can stick with your worldview of everything being down to "wot peepl ar like"!

You don't talk like any activist I have ever met. If you talked that way in my circle, you'd be a copper in ten seconds flat.

anon


errr...

07.05.2011 15:22

"And there it is. The essence of the complaint.

These people despise Indymedia. "

Also terrorists hate america and god hates fags!

Bit of right wing rhetoric wins any argument I find

mayday belongs to the workers, not the anti-semites


Thread now cleaned

07.05.2011 15:32

Please let me know if I missed any.

How does anyone provide evidence of who posted what - its an open publishing newswire. Anyone with access to a computer can come here and post.

It does seem a fantastic co-incidence that we suddenly get a bunch of people posting dodgy posts and feeding the agendas of those who have been trying to prove that this site allows anti-semitism, all at the same time.


ftp


Trollfest

07.05.2011 15:33

My first and last contribution to this thread.

So, someone calling himself ftp is saying, at least twice in the comments to this article, that "trolls from Be The Media" are posting here. "Slinging mud" even.

I'm just wondering if you can substantiate that? Lexicographical analysis perhaps?

Or have the "anti-abuse" measures [1] been switched on? Perhaps you'd confirm one way or another. We were expecting to see a clear announcement at the top of the page.

And all those people putting the boot into Be The Media, are they "Mayday Trolls"? Or just some of them?

Not helpful, imho. But I do want to know about those anti-abuse measures. Is the site "under attack"?

protag (it's really me)



[1]  http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-March/0324-lh.html

protag
mail e-mail: protag@phonecoop.coop


@ftp

07.05.2011 15:46

You said

"How does anyone provide evidence of who posted what"

Well there are the IP logs you recently confessed to keeping. That would count.

answerer


hi protag

07.05.2011 15:50

I suspect a number of comments on this particular thread are angry BeTheMediaites.

Almost definitely this one I'd say:

________________________________________________

You will be ostracised

07.05.2011 00:54
Please keep your smile for another day or two. And then say bye-bye to the Indymedia network...

Lettin' loose around the world

Your presence has of course confirmed that BeTheMediaites are visiting the site.
_________________________________________________________

So its a BTM agenda and we know BTM are watching the threads.

Of course we can never know who it is really is. Thats the point isn't it?

ftp


not at all odd

07.05.2011 15:54

Not at all odd when you think about it. Indymedia UK has had an institutional problem with anti-Semitic posts for a long, long time. You've consistently demonstrated that you're willing to gloss over anti-Semitism when politically convenient and are as likely as not to counterattack those who point out the anti-Semitism you've glossed over.

In short, ftp, you've been so terrible on the issue for such a long time that people got bored with trying to get you to recognize it. They just tried to find ways to work around your very obvious limitations.

Found this interesting quote from Israel Shamir on Wikipedia, quoting his own website:

"European history went full circle: from rejecting the rule of Church and embracing free thought, to the new Jewish mind-control on a world scale."

Got that? The guy you admired and complimented his "passion for justice" is now passionate about "Jewish mind-control on a world scale." Comfortable with that, ftp? That was, by the way, part of an article about Holocaust denial that had Shamir 100% on the side of the racist anti-Semite David Irving and 100% against those who called them out. Still impressed by Shamir's "passion for justice"? Is he still your favorite person ever to rant about Jewish mind-control on a global scale?

even so


Disinformation Saturday

07.05.2011 16:00

"Well there are the IP logs you recently confessed to keeping. That would count."

it would if they were on. But they're not.

Over 6 months since they were last used (to find the source of medical supplies spam)

Now - as it goes I've never "confessed to keeping" IP logs.

Its all explained here:  http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/regions/birmingham/2011/01/472560.html

And the Atzmon stuff here:  http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/regions/birmingham/2008/02/392188.html

____________________________________________________

"Got that? The guy you admired and complimented his "passion for justice" is now passionate about "Jewish mind-control on a world scale."

Any evidence for that?

I vaguely remember saying I'd met him in Palestine years ago. You seem to have stuck with us for ages.

ftp


Enough, already!

07.05.2011 16:34

Oh well, I've read enough.

Indymedia UK have split into bethemedia (bit rubbish by the look of it) and Mayday (here).

Bethemedia are not allowing any open publishing at all or any commenting. Its just another aggregate.

And Mayday are here allowing lots of open publishing and comments.

Since the split, Mayday have been forced to lock bethemedia out and the site has being taken over by Mayday who's actions to date have been...to carry indymedia on. Bethemedia, if they were left to their own actions, would have allowed Indymedia to close (a terrible thing).

The split happened because bethemedia were getting sick of what they claim is anti-semitic content being published on Indymedia. The split happened but didn't go according to bethemedia's plans and within days, Indymedia are being swamped with anti-semitic content...in the comment sections.

Yep, its yer classic stitch-up.

Well done to everybody here at www.indymedia.org.uk

Oh, by the way indymedia is owned by its contributors. Its our content, our images, our video, our blood, our sweat, our tears, our toil.

Why you are arguing is beyond me. You frankly sound like the very thing we are campaigning against.

Shut up, get on with it.

anon


Soapy Sam

07.05.2011 17:10

Retroactively editing your memories, ftp? No - it just makes it easier if you provide the links.

He was hardly a stranger to you.

"A few years ago, Gilad Atzmon wrote an article about the demonisation of Israel
Shamir (1). I met Shamir in a village outside Nablus, when he came to
interview a family whose house was under threat of demolition, because their
son, who by all accounts had a learning disability, had attempted a suicide
bomb. He got to his target, because he was employed in building the settler
road that passed the back of the house. I had quite a long chat with Israel,
and I was impressed by his passion for justice."

Thats what I wrote. I met him once and formed that impression. Thats why I like the source material. We can't necessarily take your claims as accurate without evidence, can we?

"You literally wept about how poor poor Israel Shamir was sidelined from the Palestine solidarity movement because of his anti-Semitism - an ostracism you were perfectly willing to blame, in pure paranoid style, on "crypto-Zionists" within the movement. You know, people like Ali Abunimah of Electronic Intifada, who was among the first to call Shamir out. (Is Ali Abunimah also a "crypto-Zionist"?)"

I think that is a quote of Atzmon's - not mine. So literally wept isn't an accurate potrrayal either, is it?

It seems to me that the point of that email was cautioning Indymedia uk against getting involved in the long running dispute and trying to set up a kangaroo court,

I think I was right.

The very next week Tony Greenstein started libel proceedings. Indymedia was set up as a media project, not a cheap alternative to the courts.

Meanwhile it did great damage to Indymedia, as I thought it would. My suggestion was that we moderate posts with anti-semitic content and don't get involved.

The end result of the libel trial is that Tony Greenstein seems to have left Atzmon alone for some time, although I believe he started up again recently.
 http://azvsas.blogspot.com/2008/03/why-i-am-suing-gilad-atzmon-for-libel.html
 http://azvsas.blogspot.com/2011/04/update-on-atzmon-meeting.html

If it is a crime to want to check sources and to try and work things out for yourself, then I am guilty. If the alternative is just to be told what to think, then I don't find it much of an alternative.

"But come clean, ftp. Are you repudiating Shamir's "Jewish mind-control on a world scale" anti-Semitism or not?"

I haven't read the article, and really can't be arsed. I'd hide it on the newswire as disciminatory.

So, as you posted it, are you happy for me to hide it?


Are there any other topics that are posted on here that concern you? Do you want to discuss them?

As you're anonymous, and I'm not - I'll let you know that I won't respond to this stuff again without an answer to this question:

*Are you here to debate, shut down debate or attack?*

I can see no good from trying to have a discussion with someone who is anonymous and isn't open about their agenda.If i wanted to have these discussions I would go to a forum where at least people have to register a nick and adopt a persona.

And do make sure to source your claims






ftp


Not every conspiracy is a lie but...

07.05.2011 17:10

...people like ftp always make me feel like an antideutscher abroad.

And I'm far, far a-way


trolls ahoy

07.05.2011 17:49

So, having now hidden those comments I'm being abused on that thread for being all sorts of things.

Along with this threat:

"We will destroy this project inside out. It is less than useless, it is an offence to the dignity of truth ... We hope you are proud of your piss poor censorship and will live looking over your shoulder for the weight of reply coming to you"

have a look at the guidelines.

If comments breach the guidelines they are liable to be hidden. Some users like them hidden, some object. Fortunately there is the middle way: If you want to read hidden posts add ?c=all to your browser and you can enjoy the sleaze to your hearts content.



ftp


Think of the users who don't want to take sides

07.05.2011 20:02

When Be The Media and Mayday went there separate ways (and I'm not going to go into my views on that here), articles from Mayday (this site) also appeared on Be The Media. And articles from Be The Media Collective's articles appeared on this site.

Now neither happens. Why is this?

Indy user


Kiss

07.05.2011 22:05

Ain't you all got something better to be doing?

Jo


calling mud throwing

08.05.2011 00:49

concerned - there's been a lot of bad stuff said by all in this sorry affair, and a lot of lack of listening. It's not balanced of you to say it's just the Mayday lot.

doh! - I've read various of their lists etc and you're talking bollocks. You are blaming the Mayday side for stuff they didn't do and potraying BeTheMedia as the pure ones!

take a look - I have and you're talking shite as well.

I'm not saying anyone's coming out of this smelling of roses, but then reading on through all the shit about anti-semitism etc, there's loads of really detailed criticisms from years gone by against individuals...give it up guys. It's not what this is really about is it?!

PS I don't know where Bart's affiliations lie (you'll only know of him if you've had the misfortune to read too much of IMC lists which this nonsense has drawn me to do!), but he's really not helping this whole thing.

PPS I hope along with quite some other readers and contributors it seems that BeTheMedia keep their site going as is, and this UK Indymedia keeps going where it is (no moving to other domains please)

ears


What i don't get is?

08.05.2011 11:17

Why have Mayday welshed on the agreement?

I mean, what is the point of having an agreement, if one side is going to just ignore it and do what they want anyway?

They seem to have trumped it up as a form of "direct action" (ie. just do it anyway).

anon


Direct Action in Your Pants Faction Is Go!

08.05.2011 13:08

Direct Action?!!? I'm so glad to see that the new 'Direct Action In Your Pants Faction' has launched, great news!

I've always wanted to do some direct action from the arm chair in front of my computer while I sit around in a greying baggy pair of pants and scratching my crotch, I haven't lived the dream yet, but glad to see someone is.

It's pretty fucking big headed to talk about 'direct action' from your arm chair, why don't you get up, dressed, maybe ahve a shower and go out and do something instead of dropping crisp crumbs onto your vest as you furiously type crap onto the internet (as if there isn't enough)

jobby in the lobby


direct-action

08.05.2011 13:18

The only armchair direct-action I've done involves trolling something that I disagree with.
Its a form of peaceful protest against what i think is wrong. I suppose its a bit like what other people try to achieve with graffiti.

anon


direct action?

08.05.2011 19:40

the idea of direct action is to fight against power, excluding others from a domain name because you have the power to do so is abuse of power, not direct action.

a


Re: Why have Mayday welshed on the agreement?

08.05.2011 23:01

They haven't.

The terms of the agreement were not met.

They tried to block because of this.

Their block was ignored.

Be The Media started archiving this site dispite the block on them doing so.

The site was therefore in danger of being shut down, see:

The Attempt to Shutdown UK Indymedia
 http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2011/04/478397.html

So action was taken to prevent the site from being shut down, if they hadn't done this you would not be able to read and post to this thread.

none


The simple way.

09.05.2011 10:08

If you cant be bothered to wade through the 170 comments above (& the hidden ones by putting 'c=all' on the end of the url). Then simply take these 3 easy steps to debunk the situation.

1) Look at the 'IMC UK' newswire paying special attention to the posts genuinely put on the UK newswire rather than being imported from other sources (the ones that don't have an arrow next to them). Everything on the 'Newswire' has been sanctioned by ftp or whichever member of the Mayday group happens to moderating.

2) Take a good look a IMC London paying particular attention to its newswire and the sort of posts allowed by its moderators.

3) Compare the two and decide which you prefer.

There that was easy wasn't it?

G.


financial implications

09.05.2011 17:40

Does anyone know the traffic stats for this website?

I imagine it would rate in the tens-thousands per month of unique visitors.

This makes the indymedia.org.uk domain name very valuable. If you just put it on a domain auction site you would get a lot of money for it.

That means that this is theft. The domain name has a high financial value.

This is basically what it all boils down to. The established readship numbers.
To start a new site and try and build this traffic is a huge job.

I would like to see Mayday's comments on this side of things.

road wehh


Lots of explanations needed.

09.05.2011 18:46

I would really like to hear some more from bethemedia about what has happened here and why they have no acted to ensure that www.indymedia.org.uk has not been threatened as a result of the disagreements between Mayday and bethemedia.

We, as contributors, would always expect that any party involved in a dispute, howsoever caused, would be thinking first of the UK Indymeda site.

anon


re: financial implications

09.05.2011 19:05

I don't think the financial value of the domain name is an issue.

The moral value (as in who can call themselves indymedia.org.uk) and the practical value of the domain name are much more important.

Not everything is valued in £ !

Me


keep up the good work Sheffield IMCers

09.05.2011 20:04

Its Be The Media that vandalised "traven" upload server.

Its Be The Media that trying to steal the domain name.

Its Be The Media that needs to authorised by the IMC process, with docs etc.

I dont know why Bristol, Nottingham etc, still want be editors of UK?

It good to see indymedia being transparent for once, at last we get links to see their email decision making and their documention. Even got to hear about their IRC chats. Why is there never any mention of these networking meetings on the website.

RE: line 3 of this website: "A network of individuals, independent and alternative media activists" just what decision making role does your massive network of individuals play?

MIR has got web2.0 non-responsiblity for illegal postings & comments. Compared to Be-The-Media claiming full liability for authorised articles. A major legal difference which editors may not of considered.

keep up the good work Sheffield.

r


@r

09.05.2011 20:17

"Compared to Be-The-Media claiming full liability for authorised articles."

what a bullshit. none of the websites ( Northern, London, Nottingham, Bristol) require "full liability for authorised articles." did you ever look at those websites? Open publishing works excactly as on Imc UK.

e


@e

09.05.2011 21:19

Umm that was a joke..

r


GODDAMNIT!

10.05.2011 07:41

GODDAMNIT
GODDAMNIT

The current situation.

Eric


The world keeps turning and posters keep posting.

10.05.2011 16:57

I can't say I'm involved with the running of Indymedia, or really have any knowledge to how its done, but as a layman and regular user of the site I fail to see why it needs changing. If a section of the collective want to try something different then whats to stop them from doing so, and leave those who want to continue with the current site to it.

From what I can tell this seems to have become an argument between two opposing groups, with the prize being a domain name, rather than a discussion about what kind of online resources are needed, and wanted, by UK activists.

Related to that, if there was to be such a huge change to UK Indymedia, then shouldn't that have been made public, and a discussion opened up with the wider Indymedia community, months beforehand (the change being decided in December), rather than users simply being told a week or so before the change.

Anyway, as the row rages on behind the scenes the majority of Indymedia users carry on posting news and views, and engaging with each other as well as the usual lunatics (but then Indymedia wouldn't be Indymedia without the occasional nutter). Which prompts the question why not leave it be?

Poster Boy


Why not leave it be?

10.05.2011 21:03

Hi Poster Boy

The much contested changes have been in the offing since 2008:

 http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2008/02/391384.html

"Sunday started with a go round of people's current visions of Indymedia, and then moved into a discussion of how to engage with "Web 2.0". The idea of Indymedia as an aggregator from other alternative media sources, such as blogs, was suggested. One developer from London presented his design for the Indymedia calendar which was very well received, and perhaps shows a future direction for whole Indymedia sites."

There's been various kinds of inertia stoppng the changes from happening, and lots of meetings (open to users), although all three of the 2010 network meetings had their outcomes disputed (often by people who weren't there).

Which brings us to where we are now.

poster girl


in short

10.05.2011 22:08

The problem is this.

The URL "indymedia.org.uk" belonged, collectively, to the IMCistas in the UK.

When "bethemedia" made a change to the front page of this site, the "indymedia.org.uk" URL still belonged, collectively, to the IMCistas in the UK.

When "mayday" made their followup-change, their "direct action" consisted of taking unilateral possession of the URL that had been until then mutually owned, and changing passwords to enforce that unilateral possession.

This is what has people screaming "hijack" and "theft."

briefe


Seen and read it all

10.05.2011 22:43

For some reason I've wasted days pouring through all the crap about IM-UK splitting and the subsequent war over the traffic...which was, as I understand it, supposed to be redirected, (via a splash page), to the 2 new projects, (or more precisely one new project and IM-UK).

What seems to have been forgotten is that internet users are still able to decide the direction of their traffic and they're not going to be fooled by a splash page which allows them to choose to go to the site they intended to visit or another "Indymedia" site, (which they can't actually publish on).

It seems that the group on one side of the split has seriously misjudged the site's users and were living under some illusion that once they'd put up a splash page that 50%(+) of the traffic heading for this site would miraculously redirect itself to their site.

Except they weren't, (and still aren't), offering what the site's users want and they are now desperately trying to close this site in the hope that, by disabling IM-UK, people will be forced to publish on their site, (except of course you can't publish on their site, but let's not let details get in the way of a good story).

The funniest thing about this farce is that the 2 factions are still fighting like a pair of tramps in a muddy puddle, struggling over a few pennies to buy a can of strong lager. It's ridiculous, pitiful, and I've wasted far too much time reading all the crap that's been posted on this subject.

You want my web traffic? Give me what I want or I'll find it elsewhere, and for the record I didn't find it at the new site that's going to replace this one, (once the clique that split manage to force the IM authorities to close down this domain entirely).

It's pathetic and I'm...

Bored as fuck


@poster girl

11.05.2011 00:21

> The much contested changes have been in the offing since 2008:
>
>  http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2008/02/391384.html

The static mock-up presented in Nottingham:  http://redesign.dev.indymedia.org.uk/

Has been implemented at a template level here:  http://chrisc.dev.indymedia.org.uk/

But the deployment was blocked.

2008 redesign


will 'they' succeed unjustly in closing down our UK IMC?

11.05.2011 17:55

Fighting like a pair of tramps, welshing on an agreement - the politics of the language used by some contributors is somewhat dodgy/racist!
And to briefe - bollocks!

Bart, Northern & Bristol IMCs are currently trying on global email lists to lock-down this site so no-one can publish to it, lock-out the people currently doing admin to keep UK IMC going and block any chance of them continuing as part of the Indymedia community or indeed of a UK-wide open publishing site continuing to exist. The reasons they give seem unbalanced and do not take into account people's desire for indymedia.org.uk to continue to exist as an open publishing site. I hope they don't succeed - that would be really unjust.

ears


no rebuttal? shout bollox!

12.05.2011 16:46

Which of these points do you consider inaccurate, ears, and what is your evidence?

1) The URL "indymedia.org.uk" belonged, collectively, to the IMCistas in the UK.

2) When "bethemedia" made a change to the front page of this site, the "indymedia.org.uk" URL still belonged, collectively, to the IMCistas in the UK.

3) When "mayday" made their followup-change, their "direct action" consisted of taking unilateral possession of the URL that had been until then mutually owned, and changing passwords to enforce that unilateral possession.

briefe


@ briefe - blah blah

12.05.2011 19:05

Ownership is not just admin access - it's also about defining how the site works/looks.

If something belongs to you, it's generally held (I'd dispute it, but anyway) that you can define it, change it or do what you like with it. You can figure out the rest of this argumentation...

In any case, this whole case is so much more complicated - unfortunately - than you are making it out to be. You're just trying to oversimplify with a set conclusion.

ears


use magic maybe? Harry Potter's wand?

12.05.2011 21:39

'Ownership is not just admin access - it's also about defining how the site works/looks.'

And how pray does one do that when one has one's admin access taken away when the site was hijacked? Magic?

These decisions were previously made by group consensus of all UK IMCistas. Until the coup. Now it is only made by a certain self-selected elite. And it is hard to overstate just how badly that is being taken globally.

briefe


a majority is not always good

12.05.2011 22:32

Sometimes direct-action is needed for the greater good.

Afterall, the suffragettes fought against the consensus and now we look back on them as heroines. I think it is safe to say that the same will be said of the Mayday collective in years to come

Polo


good luck with that

12.05.2011 23:58

"Sometimes direct-action is needed for the greater good"

Direct action against your own comrades, as in this case? Good luck with selling that.

briefe


history

13.05.2011 01:46

Don't recall the suffragettes taking 'direct action' against other suffragettes.

history


Direct Action to save the newswire

13.05.2011 05:10

"Direct action against your own comrades, as in this case? Good luck with selling that."

What were those Be The Media 'comrades' going to be doing with the newswire?

Why won't they answer the question?

They're here trolling this thread often enough


A fork is just a split


Not computing

13.05.2011 05:24

"And how pray does one do that when one has one's admin access taken away when the site was hijacked?"

The Site was copied to another server, as proposed by BeTheMedia, and agreed at Bradford.

The original site is archived on the server where BeTheMedia proposed it should be archived, and was agreed at Bradford.

As it says on the Be The Media splash page:
"A syndication of radical news in the UK is available at  http://www.bethemedia.org.uk and a copy of the UK Mir site has open publishing up and running at  http://www.maydaymedia.org"
 https://archive.indymedia.org.uk/

So, if you were on the Be The Media prong of the fork, why would you want admin access to the project you proposed that Mayday should run?

And if you care so much about the site, why were you proposing moth-balling it?

Where would people be posting now if the DNS hadn't been pointed at the copy?

Wouldn't it have been better to sort out the problems with new imc rather than proceeding in the face of dissent from a sizeable group of 'comrades'?

A fork is just a split.


where?

13.05.2011 12:38

Where would people be posting now?

How about maydaymedia.org.uk, until Mayday got through the new-IMC process? There's absolutely nothing preventing that. Mayday has admitted as much on the lists.

Why exactly would that have been so utterly utterly terrible for the time it would take to get through new-IMC? It wouldn't have. Many IMCs had temporary URLs of their own as they went through the new-IMC process. But Mayday - oh no, they're above that. They decided that even one second without an indymedia subdomain was the equivalent of a "mass expulsion" and being sent to Coventry. And they talk about it here as if it were a permanent closure to open publishing in the UK. Not to mention the "conspiracy to shut us down" horseshit.

That's the central bullshit of their argument. They're telling you that it was either "indymedia.org.uk" or nothing. When really it was either "indymedia.org.uk" or Mayday getting over their own ego-driven demand to be treated differently than every other IMC collective, and using maydaymedia.org.uk, a URL they bought specifically for this purpose before they decided that it would be easier to simply hijack "indymedia.org.uk."

mayday mayday


Re: until Mayday got through the new-IMC process?

13.05.2011 12:49

The addition above, documenting the Mayday attempt to get through New IMC:

 http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2011/05/478721.html#additions

And the attempt to get through New IMC by Sheffield Indymedia:

 https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcSheffieldNewImc#Sheffield_New_Imc_Application

When taken with this:

The Bradford consensus decision is invalid on two counts if it was the intention, deliberate or otherwise, to expel Group A from the global network.

a) If it was always the intention of the Bradford consensus to denounce Group A and expel its members from the Indymedia network then Group A would never have agreed to this and therefore the so-called "consensus decision" is insecure, or

b) if it was never the intention to excommunicate Group A then the "consensus decision" must also now be invalidated (as moving forward will result in the proscription of Group A), and the global network needs to work quickly to establish the Mayday collective as a new IMC.

I believe that either of the above options calls into question the validity of the decision reached in Bradford.

 http://sheffield.indymedia.org.uk/2011/05/478559.html

Indicates that the whole thing is totally flawed.

And the response from Be The Media to what has happened is for a mass expulsion from the Indymedia network.

Is the only way forwards UDI for the UK?

No IMC Process


new-IMC

13.05.2011 13:07

Once again, Mayday's paranoia gets the best of it.

Yes, Virginia, there is a new-IMC process. And Mayday will probably get through it, though its tendency to slag off the guy from the new-IMC group and belittle the new-IMC process hasn't really paid off all that well strategically, has it.

But Mayday believes that it is somehow above using a temporary URL that isn't in the Indymedia domain. That's for little people, not Mayday. What's worse, Mayday continually misrepresents what the actual impact of doing so would be. They make it sound like they're being sent to the Siberian gulag. What they don't note is that temporary URLs are the same damn thing that the majority of IMC sites did, but Mayday considers itself too posh for.

And so their justification for the hijack vanishes to dust.

boo scary


and

13.05.2011 13:46

and I call their talk of "mass expulsion" a silly thing.

Grow up a little, please.

and


Re: talk of "mass expulsion" a silly thing

13.05.2011 13:53

> talk of "mass expulsion" a silly thing

What's this then?

* That should the deadline pass without the domain being handed over,
all further access to global indymedia resources including mailing
lists, irc, docs.indymedia.org and DNS is denied to the group currently
holding the domain (the mayday collective) until this handover has taken
place

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-May/0508-hq.html

Oh You Silly Thing


what it is

13.05.2011 14:39

What that is is an after the fact reaction /after/ you unilaterally violated the POU and hijacked a shared community resource. It was not an initial demand of bethemedia or anyone else /until/ you decided you were above the rules binding IMC collectives and did your reprehensible 'direct action' against other IMCistas.

O poor poor Mayday collective, people reacted badly to your hijacking a shared resource, you poor dears! Ah cruel uncomprehending world, if only they would leave you to steal in peace!

Did you imagine that your 'direct action' would have no consequences in the network? are the POU a one way street, where you can do whatever the hell you want against any other collective, free as a bird, but everyone else is bound by POU to just accept what you've done?

I'd suggest that you go to imc-process right away with a genuine apology for the hijacking, an agreement to assign stewardship of the indymedia.org.uk DNS entry to a mutually acceptable third party until things are settled, and a solid point-by-point proposal on how you're going to implement Bradford, including the archiving of indymedia.org.uk.

is


Rules rules rules

13.05.2011 17:56

Yeah this is an occupation of a "shared community resourse" in protest because you or they or whoever the fuck ordered the pushing of the fork bomb kill switch with the time delay fuse in the face of open dissent that was going to push this site and its long term admins outside of IM, clearly in breach of POU8

" 8. All IMC's are committed to caring for one another and our respective communities both collectively and as individuals"

So stop being so self righteous and authoritarian with your draft, un-ratified POUs. Pleeeez.

POU8


feel a draft?

13.05.2011 18:32

"So stop being so self righteous and authoritarian with your draft, un-ratified POUs. Pleeeez."

And this is the angle you'll try to use to get through new-IMC? That the POU don't really matter all that much anyway, as they're draft and un-ratified, so it was okay to ride roughshod over them? The part of the new-IMC application where you demonstrate adherence to the POU, you'll just write 'screw em, come back to us when they're ratified'?

really?


Self Righteous Petty Authoritarian Bureaucrats don't you just love them

13.05.2011 18:56

Drafts and un-ratified is what they are that's just a fact innit. As I said look to your own house for riding roughshod over POU8 for example.

" 8. All IMC's are committed to caring for one another and our respective communities both collectively and as individuals"

How was BTM's action of hitting the kill IMC UK switch on the time delayed fork bomb on May 1st 2011 despite a very obvious lack of active consensus conforming to POU8? quite clearly there's a breach there huh?. So stop being such a self righteous petty bureaucrat and do something useful.

POU8


my own house

13.05.2011 19:21

'As I said look to your own house for riding roughshod over POU8 '

My own house? I'm not from Bethemedia, if that's what you're implying. I'm just someone from another collective watching this disaster on the global list for the last two months with a dropped jaw. IMC-London warned a few days before 1 May that you might go for the hijack.

'We fear that Group A, the Mayday collective, will abuse the tech power
and privilege that they have been entrusted with by all of us, and
hijack Indymedia UK domain.

'We sincerely hope that on 1st May, after a successful fork, we will look
back at this email and find it alarmist and feel a bit stupid.

'However, should the unthinkable happen, and tech privilege be abused,
and a whole subsection of Indymedia stolen, we do hope for the support
of the global community.'

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-communication/2011-April/0429-l2.html

And lo, you did exactly what they feared you might. You lived down to their worst expectations.

Although again, to you, POU8 seems to say 'Mayday may do whatever it likes, no matter how destructive to the Indymedia network, and by POU8 no one can criticise it in any way.'

unhouseled


Re: IMC-London warned a few days before 1 May that you might go for the hijack

13.05.2011 20:45

And the same day London IMC sent that, 29 Apr, the Mayday Collective sent:

Indymedia Mayday Statement Regarding the Proposed UK Indymedia Site and Lists Shutdown

We are, in effect, the stewards of the UK Indymedia
open-posting newswire, we stated this at the UK Network
meeting in Bradford in December 2010 [1]. This service is
threatened by the way the Bradford agreement to fork the
site [2] is being interpreted by the BeTheMedia group (B)
and within New IMC. We ask the global network to suspend
any working-group actions that would interfere with our
ability to operate the site until the issues are resolved,
specifically the shutting down of lists or alterations to
the DNS or any alteration the uk entry in the global
cities list — we would like the current status quo to be
maintained until the agreement can be completed properly.

Some points we would like to make about the current
situation:

1) We are all long standing Indymedia volunteers.

2) Our primary aim is to run an Indymedia website for the
UK that provides an open-posting newswire; we have
demonstrated our commitment to this aim.

3) We have compromised by agreeing to move to a new
Indymedia domain even though this will be disruptive
for site users.

4) B group is claiming there was consensus on forking and
going ahead with all changes on 1 May irrespective of
our status at that time, we dispute this, the agreement
was based on a.indymedia.org and b.indymedia.org — our
understanding of the consensus was that the fork
depended on us having an indymedia.org sub-domain to
move to. If B group don't want an indymedia.org
sub-domain that's fine, but our position is that we do,
and at the Bradford meeting we agreed to the fork on
that basis.

5) We are keen to proceed with the fork once we have
achieved new IMC status.

6) We think forcing the site to move outside of Indymedia
is unreasonable.

7) This can be sorted out fairly quickly — we can work
together to resolve the New IMC issues — get New IMC
status and an indymedia.org sub-domain and fork.
However, a hold should be put on changes to the status
quo to allow the New IMC process to progress.

8) We don't think mass expulsions from Indymedia is in the
"spirit of Indymedia" — in addition to the UK newswire
the indymedia.org.uk site hosts several regional IMC's.

9) There is nothing preventing group B from launching
their new site and advertising it on UK Indymedia in
the meantime.

[1]  https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/ImcMaydayFoundingStatment

[2]  https://docs.indymedia.org/Local/UkNetworkMeetingBradford2010Minutes

Archived
- Homepage: http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-communication/2011-April/0429-he.html


wrong

13.05.2011 22:08

'We are, in effect, the stewards of the UK Indymedia open-posting newswire,'

Wrong from the very first sentence. Mayday was not the steward of the UK Indymedia open-posting newswire, in any sense except self-appointment. It is now the steward of the UK Indymedia open-posting newswire only in the sense of having purloined it.

ready steady wrong


Illegal

13.05.2011 22:52

I would imagine that Mayday's actions are illegal

It is not their domain. Give it back to the true owners.

anon


two wrongs don't make a right

13.05.2011 23:01

my own house by: unhouseled

Is that a typo or a Freudian slip *un house led* ah you're being *led* that Freud ...

'As I said look to your own house for riding roughshod over POU8 '

Keep repeating it.....

" 8. All IMC's are committed to caring for one another and our respective communities both collectively and as individuals"

Still don't get it do you? you need to examine in some detail, the fear spread by BTM wrt Mayday its documented very well and of course BTM are about to wipe the record clean with their Stalinist approach to historiographical analysis - erase it Boris, but what BTM are feeding folk is on the face of it misinformation designed to spread fear in order to control the likes of you and me.

Some key words and phrases...

Mayday are

Spys
Betrayers
Not to be trusted
Rogue
Faction
Crazed
Conspiraloons
lawless
to be feared
Out Group
security risk
purloiners
thieves
wrong
illegal
and general all round black hats.

BTMers seem to have a

Bourgeois concern for property which perfectly displays BTMers liberal leanings and the moral majority mock outrage merely amplifies the effect, know them by the words they utter. If this was some state and not some anarchist paradise those accused of "purloining" would get a fair hearing. The simple repetition of this false narrative shows the strategy of these liars and de-famers for the weak PR, created reality, fabrication that it is. You are not our comrades as you increasingly act and sound like the enemy, your spin and propaganda won't wash here so I'd suggest you go and do something useful. Like a radical analysis for example might be useful dunno its just a suggestion.

and so on and so forth and just keep repeating it....

If you do some basic evidence checking then you'll find no evidence to support the dumb conspiracy theory proffered by BTM, quite weird that a tale of a single power crazed tech who plotted all of this on his own isn't actually based on any facts or supported by any evidence whatsoever and further more I might add that it smells highly of the soiled underpants of the tin foil hat wearing brigade to me. Just do some fact checking and you'll find it's all spin and fabrication a corporate PR company would pay good money for someone to come up with. The creation of the out group - Mayday they are outlaws, we BTM are the in group the perfect ones who need to do no reflection because we have successfully negotiated a flawed bureaucratic process and have gained status and a white hat and therefore can act without any examination or accountability - so who's being hierarchical there? huh? See what I mean the good v bad narrative don't work it's more complex than that.

You see because they BTM are just such perfect examples of human beings you'll just about find anywhere on the planet they BTM can seemingly get away with the attempted murder of IMC UK. The black hat outlaws Mayday must be severely punished, we BTM are the good guy white hat sheriff cleanin' up this dirty town. It's classic Machiavellian divide and rule. White hats v the Black hats, and humans especially those fervently in favour of natural social justice are ripe for the taking on this one, its one of the oldest narratives in the book. As I say in the interests of natural justice do some reflection about BTM because its pointless trying to guilt trip us because we know we ain't perfect, but we can account for and defend the actions we've taken. So don't be so easily fooled by those that pretend they have reached a higher plane of perfectness above us mere mortals because it's BS k? IM is not some church for the perfect media activist its made up of real human beings k?

" 8. All IMC's are committed to caring for one another and our respective communities both collectively and as individuals"

The occupation of this space by the people who continue to do work here and who believe in this project took direct action in response to the breach of POU8 by BTM when they hit the kill switch that would effectively eject the time served admins of this site out of IM, something untenable to Mayday so read this again and with a view to the actions taken on May 1st 2011 by BTM in the face of collective dissent and reflect on it.

" 8. All IMC's are committed to caring for one another and our respective communities both collectively and as individuals"

Your quoted e-mail is merely a prediction that if we BTM hit the kill switch in the face of active dissent from autonomous UK collectives in contravention of the spirit of POU8 you know...

" 8. All IMC's are committed to caring for one another and our respective communities both collectively and as individuals"

Then they Mayday might take action to avoid being killed off. Of course the reason given isn't the real reason we rescued this site which is very clearly stated in our public statements, go and read them as you've obviously not got much on yer plate at the moment and seeing as yer head is so full of lies and propaganda it might help even the balance of your judgement. It's just an idea not an order.

I mean that e-mail avoided the terms "occupation" and "direct action" and only used the terms "stolen" and "hijacked", now even the state will give you at least a hearing when charged with these crimes, but no it seems BTM say we must excommunicate them for they are apostates from the church of IM and the church of IM is perfect and we are perfect, its really really very fucked in the head thinking IMO - kind of off with their heads guilty as charged no need for a trial reaction for what is after all at most the minor civil offence of trespass. What sort of people are these BTMers? Perfect? Bureaucratic? and obsessed by status? wtf?

Oh and be careful your pants may be on fire.

ciao
2%

of The Mayday Collective


if you insist

13.05.2011 23:21

"Unhouseled" - look it up. Try the ghost of Hamlet's father, Act I Scene V.

The rest of your Peter Lorre rant is exactly the sort of thing that's got people convinced Mayday is actually Maydaft. Do you think it helps your new-IMC application?

unanel'd


Hmmn that's posh quoting Shakespeare

14.05.2011 00:22


Thanks for sharing that was that just serendipitous? or are you saying you've not been
" smeared or rubbed over with oil or an unctuous substance"?

I'd rather be Maydaft than BeTheMeanies. There you go again with your Bureaucratic "that won't get you through new-imc" threat. We'll if new IMC don't like Peter Lorre then its a failed process. IMO.

Don't you know there's a war on? Well several wars, shouldn't you be out there fighting the real enemy instead of this perception managed alleged internal one. ?

Don't let the dividers win.

2%

of The Mayday Collective


@2%

14.05.2011 07:43

I've read your words, but I have absolutely no idea what you have just said.
I'm guessing you have wrote it when you were drunk or stoned.

I am not being funny, it is just impossible to understand what the point you are trying to make.

Could you provide it in bullet points or just an executive summary, or something.
I'm more confused about the mayday motives than before.
Are you their spokesman?

anon


Glad to see the site in such capable hands

14.05.2011 13:41

2% said "I'd rather be Maydaft than BeTheMeanies"

I laughed hard at this. Are you actually serious. I think the requirement to look after one another doesn't cover the kind of help you clearly need. I couldn't make head nor tail of your tl;dr rant, but it did serve to convince me further that the site is definitely not in good hands.

Reading through your email list and the site recently, I see you all seem to have adopted a pretty strange stance in that you have referred to yourselves as being a bit like Martin Luther King Jr. and the suffragettes. Are you actually serious? You're actually just thieving toerags and people who are killing Indymedia with your crazy power grab. Get over yourselves and grow up!

Martin Lol-fer King


clarification please

14.05.2011 14:40

reading 2% odd posts is like listening to Sarah Palin's interviews.
The more that is said, the more damage is done

Quite concerned that this the official mayday line on the subject
Are we to assume this is maydays response? or is it a loose cannon

concerned of easterton


Don't panic!

14.05.2011 14:58

Purloined, hijacked, stolen: this is a load of rubbish.

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Domain_hijacking
"Domain hijacking or domain theft is the process by which registration of a currently registered domain name is transferred without the permission of its original registrant, generally by exploiting a vulnerability in the domain name registration system."

indymedia.org.uk hasn't been transferred anywhere. It is safe in the hands of the original registrant. It hasn't been hijacked or stolen. It's being used for the purpose for which it was registered, and that's how it's going to go on being used.

The present moderation crew are essentially the same people who've been moderating the newswire for years; don't count on any dramatic change of direction!

~DP

Property is...


foolish mortal

14.05.2011 15:39

But they has welshed on the original agreement

a bit like coup to protect their powerbase. Larger readership = power

xray spex


again, not true

14.05.2011 15:41

'The present moderation crew are essentially the same people who've been moderating the newswire for years; don't count on any dramatic change of direction! '

Only some of them, the others being locked out.

I am surprised that Mayday wants to continue with the 'we did nothing wrong' approach, which will only prolong the process of reconciliation with the global Indymedia movement.

not quote


Not true either and more spin

14.05.2011 19:44

No one has been locked out of anything. The original site has been turned into an archive site to comply with the wishes of Be The Media. All the original mods of that site still have full access to it.

As for the 'we did nothing wrong' approach' I think you'll find that applies just as much, and probably much more so, to Be The Media than Mayday. The 2% post above makes that pretty clear.

Liscuite


explains much

14.05.2011 20:17

If 2%'s post is what passes for clarity in the Mayday collective, I wonder what they consider incoherence.

Those of you with long histories with the Indymedia network will probably remember the SF schism, where the IMCistas of San Francisco decided they could no longer work together and they split up. One side insisted, insisted, insisted that it must, must, must retain ownership of the URL "sf.indymedia.org" after the split. Which they did, forcing the other groups into the fiction of being "Bay Area" so that it could claim to be The One True SF Indymedia.

Well, look at Bay Area now: sf-bay.indymedia.org, www.indybay.org.

Now look at SF-IMC: sf.indymedia.org, www.sfimc.org. Got the Ozymandias thing going.

ah yes


more lies from Mayday?

14.05.2011 20:25

'No one has been locked out of anything. '

Really? You're saying that, say, members of imc-uk-northern can change where the URL indymedia.org.uk points to? A few weeks ago they could have, had they been looney enough to do it, as ownership of the URL was a shared resource among all UK IMCistas. But then you decided on May 1 that some UK IMCistas are more equal than others, and took the whole pie for yourself.

This is why there has been an international call on imc-process that stewardship of the URL go to a neutral third party. This passed global by consensus. And then you gave global the bird, saying in effect that it was your bloody DNS entry and you're bloody well going to keep it no matter what the bloody Indymedia bloody global bloody thinks.

You really ought to reconsider that approach.

tell a little truth now


BeTheTrolls always tell the full story....

14.05.2011 21:52

" that stewardship of the URL go to a neutral third party"

Who is that then?

The other requirement of the authoritarian response was that once global DNS had issued a 'demand' for the DNS, it should be pointed at the archive. So if that really has ACTIVE consensus in the network, then the network is not neutral.

Why would Mayday hand over the DNS to a group that it has no voice in?

What does the network offer Mayday and this site besides an infrastructure dominated by a handful of self-important individuals?

ftp


No consensus

14.05.2011 23:17

"You're saying that, say, members of imc-uk-northern can change where the URL indymedia.org.uk points to?"

What's that got to do with admins being locked of the site as claimed above? FA.


"that stewardship of the URL go to a neutral third party"

The problem is there is no neutral place to point the domain other than nowhere which would just be lead to confusion for site users and UK activism. Either it goes where it is now or had BTM controlled it then it would have pointed at the splash page ignoring the blocks and lack of consensus about that too. The problem is the lack of consensus on this and until that's resolved it's got to point somewhere.

Liscuite


@anon

14.05.2011 23:22

anon said above: "I've read your words, but I have absolutely no idea what you have just said." and "Could you provide it in bullet points"


I found 2% post really interesting. The thrust of it is about looking at the attitudes of Be The Media revealed by examining the language they have used.

So for anon and anyone else here's my take on it. (BTW Not all of the references will necessarily be posts on this site. Some may be in various emails on Indymedia lists.)



1. Be The Media (BTM) are hypocritical in their repeated references to the Indymedia Principles of Unity 8 which states: "All IMC's are committed to caring for one another and our respective communities both collectively and as individuals". This is because they are spreading fear about Mayday which can be seen in the language used. Words and phrases used include: Spys, Betrayers, Not to be trusted, Rogue, Faction, Crazed, Conspiraloons, lawless, to be feared, Out Group, security risk, purloiners, thieves, wrong, illegal.

2. In the various correspondences BTM frequently refers to ownership the url (www.indymedia.org.uk), ownership of the name (UK Indymedia), and ownership of the actual web site. The concept of property is the central tenet of liberal ideology and so such language implies BTMers liberal leanings (or perhaps it's just for PR effect).

3. Repetition of 1 and 2 above reveals a dishonest PR strategy against Mayday.

4. BTM cannot be Mayday's 'comrades' because they increasingly act and sound like the enemy, although their spin won't wash with the Mayday group.

5. BTM have suggested that Mayday's actions were a conspiracy plotted by one person. This theory is dumb since there are no facts or evidence to support it. If one checks the facts one will find such a conspiracy to be "all spin and fabrication a corporate PR company would pay good money for someone to come up with".

6. BTM's public correspondence on the issue assumes two groups: one are goodies (themselves) whilst Mayday are portrayed as the baddies. BTM are the goodies because most of their spokespersons belong to IMC affiliated local groups. They are using this to promote a self image of being an 'in-group' which implies Mayday is an out-group. Because of this they think they don't need to reflect on what has happened at all. It's automatically assumed that fault always rests with the baddies - those outside the IMC process. This also implies heirarchy: the goodies are naturally above the baddies.


The rest of 2%'s post seems clear enough not to rewrite.

Liscuite


stand behind your words

14.05.2011 23:58

'What does the network offer Mayday and this site besides an infrastructure dominated by a handful of self-important individuals?'

The famous Mayday diplomacy.

Why not post that to imc-communication, and see what it gets you?

not from BTM


Meaningless words?

15.05.2011 04:51

"POU1: 1. The Independent Media Center Network (IMCN) is based upon principles of equality, decentralization and local autonomy. The IMCN is not derived from a centralized bureaucratic process, but from the self-organization of autonomous collectives that recognize the importance in developing a union of networks. "

"POU8: All IMC's are committed to caring for one another and our respective communities both collectively and as individuals and will promote the sharing of resources including knowledge, skills and equipment."

"POU6. All IMC's recognize the importance of process to social change and are committed to the development of non-hierarchical and anti-authoritarian relationships, from interpersonal relationships to group dynamics. Therefore, shall organize themselves collectively and be committed to the principle of consensus decision making and the development of a direct, participatory democratic process] that is transparent to its membership."

The current approach falls far short of these principles.

And here's Bart showing us how it all works:

"the Indymedia network cannot let this happen so we have to *force* them to give it back or break off any
contact."
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/new-imc/2011-May/0513-3p.html

And his rather sad little attempt at *force* is to turn POU8 on its head and create another stalemate. Having created the initial one by demanding that mayday admits it betrayed its users. Which we didn't do. His remedy is the exact opposite of POU8.

"We also support the withdrawal of all privileges concerning Indymedia
infrastructure and all Indymedia resources for all members of the Mayday
collective. This comprises root access and admin privileges on Indymedia
servers, membership of global working groups, control of infrastructure and
the like."
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-May/0506-uz.html

and expanded by JimDog:

"* That should the deadline pass without the domain being handed over,
all further access to global indymedia resources including mailing
lists, irc, docs.indymedia.org and DNS is denied to the group currently
holding the domain (the mayday collective) until this handover has taken
place"
 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-process/2011-May/0508-hq.html

Clearly I've been thinking about this a lot. Right now the newswire is running and everyone knows where to find it. The agreement was based on a.indymedia.org which is now mayday.indymedia.org. Bart prevented that from happening and has since been the key person in getting the measures in place to *force* compliance. It isn't going to work. We aren't affiliated, therefore don't have a say and therefore would be mad to hand control of this wires domain to a network that leaves us outside of its "anti-authoritarian", "non hierarchical" "direct, participatory democratic process". We are not going to move the newswire from url to url to url to appease those who patently don't give a damn about it.

I note that you couldn't offer an answer to the question "'What does the network offer Mayday and this site besides an infrastructure dominated by a handful of self-important individuals?"

other than to suggest I post it to a list so that self-same self-important individuals can become apopleptic.

I'm sure they'll read it here.

If you can think of a reason why I should pretend that I have respect for a rigged bureaucratic process do let me know. And if you can think of something positive that the network offers the site, let me know as well. Because I really can't see what it is!

ftp


What I don't get

15.05.2011 07:20

Sorry if this is a stupid question, but can someone explain what all this 'locked out' business is about?

Maybe I've not understood it properly, but this issue is about two groups of people who've found they can't work together, right? So they decide to split (or fork or whatever) into two different projects.

If it's BeTheMedia people complaining about being 'locked out' from being able to moderate the site and do other admin tasks, I don't get why do they want to have log-ins to admin on Mayday's site? Surely they want to be getting on with their own project? And if they had log-ins before May 1st, weren't they going to lose these anyway when the fork happened, otherwise what would be the point of the fork? Or is Mayday locking its own collective members out?

I'm sure I read somewhere that the site as it was still exists, frozen in time, with all log-ins intact and just the new copy that's being run by Mayday that's moved. It doesn't make any sense to me for BeTheMedia to be having log-ins on Mayday's site.... does it? Whassit all about?

There's also been a lot of talk about 'theft' and 'stealing' the domain indymedia.org.uk. Seems to me that, irrespective of any factional interests, the moral 'owner' of indymedia.org.uk in a collective, non-hierarchical world is the site that lives at that address and has lived there for a very long time. I can understand how a group following the capitalist, property-owning model might try to get the website evicted from its home, and how activists might want to take steps to prevent that from happening, like putting decent locks on the doors with keys only given to trusted people, but what I don't understand is how BeTheMedia has got itself into this role of landlord seeking eviction.

Guys! (and wimmin!): If you want to work on a different project, you just go and do it. Trying to stop the project that's been doing what it does for years from continuing to live in its own home because you want to use its house for your new project is not on... from where this indymedia uk user is standing anyway.

Miss N Something


What's Missin'

15.05.2011 08:39

Competition is what is missing from this whole debate!

There seems to be no mention of it anywhere yet it is key to understanding what is going on. Perhaps it's just not politically correct to mention it round here in these halls of anticapitalism.

Never mind what high and mighty principles either side may quote the split means the two groups are now in competition with each other. Mayday says that BTM want the UK site shut down and of course they do. But they can't admit that publicly because it's against the hallowed "Principles of Unity", against the ideals of consensus etc.

The Mayday group serious direct competition for their own site since it's offering almost exactly the same thing. If the Mayday site succeeds as the continuation of the busiest UK activist site and one of the best Indymedia site then the BTM bods will have just walked away from it and left themselves only with only the local sites. That would be a dramatic step down in both activist and Indymedia status.

So to get things as level as possible before the May 1st split each side required certain conditions:

BTM wanted the main url to point to the splash page and wanted Mayday to use a different name - that is not use "UK Indymedia".

Mayday wanted to continue to be an affiliated IMC just as they had been when working as UK IMCistas.


When Mayday's requirement wasn't met they blocked the agreement going ahead and wanted it postponed. BTM ignored that and just carried on regardless. After all if they could get away with it the Mayday (old UK) site would be removed from links from all global Indymedia sites which would give them a competitive edge.

Now how much either side predicted what the other would do is open to speculation. BTM seem have predicted Mayday's response (see above) which was none too hard. After all if you push activists around they usually push back. If BTM can now promote themselves as whiter than white in this whole affair the rest of Indy network will side with them and give them a considerable advantage. But that may be negated as long as Mayday continue to hold on to the domain name.

So if one looks this mess in terms of good old fashioned straightforward competition the whole thing becomes a lot clearer. As 2%'s comment above said all the BS about principles of unity is just for PR effect and self justification.

Liscuite


Its all about the visitors

15.05.2011 13:16

Absolutely.

Indymedia UK has an existing large readership with a high number of returning visitors.

That is worth a lot. If the domain was put on the open-market, it would likely sell for 10,000s because it receives a lot of traffic each month. To start a new site, and build up that traffic is a long, slow, risky business that requires a lot of work and many years.

Mayday and BeTheMedia are battling over who gets that traffic to the site that they maintain.
Nothing more.

The indymedia.org.uk domain has a high monetary and readership value.
Who can blame them for squabbling - I know i would do the same?!

Roadeo


a little history

15.05.2011 15:16

Historical analogy here might be useful. When Czechoslovakia split into Česká republika and Slovakia, there was a dispute about flags. Both sides agreed that, since there was no more Czechoslovakia, neither side should get the Czechoslovakian flag. Slovakia then announced what their new flag would look like. And then Česká republika went back on the agreement and announced they'd use the old Czechoslovakian flag after all. It was purely a case of "you can't stop us." Purely a power issue.

Bethemedia and Mayday agreed that neither one would get the Czechoslovakian flag, because they agreed at Bradford that there is no more Indymedia UK. Bethemedia set up their new site at their new URL. Mayday then decided "you can't stop us" and, rather than pointing 'uk.indymedia.org' to the mutually agreed site, pointed it to their own. Purely a power grab.

Now Mayday is making noises about how it really doesn't care what Indymedia thinks. But it's looking like Indymedia thinks it stinks.

There is still time for Mayday to correct its course.

not from BTM


Re: Purely a power grab

15.05.2011 15:39

> Bethemedia set up their new site at their new URL.
> Mayday then decided "you can't stop us" and, rather
> than pointing 'uk.indymedia.org' to the mutually
> agreed site, pointed it to their own. Purely a power
> grab.

Simply not true.

This is how an activist from Germany has described it:

> the Bradford Agreement (1) clearly states that the UK
> site forks into "a.indymedia.org" domains (meaning domains within the
> indymedia network). Hence, I can understand Mayday's frustrations that
> when they did not only experience severe hickups with their new-imc
> process, but that they were also not successful in being heard and
> understood on the global lists (process and communication). This
> includes the failed effort from IMC Scottland on IMC Process (2), which
> was formulated as a 'block', but actually seemed to have been meant more
> as a proposal to extend the 1 May deadline. In retrospective, this could
> actually have helped to de-escalate the whole situation, but
> unfortunatly was regarded as a an invalid 'block' instead of a new
> proposal under a wrong heading (3).

 http://lists.indymedia.org/pipermail/imc-mayday-collective/2011-May/0514-31.html

Mayday and Sheffield and Birmingham and Scotland all tried to stop the 1st May fork because they didn't have an indymedia.org domain to move to.

BTM chose to ignore these blocks even though they knew that by doing this they could cause in the situation we have now.

They didn't have to start archiving the site in the middle of the night on 1st May but they chose to because of their desperation to get this site shutdown and some of it's traffic directed to their bethemedia.org.uk site.

They knew what the consequences would probably be.

Perhaps BTM didn't understand to what extent the Mayday Collective were committed to the users of this site over and above any committment to the global Indymedia Network, perhaps they though that threats from global authorities would be enough to convince the Mayday Collective to abandon the UK activist community, perhaps they though this because they are more concerned with global authorities than they are with the UK activist community (perhaps this explains why they wanted to hush up the 303 cop posts).

Perhaps BTM didn't realise the extent to which the Mayday Collective has been immunised to the effect of disinformation (they have been fighting disinfo, day in, day out, for years, where as some people in BTM have actively supported disinfo against this site) -- so when the BTM trolls try to use disinfo against Mayday it doesn't work, they see straight through it. And futhermore when they see the same tactics being used by BTM that they have seen used by state/corporate disinformation campaigns they can't help but wonder: which side is BTM is really on?

BeTheDisinfo


Deniers and hand wavers

15.05.2011 18:25

How was starting the fork on May 1st in the face of active dissent from UK collectives not in breach of POU8?

And I quote POU8 so as you know what it says

" 8. All IMC's are committed to caring for one another and our respective communities both collectively and as individuals"

And if you just continue to hand wave then.
I'll just keep repeating it.

2%


I think I speak for the majority of indymedia.org.uk site user when I say...

15.05.2011 20:37

...SORt IT OUT, you twats!

denis o'neil
mail e-mail: allsortsd@yahoo.co.uk


@ roadeo

15.05.2011 21:02

I think you're onto it.

If things work out BTM's way, then both prongs of the fork benefit equally from the website they've all built together over the last decade.

If things work out Mayday's way, then one prong - mayday - gets all the benefit and the other is left out in the cold, having been shafted by Mayday even as Mayday keeps saying "POU8! POU8!"

Of COURSE Mayday is going to do whatever they can to convince as many people as possible that their solution is the most just.

But it isn't.

got it in one


Still Avoiding the Question

15.05.2011 22:14

How was starting the fork on May 1st in the face of active dissent from UK collectives not in breach of POU8?

And I quote POU8 so as you know what it says

" 8. All IMC's are committed to caring for one another and our respective communities both collectively and as individuals"

And if you just continue to hand wave then.
I'll just keep repeating it.

2%


got it in one ain't got it

16.05.2011 07:03

got it in one said: 'If things work out BTM's way, then both prongs of the fork benefit equally from the website they've all built together over the last decade. If things work out Mayday's way, then one prong - mayday - gets all the benefit and the other is left out in the cold, having been shafted by Mayday even as Mayday keeps saying "POU8! POU8!" '

That's not quite true though, is it? If things had worked out the way the Bradford agreement envisaged, then both prongs of the fork would have enjoyed the traffic from the uk indy website. But BTM tried to force through the agreement in a situation where mayday and what was in effect the uk site (albeit rebranded at the insistence of BTM that the uk site could not be allowed to continue) would have been pushed out of the global indymedia network.

BTM's insistence on forging ahead with the fork regardless prompted mayday to take action.

Of COURSE BTM is going to do whatever they can to convince as many people as possible that their solution is the most just.

Doesn't make it true though.

getting it


What BTM don't understand is...

16.05.2011 17:20

People wouldn't be heading over to the BTM site from the splash page anyway because they want an OPEN-newswire that covers the entire UK, not pre-selected news, (akin to the current features section), from certain parts of the UK!

I want to publish news articles that are relevant to the entire UK, and I want there to be some chance that people from all over the UK will read those news articles that I have worked so hard to produce...rather than publish it on a regional site and hope that the BTM editors deem it cool enough to be published on their site.

I've said it before and I'll say it again. I DON'T trust any of you, and the Gateway 303 scandal is beyond belief, but at least on the current IM-UK site, (now referred to as MayDay or whatever else you want to call it), I can get my news out into cyber-space and hope that it's picked up by others,..as well as using IM-UK as a platform that I can link to when using social media to spread the word.

I have been checking the BTM site but there's never much news of interest, (especially as this site already aggregates news from the Regional IM sites), so much as they have a tantrum about "traffic" and "hits" they should understand that because a link is available doesn't mean people are going to click it regularly!

The "hits" and "traffic" they're so upset about come from real people with real opinions, and from what I can tell the people that generate the traffic are voting with their mice and using IM-UK...not because they don't know about the BTM site but because it doesn't fit their wants/needs!

Even if IM-UK is shut down, it doesn't mean that people are going to start hitting the BTM instead, because they are 2 different entities...a bit like chocolate and vanilla, and unfortunately for BTM people simply don't like the flavour they're offering!

What annoys me most about this dispute is that nobody asked the site users' opinions first, and BTM seem to be the most guilty in this respect because they're still decrying MayDay's actions and assuming that if the splash-page was in place then they'd have thousands more hits each month.

I don't know anybody on either side of this dispute, and my position is based solely on personal preference, but I'd suggest putting the splash-page back in place and showing BTM the outcome, although it just hinders the majority of users who want to come to this site and post their news with extra clicks!

What I'd suggest instead is to put a BIG and prominent link to the BTM site on the front page, so at least everyone can check out their site and make up their own minds about it..which will see a spike in BTM hits for around a month and then a steady drop off as people realise that all the BTM news, plus plenty more, is available on the IM-UK site, (including comments etc)!

A. User


Analogy

16.05.2011 19:58

indymedia.org.uk == www.google.co.uk
bethemedia.org.uk == www.cuil.com

I'm sure that Cuil would have liked to shut Google down and have a splash page pointing to themselves too. But it didn't happen. Cuil failed because it wasn't as good as google.

If BeTheMedia.co.uk want to increase their visitor numbers then it is completely feasible.
Make it better than indymedia.org.uk and the site will become a natural success. Cram it full of compelling, in-depth, regular, unique and interesting content with an engaging web2.0 experience and I can't see how they would fail.

Good sites and naturally successful.

In fact, it is good that indymedia has some competition as it will raise the bar in terms of the quality of content. I think the biggest fault with indymedia at the moment is you have to wade through all the inaccurate garbage that is 1000s of lines long. I'm talking about the articles like global research and dandelion salad. Some of those posts of 30,000 letters long and are just a huge cut and paste affair. Really low grade content-mill stuff. That and the conspiracy theory stuff.... I'd happily move to another site if I didn't have to get annoyed by all the bullshit.

anon


The truth about bethemedia!

17.05.2011 19:04

One thing that isn't being discussed here so far is what will be the consequence of IMC UK being linked to the bethemedia site which is aggregating content from a range of other sources.

In case you hadn't noticed, the Google search engine has recently penalised websites that aggregate content from other sites, but which do not publish content which is original. This comes in the form of something called the Google Panda update and is designed to remove or de-rank sites which do not offer original content to their users.

Google 'Panda' update downgrades UK tech sites - and Microsoft's Ciao
 http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/pda/2011/apr/13/google-panda-uk-update-winners-losers

High-quality sites algorithm goes global, incorporates user feedback
 http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.com/2011/04/high-quality-sites-algorithm-goes.html

Bethemedia fits into the schematic of a website that does not offer original content and so is very very likely to be penalised by Google and as a site, it will be shoved down the ranking tables. If a splash page is placed at the head of the UK Indymedia site, for instance at the landing page, and it links to a site that fits in with the Panda update, then Indymedia is almost certainly likely to find its global ranking being severely affected as a result.

This de-ranking could prove fatal to IMC UK's overall ranking and will mean potentially thousands of pages on a whole range of subjects will suddenly drop out of the overall search engine metrics leaving the MSM "IMC FREE" in search engine results to dictate how things are seen by the public. On any given search term, Indymedia UK is as popular as any MSM title and ranks just as well.

This is likely to have very serious consequences for IMC UK on subjects such as the Iraq war, in which IMC UK played a significant role over how the internet surfing public viewed this conflict. Imagine what will happen in every single page linked to Indymedia UK is suddenly dropped by five or ten pages for every single instance of the phrase "Iraq War"!

Very odd that bethemedia should appear at the same time as the Panda update, very strange that Mayday should be "encouraged" to go it alone and very strange that Mayday should find its application through new process blocked by somebody called "Bart". Very very strange that bethemedia should have blindly refused to assist Mayday when the block had been revealed.

Game over.


My Tuppance

19.05.2011 10:00


OK, been following this for a while and I have been unsure and unwilling to take a position up until now. Basically the Panda thing has tipped it for me Now I am not going to go as far as the poster has, s/he has insinuated that some kind of conspiracy has taken place. Anyone can find synchronicity in events, and point to dark forces at play, but the problem is this is an argument from ignorance. And you don't really have any evidence - you can paint any picture you like by connecting the dots, ain't necessarily the right one; you are making the same logical fallacies that the truth movement make. There is a lot of stuff recently published about dealing with police infiltrators in the wake of the Mark Kennedy affair, and spreading rumours is a no no. That said there is always a possibility of state sabotage, but go about it the right way.
Right back to the point: I support Indymedia and (slightly critically) the Mayday collective, I place above all the importance of having our own media, that shows up high in searches on google, for me, that is the whole point. However, there is still an issue for me, and that is they grey area, which I am guessing has been part of the issue of the split which is the cack which finds it's way on the newswire, and is not hidden. for arguments sake let's take truther rants as an example, many postings are old ideas and rants that have been around for a long time, lifted from other websites, to point users to other websites.

Proposals/ideas
Would it be possible, instead of hiding these Grey articles, to have another page/s where these articles can be moved to, I have not fully thought through how these other pages could be named, a few ideas come to mind: 'Controversial issues', or 'personal opinion/rants' Perhaps you can think of better titles. I am just trying to think of a way that the open news wire can contain the important stuff I think we all want to see - action updates, protest/event reports and news (it's a news wire) that can be visible on the main page.

Thinking about it more, it may be the case that you don't often have to move articles, but the uploader can pick a category placing it on the relevant page, moderators can then from time to time move or hide or promote articles as necessary.

Anyways, it would need a lot more thought, but there it is.

Long live UK Indy!

just a Reg poster.


Freedom is a conspiracy.

20.05.2011 02:48

"s/he has insinuated that some kind of conspiracy has taken place."

Had the splash page remained, the damage to IMC UK would have already been done by now.

The post mortem would be going on right now and I'm quite sure bethemedia would now be claiming any blame directed at it to be 'conspiracy theories'!

Instead, they are bitterly protesting that they are locked out altogether and are bleeding from the eyeballs in anger at the global IMC's trying to get them to shut Mayday down.

I know what you are saying about truthers, in a lot of ways I agree with you. But in my experience there is truth in everything.

But as far as bethemedia is concerned what pings on my radar is lack of concern for Indymedia UK throughout this entire affair. That for me is enough to warrant suspicion over its motives.

Add that to their low quality 'aggregator' website, in addition to it being attached onto the UK home page, in addition to happening at precisely the same moment the worlds largest search indexing bot penalises this kind of site and, well...

The odds are good enough for me!

Game Over


Google Rankings for 'Be The Media' and 'UK Indymedia'

20.05.2011 12:56

'Be The Media' Google Search Results - Page 5
'Be The Media' Google Search Results - Page 5

'UK Indymedia' Google Search Results - Page 1
'UK Indymedia' Google Search Results - Page 1

The Google Panda stuff is interesting but without evidence that any Be The Media activists knew about about it in December 2010 it's just "circumstantial evidence",  https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Circumstantial_evidence

However here is some actual evidence, the Google search results for "Be The Media", top hit page 5 and the Google search results for "UK Indymedia" page 1.

Try these yourself:

 https://encrypted.google.com/search?q=be+the+media

 https://encrypted.google.com/search?q=uk+indymedia

SEO


Further More Regarding Google

20.05.2011 13:09

Google Search Results for 'Indymedia' - Page 1
Google Search Results for 'Indymedia' - Page 1

The Be The Media activists decided to link to the UK Indymedia site from the splash page using the  http://www.maydaymedia.org/ web address.

It seems that this address was registered by the Mayday Collective but they never decided to use it for the site as they wanted to remain within Indymedia and use mayday.indymedia.org.

If you search for "Mayday Media" in Google the site can't be found in the first 27 results pages, I got bored at that point, perhaps it's on page 28, who knows, who is going to look that hard before giving up?

 https://encrypted.google.com/search?q=Mayday+Media

Further more if you search simply for "Indymedia" the UK Indymedia site is on the first page of results:

 https://encrypted.google.com/search?q=indymedia

There seems to be no good reason to destroy the findability this site by moving it off indymedia.org.uk and it shouldn't be done.

SEO


It is

30.05.2011 13:15

"And they talk about it here as if it were a permanent closure to open publishing in the UK."

But that's exactly what it is, isn't it? The justification being the use of open publishing by cops, fascists and other disrupters. We are assumed to lack the gumption to spot or ignore them.

Certainly there is still open publishing on some local or regional sites, but..

For how long?

What if you don't live in those areas?

Stroppyoldgit


What -and who- is IM for anyway?

30.05.2011 15:23

“You're actually just thieving toerags and people who are killing Indymedia with your crazy power grab.”

Leaving aside the inflammatory language, what IS Indymedia? For me and for most people it’s the open newswire and open comments, available and relevant to EVERYONE on this island, not just those in a few places or regions.

BeTheMedia wishes to kill that, and their boring site comprising only material I can find elsewhere and a list of events and actions which is usually not up to date is no substitute. So who IS trying to kill Indymedia?

BTM are sometimes honest about their wish to kill the open newswire for the reasons I stated above (intrusion by cops, fascists and conspiracy loons). The reasons are valid, but euthanasia is not the answer.

@ Just a Reg poster suggests an answer, but is anybody listening? Anybody interested in refining it and working it out? Anyone got a better idea? Apparently not because as (s)he says:

“What annoys me most about this dispute is that nobody asked the site users' opinions first..”

@ A User

“what I don't understand is how BeTheMedia has got itself into this role of landlord seeking eviction”.

A very apt analogy. BTM remind me of the sort of landlord which would rather bulldoze a community garden or tatty old building where a useful and imaginative social centre flourishes (despite some faults and going through the occasional bad patch). With the site reduced to unsightly rubble and securely fenced, they then proceed to erect a dull corporate building on the other side of the road.

Has anyone thought how disheartening the BTM approach is for all the people who don’t live in big cities or in regions with IMCs? Rather than posing the questions:

What’s going on where you live?
Why not investigate and expose it here?
Better still, get together with your friends, DO something about it and tell us all what happened on the newswire.

their attitude just says:

You live where? Never heard of it. You don’t count.

Stroppyoldgit


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