Thursday, 27 October 2011

The 4th General Assembly for Occupy SL (OSL) happened last night.  It was a bit chaotic, but we got some important things started.

Three working groups (or "committees") were created.
1. Direct Action working group
2. Media Communications working group
3. Facilitation working group

These working groups, or committees, are open groups of ppl who are talking together to generate ideas, discuss and work out the details and feasibility, and then to present and make proposals in GA meetings.  A working group is simply a collection of ppl who are focused on one issue or aspect of OSL.  Anybody can be a part of a working group by just "showing up" i.e. presenting yourself to the group, listening to what is being said, and offering input.  You may be involved in as many working groups as you care to keep up with.

Working groups are not new SL groups.  They won't be posting their own groups notices.  Though they can use the OSL sl group to make Notices for meetups and solicit for ideas.  I'm looking into setting up online forums the working groups can use for asynchonous discussions.

The Direct Action working group's focus is to work on the overall Occupy SL campaign and specific protest actions or other kinds of direct action.  Contact any1 Gynoid to get involved with that group.

The Media working group is tasked with developing a media policy and discussing how we should talk and interact with the media in sl.  Primarily, this was in regard to non-OSL bloggers.  There were concerns about how OSL might get represented if we weren't careful.  Contact Flashing Merlin to get involved with that group

The Facilitation working group is to review and refine how we do meetings and how we communicate to work together in OSL.  This group would talk with other working groups and develope the agenda for the next GA.  Contact Merriam Galaxy to get involved with that group.

*these working group contacts are not meant to be leaders, but are just points of contact for now to get ppl connected.

There is still room for other working groups around the meat-and-potatos of what OSL can/should be doing:  specfic issues (unemployment, banking reform, electorial reform, foreclosures, student debt, public welfare and cuts to services, war, poverty, etc), how to do education in sl on these issues, teaching ppl in sl about what OWS is about, how to get involved in rl, activism in general, direct democracy and other models of political organization ...and whatever else ppl want to focus on.  People are encouraged to start working groups on their own and..Get Involved!

At the 4th GA meeting we also had announcements from ppl.  Miso Susanova told us about OccupyLEA (Linden Endowment for the Arts) and how they are protesting Linden Lab policies that are hurting the artist community in sl.  She said that A LOT of artists got onboard with that and also joined OSL.  OccupyLEA is losing its space at the LEA sandbox but has been offered and encouraged to setup on Caerleon Arts Collective sims, a big name in SL.  Caerleon is about to lose their sims because they can't meet the new tier (rent) schedule that LL has established.

From the letter Miso received from Caerleon Arts Collective:

OCCUPY SL!  Hi everyone. As you know, after building SL from the unpaid collective labor of thousands of artists and educators, LL is unceremoniously evicting us by doubling our tier. In the handful of months we have left, we invite you to OCCUPY SL by establishing a tent city of artists and others on the three Caerleon sims.

We want artworks, meetings, discussions, a General Assembly and, in general, joyous mayhem. Press are invited.

Having the arts community onboard with us in OSL is HUGE and great resource.  Many artists are already coming to us wanting to do projects.

Flashing Merlin contacted Rodrick Linden this last week asking him to donate space for a virtual Zucotti Park. Rodvik has yet to receive a response.  Flashing also contacted Hamlet Au, of New World Notes Blog.  Hamlet Au wants to write about OSL, but there was hesitation voiced from members at the meeting on whether Hamlet would present us well in his blog.  This in part lead to the formation of the Media working group.

Wara Ysabel from Bolivia shared this about what is happening in her country:

[2011-10-26 19:39:36]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): thanks .. Well, I am from Bolivia, last 9 weeks we have supporting an indigenous machs from low lands to La Paz, 600 Km long.
[2011-10-26 19:40:09]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): the reason for that, was the president, pretended to build a higwayt trhoug the National Park and Indigenous terrytry (TIPNIS)
[2011-10-26 19:40:28]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): well, what happend from the march start (1200 person aprox)
[2011-10-26 19:40:45]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): we was warking very hard in many aspects
[2011-10-26 19:41:15]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): 1) Sharing, educating and publishing news (when media stop informing, so walls start talking)
[2011-10-26 19:41:42]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): 2) Humanitty support to the marchers And we have aprooblem ehere
[2011-10-26 19:42:00]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): at day 35, police and ppl is close to Evo Morales (coca growers)
[2011-10-26 19:42:28]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): bloked the march, and close the ways to give them even water
[2011-10-26 19:42:42]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): note the march include 102 childs, womens, and olds
[2011-10-26 19:43:11]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): on september 25, police violente breake the march, it was very very sad
[2011-10-26 19:43:15]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): i will share with you some videos later
[2011-10-26 19:43:42]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): but that event, makes all the country join. Several ocuppys was made in cityes
[2011-10-26 19:44:12]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): and the ppol start supporting the march with everything. from water to clowns to make childs be better
[2011-10-26 19:44:23]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): ok, after 66 days and 600km
[2011-10-26 19:44:32]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): march reach La PAz

[2011-10-26 19:44:45]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): and finally, the goverment off the 480USD millons porject
[2011-10-26 19:44:59]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): so, for now, we won, and most important, we learned
[2011-10-26 19:45:30]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): the riught way to the union, is the difference betwean every one
[2011-10-26 19:45:44]  Wara Ysabel (vampi.zapatero): thanks, and congrast for ocuppySL

So, very cool...  :)

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