Creating an open SubGovernance (SG) for working with the community combines the advantages of a decentralized approach (freedom of participation, rotation, openness) and a professional one (working group format, professional qualifications, exclusion of idlers).
The main problems of the community
- Lack of information about what is happening within the community. Conflicts, alliances occurring in separate working groups, disputes, quarrels - everything that can affect the system’s work as a community of living people.
- Lack of information about community members - who, what resources they have, what resources they can provide, competencies, and important biographical facts.
- The disadvantages of decentralization are the lack of synchronization between individual working groups, except for several representatives of the primary FreeTON core, who are overloaded and cannot simultaneously ensure the connectivity of communications in the community now (not to mention scaling)
- Lack of understanding among the majority of community members of the principles of professional and external communications, in particular PR, SMM, Community Management, and so on.
- There are high risks of centralizing SGs, both within individual interest groups (they got together with friends and made an SG) and within individual language zones (all Russians got together and let’s develop international history).
Why the existing solutions will not work
- Most of the proposals now contain general words instead of specifics.
- The professional experience of those who propose the creation of the next division is incomprehensible. For example, proposal 1 and proposal 2 do not contain a word about initial members’ background, which is a highly valued decision affecting information.
- No specific action programs are known for the requested budgets.
Community SG, recruited by an open vote, from among the community members, however, having a professional qualification - the need to provide your professional biography to participate. We think that professional competencies are crucial for the whole FreeTON evolution, and community vector is among the most important ones.
SG Area of Interest
Coordination of the existing project community, in particular: information digests of events in the project and the community (non-technical); compiling competency maps of community members to strengthen the activities of profile SGs, such as PR, Bizdev, and others; organization of events, myths, other events aimed at acquainting participants with each other; interviewing key participants.
Encouragement of key community members for non-specific activities, in particular: competitive bonuses for participants who, in the opinion of the community, have made a significant contribution to the development of the network.
Monitoring and identifying conflicts in the community with alerting the core Governance and the community; assistance in resolving such conflicts within reasonable limits, development of recommendations for joint work in conflict situations.
Relations with external communities.
Analysis of related communities, particularly partnerships, to use their resources to develop the FreeTON project.
Assistance and coordination of technical, informational, and other project partners in matters related to the FreeTON community’s functioning, particularly PR SG in finding speakers, participants with media weight, participants-journalists, or related to various media.
Groups and forum moderation; monitoring community members’ activity and reputation; compiling and updating stop and ban lists (if necessary), tracking virtuals and other people may be harmful to the community.
Monitor rumors, gossip, fake news, and other information circulating about the project in other communities, primarily industrial.
Community SG’s interests do not include an immediate and prompt response to all possible situations. By analogy with the real world, Community SG is a foreign and domestic intelligence service that operates openly and publicly to develop the project’s overall coherence and mediate conflicts both within the community and with other communities.
Composition of participants
The initial composition of the SG consists of 10 participants (hard maximum). In the future, this number does not expand; however, the SG has the right to form separate working groups and involve any interested community members in their activities, both at their own will and at the initiative of those who wish.
Members of the FreeTON community elect 6 seats in SG, 2 are randomly distributed among all those who have applied (for more details, see the voting procedure), 2 more are reserved for the selected SG composition members’ invitation. A vote of the SG itself elects these 2 positions.
Term of Office
Community SG’s renewed every 3 months (first six months of operation), then every 6 months (0.5 - 2 years of operation), then every 12 months. The renewal procedure is described in the Voting section.
Why this approach? Because:
- In the long run, we need to do things and not be involved in constant preparation for the next election cycle or make a good report, which allows us to be re-elected.
- We need not become elected for the “whole life” from the very start - this is why the first cycles are much shorter.
- Too much rotation is as bad as no rotation at all; It’s better to allow the SG members enough time to develop and execute some long-run projects, inevitably occurring after some time.
Every 3 months, SG publishes a public report on its activities on the FreeTON forum within the appropriate section (to be created). As a result, the community may see and understand what they do, the results, and how the budget was spent.
Also, each SG will post a detailed summary report at the end of their term. For the first 2 SGs, the final report is the same as the usual three months one. The final report aims to summarize the entire SG work and start the next election cycle.
The final reports, in addition to describing the activities of the entire SG, and the results should contain a part that describes each SG participant’s role and contribution so in case that some (or all) of the previous SG members would want to be re-elected, every one may see their own personal results of previous work.
Voting is initiated before establishing the SG and within 1 week after posting the previous SG’s final report. Elections last 1 week, during which the SG is supported by the previous membership (for the 2nd and subsequent SG elections).
Requirements for candidates
To participate in the vote, you must provide a message in this topic with your professional resume in free form, containing:
- Professional bio, in particular, information about the main professional achievements in the field of communications (PR, SMM, Community, GR, and other communication areas)
- Current employment (where and by whom do you work, how long it takes).
- The ability to engage in Community SG full-time or part-time activities.
- The main tasks you can and want to do during the SG’s term. Consider this your election program.
- A budget modeled on other SGs required to implement your program.
Anyone can participate in the elections to the SG, including the participant of the previous SG. There are no restrictions on the number of elections.
Requirements for Voters
To vote for a candidate for SG participants, you must like his message, as well as give a reply to a message in which it is required to indicate:
- Your professional experience in communications (if any)
- Your public FreeTON key
- Reasons why you support this candidate, in a free form. Even if you like their avatar.
The procedure does not protect against cheating, but it makes voting more meaningful. In the future, it can be improved.
Summing up the election results
Votes submitted as likes without a reply will not be counted. Vote counting can be done by any community member, ideally an Analytics SG representative.
The 6 winners are determined by the maximum number of votes cast for them.
After that, within a period of not more than 1 week from the moment the winners are determined, a screen record is collected in Zoom. The selected SG participants conduct a by-election.
- 2 seats in SG go to 2 random candidates, based on the serial number of their questionnaire. The procedure is carried out as part of an installation call using Google Docs (a public table with the candidates’ names and the serial numbers of their profiles) and any publicly available random number generator. Two throws are carried out.
The data on the procedure carried out, a link to the document, and a link to the recording of the installation call are published in the topic with the elections.
- The procedure for the election of 2 candidates proposed by the SG (6 + 2) candidates can be carried out in any format; the main condition is the publicity of these elections. Required:
- The consent of the nominee himself
- The nominees provide SG participants with a biography and a story about them. Each of the SG participants can propose only 1 candidate. You cannot vote for your candidate.
- A simple majority vote elects the winners.
Data on the procedure, the list of candidates, and the results are published in the topic with the elections.
SG Decisions and Dispute Resolution
A simple majority vote makes resolutions in the SG.
Disputes are resolved internally by SG.
Exclusion from SG
Any participant who does not participate in the SG activities for a month or more can be excluded from it by a unanimous vote of active participants (i.e., other than those who are proposed to be excluded). First, SG should notify the missing or non-active members and allow them to explain the reasons for their inactivity. Such notification should be done at least 2 times, and the entire case should hold not less than 1 week. Then the exception session is conducted during a publicly recorded call. Any participant proposed for exclusion can, during this call, state the reasons for their inactivity and promise to improve.
- SG conducts processes within the working group in a closed chat.
- The SG works in weekly sprints.
- Once a week, SG conducts public recorded calls, during which they discuss the results of the previous sprint and fix the goals for the upcoming sprint.
- At least once a month, the SG holds a public AMA session with the community about the SG’s work, listens to suggestions, and gives feedback. The language of the AMA session is English. If desired, the SG can additionally conduct AMA sessions in any other language (optional).
The SG budget is formed according to the following scheme:
- The budgets of all 6 election winners are summed up.
- 40% is added to this budget, based on the fact that each of the 4 additional SG participants receives 10% for implementing their programs.
- Then, 20% added as a fund for contests and proposals from the community itself.
- 10% for administrative expenses is added to the general budget.
In our opinion, this scheme allows forming the composition of SG participants and its budget competitively, as the amount requested for the implementation of candidate programs also becomes a factor influencing voters’ decisions.
First, each selected SG participant is free to recruit participants into working groups related to the participant’s program’s implementation. Groups can be made up of both volunteers and those who will work within the SG’s budget - the final decision is up to the working group coordinator and herself.
Second, the community can, at any time, offer their ideas and projects for funding both directly to Community SG and unaddressed, but always on the FreeTON project forum. Community SG has the right to spend 20% of its budget on implementing such projects, laid at its formation stage specifically for these purposes.
SG participants decide to implement a project through a vote on the SMV system (66%). The decision must be publicly recorded on the forum, with the arguments of each of those who voted for or against.
Terms of consideration of applications from the community for funding - no more than 1 month from the date of submission.