Mon 3 Feb 2014 7:41AM

Loomio -> liquid feedback

BV Ben Vidulich Public Seen by 266

So I notice Loomio have released their source code:


This could be a good opportunity to create a liquid democracy platform.


Hubat McJuhes Mon 3 Feb 2014 9:52AM

I took the liberty to change the description slightly to express more clearly what you seem to want to say. Unfortunately I don't seem to be able to do the same to the title.
I understand you would like to encourage people to join in the development of loomeo towards implementing core aspects of the concept of liquid democracy. It surely will not become liquid feedback, though, as this is the name of a particular other implementation of those concepts.
But the title as it stands now suggests you would actually want to dump loomeo and switch to liquid feedback instead (which I would passionately support once we reach a certain number of members).

Nevertheless, loomeo is written in Ruby on Rails which is a language I always wanted to play with.

Thank you, folks of loomeo, for opening up your code. This is very, very cool.


Andrew Reitemeyer Mon 3 Feb 2014 6:47PM

LF is being developed and improved by a lot of different groups. IMO we should not spend too much effort in duplicating what others are already doing. That said if it is fun then go for it.


Craig Magee Mon 3 Feb 2014 9:50PM

Implementing and maintaining our own fork would require a lot of dedicated effort for very little in return.
The platform is here and we are using it. If another platform is seen to suit us better we can switch to that. Developing and long-term maintenance of our own platform is unlikely to be stable and secure given our size and resources.

Learning they use Ruby on Rails makes me really pleased we didn't go with the hassle of hosting our own Loomio instance!


Danyl Strype Wed 5 Feb 2014 2:11AM

Loomio has been free code/ open source from the start. It was one of the main reasons I supported Pirates trialling it. If people want to contribute code to Loomio, that’s great, and I’m sure the code team would welcome any patches or plug-ins you might want to write.

However, I’m not sure there’s anything you can achieve with delegative voting which can’t be achieved by efficient use of subgroups. I think once more members actually spend some time doing serious decision-making work in Loomio, as the Board did last year, you will get a better sense of what a powerfully simple platform it is.

How about we trial that by setting up a Candidates subgroup to formalize candidates for electorates in the coming election? Any decisions made would have to be approved by the Board and/or an MMORPG/ SGM, but it would give us a set of serious decisions to test Loomio with.


Poll Created Wed 5 Feb 2014 2:17AM

Set up a Candidates subgroup to formalize electorate candidates for the General Election Closed Wed 12 Feb 2014 10:08AM

by Danyl Strype Tue 25 Apr 2017 5:22AM

The responses to this proposal reveals some very different understandings of how Loomio will be used to make Party decisions. This clearly needs more discussion.

I propose that we set up a Candidates subgroup to formalize electorate candidates for the General Election. These candidates would still have to be signed off by the Board or a general meeting. Local chapters should be given some ability to endorse or reject potential candidates based on local knowledge, but the best way to do this would be for their members to participate in the thread on their electorate in the Candidates subgroup.


Results Option % of points Voters
Agree 20.0% 2 DS BK
Abstain 30.0% 3 CM HM AB
Disagree 50.0% 5 AR DU TF DP RU
Block 0.0% 0  

10 of 43 people have voted (23%)


Danyl Strype
Wed 5 Feb 2014 2:20AM

I see this as a group of serious decisions which need to be made ASAP, but with plenty of rigour (we don't have want any David Hay debacles). Making these decisions via Loomio will encourage more member participation here, and test its usefulness.


Craig Magee
Wed 5 Feb 2014 2:31AM

We have an open-platform, we have an election. Let's see Loomio in action.


David Peterson
Wed 5 Feb 2014 7:11AM

Extra work for no extra benefit. It can be simpler.


Andrew Reitemeyer
Wed 5 Feb 2014 11:19PM

The local chapter should have the say in candidate selection. After all they are the ones who will be campaigning for that candidate. It is nothing to do with the board. Objections should go to the full party.
Does not apply to list candidates.


Tommy Fergusson
Thu 6 Feb 2014 8:33AM

Would need to see someone reliable volunteer to run this right up to the election. If there's no credible plan ready to implement it then it's a dream, not a decision.


Tommy Fergusson
Thu 6 Feb 2014 8:34AM

Would need to see someone reliable volunteer to run & cheerlead this right up to the election. If there's no credible plan ready to implement it then it's a dream, not a decision.


Craig Magee
Fri 7 Feb 2014 5:31AM

I'd like to see more details on what the process will be, Loomio could potentially be a part of that as a discussion platform for the membership base. Not everything here has to voted on or created with the intention of voting/deciding something.


Hubat McJuhes
Fri 7 Feb 2014 8:41AM

What Andrew says...


Adam Bullen
Sun 9 Feb 2014 9:24AM

After reading what Andrew said, I agree, but there should still be some central oversight to vet the candidates put forward by the local chapters.


Hubat McJuhes
Tue 11 Feb 2014 10:38AM

If we leave the decision making to the members and leave the board alone, this could work out alright.
Otherwise what Andrew says...


[deactivated account]
Tue 11 Feb 2014 11:56AM

Andrew R is correct. Local support for candidates is more important than national support. For that reason, I would suggest that we do not need a national group to manage a local process.


David Peterson Wed 5 Feb 2014 7:10AM

Why all the formality, paper work, busy work??

It is hardly as if we're going to have a large number of candidates we need to process and choose from!

If it is more than can count on my fingers I'll be astonished!! :-o

In harsh reality, it is likely I'll be able to count all our 2014 candidates on one hand. More or less, we'll take anybody who volunteers and stumps up the cash! (so long as they don't set off any obvious alarm bells)


Craig Magee Wed 5 Feb 2014 7:24AM

We have to do it somewhere, why not here?


Danyl Strype Wed 5 Feb 2014 4:50PM


Why all the formality, paper work, busy work?? <<

David, are you saying that we shouldn't have a formal process for choosing candidates?!? If not Loomio, how would you propose these decisions be made? Unilaterally by the Board? By the 4 person majority you are so scared of at MMORPG?

Little reality check my brother. Running a serious political party is a huge amount of work. Like it or lump it.


Danyl Strype Sun 9 Feb 2014 10:39PM

I'm all for local autonomy, and where there are local chapters/ branches, they should certainly drive the selection process as @andrewreitemeyer says. But what if there is no local chapter, just one person who becomes a member and puts themselves forward as a candidate? Potential electorate candidates are putting themselves forward to represent the Party and the membership, and I agree with @adambullen that the membership should have some oversight. Loomio seems like the logical way to do that.


Rob Ueberfeldt Mon 10 Feb 2014 1:04AM

I would have thought to be a chapter or branch you would need enough members to be incorporated. That is how we set NORML branched back in the day, make them legal entities. It stops fly by night stuff happening. Getting the requisite numbers for incorporation and having secretary, treasurer, chairperson positions is not easy as we haven't managed it yet. :)


David Peterson Mon 10 Feb 2014 1:45AM

@Strypey, @tommyfergusson nailed my point.

As it is a bunch of busy work for a small gain we'd need volunteers to do this, so until then this is a "nice to have" dream rather than an actual decision that can be made.

I've made this point a few times, we need to keep our dreams in check with reality, and not try to behave like a big well resourced party when we can't because we're tiny.


Hubat McJuhes Mon 10 Feb 2014 9:25AM

But you do know about the wellington branch being incorporated, don't you, @robueberfeldt ?


Rob Ueberfeldt Mon 10 Feb 2014 9:11PM

I do indeed don't know. Excellent to hear. Though odd to have a branch do it before the national body!


Danyl Strype Tue 11 Feb 2014 2:45AM

It seems petty to block the creation of a subgroup to discuss issues around candidates out of fear that nobody will use it. Even if that happened (and I think it unlikely) what's the worst that could happen? David raised exactly the same sorts of objection to inviting the membership to use Loomio at all.


David Peterson Tue 11 Feb 2014 11:35AM

@strypey , you make a serious habit of putting the horse before the cart.

Get the local membership in place first!

Perhaps the Wellington region though could have some kind of local membership level of selection first, but for the rest of the country to do so would be quite ridiculous.

As we're small, we really should just keep this all at a country wide level involving everybody rather than fragmenting it down further for no real reason.

As for your other point, I objected to Loomio on the basis of a whole host of other reasons, which I won't be going into here.


Danyl Strype Tue 11 Feb 2014 10:42PM

Note: By "subgroup" I'm referring to a feature in Loomio. As with the Policy subgroup, every member on Loomio would be a member of that subgroup unless they didn't want to. It's just a way to keep all discussions of a certain type in one place where they can be easily found. If a discussion thead could work through more than one decision at a time, I would just propose having a discussion thead on candidates, but as it stands, this would create a bottleneck.

we really should just keep this all at a country wide level involving everybody

This is exactly what I'm proposing! A Loomio subgroup would allow members to discuss all candidate decisions in one place. This would include party list rankings and candidates in electorates with no formalized chapter.

Objections should go to the full party.

How else do you propose an objection should go to the full party, and a decision made, other than by Loomio?


Hubat McJuhes Wed 12 Feb 2014 9:18AM

I suggest to start a new proposal once the current one will be closing in one hour, that is about opening a group for discussing those matters but refrains from suggesting who should have a final saying.
I would happily agree then.


Hubat McJuhes Fri 11 Jul 2014 1:22PM

Back to the original matter of this thread:
The fine people of liquidfeedback.org have just released version 3 of LiquidFeedback. I find it very appealing, actually.

Here is the link to a demo instance to have a play with it:


Andrew Reitemeyer Sat 12 Jul 2014 7:04PM

Myfirst impression is a much better design - more intuitive and less clunky


Hubat McJuhes Wed 23 Jul 2014 12:48AM

Alana from the loomio team has opened a discussion on the loomio user group that is described like this:

*There’s a free online class from Coursera called Making Better Group Decisions: Voting, Judgement Aggregation and Fair Division, which I have signed up for.

Since by definition many people in the Loomio community are interested in this topic, I was wondering if anyone else might want to sign up and we could host a studygroup here on Loomio, which other people who aren’t able to take the course could also learn from.

Details: Starts 25 August, goes for 7 weeks, requires 1-3 hours/week of study time. The instructor is Eric Pacult of the University of Maryland.

EDIT: There’s a bunch of people interested (yay!) so I’ll set up a subgroup for us before the course begins and we can use it for our study group. If you’re interested, go ahead and sign up for the course and make yourself known in this thread so I know to add you.

If you are interested, sign up with the course
and check the loomio group:


Danyl Strype Tue 6 Oct 2015 4:10PM

Here's an interesting article quoting comments from the creator of the Liquid Democracy concept. Apparently the way LiquidFeedback works is "delegative democracy", not "liquid democracy". What the author describes sounds closer to how Loomio works.


Hubat McJuhes Wed 21 Oct 2015 8:31AM

@strypey the link in the above comment is broken. Any idea?


Danyl Strype Fri 18 Mar 2016 3:16AM

Funny, it's working fine for me. Try again?


Hubat McJuhes Sat 19 Mar 2016 1:57AM

Funny, today it worked for me as well. Must have been user error. Indeed a helpful little article. Thanks and Cheers.