Libre hosters conf 2020

I didn’t mean to offend your efforts or demotivate you in general, I just wanted to clarify why I can’t fill in some poll with so many dates. Also, you shouldn’t feel solely responsible for this event imo.

We might at some point get enough anima to organise the first chaos treff in Brussels, so perhaps just fix a date and we might do some combo. Or combine it with https://no.camp

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Dear friends,

first of all apologies for the late post on my side. I should have posted this much earlier, but couldn’t due to many things going on.
As I mentioned during one of the previous meetings the idea of a fest came after the involvement with Open Publishing Fest and from a spontaneous call with @pierreozoux from Indie.host. Here is the proposed description and some other technicalities from my side based on discussions and some of my & my colleagues proposals:

Conference name: Libre Hosters Festival 2020
Proposed dates: three days in total Thirsday Friday, Saturday in November. With a team preference for 5, 6 & 7 November 2020.
Languages: any language that one feels appropriate or/and comfortable. The more the merrier :slight_smile:
Website: festival.libreho.st
Tagline: celebrating ethical data hosting & net decentralisation

Description
In this moment of history, where the big tech is doing more harm than ever, we gather together at LHF to share our knowledge and build bridges between us to fight back. Libre Hosters Festival celebrates the development of a network of cooperation and solidarity that uses free software to encourage decentralization through federation and distributed platforms. During the festival days we will share our values: transparency, fairness and privacy with a culture of data portability and public contributions to the commons. Most important, we will get to know each other, celebrate and make sure to enjoy these days of togetherness and meet with old and new friends just like in a ‘real life’ festival!

Expected participants:

  • Libre Hosters of any kind (individuals, small teams, coops, companies);
  • organisations, small teams and individuals that want to find an easy way to move away from big tech;
  • community members and contributors behind free libre open source software.
  • digital rights freedom fighters.

Where
there are many travel restrictions in place and it seems like it will be like this for quite some time. Having said this, online seems like the best way to go. Presentations and workshops can be hosted to a platform of choice of each presenter as long as FLOSS infrastructure is used. On my/our experience BigBlueButton and Jitsy seem to have worked, but if someone feels like using something else it’s more than ok.

How
The festival can be organized in the most decentralized way possible, so everyone should feel free to propose a talk, workshop or a… DJ set featuring Creative Commons music :slight_smile:

Thematics
Presentations can be around federation, green energy hosting, floss infrastructure providers and more (we need to define the thematic areas maybe?). _Participants should just be creative with the proposals and as long as it is related to the principles of Libre Hosters Network (https://libreho.st/) should be more than welcome to submit a proposal at the dedicated forum category https://talk.libreho.st/ created only for the festival.

Website and communication
We can use the same website structure as Open Publishing Fest (https://openpublishingfest.org/), but feel free to propose any others tructure you think would make sense.

CoC
Last but not least, usually such events have a CoC, which I would propose to have.

What do you think?

R.S

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@agnes I just voted at the poll. Thanks for creating it BTW.

R.S

Thank you for fleshing out the proposal. I like it a lot, except for a couple of mentions:

As mentioned elsewhere, we prefer the term “free software” to any other alternative, to make a point about freedom.

I think the emphasis is too much on the individual where it could mention as well informal collectives and non-profits since members are organizations:

On other notes:

  1. I would be happy that @agnez’s original proposal to coordinate local events be maintained and put forward. As Petites Singularités, we have proposed /run to Resist Uniform Normality, and this would be an excellent example
  2. A dedicated category in #events can be started (e.g., #events:festival)
  3. For the website, I like the proposal: the blog could reflect the dedicated category and calendar

Thank you @nino for the heads up!

Something else: since this would be a mostly online event, I don’t think we need to restrict how many “talks” are given, etc. Actually we should think instead of a different format of presentation, e.g., collaborative writing of documentation, shared screen sessions to setup services, and shared distributed task lists to hack on during the festival, etc.


Additional notes from Petites Singularités

As discussed previously for the OFFDEM manifesto[1], the original proposal of this topic was to organize

After discussing with @natacha, we realize the following:

  1. There are few or no travel restrictions in Europe at this time
  2. There are no travel or assembly restrictions locally
  3. Online tools exist all the time, and we can use them without requiring a special event
  4. Online events are usually sub-optimal to convey a sense of community except on the long term thanks to continuity and in-person gatherings

Therefore, we would like to insist on the original proposal and first point above and avoid an “online event” that would deny these facts and fall for the systemic paranoid creep that is instrumentalized by governments and global corporations at the expense of social life and the more fragile alternatives.


  1. Do we need such large events , OFFDEM vouches for decentralization, as most people only have one life and can achieve a limited number of projects, we do not need to be all at the same time at the place, let’s organize and promote smaller and more focused meetings on different topics aiming at practical achievements for the communities they support.

    ↩︎

Thanks for the comments @how. I agree with what is proposed. My only concern is to define the date(s) the soonest possible. For how long do you think we should wait before taking a decision?

R.S

Usually, setting dates for an event is a matter of making the decision. If there’s no outstanding event that other Librehosters would attend at your chosen dates, it’s fine to just carve it in stone and get started. Another option would be to make it run over a full week so that smaller events have more space to choose from and join the gig.

As for myself, I am fine with the proposed dates, and I am checking with P.S.: members to confirm.

Small correction: there ARE travel restrictions in Europe. I live in Albania (a country in Europe) and can’t travel almost anywhere at this moment. Same applies for citizens of Serbia, North Macedonia, Montenegro and Kosovo which happen to have strict travel restrictions. For Kosovo citizens I know for a fact that even without a pandemic it is quite hard end expensive for them to travel. Is this fair? No, not at all. Would it be wise to fight against it? Maybe yes, but until than I’d like to meet my friends from the Libre Hosters network and people interested in what we do in a way that is possible and feasible at this moment, not when the govs decide to change their opinion. Capitalism is another fight - growing or connecting with each other is another challenge. Let’s not mix those.

Again, where I live there are strict assembly restrictions and the same applies for people in many European countries I mentioned above.
There are quite some people from Tirana that would participate at a Libre Hosters event, but the only way to do it is virtually/online at this point. It would be unfair for these people not to participate, know and interact with you and the community.

That is true, but since for one reason or another (travel costs for people outside the usual central European countries where all the events happen unfortunately, which maintain a privilege in accessing these events + the fact that officially there is a pandemic) the proposal for this event was to be online.

In my opinion and experience in building communities, dedicated events tend to incentivize people outside of the usual suspects to join. You can invite your friends to enjoy a coffee/beer/tea at your place one by one or all together. The social feeling you get in each case is different. It’s the same in this case, we can invite people sporadically or have a lot of people during specific days. We are doing the first option in the forum and in monthly meetings, why not try for once to gather in a couple of days more people as well?

I finding it hard to follow you here - maybe it is just my poor understanding of the English language. It’s just an online event with people that given the circumstances can know each other better online, meet new people that have similar interests outside the usual bubble. This does not avoid in-person gatherings. Me and my friends had a call with one of the members here the other day and had a blast. It would be impossible given the costs involved to do the same meeting by traveling from Tirana to the city of my new friend from Libre Hosters. Is it better to do an online meeting in comparison to a virtual one? Yes, of course. Can we do it at this stage given the circumstances? I don’t think so.

R.S

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I cannot see how you cannot mix those in the current conditions where capitalism is imposing different rules to different people according to their status within the capitalist world…

Interestingly, these are countries that do not produce heavily spending tourists by Western European standards. Can you see a pattern here?

This is exactly one reason why OFFDEM promotes distributed local events, to get rid of this prominently Western European or U.S. centrality of large events. Instead, organizing smaller, local events and coordinating them globally using the Internet seems a lot fairer. One of the interesting side effects is that people with less visibility, e.g., a local Albanian hacker, can participate because they already have the recognition of their local community, and do not need to compete with “world class stars” to appear on the global event. Same goes with languages: you can have local events in a local language for your local audience, and eventually translate for a global audience (which does not necessarily mean ‘English’, BTW – it’s a lingua franca here in the network, but I would expect Arabic hosters to be happy with providing contents in their own ‘global’ language).

I don’t see a difference: our online meetings are mostly attended by people who know each other in the flesh, and there’s no exclusion involved with gathering people and relaying their conversations or labor online – which we always do with Librehosters gatherings (we use “meeting” for online events, and “gathering” for meetings in the flesh, but both types of meetings are relayed online).

The proposal is to organize local gatherings, and to coordinate online: do you see this as a problem with regard to the announcement you wrote? I did not get your last paragraph: the proposal is neither to travel anywhere nor not to meet online. Did I manage to clarify the original proposal?

My proposal was to have a decentralized event with the only ‘conditions’ being:

  • all the activities (on & off line) to be reflected on an online calendar so that everyone knows when happens what and can plan a bit ahead;
  • having a name for the event so that we all refer to the same thing and dates when things will happen and people plan a bit in advance before;
  • all activities are ‘on topic’, which could be the same topics with the ones we talk here at the libre hosters community/network.

These were the initial thoughts principles and if we agree on those we could build up on the details of the event.

R.S

Sounds like /run but I don’t know how you relate to what I posted above.

I’m trying to explain what I had in mind with my proposal for Libre Hosters Festival. I’m not sure how to respond to the connection between fighting capitalism and organizing a get-together, a festival, a gathering where we share ideas in different ways, different languages about something I guess we spend quite some time on a daily basis. I’m strongly opinionated on a large spectrum of political issues, but I don’t feel comfortable talking about these issues at this thread at this stage without even agreeing on proceeding with the festival. I’m relatively new here and to be honest I was quite excited to the idea, but I don’t see how i can contribute more to the discussion without repeating what i have already mentioned. Or maybe here is one more idea: we both could host a session about the connection between capitalism, privileges and Libre Hosters in a dedicated session of the festival. What do you think?

R.S

I was talking specifically about the festival. You’re making this complicated.
Can you please clarify what do you think of the original proposal of this topic, that is to connect local gatherings?

Let me rephrase: I understand that your national situation makes it difficult or dangerous to organize local events, but that also makes you in position to coordinate online. So, knowing all that we know, are you Ok with helping coordinate local events elsewhere and make this online coordination working for you and your community?

Yes, I’d love to help online and offline local events as long as:

  • all the activities (on & off line) to be reflected on an online calendar so that everyone knows when happens what and can plan a bit ahead;
  • having a name for the event so that we all refer to the same thing and dates when things will happen and people plan a bit in advance before (I proposed Libre Hosters Festival);
  • all activities are ‘on topic’, which could be the same topics with the ones we talk here at the libre hosters community/network.

I was wondering what the other members think of the proposal. It would help also avoiding monopolizing the discussion only between the two of us :slight_smile:
R.S

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@agnez is there a decision on the vote in relation to the dates? https://poll.disroot.org/bjLXtvJeyVEeXjNA
For our team December is the month of another regional event and it would be exhausting to be in the organizing teams for both events at the same time.
Thank you.

R.S

Hello again friends, I was thinking to start working on the website for the event and also for the announcement of the call for speakers/workshop hosts and local & side events. If there are any thoughts on this, proposals or someone wants to join the efforts please ping me here. The idea is to use floss tools for the implementation of course. If the domain name will be festival.libreho.st who should I ping?

R.S

Do we really need a dedicated website? Discourse can serve to host one topic per activity. A static page can aggregate those in a friendly manner.

Probably @chrisc.

In my opinion it helps communicate the event outside the usual suspects. If we want to present the importance of LibreHosting to slightly more people communicating all the elements of the festival in a dedicated (sub)domain and a microsite might help newcomer understand better what is it all about, how it works .
In my perspective forums are a great tool for discussion, but if you want to get the only the basic information (what, when, where, how, who etc) without the long thread on a specific forum topic, a microsite might be a bettor way of presenting such information.

R.S

@rskikuli I should still have access to add dns records, if you give me a website for the festival to dump on the librehost server I can do that too, we can also try arrange a pipeline for autodeployment of changes.

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Hey there, we don’t talk much with @pierreozoux but @rskikuli you have, as you already know, our support in this :wink:
Pierre is still planning to do his part as discussed and convert the openpublishingfest website as a static site with Hugo.