July 18, 2012 at 11:39 am #25122
I’m afraid that the time has come for me to step down as the webmaster for Occupy Asheville. As many of you know, I have other projects which I am working on (http://www.whistlingduckhostel.com), and these will increasingly be taking up my time as they progress. I’ve been proud to count myself as a member of the Occupy movement since October, and I feel that we’ve made a good run of it, but at this point in time I feel it is best to focus my energies elsewhere.
If there is anyone out there with the technical know-how and the willingness to take over management of our WordPress-based site, please contact me and we can discuss how to transition control of occupyasheville.org. Should it happen that nobody steps up to the task, I won’t retire the site overnight but would like the remaining active members of Occupy Asheville to seriously consider how they would like to move forward. In lieu of a new manager for the website, we will likely need to switch to a mailing list or some other form of group communication.
I’d also like to take this opportunity to express a few general thoughts on our local movement. Overall, I feel like Occupy Asheville has been a fantastic experiment. I’ve met a lot of wonderful folks, we’ve had some fun protests, and mostly we’ve done a whole lot of experimentation with different meeting formats & governance processes. I still count the Coordinating Council as a success, but it took so long for us to arrive at that model and get it functioning that we missed the main thrust of Occupy’s enthusiasm.
Last night we held what may end up being the last media working group meeting, and the general consensus was that Occupy Asheville is at a point where it needs to seriously reconsider its direction and strategy if it is going to continue forward. My personal opinion is that it is now time to consider Jonathan’s suggestion from a while back about sunsetting Occupy Asheville in a very positive and public way. Such an action would allow us to go out with a bang instead of a whimper, and it would provide the opportunity for us to wrap up some loose ends, like taking down the website and deciding what to do with the remaining treasury funds. After holding a “closing ceremony,” I would not expect the remaining organization to disband; on the contrary, I would expect it to tighten up into one or two small core groups that can continue meeting regularly in person, establish mailing lists to maintain online contact, and even consider adopting new names – the “Occupy” moniker, as fantastic as it is, has acquired so many negative connotations that to continue to use it would only hinder the incredible work we will all continue to do.
Thanks for indulging my thoughts on the matter. I thank you all for the wonderful opportunities that you provided me through Occupy Asheville, and I greatly appreciate all the friends and other connections I have made along the way. It’s been a pleasure working with you all. Don’t hesitate to remain in contact with me, and keep fighting the good fight!
JonJuly 30, 2012 at 9:14 am #25152
Two weeks out, I haven’t received any offers to take over management of the site, so it looks like we’re going to have to phase it out. Has Coordinating Council discussed how to handle this yet? What are people’s thoughts on how to proceed from here?August 5, 2012 at 1:00 pm #25155
We had a wonderful GA yesterday with about 15 people in attendance. I didn’t have time to count because it was so engaged. Generally, folk want to continue Occupy and want to continue to have a presence on the web as Occupy Asheville. We think it should be a smaller footprint, possibly just the calendar and a place to store and post minutes of GA and CC. There may also be changes to the GA and CC in terms of frequency of meetings. You can read the minutes Jim Barton posted for more details. There are a couple of people willing to maintain the website with a bit of help from you getting started and there is money to keep paying for the hosting fees, so please don’t abandon ship yet.
KathrynAugust 6, 2012 at 11:09 am #25157
Thanks Kathryn – scaling down the site is totally doable, and would be easier to maintain for folks with less tech savvy. I’ll be glad to help implement whatever changes the group decides at GA/CC, so just make sure to choose someone to take the lead on the new site and I will work with him or her to get it set up.
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