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Gregg Shields (M)
Glasgow, UK
Immortal since Nov 7, 2009
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    Now playing SpaceCollective
    Where forward thinking terrestrials share ideas and information about the state of the species, their planet and the universe, living the lives of science fiction. Introduction
    Featuring Powers of Ten by Charles and Ray Eames, based on an idea by Kees Boeke.
    From Schmuck's personal cargo

    Should SpaceCollective Be Open?
    Whenever I visit this site, more than anything else, I get the sensation that people are thinking. We seem to find companionship in our common curiosity of ourselves and the Universe.

    You don’t need to read this post to know what I’m talking about, as you are likely more experienced in Space Collective than I am.

    No, the purpose of this post is to pose a question, and the question is this.

    Should Space Collective be Open?

    I encountered this place entirely by chance, I was using the random chat service Omegle, when I got talking to NotThisBody, we had a very interesting conversation, and he directed my attention to this site. I expressed my interest, and he sent me an invite.


    In that sense I am lucky, because had I encountered this site in another way, I would have had no way to join, while I very much would have wanted to.

    I think Space Collective has the potential to be something of great importance on the internet: it demonstrates a world of profound thought, and encourages a deepness not found on the staples of Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

    I understand the reasoning behind the current system of invite-only membership, as it ensures a degree of quality to contributors to the site, but unfortunately this is at the expense of the kind of rapid expansion that I think it could achieve.

    If anyone is free to join and contribute to Space Collective of their own accord, it is of great advantage to all of us, as it encourages more minds to engage in the topics we discuss, and brings more ideas and perspectives into the mix, which will encourage further and further thought.

    Frequently here, we speak of the importance and openness of the internet, and how profound it has the potential to be. Can the same not apply to this site? Is there any disadvantage in the encouragement of greater participation from the rest of the world?

    What is the purpose in limiting ourselves to only those that we know?

    Fri, Dec 10, 2010  Permanent link
    Categories: Space Collective
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         Fri, Dec 10, 2010  Permanent link
    What I actually really want to know is how I got here. I really don't remember, and often wonder. Nobody invited me. But I do remember wanting to join ages ago, and finding some way.

    I would at least like to see commenting opened up to the masses.

    Maybe we should all openly vote on certain prominent figures to try and convince to make some posts and join discussions on here. I think that could be something really interesting.
    weather     Fri, Dec 10, 2010  Permanent link
    I agree with dmitri
    It would be interesting to see the results of opening commenting to the public

    Though I would be concerned that the saturation of comments could take away from the coherency of the discussion and maybe discourage people from writing longer, well thought out statements.

         Fri, Dec 10, 2010  Permanent link
    oh...


    Mon, Dec 17, 2007 at 12:50 PM
    subject Invitation
    mailed-by spacecollective.org

    In case you did not receive the message below due to spam blockers, we are re-sending it as we're still looking for a few bright minds.

    -
    You are invited to join SpaceCollective as a beta member.

    SpaceCollective is a creative exchange platform where forward thinking terrestrials share information and ideas about possible futures within our own lifetime.

    Unlike conventional social networks, our goal is not to attract the greatest number of users, but to bring together a worldwide gathering of fearless minds joining us in our forward pursuit.

    So, before signing on as a member take a look around the site to make sure you are prepared to participate. Either way, you're welcome to check out our publicly available content at any time.

    Click here to set up your account.

    See you around,
    SpaceCollective


    Makes sense. I guess I signed up for beta at some point?

    I don't remember any privately available content being a thing. huh.
    Olena     Sat, Dec 11, 2010  Permanent link
    I'm not sure if I agree, only because of how easy it is to join.

    I happened upon SC because I used to look through image bookmarkers a lot, such as ffffound, which led me to but does it float & SC. I lurked around a lot, eventually decided to join, & just emailed them to ask... they got back to me quickly with an invite.
    It's a little intimidating because there's definitely a visible quality standard, but the community has been welcoming and I've learned a lot by interacting here, so I'm thankful for that.

    I do think exclusivity is hurtful to the world-wide community in that these topics are elevated such that the "average person" feels that they can't understand or join the discussion, which is untrue. They should be able to, as humans. They're capable.

    The thing is that even if you open up SC, it might still look like it's out of reach to a large portion of people, or that it's meant for a "certain kind" of person. I'm currently surrounded by ultra-liberals in my daily "real life" experience, and even those people are "creeped out" by the kinds of topics we discuss here. Even in art school (set aside the stereotypes), many of the people I speak to have no idea who Buckminster Fuller is. "One of the greatest minds of the last century".

    There's an opening up that needs to happen which is very well beyond the parameters of SC.

    I also agree with weather's comment:
    Though I would be concerned that the saturation of comments could take away from the coherency of the discussion and maybe discourage people from writing longer, well thought out statements.

    That actually reminded me of reddit.com. I don't know if any of you visit... I personally enjoy that site, but I think it's best to avoid that model of interactions, here.
    Schmuck     Sat, Dec 11, 2010  Permanent link
    I'm not calling for a mass recruitment of new members, my point wasn't that Space Collective should just blindly recruit everyone.

    Rather, Space Collective should make it possible for those that want to join to easily be able to do so. Something as simple as a "Sign Up" option I think would lure in more people who really have something to contribute, rather than deter them with the current "Invite Only" system.

    The only reason people would want to sign up would be because they feel they do have something to contribute to this site, by not having such a system, the site is closing itself off to such people, which I believe is something that should change.
    Olena     Sat, Dec 11, 2010  Permanent link
    No, recruitment isn't necessary, agreed.
    I just realized that next to the login button it does say "membership is by invitation only" but there are no means of being able to request invitation unless you just go ahead and ask about it through the "contact us" page as I did... is that some kind of screening process?
    You're right, even if they keep it invitation-only, it might be nice for it to be more evident that one can apply for an invite.
    nom the puppet     Sat, Dec 11, 2010  Permanent link
    perhaps a secret handshake of some kind?

    have you ever been to the internet? the members here are like hunting trophies for trolls. the length of each submitted article seems like it would be enough of deterrent to explain the lack of that behavior at spacecollective, but i don't know, maybe the admins are just super-human post editing cyborgs... or maybe the lack of access has something to do with it?

    this might be the shangri la of the internet...
    Spaceweaver     Sun, Dec 12, 2010  Permanent link
    It seems SC is as open as it should be. No one who really appreciates what is going on here and wishes to join, should be deterred by having to click a few extra links or exchanging a few emails.

    There is always this dilemma between high standards and accessibility. SC is interesting and attractive because it is high standard and unique. Opening it will very quickly change its character. Just imagine 200 or 2000 posts published everyday. Imagine for the sake of argument that all of them stand to the highest standard and interest. Would you be able to feel the same sense of belonging, intimacy and interest when you can browse and read less than 5% of what's being published? How would you feel about investing a few days or weeks in writing a post just to be published as one among hundreds a day? Am not sure it can work.

    An alternative might be to create in SC an open forum where everyone can comment while leaving the main posting pages more exclusive and standing out.
    Olena     Sun, Dec 12, 2010  Permanent link
    Inane comment incoming, but I loved nom's post, especially "this might be the shangri la of the internet..." I lol'd.

    In all srs bsns though, this is true: "have you ever been to the internet? the members here are like hunting trophies for trolls."

    And SpaceWeaver's comment, "It seems SC is as open as it should be. No one who really appreciates what is going on here and wishes to join, should be deterred by having to click a few extra links or exchanging a few emails."
    That's just what I was trying to say in relating my own anecdote about joining; if you really want in, it's not so hard.
    Apollo     Sun, Dec 12, 2010  Permanent link
    I hate to be the cynic, but I'm pretty sure SC would immediately go down in flames if it were opened to the public. The reason I say this is that SC is, as its name implies, a forum / platform of and for a niche group of like-minded individuals. I believe that SC functions precisely because it honors the rarity and peculiarity of our interests; we never need to justify the content of our postings, as it's simply assumed that whoever's on the receiving end will either a) understand or b) respectfully disregard the content that is posted. In other words, SC thrives in its format as a semi-permeable network. To open it up any further would flood the community and dilute that vague quality of the site that keeps us interested and engaged.
    michaelerule     Sat, Dec 18, 2010  Permanent link
    I'm tossing in my vote for "dear god please don't open up SpaceCollective".

    I once set up an open forum that took a grand total of 8 days to become bogged down with porn of the likes I'd never known existed — not a pretty job for an admin. The only open forums of which I am aware are reddit and slashdot, which do experience a fair amount of trolling, but self-police by up/down voting. I'd be somewhat sad if I had to down-vote three or four advertisements for ******-porn and v14graA every time I logged into this place.

    so, yeah. it's really nice as is. although I'm not sure about quality — I, for one, just post whatever thoughts keep me awake at night.

    Oh, and I've been having trouble convincing some serious academic types to contribute here. they all seem to be too busy at their day jobs.
    Xarene     Sat, Dec 25, 2010  Permanent link
    In addition to keeping it 'invite only', I say we're due for a major cleanup of dead time-capsules. I was optimistic for a while. Random people and friends (smart, talented ones) would email me and hit me up for an invite. I'd give them one, with a kind note to 'contribute'. They made their "profile". Then they left it empty. Which part of the word 'contribute' did they not understand?

    Not only do I like to browse posts, I like to browse time capsules; many of the names and images are intriguing by themselves to make me want to click and see what they've written/thought. But too frequently and cluttered in-between the time capsules are a littering of empty ones stuck with the generic place-holder image.

    SC, can we clean up a bit? Actually, I'd like to reserve the right to kill off my descendants.

    Apollo     Thu, Dec 30, 2010  Permanent link
    I have to say, I agree with Xárene. Perhaps we could come up with a spacier and less Biblical-sounding term for it than "killing off descendants", though ;)
    klaitner     Thu, Dec 30, 2010  Permanent link
    I like "kill off descendants" just fine (simple, direct, Accountability where it should be). Do not think this should be done on the basis of 'Contribution' as this is not the only dimension of value operating here. Participation (commenting), Validation (reading), Surfacing (favoriting and promoting), and Referral (of new brilliant SC members) are other dimVal's that come to mind without giving it much thought. The requirement to contribute would also decrease quality.

    Time does not exist in hyperconnectivity (I may be corrected on this point, w?), post frequency is irrelevant, activity is irrelevant. The person is invited because they are qualified, this is enough for me to allow them to 'take up space'. SC strikes me more as an archive than a real time tool. It is a quiet room where one can speak clearly to an attentive audience, not a marketplace where one must yell in short bursts to be heard. Other tools emphasize activity, and may be more appropriate.

    Quality is the emergent characteristic of the constraints placed on this space. I see no reason to change the invite only constraint. There is a certain standard that is maintained by the Accountability affordances. Extending Accountability to the ancestor for the quality of descendants interaction seems appropriate, though personally I would hate to see it used based on quantity. At least if provided in this way, the censure would be restricted to the value equation of the ancestor being imposed upon their descendants.

    Perhaps a more polite approach would be to invite inactive accounts (after a certain time) to close their account if they are no longer interested. This would have the dual benefit of cleaning up accounts that will never be used, and perhaps gently prodding a valued member to participate, or even contribute.

    meika     Tue, Mar 13, 2012  Permanent link
    I can't remember how I got invited in either. It's a mystery. I only come by every few months now, but still feel at home.

    Once when I was not very involved here I got an email requesting an introduction but I declined as I was not up to speed and passed the buck on it, without saying no. Always felt a bit odd about it though.
    sonicport+techfolder     Fri, Mar 16, 2012  Permanent link
    Spacecollective is as open as the language it has become, I don't see any firewall in place to date. It is a debate about how many people we as a team can engage in good conversation with the world in demanding times.

    How long does it take to create a relationship before the invite key is pressed?
    BenRayfield     Fri, Mar 23, 2012  Permanent link
    I created a new thread as my response:
     http://spacecollective.org/BenRayfield/7419/Plant-seed-of-global-democracy-in-a-spacecollective-upgrade 
    nagash     Mon, Apr 2, 2012  Permanent link
    > I have to say, I agree with Xárene. Perhaps we could come up with a
    > spacier and less Biblical-sounding term for it than "killing off descendants", though ;)

    Yeah, let them be black-holed to nothingness
     
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