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Neo-Tribes: The Future is Tribal

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You might have come across people that are "abandoning everything," deserting the urban consumer lifestyle to engage in small community activities, living off the land or following the path of the digital nomad. Are these experiments just nostalgic recreations of hippie fantasies from the 1960s or do they signal a powerful new leap into new ways of organizing social systems?
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interval it's great to be here but before we jump into the future is tribal I wanna share a little bit about my own background and give you some of my own cultural biases in how I came to some of these assumptions but growing up I was always surrounded by misfits I have both my parents were anthropologists and so I spent a lot of time speaking to really different kinds of people and my father worked with indigenous people in Brazil and my mother traveled around the world and spoke to people who thought they had been abducted by aliens so I don't know how many people believe in Elliott I have here a we can talk afterward hum but growing up you know between the ages of 7 and 14 this completely terrified me and I was really scared that I would be abducted and then I getting into my teenage years I started becoming worried that I wasn't being abducted feeling like a little bit of pool of egoism like if the aliens out there but why am I not a chosen ambassador of the human race and so I come from this perspective it really taught me 2 things the value of speaking to people that make us uncomfortable the value of speaking to people who come from radically different world views that really take us out of our echo chambers and then also the limitations of Western consciousness that there's so many experiences that we have that we don't necessary necessarily have the narratives and so part of the effort with neo tribes is to think about the stories that we haven't really written yet and so we'll look at some of these emerging narratives and really play with them together and then I'll bring a few people on stage who've been actively immersed in in their only the new tribal reality and will will make this a little bit more participatory but coming from this esoterica upbringing I when I really into this corporate Heart of Darkness so I went from this I
really a wide open landscape of cultural plurality in into companies and into corporations and
within those huge bureaucracies I felt like I stumbled upon really a lost tribe within these institutions and people that were culture hackers people that were in Japan or as people that were really trying to transform their institutions from the inside but these were people like the bird she worked at Ford who was I a card-carrying member of Amnesty International and really tried to get the company to think differently about their practices on human rights who tried to push the company and provoke the company to develop business models beyond just automobile manufacturing to think about mobility solutions and so working with people like Dave we ended up starting this guerrilla movement for the cubicle warriors for these intra Benoit's for these people that were really trying to bring in a completely different business models in into corpora context and they face so much push back they faced all these antibodies within this organization and so it was a little bit like Alcoholics Anonymous bringing together these people where they could have a shared sense of
identity and when it can really share best practices where they could give each other tips for has stealthily how to navigate huge organizations are where they could share instances of being able to pitch and make the business case and most importantly where they could find a source of real personal resilience are where they could find that peer support that entourage that could give them fuel and courage in their
work the and then I got bored I really got impatient working with just people that were trying to transform institutions from within up this change from within gender started to melt for me a little bit and so I started asking who were the other tribes out there who can I spend more time working with
so I got involved really with a lot of social entrepreneurs I got involved in Occupy and then I got involved really looking at the fringes speaking to people on the black markets and informal economies and trying to understand what can we learn from fringe innovators what can we learn from gangsters and hackers and pirates and people that we don't read about in Harvard Business Review but who have incredible stories of creativity and ingenuity and so might tribal context started to feel a little bit more promiscuous and I think that's 1 of
the elements of the neo Indian tribes this fact that we can be part of several overlapping tribes and for me it was also this feeling that doing the change from within work did allow me to really anchor
in art and activist spirit in an artist spirit there were so many things that had to be factored out of me to really think about driving change from within organizations to be a misfit within a huge bureaucracy you're constantly camouflaging yourself by you you can't be the protester who can stand boldly in your agenda you have to figure out the politics of an organization to drive change and so some of my explorations in different kinds of tribes were also my own identity explorations of our how can I stand more powerfully in very different ways of being in the world and so what we have this
formal definition of neo tribes which is very much looking at this idea of how do we get outside of mass society but you know that we've evolved to live in much more than
just the consumerist reality that we've inherited so if you like that formal definition I would keep looking at that slide I set up last nite and I developed a little bit of some poetic indulgence I am so let me read you some of the different longings II that
I have a renewed tribalism what is near tribalism mean it means we can't afford to live in mass society it means reality is up for grabs it means that from this slow burning of your atomized existence the green shoots of wildness are springing forth it means an exit from mechanical rhythms and reconnecting with natural cycles it means consuming technology with the same conscientiousness we apply to our consumption of food it means a world where the peak experiences a festival culture find refuge in everyday living it means radically new ways of organizing business in Internet start-ups around principles of self-organization and cooperative ownership it means the entrepreneurial cowboy becomes a
communitarian angel it means the tech road developing aspects of monastic living it means
believing that yes small is beautiful but still pondering about transnational political collective it may also mean that just maybe we have outgrown mass democracy the that civic culture re localizes at a scale fit for human agency I carry in my heart a thousand visions for new ways of being in new ways of operating new forms of agency my body craves to be unshackled from an industrial reality that requires my performance here now let's rewrite the scripts of capitalism let's design for each time a cell of discontent not with grand schemes and isms but with gentle prodding into heightens community but let sail away from mass society I want to jump out of my role as consumer worker colleague friend lover talking head leave behind the tattered scripts of identity I want to rebrand the prison of my discomfort not his personal failings but structural undoing I want to follow the rabbit holes of intuition and on the conduct manual for mythic living I want to feel the flow of the nomad the pilgrim the communitarian in my veins without pausing for your Facebook approval in the lurch of discontent as we hear the whispers and taunts of the new paradigm
let's examine our fallenness were all born into cultures we didn't help to create cultures that no longer serve culture is gone not modern life is waves of fossilizing The Art of Living let's help culture find its poles let's tease
out the emergent DNA starting now let's bring into being new tribes new currents new cultures new rituals new processes a new embodiment for a new age so thank you so those were really some of
the emotional longing was that I think a lot of people are bringing into this concept of you tribalism we did
every tree in December in Brazil and it felt like everyone who was there wall so diverse had a common desire to jump out of the system and really what were they trying to jump out of but this crisis of meaning the fact that we've lost a lot of ritualistic elements of life a lot of missing mythic elements of life are lack of trust in institutions and government if you see what's happening with the political crisis in Brazil or the US right now but were really questioning this idea of how we reached peak democracy here are democracies even the
best way for us to express our citizenship for us to express our forms of agency and bureaucracies again we're living in these command-and-control systems so how do we find alternative ways of structuring work of ringing freelancers together of developing collaborative forms of entrepreneur or so ship that are hijacked by Silicon Valley and really this piece that there's been such a disconnection between are human existence and natural rhythms and so those were just some of the things that we feel like we were in crisis with that were bringing us to this moment where we wanted to seek out alternatives where we wanted to look to different tribes for inspiration in
terms of how we can live our own lives and how we can begin to happen modern society and in addition to these subjective polls these drivers there's a whole macroeconomic landscape emerging that parallels that process that these 2 things are really incurred interconnected I'm really looking at this unprecedented inequality that we have the the whole externalization of environmental costs and also the fact that you know my own well being
in some ways is tied to the price of oil is tied to interest rates on that my sense of contentment is completely interlinked with macro-economic factors and we see this spilling over within the business environment to where business is becoming a thoughtful about how do we exit from these mass corporate structures how do we think about new ways of organizing ourselves around principles of decentralized governance and so you have this these green shoots of a new reality that are coming up around citizen production around what it would look like
if we dis intermediated corporations if we return to a kind of cottage industry reality that really happened before capitalism started I where we have much more peer-to-peer production and so we'll hear a little bit more about this but this trend is also this whole trend of distance are distributed Enterprise this holds trend of
decentralization is spilling over into our spiritual life as well that spiritual and religious realities tend to imitate economic structures and so were now in this moment where how do we apply to the nodes of the internet the thinking of distributed networks to spirituality how do we embrace realities around peer-to-peer spirit reality where were not dependent on the guru or were not dependent on a traditional
hierarchies within religious organizations there is a huge movement of growing nines so especially prominent among Millennials of people that identify a spiritual but not religious and more and more you see these peer-to-peer forms of self-organizing around some of these
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some of these communities that are part of this emerging phenomenon but what I really gains I've spent the last 3 years interviewing I gangsters all
over all over the world and the gentleman here is king tone who was 1 of the leaders of the Latin Kings and he he really was 1 of the 1st people that I spoke to who pushed back against the word gang he said don't call us again colicin organization like any other on that we do recruitment we do retention on and that you know the majority of the money is drug money that that actually means that they have skills in terms of understanding how to manage brand how to do products quality around things I'm and so he really was at the leadership of this game
at a time when i the gain was recovering from 1 of its most bloodiest periods and so the questions he was asking are not dissimilar from so many of the questions that people ask who who were leading other types of communities he was really saying how what is the what is the change management intervention for this game how could he have the game to become much more of a social movement I to become much more of an activist organization and so he started building alliances with really critical allies to bring
in some of this new DNA ends the organization another I collective
that I spoke with is this great from a French feminist group called the bob and
so they'll come to events like this but to any sort of big public conferences and wherever there's an under representation of women and they basically I wear fake beards and crash the events and congratulate the men on how
smart and intelligence but they are and and really I provoke audiences into into being much more sensitive to gender dynamics and what I love about this group is they operate without a leader but even in interviewing them there's no 1 spokesperson so they really have this kind of a rotating chair for alpha leadership and you steal a lot of this type of activity really wouldn't hacker collectives to within pirate cultures where you you find much more of the elements of decentralization being built into these organizational structures you
I I think I have to click it here area was another really fun you tried that I encourage you if you're on
social media right now to check out the ah preppers so you can get a hashtag proper or you can go to a hash ag proper chat and find this really amazing
community of people that come from the radical right and radical left and they're a little bit crazy they believe that the apocalypse is coming at them the end of the world is near and and that catapults them into this philosophy of radical self-reliance where they're constantly preparing for the end of the world but there's even a woman on Twitter who sells foraging i advice for like how to look pretty
after the end of the world so she gives forging tips for people that wanna know how to make make up out of like natural plants and things like this and so this triad is actually really interesting in the sense that
it's uniting these tool different 2 different pools of existence the sort of climate change advocated by you know who staunchly us look doomsday in their own in their own right and then the sort of gun toting conservative that doesn't believe in big government and so you have this interesting alliance we also have ecovillages now around the world and more and more I think these were really planted with this sixties legacy of communitarianism and you know now you see ecovillages on almost in every country and ones that have actually
developed a large amount of sustainability and so a lot of these and approaches are really built on this idea of the island and how do we isolate and prototype new forms of culture better fit for an emergency society and so these groups have tended to to find ways of totally restructuring sexual norms of restructuring governing norms and really incubating them at a small
scale until they feel like they're right enough for mass infection so now you see some of these ecovillages better seeping a little bit more into the mainstream and looking at this question of how do we scale some of these practices I have always scale this culture of embodiment that's been that's been fostered
another I near tried that you would really think of as a tribe per say is I this low lovely clustering of permits from around the world you see
people better I'm going back to the land in pursuing this solitary form of living and yet they haven't e-newsletter that they used to update each other on their little solitary pursuits that's quite fond of edits and there's a long tradition of these kind of these hermit tribes you know Thurow I wrote Walden 45 minutes from where I grew up and so he had these experiments in radical self-reliance In really rejecting mass consumerism and
industrial forms of society and he did that for 18 months and then when he went back into society he had to work at his parents pencil factory so I think there's always this question of if you're trying to jump out of the system if you're trying to peel off from the system but how do you develop a better strategy of cultural infection but how do you really
make sure that you can sort of package a insights I 1st 1st scale and I think people have very different approaches are around us and will hear a bit more from Derek in Chelsea in just a moment the other thing that I've been doing a little bit of research on is this idea of utopias and fail Utopia's especially in looking at what are the dimensions that that make experimental community thrive I was reading this morning for example about this great i utopia that was set up by the shakers in Indiana and so the shakers had this flourishing community I really splinter from the Quakers group the Quaker groups and they had a lot of land
and now the only 3 shakers left and they all live in Maine arm and an element of the Shaker of practice is that your celibate arm and so how they've managed to exist
for over 200 years was largely through this policy of adoption and also
through people that were attracted to the that lifestyle onboarding new members who were adults on and now what they're doing is they're actually putting their land in trust because they don't
actually have any new members and across the US this is happening now where you had forms of intentional or monastic community that are now looking to the new generation who might not share the same spiritual world views but who could help the stewards of land so that would otherwise just be you know go to the government or be put up for sale and so I'm involved in in some of these conversations looking at how how can a German generation develop intention around land stewardship an Enbridge filled with some of those generations that had us started these communities and some of the practices and rituals what can what can the new generation actually learn from some of those elders who have done this work I'm not going to talk too much about which
is but I've spent some time especially in the last week of being very and amerced in different emerging of
witchcraft cultures but you when I come up and and I wanted to do was which is but you want to share a little bit about the experimental communities
that you've been involved in the and also may be any any practices any rituals so that you guys feel like the study of by 1 here about who you can sit on this rules out and I can pick up their from their like their generously thank you so much for having us in this conversation today and Howard everybody mind Chelsea Robinson and I'm from a little island called New Zealand are a set of islands and
yes so I come from a community in this conversation and your tribe called and spiral which I'm sure that some of you who right you know here will so feeling connected to having part of
the instructor Unity Festival years and actually this community does have some sort of which he personalities in it but it has all sorts of personalities it that are all cultivating a practice of tribalism in their own way and when I think about uh that kind of rituals that we have we have we just have so many it's hard to know where to begin and I'm sure that many of them are the same as the practices of your own organizations and at different communities that you've seen time when including and bringing your whole self to the
workplace through storytelling about who you really are and having a really into his of retreat culture to really build human
connections at that deeper level and but I
think behind all of this for me when I think about like the shape of an spiral in the nature of it it's it's a it's a business collective
it's a community of people creating livelihood together and and I think about when I think about new tribes I think about this for Elle's which are kind of like a lineage you know every tribe has its lineage and love every tribe and tribe has its love practice uh livelihood so most of the from ecovillages to which culture to gangster kind of
communities there's always this question of like where is that what is the money come from what is the food come from what where's the livelihood aspect and then the last 1 the leadership so what is the leadership practice how do you practice decentralized governance or who is the 1 leader and I think this is a really interesting set of lenses to look at things there and yeah I a I would love to show the lineage of and spiral but I
wonder if it's the right thing but I think that's greater sharing and 1 of the themes that we wanted to
explore is around this idea of cultural hybridity answer rather than perceiving tribes as stagnant entities that have no connection to modern realities what are the different bits of past communities that were
sampling problem and i've Indian spiral story is incredible illustration of that you have
cost so this is a very little known
story and it's not mine so also wanting to acknowledge that in these sort of had dynamic communities story is really the vehicle for for a we know how to get here like what's the creation story what's the origin myth but behind how we got here and so you have to also acknowledge it would be perfect but In spiral as a group of David's basically developers who sat around in a circle and seed had a look at our income is high enough that we can just work a bit for client work and spend the rest of our time doing work that matters or trying transition on practice of our internal economy as a collective into in a collective driven by social environmental impact and I think that's uh that instance and the way that that group set in a circle and the way that they talk to each other and the
way that they get that came from a community that I've been part of cold uh a circle called regeneration which was you know it's a gathering like I'm sure many of you have been part
of the sort of community that meets every summer or every winter and goes deep together inches practice inches life stories and release of asks the hard Christians of why we here and what we to do and support each other with that and regeneration was a set of circles and the community and a tribe that came from another tribe in New Zealand specifically quote hot politics which is 2 generations before me and hot color 6 created the
1st green party in the world they created all these an incredible initiatives transform the landscape of New Zealand's industry and politics because of the sort of silent on the
current work that they were doing in their sort of more personal more quiet more missed expects and then that also has lineage right back to our and our indigenous peoples practice and culture so there was a part of international peace movement was started in a little place called Piney habitat in i in the North Island of New Zealand and Pontiac I was non-violent direct action based indigenous movement against colonization and a lot of a lot of Gandhi in practice has actually also been inspired by this group and their practices are also still the practices that keep in spiral alive and well but so many people so many of the designers developers facilitators accountants lawyers and this extensive collective that is now in spiral wouldn't necessarily understand that that's the lineage but when you do look behind each of these
practices they have this very very multigenerational DNA
massive cultural DNA strands and I think it's just so profound to sort of question that and acknowledges and say where this code come from this and what I had a wife finally contributor to the other coders and Derek I'm interested in hearing about you I mean I know a lot about you but maybe audiences with name you but also you did speak of it to this point of water some of the challenges of our remixing culture you know within and spiral you have these personalities that are you know the the this is developer person and the
program a person the Occupy protester person the which so like how do those cultural personalities interweaving water some of the tensions or conflicts yeah that's a
that's a good question about high and they're of so I think that to sort of transition from what you were saying over to what you're
inviting uh in the more recent history of this set of circles is that I think you
really need a combination of people from the uh freelance sort of the emerging freelance movement which is the sort of original viral crew of the open source community In the occupy movement and I think the DNA of an spiral is really fused with the use of this sort of deep lineage going all the way back to her politics and in combination with this new where piece of DNA which is the sort of text in and I think
a lot of what we get stuck on a as a community is about how we how we
relate our own values in a sense of the measuring and distributing value to the way that the external world outside of our little bubble I measures values in spiral internally has a bit of the market on economy inside of it and the reality is that some people who are programmers bring in 10 acts of what some other people who might you equally important work but by the market scenes other day doing you know something that's worth 1 10th
so I think this is 1 of the core stumbling blocks or things that were still working out
we're talking to actively seeking out other communities reviewing these issues as well and and so yeah I think through that struggle often the at the peculiarities of different groups personalities images and people's political philosophies come into play in speech reality and system personal sense of value where they get their value from is really key part that's that's great and I I wanted to share to that for us this is such a new conversation that new tribes is a frame has only really existed for the
last 7 9 months for us to make sense of some of this peer-to-peer sharing between different forms of unity and so were still really trying to find a language for it and would really welcome your input on there too and maybe afterwards if people wanna talk about which is we can grab years and you've got to have both let's move on because I think 1 element of the tribes that really distinguishes it from other types of communities but is the ephemeral nature of this idea that you can have multiple tribal allegiances and and so I wanted to
share a little bit I think Eleanor was giving a talk earlier and she was 1 of the people by really introduced me to this magical world of warping which is a particular kind of you tried but often and so how many people here have ever lots before they are moving away for those who don't know i lobbying is alive action role-playing of you might have this bias in your head where you've seen the film where you associate it with the nerds running around in the woods with swords but that's not the case necessarily but 1 of the things that i've really been exploring is this idea of using as a way of prototyping alternative realities and so how can you set up this design fiction
this utopia this dystopia over the course of a few hours weekend to really test some hypotheses that you want to explore if you want to experiment with the future of finance for example why not set up a lot around it and really get into the embodiment of what it looks like to live in a world driven by cryptocurrency world world driven by a you know more distributed financial tools if you want to experience the collapse of the collapse of monogamy in new forms of relationships set up a popup scenario around it and really begin to prototype with some of that culture the other thing that I really I have found in in locked that I'd love is this idea of lead which is when
I think the personality characteristics of the character that you're playing began to seep into your own personality and so I was speaking to someone who taught himself how to be extroverted through lot he was a complete introvert and really developed you know social skills through this temporary practice so I think it's a powerful way for us to be able to access through tried different types of identity and to figure out how we can happen challenge ourselves to step into new types of roles I experienced that felt a little bit like an extended lot of fermion Derek was also there this is where we met and I know there several folks from from popular Republica was this experience of pop out where we were for 5 weeks I was only there for a week but you as were there for a good 5 weeks in the summer version that was an attempt at rebuilding new forms of society but you wanna share a little bit about what the the publication of the talk was about and how you ended up there on and some of the beauty of the founder of some of those genomes but also some of the shadows some of the tensions in creating this pop-up culture yeah sure I think the symmetry years and this is in some ways this is really my story to tell so I can only give a bit of a story from a participant in
particular but I think the message of market was around trying to deliver a message to the COP 21 but climate
conference to say yeah we're we're not OK with you just talking about action and not doing anything for prototyping on the ground really trying to figure out what does a society that is sustainable look like and they're sort of the underpinning of that uh experiment I think that was about open-source culture in particular and how how does that relate to the way that we build societies manage societies and come together as communities and makers and so for those of you don't know about pop 21 it was this a 5 week long innovation can help in a castle outside of this castle i outside of Paris and we came together and I really prototyped what a new society would look like by building building toilets and creating systems to make sure that everybody got there was an applied Arsenal no it wasn't money cancel when we say castle sometimes people think that we're just hanging out but it turns out the infrastructure of castles is not actually built to hold up to 300 people at 1 time yet those of issue came up many times and so I think uh some of the beautiful things about that experience work that uh yeah just the aspect of transformative learning of being in that context so I should have about a week early to help set up the infrastructure for the camp and it felt like we're in a disaster area like we're figuring out OK this one's will we've got like 30 people we need to build with today's that's model that that is not an issue and also some instilling building the showers but right now the showers are working and others tense but some of us sitting on the floor and it felt like a yes we were like a lot I guess we really prototyping of that of a dystopian situation and it was the
beautiful thing was to see an overview of weeks using open source tools and using that are obviously not everything we used was open source but really trying to be as generative with the tools of open source and open hardware as we could but to create a community with infrastructure and so by the end of it I I think that there is this yeah it's kind of magical experience of everybody going through this learning journey and finding out that OK
some of these things are we kind of have a handle on what we know we can we can figure out how to build these things and these things we don't need in these ways and some of these things we we don't have a handle
on and so yeah I think there's a lot of there's a lot of difficulty in organizing the sort of difficulty in like being able to see each other under stressful situations I think those are all real human aspects of the prototyping experience and the I feel like I learned a lot from the idea that many of the sponsors became a necessity for went off to quit their jobs and consider that other people had transport presidents of there were to think that
really stood out for me and being at the castle 1 was just how everyone's happiness seemed to shoot up when there was divide by all of which have implications for how we design fights that are very different from the sort but but that also leaving pockets and the who is here in the front row 2 of the audience everyone seemed to have this deep longing for building a new kind of society and then really struggle to figure out how to bring that back into their everyday life and so calcium wondering if there's anything that you would wanna share where you felt like there's been a sort of a longing or a hunger that you found in community or something a particular and a particular genome that you feel a group could be transferable to to sort of mass everyday society yeah I mean I've run a lot of different communities have been have been the person who other people call it to him and the like have come up with an idea that you like those please give it to be let's talk about it tomorrow and so yeah there's a lot of different right every community so different and it's interesting you know there are I think what comes to mind is about like what currency is going to sustain that energy and the longing because you you are always in this process of creating the world's there is no receiving the world really you're you're constantly a participant in creating an and so on i whether i whether it's like a movement for climate action in policy or whether it's you know spiral style business collective or whether it's a group of people from across an entire sector coming together to conserve movement and change their sector everyone is showing up with that feeling of like I can feel it in my heart how do we do it and so I think 1 of the hardest things and i've and you know as someone in only the early part of my adult life I differently have been told many times it's not about you know staying up
all nite every nite in your twenties trying to do change the world it's like actually this is a multigenerational cent and so I think it's
interesting on a small scale you look at a political campaigning organization and political campaigning movement something like occupiers something like likewise manner and you can see it's tribal slime and its leader
listeners potentially the and you can see that money is not a big part of that maybe it's
maybe the donation-based fund-raising system is just never going to allow for those people to actually create full livelihood from participating in creating the world in that space and so the currency becomes love or becomes reputation or a becomes credibility or it becomes face time or
something like something motivates you to keep showing up to the meeting because it's rewarding for you where spiral I
think there's there's there's a slightly this slightly more healthiness I think to people being over to earn money together that that is a gene and I would definitely that firm from now on I will be designing around as you know as like actually if we can make money together and then share that share capacity is it not only sustains us that sustains our mission because then we can take people out of this feeling trapped in this organization where they wanna create internal movement in whatever corporate as you were
talking about that feeling and we can say common serotonin of little economy we're gonna bridge across from the island to the mainland using an economic engine just to give you more time and and to give you more sustenance and to allow you to have a holiday sometimes I I think is a really interesting piece about about levelheaded about money in and the other thing about pop not that I was there but it just it's just such a strong reminder that another gym is about time I'll
like how long you know 1 another and I think in the community over 5 weeks would encounter the same challenges of we have to that the governance system and the whatever and what is this power structure that's imaging and whatever and I think that everything is about time when I was talking before about the lineages inner circle behind circle behind circle of people sitting together working through this ship is really like that is you know nothing
can replace that level of did that you've created and co-created over over generations of like the wisdom of the informal knowledge that is coming through that so there's something there about time too and yeah I think you and I wanted to bring our attention to 1 of the elements of new tribes that we really see in Festival cultured but there is also a young
guy who were that was part of this peer-to-peer spirituality your philosophy group that we put together called wisdom hackers and he spent 3 months traveling around and going to festivals and really asking the philosophical question why can't we bring festival spirit into everyday life and I think from a from a new tribal perspective there are a lot of ways in which festival culture and community design insights that have come out of festival culture of the really important for even seeding groups like in spiral in and how we think about even mobilizing politically but but we were also at a festival an amazing festival in Costa Rica called envision recently and that we had a bit of a provocation to some of the organisers and I what I'm wondering if you guys can share a little bit about some of years some of your discomfort with festival culture and then some of the things that you feel like it's actually incubating new new forms of DNA here here a new kinds of micro
economies that could be really interesting as a way of transforming mass society
it yeah immediately I
just we have a set of the 2 sides of the same coin you know it's it's about the same thing that is the gift is the curves in terms of festivals being a place where people can escape and so they can stay in a way that is going to definitely be devoid of their normal life since if I did see and progress in daily with them to the escapism of that
can can be a real it can be a shadow as well as a by saying but I think it's a state i it also allows for in our place cipher and free from the bounds of normal thinking so this this this this wondrousness of the estate and and this difficulty with that and yeah I know yet I I would agree and I guess that the classic example of the festival that walks this line is the burning man and I think that yeah you know it's it's in some ways it's sort of an extreme example but have you've got this peer-to-peer experience to some degree or at least a maybe you don't have exactly the same way now is used to but you've got this experience of yeah going out and
costume and sitting down on a gigantic pirate ship built in the middle of the desert and having conversations Larry Page and I think that that experience over time has created a really significant cultural shift at least in California and I think it does require on-site you think that the seeds of experience the happen in this festivals can create real impact I think that the I was really inspired by the envisioned founder who we were we had this panel vision talk about post capitalism and hence we did didn't we did named the panel and I was really inspired by his his own critique of his own projects where you saying yeah we be bought this piece of land industry can we like invited or friends rebuilt the sole legal village and then we realized ship we're all just rich white guys and we just bought a piece of Costa Rica from the government and made it hours and so now he's like iterated that project and really the next version of what they're doing is more about being a bridge to finance the for the local community to coordinate is a property and so I I hope that what the festivals are in the reading is something that conscious of obviously these things the complexity can never really know yeah I mean it was disheartening and in addition to deceive people locals were speaking
into the festival's climbing fences and going underground and and so I think part of the challenge there was how do you think about festivals is as sites of inclusion and have you honey radicalize festival so that they're not just about the hedonistic escapism which can be really important for one's own personal development but how do you on the bridge that we use but with systems so how do we how do we imagine ourselves within a festival context also also being able to think about you know systemic impacts about festival and and I think this challenge of radicalising self-help really comes out in his tribalism conversation because you have so many people who are really appropriating up a lot of indigenous culture and are going and desire laughter retreat center seeking out personal healing but they're seeking out personal healing in a way that undermines from systemic engagement and so they see that as divorced from this post-capitalist moment that were existing and and I think we only have a few minutes left before question so I'll I'll move assignment um yeah although this slide monsters and festivals but but really some of the questions that we we've started sharing a really probably still heavily pirate from different kinds of tribes probably respect the lineages and remix some of those and 1 tried to I hope I will i'll just talk about it maybe it'll it'll click over so 1 try that i've been really interested in is the Amish and I'm has spent a lot of time with Amish communities who I think are really
incredible for a variety of reasons I think 1 they have this alternative scripts of entrepreneurship that is much more vested with in the community and so within
this use those of collaboration and you also have within Amish communities this reluctance to technology so it's not that they're technolog technologically abstinence but they they believe in slow adoption so you really have beta testers within the community that our 1st importing new technologies and then the war will be the impact of this technology on our community's well-being and so to bring some of that homage publication into mass society I developed this performance character called homage futurist and the last time I was that
Republicans some years ago she was present so Rebecca was here and was the leading everyone in a confession of the technology since and the vanity that were encouraged by Facebook but but I I'm I'm interested to you in your letters perspectives because it's been really funny but to use Rebecca
as a vehicle for actually creating this crack In this culture of entrepreneurship and of the start up for people to be able to share their technophobia is for people to be able to share with water the actual bigger intentions behind this particular
technology so as you guys think about not necessarily becoming more sort
of what I a new approach to technology but as you think about you know what are some of the social dimensions that accompany technologies that we have to think about and how are you bringing more of Boston existential awareness to technology there been some great talks here on platform quark groups for example that are beginning to think about new forms of ownership that don't go down this traditional growth pathway
and so I think that there's there's tons of different examples of people
experimenting in this realm of so I for context I went to school at UC Berkeley which is in around Silicon Valley and study composed computer science and entrepreneurship and of my experience that was really that uh the story of what technology is in its role it plays in the economy is really dominating in a in a certain direction that's like as a entrepreneurship student literally they're like all welcome to Entrepreneurship 101 at the end of this class you're gonna pitch to venture capitalists so that it's I guess a part of my inquiry around intentional technology is really about how we as humans tend to seem to tend to play with defaults or play with
stories really easily it's cold well I'm so I'm supposed to business venture capitalists so obviously this makes sense and he's gonna take 5 per cent equity in 2
years ago could never the company I think that these I mean that's extreme but like it's not unheard of and I think that that the intentional technology story is 1 of both being intentional but what the technology is I think that something that is really really present here and you know you know here specifically teachers call budget and the other embedded tools that events so inspire we've got this like pattern of trying to take our social processes and transform them into digital processes for collaboration us of
the the first one that we kind of that kind of is the most popular 1 is a medium which is an online tool for collective decision-making which came out of a crew from the occupy movement uh it's borrow very much didn't make gloomy but gave me a desk an internet connection then that allowed them to source figured out our help them figure it out and another so so that you know sort of the digital version of a social process of that comes from a lineage of consensus building practice if you get a chance to check of the 2 or 3 very simple like a discussion thread with our thumbs and sort of it's it's this extremely deep practice of consensus-building that it comes from Our and I guess the 2nd tool that you mentioned is co budget which is our sort of internal economy to within inspire which allows us to run a bit of a participatory budgeting process which comes from I think originally it comes from our housing cooperatives who would put on these sort of project affairs where you would you sort of show up to dinner 1 nite and everybody would get a couple monopoly dollars and people put up source science fair style posters and say like I wanna do this with the House's extra money and if everyone put the steak dollars into each other's buckets and then you get you get an allocation of funds based on how much are you were given from the
community and so we've we've experiments with these practices as ways of building
technology that supports social process and social development and also experimenting with and these technologies with different financing
structures that allow a a bit of flexibility from the the dominance a narrative of it cannot dominate economic narrative of technology venture capital Hugo go specifically into that with people afterwards but talk about the financial instruments so what's really interesting at a higher levels so is that spiral has in some ways pioneered this foray into really building open-source social enterprises for add new tribal technology and I think that it's it's desire how hard it is to find that so I think that it's really interesting that most technology and especially the way that it's financed in the way that add dominant paradigms of ownership of working in the technology-based at really incentivize instabilities of technology that higher with the user-design is centered on an individual's experience rather than
a group experience and so I think it's really interesting as well to just kind of notice that that higher level that examples like when you encode budget I I kind of like this new species of and technologies designed for groups to thrive not for people and not for individuals only to sort of game this vanity experience or a or whatever you're example was the example of the sort of Anderson's effects beautiful so I think we have
time just a few minutes left so
if there are any questions maybe 1 question in order to questions and otherwise we're just going to be around 2 so on as we begin to sort of refined this story and figure out you know what works were really eager to hear from you guys water the types of challenges that you're encountering as you build communities on any lastly what can we I use from cults because they've done a lot of this particularly effectively and so 1 of the frameworks that we have was this business model canvas for whole creation and and so really looking at for any kind of community design process how do you think about the
origin story in your creation myth how do you think about the incentives that structure that community and really just applying a lot of the things that holds too well to think about some of the emerging collaborative economies and new forms of community that we wanna structure great thank you guys know what whom we have 1 question again we'd like that if this is all that's was right that 1 is very high and I live things
happening collectives now for about an hour and a half AES and 9 the idea that the collective myself in which it's among other things has become a highly connected in a real sense that we're community in north London but and 1 of the things that we found is that had setting where the things I found when I tried to write about it I think about it is that the politics really emerge from the space rather than vise versa and so this is something that you experience the
occupied I certainly did and this space and merged out of necessity we live in the warehouse for the reasons we live in where has it is true for the rent in London otherwise the rent in London is crazy we can only afford to live there because sometimes 12 of us and then added that it became easier did something is collectively inmate meals together collectively and then everything emerged from there so I'm wondering what your thoughts were on rather than starting with the idea of all the longing starting with the space itself and the problem is of that when there is so much pressure on space and housing thanks fantastic thank you
and 2 years have any reflections on just the power of states in really seeding some of these new communities I have a really quick anecdote which is that I was just in Devon last week on on a course that really looked at bioregional also was designed and so was focused on us on this idea of story of place and really being attentive to how the spaces in the geography is that were in come to inspire the cultures that are there and so the things that you see and operating very much
within a social or a cultural fabric you see those minutes within the environment of the space and you know specifically in this region of Devon it was on notorious for a lot of witch hunts so the day before we got there there are a number of indigenous woman who would come from around the world to really I feel the land and he'll some of that from and and so it was a powerful experience on
on every level of thinking how plays informs the cultures were trying to build there was a guy from Silicon Valley recently moved there and was trying to create an incubator and he was really having to redesign that around that
place and specifically you know think about how the geography had created a culture that actually wasn't about the sort of Lone Ranger innovator and the
I think places everything and I also love the way that you brought up in your question
and the issue of actin like communities out of necessity rather than communities out of luxury and that's like a really wouldn't constantly of brought their and which is kind of we we can have like dodged around and and I think there can I would is living in San Francisco a few months ago
and I just for a short time to try and understand that world but as you say we were living in a in an artist as sort of and clear activist house filled with many many bedrooms in the middle of 7 Cisco and it's the only way that you can live in the middle of sentences go at a certain point and it's so inspiring to be here in Berlin Germany and to know that the work of the the housings in the cops also has like this incredible example of the housing commons practice and and yet it's it's from indigeneity perspective I think that whole culture comes from place because we've always been a land-based species it's only now and this really strange digital age were feeling more disconnect with weird away I live what is
my hard questions like that have been much much less frequent I think in previous generations and so it becomes more important now also for us to question what we need are routes to be made of what like what is rooting where are you reading and what is the culture of that place and and how is it coming through you in New Zealand we have a practice of you don't introduce yourself by who you are and what you've done you introduce yourself of your family lineage and where you're from that land once you explain which hill you grew up next to which River I which which boat you arrived into New Zealand from because in modern culture everybody arrived on a walk
in the canoe from the Pacific Islands hundreds of years ago and so everyone can trace back to 1 of these boats and I think again this is a practice of Re-grounding recognizing that you are the manifestation of all of these layers of lineage all of these layers of different connection to land and we are inextricably connected with that so yeah just totally on what you for for great thank you think you
guys how you might make life harder for regular much family so the