A simple thing to do to help is to actually have conversations with homeless/poverty stricken individuals
cross-posted from: > A lad told me today that he'll make a facebook account just to connect with me, gave me the address of the place he's couch surfing at and told me to come over anytime. He said "because you treat me like a human." > > 😢 > > I've gotten in trouble at a few jobs for talking with poor people rather than just shuffling them through. > > It helps that I have to walk through the hood frequently.

Ideas to promote the fediverse/privacy/anything
BTW do we have any subs about fediverse/lemmy/privacy promotion? --- Change wifi name to x Chalk ads on sidewalks Set up a free public booth and hand out food samples and pamphlets Make song/art about fediverse Cold emailing celebrities about x x related shirt Yelp reviews that are mostly positive and that "it would be nice if they had x" holiday greeting cards In bookstores, put privacy books in more relevant spots When eating out, ask about their social medias, recommend x Bumper sticker or paper printout inside of car with links Facebook status, if have a fb I used to live in a city with a big university library I went to often. Sometimes I left notes or hints in books I liked. Maybe one could leave a list of local instances or a pamphlet about how one can and should host their own in some admin or linux books. [Posters]( --- cc0 Cross posted from

Activism choices - individual, social or political
I've noticed that activists (or just people who care about any public issue, even if they are not very active about it) fall into three categories. 1. Individualist people. They want to make personal choices to change their personal impact on the world. Many strongly oppose taking political action at all. People who just avoid buying meat or petrol cars or nestle or products from occupied palestine etc. That is their way of making a difference. 2. Social people. They are interested in the local/community level. They organise swap-meets, do bicycle repair workshops, they work together on allotments, they volunteer at charities. 3. Political people. They want to make national or global changes. They go to protests, write to politicians, vote in elections. Of course most people do a bit of all three. But everyone seems to be really focused on only one of them. *** I will argue that #1 is three things: 1. Ineffective. 2. Counter-productive. 3. Self-defeating. *** Ineffective The amount of impact you can have by tweaking your lifestyle is small. Even if many people do it, business will not. And most of the problems are caused by businesses. You won't impact overfishing by refraining from fishing yourself, but people think that you can impact pollution by not driving a car yourself. In most cases it's the businesses which must change their ways, not the individuals. Counter-productive What if you stop buying fish? Even if 1 billion people decide to not buy fish, that still leaves 6 billion people who are still buying fish. This is the perfect situation for fishing businesses - despite massive opposition, their sales are barely affected. 1 billion people opposing fishing with political action would kill the industry. But people think buying more tofu and less beef is worthwhile in the fight against farming malpractice, that buying a bike or electric car will help against pollution. This style of activism is very popular among the problem industries themsleves, and actively promoted by them. It is "activism by excercising consumer choice". But we must be more than just savvy consumers, to really change anything. *** Self-defeating If you make a choice - you will use less water, heat your house less, eat less tasty food, spend more money on ethically produced products - you are making a small sacrifice. Others are not. Those others are at an economic advantage against you. Even if all you are spending is mental energy, they will have slightly richer lives than you. In aggregate, this type of action is self-limiting, self-defeating. If the people who do the right thing suffer slightly, and the people who don't are unpunished, there is a strong disincentive to take action. This is the opposite of what is needed. *** I made an earlier post about how everyone is divided - interested in different causes - so there is no critical mass to change any one thing - even though there is broad support for all of the causes. I won't repeat that here - it's a different problem. *** So, to me this has all become obvious recently by talking to kinds of people I wouldn't normally talk to. Individualist action is very popular. There is even a taboo against political action. People want to avoid confrontaion, and they are jaded of the news cycle. But does have a value - as the entry-level. To start people thinking about the greater good, ease people into being concientious. #1 is the easiest, so you can get satisfaction from making a small difference. And you don't risk big disappointments or uncomfortable confrontations, so it's accessible to more personality types, which is important. It also feels more democratic, more civilised. But I'm convinced now, that these individualist people (the vast majority IMO) all need to be persuaded into more effective methods. To spend any energy, time, money on activism through personal consumer choices, it undermines the very cause you are working for. These methods are championed only by the very industries who want nothing to change.

I propose an activist group with no particular cause
** The problem ** Everybody wants to improve the world but we are all divided. Some are interested in global warming, farming practices, modern slavery, mass extinction, abuse of political power, inequality of wealth, inequality of rights, etc, etc … even though most people agree that these are all very important and need addressing. Most people will even agree on what steps need to be taken. But nobody has the energy, time or money to be active, or even interested in everything. So we each pick a campaign. We are divided into small groups with little power. ** The idea ** Even when there is a large group of activists focused on one issue, we always disagree about the details (because there are always many small contentious choices) so we again become divided. The business interests which oppose us are united and organised. Then nearly always win. We need to be more like them. ** The solution ** I propose an activist group with no particular cause. Its work will be divided into one-year campaigns, and the cause will be decided by vote at the start of each year. If you believe in any of the relevant causes (there can be dozens) you should join. Each one-year campaign can be more successful than those of any specialist activist groups, because of the number of people involved. It will be large, and better funded, have more experience, have more diverse people and connections than and special interest group could have. One the year’s cause is decided by vote, the organisation decides the details. The members are expected to support both, neglecting their personal activist interests and preferred methods. They get only the satisfaction of achieving somebody else’s goals, and to wait another year for their turn. This works on the assumption that most people agree on most activist causes. The die-hard anti-meat or anti-wheat, anti-car or anti-bicycle, pro-springfield or pro-shelbyville, this organisation will not serve them. Only issues with a broad consensus of support will ever become campaigns. **

 The conclusion ** There are many resourceful and energetic people working in activism. If they can all be persuaded to work together on one thing at a time, backed by the combined numbers and power of all their supporters, they can achieve all their individual goals much faster. By having a strong, united activist movement to match that of businesses, we the people can gain control over our world, and take it back from them. ** The details ** A typical campaign could be about caged hens, UBI, restoring forests, zero hours contracts, pesticides, influence-trading in politics, anything important enough to mobilise the most effective activists, and with very broad societal support. The methods could include boycotts, street protests, writing to local politicians, media interviews, meetings with key political/industrial figures. All the usual stuff. ...But this time, instead of these people being blasted with one million different things, getting pressured different ways ... they are getting plasted about one thing, constantly, for a year. They will budge. *** An example of how the organisation could be structured: Those who have been members more than one year get more voting power. Those who donate money get more voting power (I suggest a threshold of 1% of the average salary). The idea is to encourage people to join even in years where the campaign is not interesting, and remain members for many years after their campaign is finished. The number of votes per person should be capped too, so that every member’s vote is important. There is a balance to be struck here. Run on campaigns are possible, if this year’s campaign is making progress but more work is needed to reach the objective. The members will decide. Maybe members must register with their special interest. When it becomes a campaign, their voting rights are reduced. This will stop the same campaign winning every year. So if you really have no interest in this year's issue then don't go to the protests, but keep paying your fees. I think most people will go anyway though if all their peers have voted that this is the most important thing of all. These things might also be important to you, like they are important for everyone. If the campaigns achieved real progress on all those issues, year after year, you'd still be very happy about that. If you register as predominantly a human rights advocate, each year no human rights issue is selected your voting rights increase. If you stick with it (and especially if you keep paying your dues) then your voting power will eventually increase until your cause is selected. Unless your cause is really niche. Then it will never be selected by the vote. But that's a feature not a bug. It's hard to know if your cause has real support, and it's important to know that. The media projects an image of society uniformly believing one thing - everyone who disagrees is a radical. Knowing what has real broad support already, stopping politicians from pretending that nobody is on your side, is half the battle.

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