Platform Cooperativism

Nobeah and a number of other partners are forming a consortium to implement “platform cooperativism” in a free and open source platform. This platform will focus on uniting with other similar projects to dramatical magnify the power and reach of open-source software and other solutions through which their providers aim to spread the benefits of their projects to all. Our goal is to benefit any product vendor or service provider by:
Making it simpler to architect a product or service in a way that actually does achieve these philosophical goals, since the differences between an architecture that does and one that might even do the reverse are subtle.

Providing an infrastructure that increases the synergy between our different projects so they become competitive enough to prevail. For example, making it simpler to align a product with other products on the platform (if desired) so they compliment rather than compete. And defining collaborative work-flows for additional external business processes involving that product, and giving access to the product from those work-flows to increase the usefulness of all platform applications as a whole to consumers.
Making it simpler for a much larger audience to find and use their product or service.
Giving vendors/collaborators immediate access to business models that will enable them to earn a living wage.

Making it easier for all our movements collectively to launch and attract funding.
We envision this infrastructure will derive functionality from the Open Mustard Seed platform. This platform is intended to not only lower the bar to each project succeeding, but also to give each project the backing of a deployment program that once seeded with initial funding will be sustainably self-financing. We are also developing partnership programs that beginning 2017 will target deployment to a huge audience worldwide, programs scalable enough to lead the transition to an entirely new economy.

A brief introduction to this common vision can be found in this very short video and further detail can be found in this draft paper being prepared for the 3rd International Conference on Internet Science in Florence, Italy. This paper is free to be shared privately but not published on-line as it is undergoing constant revision prior to submission before April 1, 2016.

But most importantly, we’ve created a campaign aiming to bring everyone together within this common vision from the individual projects we’re working on. This campaign is ending in just a few days (Monday March 28, 2016) and we’re still just beginning to connect with you in the collaborative community. So I ask for your assistance in suggesting or forwarding this campaign to donors interested in bringing about the open, sustainable, sharing, collaborative economy.

This campaign is important because so many groups are struggling to create solutions with similar philosophies. One of the biggest barriers to progress is lack of a larger coordinating vision making it easier for us to gain from each other’s work while at the same time making it easier not to unnecessarily duplicate it. We also need better coordination between projects to enable expertise to cross between different ones easily enough for the best ideas in each to be quickly implemented in all. And making a whole new economy possible takes coordinated activity in too broad a range of sectors for any of us to easily achieve alone. It’s clear we need to create more synergy.

The problem isn’t always that the information isn’t there, the problem is often that it’s inaccessible because it either takes too much expertise out of one’s own field to digest, or too much time to make use of it. Having researched these issues and their solutions for well over a decade, we propose that the way forward is that we will use our campaign (within which we’ll make use of tools like Metamaps.cc as well as tools we’re developing internally) to create a navigable visualization of yours and other projects that will help all of us quickly and powerfully align our activities within this far more powerful overall vision, and within the much broader ecosystem of players. With this alignment, and with the support of the right platform, we can each advance far more decisively towards our chosen outcomes.