Thu 28 Nov 2019 1:15AM

Naming and expressing the group ideology

P pospi Public Seen by 73

Many ideologies in tension and options to consider! From Sid-

“An Agent-Centric Wealth/Economic System”

Distributed ledgers are empowering people to interact with each other in new ways. They’re giving birth to an economic system that is contextual, and built around the human experience.

Our agent-centric economic system empowers individuals, communities and organisations to leverage tools that harness the new economy. Build, collaborate and share in whole new ways, amplify and scale new kinds of value and discover new patterns of social orchestration.

Tools: Distributed micro-accounting, agent-centric value, reputation based economics and more.

Potential branding themes:

  1. Digital Commons

    • Works well with Commons Engine branding

  2. P2P Economics

  3. Open App Ecosystem (join this existing umbrella project?) “A suite of interoperable, open source tools which support transparent, democratic, and decentralized organizing.”

  4. Economy Kit, Economikit or “Toolkits For A Truly P2P Digital Economy”

    • Pros: broad applicability, non-partisan

    • Cons: potentially loses punch in being unopinionated

  5. Sovereign Systems / sovereigntytoolkit.org This theme might be ideal naming. See https://twitter.com/dan_mi_sun/status/1196974408335626241

Please edit to add more & discuss relative merits & perils below!


Sid Sthalekar Wed 11 Mar 2020 12:45AM

I think you've just laid the foundations for a very good conversation @Emaline :)


Emaline Tue 10 Mar 2020 8:31PM

These are great ideas!

Couldn't agree more, @Sid Sthalekar. It's a tendency rather than an absolute law, but I notice everywhere that the flashier the name and the more it insists that it is a truly new, revolutionary, world-changing thing, the less impressive the product often is 😂 Overcompensation is real, y'all.

Lols aside, common(s) sense economy is an EXCELLENT trope. It gestures easily to the fact that something's awry in economic business-as-usual, but also that we take inspiration from a strong, legitimate history of minor strands (e.g. ecological economics, de-growth economics, marxist analysis).

I would look forward to a vision/mission statement that qualifies what it means to make an economy more human or that seeks to make people matter. It could be really powerful to contextualize this stuff in relation to the historical obfuscations of mainstream economics, decentralized systems' cultural obsession with overriding the need for humans, and especially recognizing ourselves as actors (both victims and perpetrators) within global, cybernetic capitalism.


Sid Sthalekar Tue 10 Mar 2020 3:00AM

I was thinking about it this morning too. Couple points that have been on my mind:
- There's something about agent-centricity that seems central to the collective; it will define the structures and organising principles of what we build. To me this translates as 'a more human economy' or as Schumacher put it 'Economics as if people mattered'.
- I'm increasingly drawn towards very simple, almost mundane, naming (Economikit has that ring to it). Over the last decade we've seen tons of initiatives with inspiring names/vision statements that for multiple reasons have delivered pretty non-revolutionary offerings. Maybe the name has to be more functional? I think the people involved + the actual magic in what we're building will do the talking.


pospi Tue 10 Mar 2020 2:23AM

Thinking about naming again after Emaline's thoughts on packaging REA materials.

When I meet new people and tell them about these things, I often mention Basal's ethics equations and Sacred Capital's reputation data types to reflect on these same conclusions being reached independently; as they are just obvious conclusions. The same is true of REA in many aspects of its fundamental design- i.e. "an exchange model coupled with an input-process-output model" or "measuring objective reality with SI units". And to some extent of MetaIntegral's meta-currencies and the UN's SDGs.

So... what about the "common sense economy" or the "obvious economy"? Isn't that what is really emerging here? Are these concepts worth playing with? Maybe there are ties here to the OSS movement or concepts like selbstentfaltung.


Sid Sthalekar Wed 26 Feb 2020 2:09AM

Yeah, I like that. I was just about to share an article along these lines. I'm seeing great value in building something the provides 'contextual guardrails' for the movement of money + content + labour. The image above captures the essence, but should be updated to include the impact of agent-centric tech. It basically means communities can be created across physical distance/geography. (I'll send you some stuff over email which highlights the importance of this)


pospi Wed 26 Feb 2020 1:52AM

We do seem to have a lot of "regional economic development" projects in the mix. It occurs to me that this might be a compatible narrative to that of "neighbourhoods". And perhaps fairly all-encompassing? (see image)


Sid Sthalekar Tue 25 Feb 2020 12:58AM

How it resonates as narrative for Economikit?
To me, Mutual Credit rings true, but it could be articulated as non-extractive + co-operative monetary model. This allows any kind of implementation i.e. issuing credits or equity shares with a cap etc.
Food systems seems a bit narrow to me though. Perhaps it could be articulated as some form of basic sustainability framework? Just a thought.


pospi Mon 24 Feb 2020 6:26AM

Last sync @Ferananda Ibarra spoke about mutual credit & food systems as being cornerstones of the CommonsEngine narrative. This seems resonant on many levels- I'm curious to hear reflections on the group as to the specificity and narrative of this vision.


Sid Sthalekar Tue 17 Dec 2019 9:59AM

Feels like the name could reflect the bottom-up/distributed/agent-centric/self-sovereign theme. I'll post a couple name options in this thread as I think of them.


pospi Tue 17 Dec 2019 12:55AM

I am just throwing this out there for the lols, it kind of goes with @Tom's controversial idea of "Reality Engine"... what about "Economicon"?

Fun branding... maybe not the right vibe :P But I also like playing with the idea of very controversial names designed to get people defensive and curious from the get-go.

But maybe being inviting is more important than provoking critique when considering initial interactions heh


jean m russell Mon 9 Dec 2019 11:19PM

I am mindful of the Sovereign Accountable Commons that MetaCurrency describes. http://metacurrency.org/about/ and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aEQ9dTzs_uI for example. For me this work is also about the promise of efficiency gains from network production rather than factory production methods. I lean toward economikit, which it seems like Pospi liked since that is thee name here.


Sid Sthalekar Mon 2 Dec 2019 6:16AM

Good thoughts.

"Being independent and autonomous (which I would say are key aspects of sovereignty) is attractive to them, too."

I think this hits home in particular with communities/collectives. Sometimes all they need are basic tools to build their own micro-economies without being extracted from or influenced.


Sid Sthalekar Tue 17 Dec 2019 5:56AM

On this topic, check out Gandhi's book titled 'Hindswaraj'. It's from his younger days, so a bit radical, but he spoke about the importance of technology liberating humans as opposed to monetising them. His views on technology/Industrialisation got more nuanced over the years.
It spawned of economic principles, some of which were captured in 'The Economy of Permanence' by J C Kumarappa, and 'Small is Beautiful' by Schumacher.
Sacred Capital's been directly infuenced by one of our mentors, Rajni Bakshi who wrote 'Bazaars, Conversations and Freedom'. In the book, she highlights the importance of decentralised commerce, that was inter-woven with social fabric, as opposed to a sterile 'market' that is removed from human-ness. She would be very interested in supporting our little collective here.


pospi Mon 9 Dec 2019 5:23AM

Interested! please link (:


Sid Sthalekar Mon 9 Dec 2019 4:59AM

I also think there's a conversation worth having around de-colonized mindsets. For me, growing up in India meant constantly having to switch between identities.
I also found myself guilty of romanticizing my 'un-colonized' identity, which can be tricky if left unchecked.


Sid Sthalekar Mon 9 Dec 2019 4:54AM

I think you might resonate with some of Gandhi's writings on 'Swaraj'. It was loosely translated as 'self-rule' during the Independence struggle, but its roots run deep. As a concept, it's meant to represent an understanding of one's potential (spiritual or otherwise) and building a value framework around it. There's also some literature around building economic systems and technology with this approach (I can point you to some resources - they intersect with Sacred Cap's roots).


pospi Mon 9 Dec 2019 4:23AM

I've been talking to my Indigenous friends about "sovereignty" as a concept... it's a difficult one to pull off.

If we're going to take that route, then we need to be really really careful to differentiate "our" idea of sovereignty (as predominantly Western, predominantly White technologists) from Indigenous people's ideas of sovereignty. We would especially need to call out that these are distinct and different struggles, and that the struggles Indigenous peoples have faced in fighting for their sovereignty are far more grave and serious than anything that many of our adopters may call "sovereignty".

There might be a qualifier that can be applied here to tease this out... "individual sovereignty" could be a part of it but, duh... that's too individualistic :P ...perhaps "universal sovereignty"?

No conclusions to make, just things to consider. At a minimum we'd need to have some BIPOC peeps included in this group before using language like that publicly.


pospi Mon 2 Dec 2019 2:54AM

I like that, and my preference leans towards "sovereignty". This work is pushing me towards collaborations with marginalised and indigenous peoples... it is crystal clear to me that these are the kinds of projects we need to be doing if this work has any real hope of addressing planetary collapse. There is a way that collaborating with Western groups could lead towards broken "one size fits all" solutions... the mindset is wrong (and we already tried that, it's called Colonialism and it doesn't work). We need projects that are sensitive to the need for nuance and place-based solutions.

I also think this can be marketed in a way that creates a softer image that traditional businesses can align on. Being independent and autonomous (which I would say are key aspects of sovereignty) is attractive to them, too.


Sid Sthalekar Fri 29 Nov 2019 5:12AM

I've been giving some thought to this, and the ideologies that stands out for me are sovereignty or agent-centricity. I see the two as closely related. I also think they represent the approach that Holochain is giving birth to.
From a marketing or branding pov, we can use simpler terms of course.


Sid Sthalekar Thu 28 Nov 2019 9:02AM

That's a good point. It could be a two pronged strategy. Super simple language for our users but showcases the deeper vision to funders and advocates who will want to support us.


Tom Thu 28 Nov 2019 3:59AM

I think the branding shouldn't just focus on communities, where small and medium business might feel threatened, the https://www.xero.com/au/ branding is good because it's benign.

It just does accounting. And we do to, we just measure more things and make the data mean more things and have feedback loops at different stages.

Xero is attractive for organisations and if we want fast transition we should also be attractive for organisations. I'm just saying we should also be mindful of that appeal. :)