WE Protect Freedom!/Committee and meeting management

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(WE = Windsor & Essex County)
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Ray's Hierarchy Of Improvement.

Necessity is the mother of invention, poverty is the mother of necessity.

Guilt loves company more than misery.
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Ray's Hierarchy Of Improvement.

Necessity is the mother of invention, poverty is the mother of necessity.

Guilt loves company more than misery.


This video essay features constructive criticism about optimizing with a focus on productivity without the humanity.

YouTube video: Productivity Rips You Apart (11:46) ~ Horses, July 31, 2023


YouTube video: John Cleese on Creativity In Management (1991-01-23) (37:00) ~ Video Arts, June 21, 2017

Committee outline

Pending consensus validation by community folks.

All human beings in our loosely formed open community are on equal footing. Yet to be efficient and effective we must collectively arrive at decisions expediently - thus a reliable and trustworthy core management team should help. Like it or not, a single "leader" is a single point of failure, whether it's absence, corruption, inability, self-interests, or whatever. A small steering committee may self-manage their agendas, arrangements, schedules, etc. and inclusively communicate with subgroups (see #Subgroups below) and the larger community. (Naturally folks remain free to create their own associations and private societies structured differently.)


Establish a steering committee (core team, executive council, or whatever label) of at least five people.

  1. chair (may be a rotating position)
  2. vice chairs
  3. secretary
  4. treasurer


  • Anyone may call for a committee election at any meeting.
  • Anyone may nominate themselves or others at any meeting.
  • Committee members are free to skip meetings as they see fit when others can cover.
  • Committee members are responsible for distributing work and responsibilities with each other and the community to prevent overload, overwork, stress, etc.
  • Committee members are responsible for keeping each other and the community informed.
  • Committee members must be inclusive, openly transparent, and communicate clearly with the community, subgroups, other communities, and the public.
  • Committee members must never be closed off, elevated, nor Machiavellian.
  • Committee members should all be updated on everything equally and be able to fill in any position.
  • Committee members should number at least five.
  • No matter the number of committee members, all must be kept in the loop.
  • These criteria may evolve.
  • We may develop processes to retire committee members.


  • maintain and share agendas
  • maintain and share minutes
  • maintain order at the meetings
  • refine and share meeting rules/guidelines
  • run meetings

Potential duties

  • be as inclusive, open, and transparent as possible
  • calendar management
  • communications and networking with members, individuals, groups, and other communities
  • community organizing and management
  • community outreach
  • develop clear definitions and limits on issues with the community
    • organizing on this wiki page is a start
    • is recording of meetings or events permitted and under what conditions
    • what content is for personal/group/public/global consumption
  • event planning and execution
  • manage resources
  • oversee newsletters
  • oversee public relations (press releases, social media, websites, etc)
  • oversee subgroups
  • share all developments with the larger community

Meeting management outline

Pending consensus validation by community folks.

The goal: maintain order at the meetings.

Some of these ideas may be embraced, rejected, or linger on the fence, be rarely used, occasionally employed, or become mainstays - but all will require patience and practice to build up our collective better habits for more productive meetings.

To foster better respect and courtesy between folks its prudent that folks not interrupt speakers just as speakers should respect the community's limited time - thus we'd like to develop good habits with interruption and interjection mediation protocols.

Chair control

  • chair could signal with a call bell rather than a gavel
    1 bell = 5 minutes to meeting / end of presentation time / quiet, attention please!
    2 bells = 2 minutes to meeting / presentation 30 seconds over / interruption
    3 bells = 30 seconds to meeting / presentation 1 minute over
    4 bells = we're about to meeting / quiet, attention please!
  • talking stick?

Hand signals

  1. applause-hands (an element of participatory democracy used by the Occupy Movement )
  2. raised fingers
    • will wait for recognition from the chair
    • has something to say eventually (while not interrupting)
    • Make notes or potentially forget points while waiting!
    1 finger = one point to make
    2 fingers = two points to make
    3 fingers = three points to make
    • Lowered fingers indicate it's been covered or the moment has passed.
  3. urgent hands
    • Hands raised high outstretched above the head indicate urgency to express a short detail, correction, an interjection, etc. - while not yet interrupting.
  4. other ?

Ideally speaking

  • Ideally the person speaking should project their voice well.
    • Why bother speaking if you're not going to be heard?
    • Especially as some are hard of hearing.
  • Ideally the person speaking should stand.
  • Ideally with larger groups we'll have amplification gear for the speaker.
  • Ideally with much larger groups we'll have amplification gear for questions.


  1. pre-meeting: distribute PostIts + pens
  2. write down notes and questions rather than interrupt/interject
  3. post-meeting: collect PostIts + pens for future meetings


A quorum is the minimal number of officers and members of a committee or organization, usually a majority, who must be present for valid transaction of business. The "requirement for a quorum is protection against totally unrepresentative action in the name of the body by an unduly small number of persons." In contrast, a plenum is a meeting of the full body. A body, or a meeting, or vote of it, is quorate if a quorum is present (or casts valid votes).

Currently this concept (and this wiki page) may be overkill. However, if our community grows we should be ready to employ fair management and protective safeguard tools like this.

The committee and/or community may develop the various criteria, classifications, and define the minimum number as well as the circumstances for a quorum.


Robert's Rules of Order, manual of parliamentary procedure, first edition, 1876.

For more ideas on efficient meeting discipline:

Agendas outline

Pending consensus validation by community folks.

Agenda time slots

  1. uninterrupted presentations
  2. formal Q&A back and forth periods
  3. casual discussion periods
  • establish time constraints
    • scheduled in agenda
    • measure time or not?
      • clock display, egg timer, flip book, signage, other manual time indicator, etc.
  • develop flexibility protocols
    • balance - over-rigidity can be as bad as no discipline
    • how to ask for more time?
    • how to grant more time with a silent signal?

Agenda usage

(These points may also apply to organizing rallies and other events.)

  1. Agendas should be compiled leading up to the meeting.
  2. Agendas should be shared with folks before the meeting. (via email, online?, etc.)
  3. Agendas should be flexible for adjustments and last minute additions.
  4. Minutes should be recorded during the meeting.
  5. Minutes should be shared with folks after the meeting. (via email, online?, etc.)

Agendas should feature

  1. Opening declaration.
  2. Reading of the agenda.
  3. Reading of the last meeting's minutes.
  4. Uninterrupted presentations.
    Each presentation may optionally be followed by:
    • Formal Q&A, as necessary, up to a cutoff time.
    • Casual discussion, as necessary, up to a cutoff time.
  5. Actionable summary. (Organize actions, event schedules, homework, recommended reading/viewing, research, to-do lists. )
  6. Announcements.
  7. Calendar.
  8. Review of and improvements to the minutes.
  9. Closing declaration.
  10. Casual discussion and disbursement.

Community members' preparation duties

Find out what information should be reviewed or researched, as was discussed at the previous meeting and included in the minutes. A brief summary may be presented for absent folks to catch up, but we can't get mired down hashing over the same old material.

Feel free to come up with new presentations to add to Wednesday's agenda that we should email out Tuesday afternoon.

A new presentation may be as simple as a factoid, a plea, a question, a statement, or a topic to ponder, discuss, or research.

Keep presentations as short as possible while being as clear as necessary.

Presentations should NOT be anything that could be digested as homework (ie. articles, books, clips, documentaries, music, videos, etc.).

Rather than discussing and debating issues to death, try to answer questions by pointing to brief documentation and strong references.

See also