[Noisebridge-discuss] Re: Why Consensus Kills Community

Johny Radio johnyradio at gmail.com
Wed Dec 18 01:06:57 UTC 2013

*Al Sweigart*asweigart at 
/Sat Dec 14 20:07:05 UTC 2013/

The consensus & anarchism culture of "no rules, no one is the boss of me" allows strong-willed people to bully their way around while making others feel
like they have no place to tell them to stop

I half agree, Al. No offense, but I think the issue is that, NB 
encourages *everyone* to police *everyone*. The culture says:

"anyone can, and should, enforce policy, however they interpret it, 
however they see fit."

It pressures everyone to police the space, without any expectation of 
support from other people, without any regulation against abuse, and 
without any helpful guidelines in "here's how you defuse this type of 
situation in a healthy way." It produces inconsistent interpretation of 
NB policy and culture, and self-appointed enforcers, who waltz around 
the space telling other people what to do or not to do.

Anarcho-consenso (AC) is a naive attempt to rectify bullying, which just 
produces more bullying. It's based on the idea that we must ensure that 
Noisebridge does not become a police-state, when what we need are 
systems which promote policies and culture WITHOUT empowering bullies. 
Imo, it's a vital balance. AC is RIGHT, we DO need to protect against 
bullies. AC just got the structural solution wrong.

The Docent program, on the other hand, was imo a healthy and fantastic 
alternative to vigilantism. It promoted consistency in NB ethos and 
policy, and natural peer-checks on abuse. I foresee a bright future for 

I am really not interested in spending my time in a place that has or 
needs "policing". That's no fun. Once we get to the point where we need 
"policing", we're already doing it wrong. With smart systems, we /can 
/make NB a place that's accessible to a wide community, yet still 
protect it.

Johny Radio

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