Build up of mutually empowered critical mass of prosumers ?

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Dante-Gabryell Monson
Date: Sat, May 17, 2008 at 1:52 PM
Subject: Build up of mutually empowered critical mass of prosumers ?
To: hc_ecology – at –, sustainable_solidarity – at –

I felt like writing some additional ideas , in relation to potential developments and projects I see around me , and question myself as to where to converge ” physically ” while being able to live, and facilitate the … ” Build up of mutually empowered critical mass of prosumers ? ” – while not disconnecting ourselves from the city / not fully living in autharcy – but being open to a globalised world , with a capacity for higher levels of mutual empowerment and collaborative creativity.

and how to facilitate the networking and collaboration of organizations , cooperatives , academic institutions , students , … any individual towards such intentions ?

When the picture is so synthetic and complex , where to start ?

a follow up on a previous thread and response which you will find below


I also notice another trend – the urban redevelopment trend around knowledge and creation centers.

this is my main reason for now visiting Helsinki , as there is a urban re-development plan , shifting a declined industrial neighborhood into a art/design/high tech – living , research and development , management , lifelong learning space.


also see another project in the united states :

if you have a good internet connection , you might want to view this very easy to read and informative 10 Mb pdf file :

if not , some more google entries related to

Remaking Cities Institute – Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Architecture

One of the aims of mine and of many people I end up meeting , along these last years , is to connect further our intentional networks , with a variety of individuals from different backgrounds sharing it , activists , academic institutions, students , organizations , businesses , governmental organizations , representatives , etc

share practices , experiment , increase our credibility through joint projects , increase support and access to a variety of resources , …

There are a number of very interesting initiatives , in many OECD countries – for example here a japanese practice sharing platform :

Although sometimes it feels simple yet complex , and I doubt strongly that the verbal language tool , even when extended by information technologies , and emails like this one , can be effective enough – i feel more and more that what is needed is new forms of language , some kinds of dynamic mapping into which we can add , position , extract , compare , correct , …

beyond wiki s , yet including them , extracting available data from the internet , from our environments , and be able to visualize them through some post symbolic visual language.

I am also not surprised to see that many a case , as with the Arabiaranta Helsinki redevelopment project , the central synthetic and creative environment , the convergence space for trans-disciplinarity , are choses to be art universities , or more precisely , art and technology development oriented environments ,

dreaming and designing futures and the relations between all elements , including dreams about new esthetical forms of lifestyle …

Or am I wrong ? I am perhaps too young to have experienced it , but it seemed that in the end of the 60 ies , the social movements erupted from the humanistic faculties ?

Is this still te case ? I traveled all over europe in the last years , met a lot of students of politics and sociology , and often they would end up being the activist side of the movement , but often in an approach that is ” fighting ” and not necessarily with new visions.

It feels that Design and Technology Development / Research ” clusters ” are becoming ” fashion and being developed , not necessarily through grassroot movements , but because of the needs and evolution of businesses ( and consumerism ? ) into products that require such solutions.

Which perhaps sounds a bit contradictory to a prosumer spirit ?

Business seems to have been successfull in absorbing the individualist needs of the 68 generation into … consumerism ? ( I paste below some references to a BBC series of documentaries ” The century of the self ” ) ,

but will it take further control over current psychological , and potential structural developments ?

Or are we able to create the prototypes that can better deal with complexity and offer alternative modes of organization and lifestyle then the current dominant competitive , consumerist , scarcity creating , individualist models ?

A dilemna I feel is that the resources are still on the side of a capitalistic mode of production and managment.

Organizing ourselves , and connecting between each other , cooperatives , that can facilitate the mutual empowerment of individuals while creating some of the resources they need to live , eventually selling to a broader market , or even creating its own markets ( and own alternative – intentional ? – currencies ? more complex barter systems involving information technologies ? to trade between partners / cooperatives that share common intentions ? )

Can we inspire the creation of a critical mass ?

Where do we start to converge a critical mass ?

With food cooperatives ? With learning practices and school environments ?

I know that its in every different field that we can be active , and spread such socio-cultural memes ,

yet for some of us , it does not feed us yet –

The p2p foundation ( and other platforms and movements ), the convergence of various examples and ideas under the wiki , blog , ning , mailing lists

is where we seem to be now.

But how to connect a critical mass ? … as to empower ourselves with the resources needed ,
without having to be dependent on a capitalistic mode of organization and production ?


” The Century of the Self ”

part 1 )

part 2 )

part 3 )

part 4 )

About ” The Century of the Self ” :

extract from

To many in both politics and business, the triumph of the self is the ultimate expression of democracy, where power has finally moved to the people. Certainly the people may feel they are in charge, but are they really? The Century of the Self tells the untold and sometimes controversial story of the growth of the mass-consumer society in Britain and the United States. How was the all-consuming self created, by whom, and in whose interests?

some more videos on my blog

On Sat, May 17, 2008 at 1:01 PM, Dante-Gabryell Monson wrote:

Hi Marco , Michel , Sam , ( cc : Alicia , Marilyn , Steve , Synnove , Andrius , Josef , Franz , Jeff )

yes , I guess that the people that are fully interested in investing themselves in a shift of lifestyle patterns in such kind of approach – pro-suming ( ? ) – form some kind of sub-culture –

The eco-village movement ( such as ) might be one such kind of sub culture , although too often I realize they tend to reject information technologies and try to move to some more collectivist structures , going back to the past , trying to escape complexity and live a simple life ,

although there are also some examples of emerging networks , such as

and also emerging , existing , communities such as one I know about ( but did not visit up to now ) in the netherlands ,

they also organize a festival ( in dutch – Michel might understand : )

and where an acquaintance of mine met at a ecotopia camp ,
“alicia falvey” , has been ( and still is ? ) very involved in – I also remember she mentionned some other projects in Ireland ? –

I also paste below for Michel an extract in dutch extracted from :

De wijk EVA-Lanxmeer

De Culemborgse wijk EVA-Lanxmeer is een stadswijk, die is gebouwd op basis van gedachtengoed over integrale sociaal-ecologische stedenbouw en permacultuur. In dit gedachtengoed staat de kwaliteit van de leefomgeving centraal, waarvoor de bewoners en bedrijven die er wonen en werken zelf medeverantwoordelijkheid dragen. De inrichting van leefomgeving wordt gekenmerkt door ecologisch bouwen, organische vormgeving en architectuur, afvalwaterzuivering in de wijk, centrale parkeerplaatsen, landschapsarchitectuur, samenhang tussen privé tuin, gezamenlijke tuin en openbaar groen, behoud van cultuurhistorische elementen, ontwikkeling van natuur, biodiversiteit en biologische landbouw.

Event : Sustainable Hospitality Exchange , Amsterdam , 27-29 June

last weekend of June in Amsterdam (27-29 June)

” SHE also wishes to connect the praxis of
hospitality exchange to a wider framework of cultural exchange,
gift-economy, trust-metrics, sustainable traveling and living a joyful
life ”

more below …

also see the bewelcome collective , same place , same time ,

but on a longer period  :

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Kasper Souren
Date: Sat, Apr 26, 2008 at 5:17 PM
Subject: Fwd: SHE wants you as a facilitator!

You heard about the SHE-conference? SHE stands for Sustainable
Hospitality Exchange and is a conference that organised during the
last weekend of June in Amsterdam (27-29 June). It is based in a local
former squat that can host a hundred people and more. The goals of SHE
is to increase exchange of knowledge on the different hospex-networks
around the world & foster debate and change.

SHE wants to be an open-space conference on topics related to
hospitality exchange. SHE wishes to enable face-to-face debates and
workshops on how these networks are run, on best-practices, on
volunteer-work, on empowerment, on community building and all other
related topics. In addition, SHE also wishes to connect the praxis of
hospitality exchange to a wider framework of cultural exchange,
gift-economy, trust-metrics, sustainable traveling and living a joyful
life because above everything SHE wishes to create the debate: what do
we mean with sustainable hospitality exchange?

In the end though, SHE is how you envision her. Look her in the eyes
and think what you could do with SHE! Imagine a space with
enthousiastic people who are very eager to hear about the history of
Hospitality Club, Couchsurfing & Bewelcome, as well as Servas and
other networks of hosp-exchange. Imagine an open podium, space for
art-installations & great food, a self-managed bar and lots of nice
people that want to live & learn by sharing.

SHE is curious to know if you are interested. SHE is really looking
forward to hear from people such as you to start thinking what you
would like to do with her. Would you for example like to facilitate a
workshop on any of the topics related to SHE? Or do you have any other
groovy ideas that SHE might benefit from? Of course you do!

Workshops that SHE is already envisioning are for example: experiences
on volunteer work, how to build up a local hospitality exchange
community, sustainable traveling and hitchhiking, trust, hospitality
exchange and money system, free software and coding, salsa, cultural
western-centrism, history of any given network, et cetera.

The space for SHE is already organised. It has lots of room for
plenary sessions & workshops. There are tables, chairs, a bar, a
dj-set and a podium as well. But SHE also already exists in
wiki-space. So why don’t you start getting into SHE? You can check her
out for more information. You can also edit the pages and give your
input straight away:

For now SHE is being facilitated by a small but committed group of
people who would love to hear from you. Please write SHE-assistants
Kasper (kasper.souren – at – or Robin (robokow – at – with
your ideas and forward this e-mail to good people.

Hope to hear from you soon!


The Money Trap – How the banks lure you into debt

also see ” Money as Debt ” video – In the US , banks are allowed to lend further 10 percent of the money they lend. Also , as the money lended is freshly created money on which they sometimes make comfortable interests , it will most probably come back into a bank account within the banking system , allowing the bank to lend even more money – as banks in the US have the right to lend 9 times more as the amount of money ( ones and zeros ) they have on their accounts.

Also , as there is interest on money created , to be able to pay off theinterest , ever greater amounts of money need to be created , and therefore lended from private banks , leading to a unlimited system of enslavery to the financial system. All banks need to do to take over on the whole economy , is to stop to process of new money creation through new lending of money , to trigger a endless domino fall of bankrupcies , which then fall into the control of the banks. But even when it is not so , more and more of the population ends up into debts it can not repay , and only the biggest and most powerful corporations and those that have the most money and can use this money to get even more money , can survive. The rest will eventually sink into debt , end up being enslaved into the system , untill , eventually , they loose everything but their skills , and eventually end up into wage slavery , if there is still a job for them :

It is time to develop new economics , new priorities for our society !