Wortley Hall 2017/How we communicate

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This is one of the pages on this wiki which came out of the Wortley Hall 2017
Co-operative Technologists Second Annual Gathering at Wortley Hall, 27-29 November 2017.

This group built on existing work by moving information about Loomio, Slack, Discourse, etc. to the Infrastructure and Communication page. We built upon this through our discussions. As part of our discussions, we discovered a number of issues, the proposed soluions to which are listed below.

Proposed solutions to identified issues

  1. Ensure email contact is monitored - at present, people send an email to an address that is monitored by multiple people. As a result, no one person is responsible for replying.
  2. Set up CoTech-only member area on Discourse - there is currently nowhere for members of co-ops that are part of CoTech to discuss things on Discourse in a non-public way. Examples of this would include co-ordinating activity around bidding for a contract or grant, or talking about commercially-sensitive Co-Tech-only topics.
  3. Create guidelines for discussion and decision making - there is unhelpful ambiguity around when Discourse should be used as opposed to Loomio. Also, as part of the decision-making process, guidelines around the actions to be taken before the vote or poll should be in place, along with (for example) the length of time the voting process should take.
  4. Consider moving from Slack to an open source alternative - of the technology CoTech offers, Slack is the least used. This is for a number of reasons, but this includes a reluctance to used closed-source, proprietary, venture capital-backed services with unclear policies around access to data. Other solutions such as Rocket Chat have been proposed.
  5. Encourage every co-op to have a contact person for representation and admin - nstead of attempting to have an always up-to-date list of every member of every co-op, having a designated representative makes administration easier. For example, if someone from a co-op needs an account, their first port of call should be the designated representative.
  6. Provide greater clarity around the names of subdomains for shared service - at present, we have names such as community.coops.tech and office.coops.tech. Although these are fine, they don't quite capture the purpose for which each tool (Discourse and Nextcloud, respectively) is being used. Perhaps we should discuss this in future, or consider renaming existing subdomains?

Related: Dan Stanley's CoTech presentation: https://goo.gl/i9U5ms

Related: Nextcloud evaluation: https://wiki.coops.tech/wiki/Nextcloud