Fri 17 Apr 2020 1:20PM

BuyTwitter Retrospective

ST Sam Toland Public Seen by 148

Hi Folks,

I'm just going through my Loomio groups and leaving those that I don't use anymore. And looking at one or two groups that were once a buzz of activity, but have since lapsed.

The #BuyTwitter campaign was a seminal movement in my own online life - I learned a lot about online and emergent organising (and the many opportunities and challenges therein) and meet a lot of great people who I am still in contact with today (and many of whom I ended up meeting IRL).

Before I leave this group - I wanted to start a thread, and maybe give people an opportunity to reflect on the #BuyTwitter campaign, signpost initiatives that came out of it and talk about the other successes of the campaign.

Chance to reconnect with the ideas behind the campaign, the people and the live initiatives that are ongoing with the same ethos and spirit.

Looking forward to hearing from you all.


James McRitchie Fri 17 Apr 2020 1:36PM

I tried to help the nascent group as best I could. I hope to file a few proposals next year around the idea of employee advisory panels… perhaps combined with or as a separate initiatives something around user groups. These could provide a foothold to expanding ownership and board representation opportunities for employees (more promising) and users (less likely).

UK and Ireland would seem to have more fertile ground, since there are already some statutes that at least touch on the issues. However, I have no idea what mechanisms there are to push there, whereas here I am very familiar with the shareholder proposal process.

Best wishes; stay safe, — Jim

James McRitchieShareholder AdvocateCorporate GovernanceSite: http://www.corpgov.net mail: [email protected]: 916-869-2402


Tom McDonough Fri 17 Apr 2020 1:59PM

The financing option that I put forward was the standard leveraged-buyout that has proven viable on Wall Street for decades and would have been viable at Twitter's stock price at that time. However, the anarchists in the group didn't want anything to do with Wall Street and proposed to Twitter's board that the stockholders surrender the $3 billion value of the stock due to the purity and beauty of our cause. Of course, this ludicrous proposal was not accepted.


Nathan Schneider Fri 17 Apr 2020 6:10PM

Thanks so much for starting this, Sam. The campaign was extremely influential in my own work, and my current efforts around "exit to community" (ioo.coop/exit-to-community) have been very much oriented toward making something like BT more possible and available. See, for instance, the introduction to this essay on "user trusts" to see where I'm seeing BuyTwitter has having contributed to a longer narrative of developments.


John Richmond Mon 20 Apr 2020 12:24AM

Thanks for the invite Sam. I loved this campaign and it got me super excited about platform co-ops. I think the model has plenty of potential and I am exploring it in the world of patient and family empowerment in health care and long term care. Perhaps as we all shift to a more -on-line world and AI really takes off we will see new opportunities in platform co-ops.


Manuela Bosch Tue 21 Apr 2020 2:51PM

For me participating in #BuyTwitter was meaningful in so many different ways. It's been my entry point into the universe of cooperative digital global organizing and it connected me to my purpose of contributing to reclaiming the commons in creative peaceful ways... creative systems hacking. It inspired the collaborationincubator.net project and connected me with various communities and networks I feel still part of today, like the Platform Coops, Social.Coop and recently DGOV. But what I always value most are the friendships and shared adventures that resultet out of this. THANK YOU.


Sophie Jerram Mon 27 Apr 2020 6:54AM

Dear Sam thanks for starting this thread - it's great to recall the moments when Twitter was looking shaky. I was only involved peripherally at the beginning but as a founding director of the Loomio company I was really inspired - my imagination was fully stretched about what was possible with the platform/ how it was possible to reach people over the seas with the same values base. It has certainly been a reference point for Loomio's history to my mind. Kia kaha (go forward with pride) from Aotearoa New Zealand.