Sat 11 Apr 2020 1:48PM

Murmurations protocol

OS Oli SB Public Seen by 203

Given it's unlikely we will ever all (want to) collaborate on the same 'platform' it seems essential to develop an open protocol to share information about and between all the various projects and organisations that are working to build the commons.

Murmurations is an initial attempt to create such a protocol...


Oli SB Sat 11 Apr 2020 2:04PM

Hi All,

As a short introduction I have created the attached graphic which attempts to spell out what Murmurations is all about... and you can read more about the concept on the Murmurations website.

We have built a Wordpress plugin which makes it very easy for anyone running Wordpress to create a Murmurations profile and add their project or organisations to the Index... and now we have built a stand-alone .json file creator to enable anyone running any other type of website to create their profile and add their org / project to the index...

It's early days for this project and we would welcome more collaborators to:

  • Test - by installing the WP plugin

  • Test - by generating and uploading your own .json file

  • Develop example Directories, Maps and feed aggregators (to show the value of the project!)

  • Collaborate on the governance of the open protocol data which Murmurations uses

  • Help build an test more features...

    Most of the work so far has been built by @Adam McKenty who introduced Murmurations at OPEN 2019... but he's a busy chap and it would be great to grow the working group so we can make more progress on this idea. If anyone is up for helping please join the Murmurations working group on Telegram.



Danyl Strype Mon 13 Apr 2020 6:37AM

I love the concept. Curious to learn more and find out if the ideas behind Murmurations can be implemented in ways that are compatible with:

  • ActivityPub (standards for server<>server and server<>client interactions)

  • Solid (standards for separating processes from data)

  • Other existing standards and protocols

EDIT: I've opened a thread about Murmurations on SocialHub.activitypub.rocks.


mike_hales Mon 13 Apr 2020 9:12AM

In the next few days I hope to check out how the json works with a federated wiki site. I need that to be VERY simple 😉 Murmurations is very much a fedwiki-friendly move.


Danyl Strype Tue 14 Apr 2020 1:51PM

@Oli SB can you ask the folks behind Murmurations to respond to this post from an OpenEngiadina dev?



mike_hales Tue 14 Apr 2020 4:59PM

Murmurations responded, in the above thread, not here.


Danyl Strype Wed 15 Apr 2020 1:02AM

All good, it seems this thread is only visible to group members anyway.


Nick Meyne Thu 23 Apr 2020 9:52PM

@Oli SB this is great. It's essential that we combat the 'tyranny of structurelessness' with some simple protocols. Need to be clear on how extension and inter-op might work.


Nick Meyne Thu 23 Apr 2020 10:05PM

If the commons is a network, mesh or fabric, then perhaps the protocol is a bit node-focused? Maybe relationships and interactions need to feature more, in an extension (?) to help navigate, and perhaps even introduce some obligations on participants to define their place on the map: maybe something from this may be useful? https://github.com/nmeyne/dgovmap-navigator


Danyl Strype Thu 25 Jun 2020 2:41PM

I'm not really sure what you mean by "node-focused" or what you're contrasting it with, nor am I clear on what "define their place on the map" means in practice. Can you expand on this?


Danyl Strype Thu 25 Jun 2020 2:37PM

@Oli SB is it possible to make this discussion publicly visible, at least to users logged into loomio.org?


Oli SB Thu 25 Jun 2020 4:38PM

not sure - but it's pretty easy to Join this group via https://www.loomio.org/g/TDO68SZb/the-open-co-op


Oli SB Thu 25 Jun 2020 4:39PM

There is now more detail about Murmurations - and a video from the Presentations and Demos at OPEN 2020 here: https://murmurations.network/blog/


Danyl Strype Fri 26 Jun 2020 12:07AM

This is a fantastic introduction to protocols! Thanks for this Oli. Again, I'm really sad I missed out on participating live.

One little piece of feedback, it's great to see you talking, and your slides as appropriate, but I'm finding the videos of all the listeners really distracting (no offence folks). For the future, I would prefer talk videos to show only the speaker and slides, until the Q&A or open discussion starts.

Blue sky thinking; it would be amazing if BBB could produce webinar recordings where the viewer can choose what to see as they watch; speaker, slides, audience, or a combo thereof.

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Oli SB Wed 1 Jul 2020 12:53PM


Yasuaki Kudo Sun 28 Jun 2020 4:56AM

I am so much in agreement. It seems to me the protocols should be the central part of computing and the Internet but have been almost completely neglected because they are irrelevant or even harmful to those anti-democracy capitalists!


Hakanto Sun 28 Jun 2020 5:05AM

This protocol is a brilliant idea and seems deeply important. During my cooperatives research over the last few months, I've encountered a variety of "solidarity economy" databases which had broken links and various holes (and no clear sense of when they were last updated). Murmurations would truly help, and would significatly ease the workload for those coordinating these kinds of projects.

Is anyone from the Murmurations project in touch with Z of Black Socialists of America who is working on the Dual Power Map? Murmurations may be deeply helpful for that project. Z has recently been added to the Board at Resonate, where I've been doing a lot of brainstorming and analysis of the platform as a user and musician. I'm happy to reach out to Z if the connections yet haven't been made


Oli SB Mon 29 Jun 2020 4:53PM

please do make an intro! you can email me at osb at open dot coop


Hakanto Mon 29 Jun 2020 11:06PM

I'll make a post on the Resonate dev forum and pass the link along to Z there 👍


Yasuaki Kudo Tue 30 Jun 2020 4:02AM


Yasuaki Kudo Tue 30 Jun 2020 6:39AM

I agree with this article. But I would argue that rather than all computer programmer needing to be given some kind if imaginary "certification", we need to have a radically participatory software designing exercise thar comprise of defining Requirements, Protocols, APIs, tests, etc.



RobertD Sun 23 Aug 2020 1:31PM

@Oli SB I’m wondering if the Murmerations team has explored extending the protocol to add some level of descriptions for the products/services offered by each participating entity. I was looking at eclassOWL or Good Relations as potential ways to standardize a JSON-LD extension that might be helpful. Both seem to be based on the international UNSPSC services and product codes taxonomy, and thus might have value for a broad set of communities.

My thought is that this kind of extension could enable aggregators to be built that help organizations better find and explore new economy partnerships for the services they need. I’ve also been pondering on ways to help those whose personal economies have been dramatically impacted by COVID-19 find and explore alternative, cooperative approaches to earn a living, by looking for complementary services they could help grow. This is assuming, of course, that the cooperatives themselves are economically stable and growing.

If the product/services extension seems viable, I think a similar kind of self-service extension might be built for individuals and freelancers own sites that would help match them to available, new economy endeavors.

Have any of these kind of ideas been considered?




Oli SB Tue 1 Sep 2020 12:04PM

HI @RobertD
Yes - we have been thinking about exactly what you mention... We're currently designing an updated version of Murmurations to make it more extensible and with better architecture, this should be done in the next few months... the initial plan is designed to help people 'discover' other people, projects and organisations within the regenerative economy, then in a further phase we aim to enable 'offers' and 'wants' which would enable aggregators to let people search triples ... we now have a dedicated forum for Murmurations at https://murmurations.flarum.cloud/ if you would like to chip in ideas there - and will announce any updates on the blog too
Thanks for thinking about this!



RobertD Tue 1 Sep 2020 12:22PM

Thanks for the update @Oli SB

Glad to hear that. My colleague and I are working on a way to make sense of project descriptions with project needs, which we may be able to contribute at a point when it’s working, both to the protocol and in an intelligent needs-based search aggregator. I’ll take a look at the forum and update progress there.



Oli SB Mon 7 Sep 2020 3:29PM

Just to make it super clear - Murmurations discussions are now taking place at https://murmurations.flarum.cloud/ - get involved if you like ;)


Bob Haugen Mon 7 Sep 2020 6:40PM

Joined via json file. Can see ourselves (mikorizal.org) in the https://murmurations.network/directory/ and on https://murmurations.network/map/ now...but not in the https://murmurations.network/feeds/


Oli SB Mon 7 Sep 2020 7:14PM

cool - good you joined @Bob Haugen :) Did you add an RSS feed in your json profile?


Bob Haugen Mon 7 Sep 2020 7:41PM

Did you add an RSS feed in your json profile?

Yes. Here's the profile: http://mikorizal.org/murmurations_node.json

And the feed: https://write.as/economic-networks/feed/


Oli SB Mon 7 Sep 2020 7:52PM

I just needed to update the feeds :) now I see your "Separating the good from the bad and the ugly…" post Title in the list at https://murmurations.network/feeds/ but there isn't any 'body' copy ... not quite sure why that is...


Bob Haugen Mon 7 Sep 2020 8:05PM

That might be the software I am using. I'll ask if they have any ideas. But thanks for doing the update, looks like we are now murmuring...


Oli SB Fri 23 Oct 2020 10:41AM

Project update about Murmurations V1.0 just published here - If anyone has recommendations for an experienced Javascript developer who might be able to help with Murmurations please let me know... Thanks!


Oli SB Wed 13 Jan 2021 10:03PM

Cross posting here, from Hylo:

I made a start at a G Sheet - mapping out some of the fields various Networks collect for their Members - building on the work A. Keala Young and Ollie Bream McIntosh and others started in the G doc, and the great work from Weaver. The idea is to list out which fields (and ideally the type of field) each Network currently collects, in order to find the common fields we might use to build an interoperable 'Person schema', on the Murmurations Protocol - If anyone wants to add more data for other networks please feel free ;) https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1W3wXW4_GPlYamilWVSaP1yhfipqN7eVJ00saPnau5vI/edit#gid=0

There is already a very core set of fields emerging, but it's also interesting to see the variation in similar fields i.e. the amount of different variations of the "name" field. This highlights the minutiae we are going to have to tackle to make our collective flock dance...


Dmitry Sokolov Mon 18 Jan 2021 7:28PM

hi @Oli SB , what will be the next step?

I tried to match skills and intents of about 20 participants in past - didn't work. Everyone was waiting for others to start doing something.

My experience of building teams tells me that without external force / resources / funding of a capable (collective) subject the chances are very slim.

What are your expectations? Where are we at, towards what goal, with the efforts of what team, supported by what resources?


Dmitry Sokolov Mon 18 Jan 2021 7:31PM

... the project template is made for you a few months ago:


But it seems inactive. Is it because the project is inactive or it has no long term memory, or the memory is realised somewhere else?


Oli SB Tue 19 Jan 2021 3:19PM

My experience of building teams tells me that without external force / resources / funding of a capable (collective) subject the chances are very slim.

I would agree with that! We have a small team working on Murmurations, as volunteers...

You can find us on Telegram mostly... via the link on this page:


What are your expectations?

Where are we at, towards what goal, with the efforts of what team, supported by what resources?

I don't have any expectations here specifically, the above was just by way of a short update.

We are getting very close to launching v1 of the protocol - and when we have I will send another update :)

The goal is huge - The ultimate aim of Murmurations is to accelerate the global transition to the regenerative economy.

I recently added some basic definitions as the start of our Wiki / Documentation which I hope will help people wrap their heads around what we are doing and how: https://github.com/MurmurationsNetwork/MurmurationsProtocol/wiki

More news as things develop...


Oli SB Fri 26 Mar 2021 4:26PM

I am pleased to report thatMurmurations Protocol Version 1 is up and runningso now you can make a profile and see it pop up on mutiple maps / directoriesWe’d love to hear your feedback.


Dmitry Sokolov Fri 26 Mar 2021 10:44PM

It would be useful to have someone in the "memory agent" role,
helping with identifying individual strengths, classifying people
and resources, and grouping them into possible projects.

Just tools don't work - hands needed...


Oli SB Thu 18 Aug 2022 1:29PM

Hi All, we've now launched V2 of Murmurations, so you can experiment by creating test nodes via the test-profile-generator which feeds data onto the demo map, see how here:


And you can create REAL profiles using the live-profile generator https://profiles.murmurations.network/ by selecting the 'organizations_schema-v1.0.0' which feeds data onto the map at https://regen.murmurations.network/

Please check it out and let us know if you have any feedback?

(but please do not submit test, or inaccurate data to the live, production Index, that’s what the test site is for ;)


Oli SB Thu 18 Aug 2022 1:30PM

We're also keen to hear if you have any questions (which will help us improve the FAQs: https://docs.murmurations.network/faqs/ )

...and if you think we're missing any specific Guides in the Docs, or other info which you would like to see to help you understand and use Murmurations??