October is Co-op Month – lots of events!

October is Co-op Month and there’s an amazing list of ways to educate and organize coming up.
In particular, our first annual meeting is coming up on Oct 24!
Check it out!

Oct 3: Co-op Investment Club Visitor’s Night
The Boston Cooperative Investment Club is hosting a visitor’s night. Wanna learn how people are taking their money out of big banks and supporting a more cooperative economy? More information here.
7-9pm @ Doyle’s Cafe in Jamaica Plain.

Oct 17th: Tenant’s Right to Purchase
The Mass Assc of Housing Co-ops introduced a bill to the state legislature that would support a tenant’s right of first refusal to purchase their building when if goes up for sale. There’s a hearing to discuss it on Oct 17th and a huge turnout would be a powerful sign of interest in this kind of co-op legislation.
10:00 AM in room B-21 of the State House

Oct 19: Mass Assc of Housing Cooperatives Annual Meeting
MAHC is organizing housing cooperatives all across our state. They’ve been mobilizing resident-owners for important legislative work. Learn more and get connected here.

Oct 24: Annual Meeting of the Chamber of Co-ops
Our first annual meeting! This is a big milestone for the co-op movement in Boston. Join us for an evening of celebrating the work we’ve done so far, electing our new leadership, and visioning where we go from here.
6-9pm. Location: TBD.

Oct 25: Harvest Co-op Annual Meeting
Harvest is in a time of major transition and this will be a particularly important election of five new board members. If you’re a Harvest member, you’re enthusiastically invited to this year’s annual meeting.

Membership Campaign!

The Chamber is in the midst of our membership campaign leading up to our first annual meeting.

To learn more and sign up to be a founding member of the Chamber, check out the official membership forms here:

Membership Form for Co-ops and Affiliate organizations

Membership for Individuals
The Greater Boston Chamber of Cooperatives centers racial and economic justice in its work of strengthening and expanding the Greater Boston cooperative economy through education, advocacy, and collaboration among its member organizations.
Through shared resources and cross-sector collective action, we are working to build a more just, democratic, and sustainable economy.


How Co-ops Thrive: A Day of Training for Anti-Oppression & Healthy Group Process

Join the Greater Boston Chamber of Co-ops for a day of training to grow skills and capacity for our co-op movement!

Saturday, Sept 23rd.

Community Church of Boston
565 Boylston St. in the Back Bay.

9:30am Coffee and Donuts
10am-1pm Facilitation For The Win:
Advanced Skills for Guiding Co-op Groups
1-2pm Lunch on your own
2-4pm Healthy Cooperative Communications

RSVP here http://bit.ly/2fescO1
& get more info and share the event on facebook.
The Greater Boston Chamber of Cooperatives is partnering with the U.S. Federation of Worker Cooperatives to host a day of intensive trainings on how to help our Boston area cooperatives run better, through an anti-racist and anti-oppressive lense. Our trainer, the amazing Esteban Kelly, is the co-Executive Director for the US Federation of Worker Cooperatives, is a cofounder of the AORTA anti-oppression training collective, a founder of the Philadelphia Area Cooperative Alliance (PACA), has been a staff member for NASCO, and was inducted into NASCO’s Hall of Fame.

Training Costs
For members of the Greater Boston Chamber of Cooperatives:
$30 per workshop, or $50 for both.
For non-members, $40 per workshop or $70 for both.
Limited need-based scholarships will be available.

Cooperative organizations and individuals will have the chance to sign up as members of the Chamber at the training.
While these workshops are geared towards members and staff of worker and housing cooperatives, this event is open to the public. Anyone involved in social justice groups more generally and particularly those working in the Solidarity Economy/New Economy movement would benefit from this training.

How do I sign up?
Here again is link to RSVP – http://bit.ly/2fescO1
& to invite folks and share the event on facebook.

Drutopia – Drupal as a Service for an ecosystem of free software distributions

Drutopia – Drupal as a Service for an ecosystem of free software distributions.

We are on a mission to build a Drupal as a Service full featured distribution of Drupal for organizing and campaigns. There is NationBuilder and other proprietary tools that are available, but why not a Drupal solution? How would a cooperative hosting solution work? Come and discuss the possibilities and opportunities.

Come learn about the Drutopia distribution and how grassroots groups will be able to easily create a Drupal 8 site with pre-configured selectable features and the SAAS hosting option. Drutopia.org

So for those outside the Drupal/FreeSoftware community, I’ve been skipping over Drutopia and just talking about Solidarity. I find that people just get confused with the relationship between Drutopia and Solidarity and it’s really Solidarity that is going to be most interesting and relevant to them.

So with that in mind, here’s a first draft of text for the one page informational sheet.

Our movements are growing and more easily coordinating with one another to live out these values of solidarity, but all too often we’re dependent on platforms and tools that don’t have our best interests in mind.

Solidarity is a member-based, Libre Software as a Service tool for grassroots organizations to effectively network and organize online.

The platform is built around four main features: groups, campaigns, actions and news.

A hosted option is available for $50/month which provides membership to Solidarity, covers security updates for the site and priority in determining the roadmap for future development.

Learn more at drutopia.org/solidarity

We will gather at the Tang center at MIT in room E51:
E51-145 : http://whereis.mit.edu/?go=E51
Date: Tue 08/22/17
Time: 6:30p – 9:00p

We will have dinner after the meetup at Clover in Kendall Square.

Unless you have already spoken to an Agaric and confirmed… Please RSVP here:

Drutopia – Drupal as a Service for an ecosystem of free software distributions

Tuesday, Aug 22, 2017, 6:30 PM

MIT Campus – E51-145 : http://whereis.mit.edu/?go=E51
MIT Cambridge, MA

1 Tech Lovers Attending

August is here, let’s celebrate Drupal! Why? – do we need a reason? While there is a regular monthly meetup there is also a mission to build a Drupal as a Service full featured distribution of Drupal for organizing and campaigns. There is NationBuilder and other proprietary tools that are available, but why not a Drupal solution?Come learn about t…

Check out this Meetup →

2 FREE webinars to get you collaborating!!!

 On Monday, July 17th at 12:30p ET (9:30a PT)

4 Hacks for Engaging & Collaborative Meetings (That Don’t Suck)!

Meetings can be tricky for all teams, but when well done they facilitate collective alignment and understanding on our work and strategies! Despite how important they may be, how many people actually love meetings?! When you have an organization full of inspiring leaders, tools that hack your meetings into flows and effective outcomes is essential and opens up the space for you to be your full self (and your team!).
Come to our free webinar to learn 4 simple HACKS to conduct engaging and efficient collaboratively-led meetings!  Register here directly and find out more about our Collaborative Leadership Webinar Series here.

On Thursday, July 27th at 4:15p ET (1:15p PT)

4 Tips for Achieving True Accountability in Your Teams and it’s not micromanaging them!

‘How to get accountability’ gets 93 MILLION results in a Google search! Getting workable accountability (for ourselves) and our teams can be really challenging, especially in this day and age with so many competing and complex demands. And, micromanaging our teammates is damaging to both a healthy work ethic and workplace relationships.

Join our free webinar to learn how to get true accountability with the members on your team on a regular basis while expanding capacity to get more done and strengthen relationships at the same time. Register here directly and find out more about our Collaborative Leadership Webinar Series here.

Come learn about Drutopia – A framework for an ecosystem of open source distributions – a hosted CMS

There is a mission to build a Drupal as a Service full featured distribution of Drupal for organizing and campaigns. There is NationBuilder and other proprietary tools that are available, but why not a Drupal solution?

Come learn about the Drutopia distribution and how grassroots groups will be able to easily create a Drupal 8 site with pre-configured selectable features and the SAAS hosting option. Drutopia.org

We will gather at MIT:
E51-145 : http://whereis.mit.edu/?go=E51
Date: Tue 07/18/17
Time: 6:30p – 9:00p

Food will be provided by Agaric and there will be a surprise 15 minute movie followed by a short discussion at 8:15pm

Thursday the 13th – At Harvard

We are resurrecting the Cooperation group for a double session of two exciting talks!
First, our friend and BKC fellow Yaso, will share a very successful activist project which is visibilizing unethical political expenditures in Brazil and Italy using Twitter bots, Telegram and open source tools.
Second, a guest and friend, Danny Spitzberg, is here from San Francisco to share the popular #BuyTwitter campaign, an initiative for the Twitter users to buy the platform and turn it into a platform co-op.
Third, we hope to go for drinks afterwards!
As usual, we will convene this Thursday, at 5pm, in the Conference Room at the Berkman Klein Center. Anyone interested in the topic is very welcome. We would appreciate if you spread the word!
Below you have additional info on both talks:
High impact activism with no resources: visibilizing unethical political expenditures (Yasodara Cordova)
Sometimes, you don’t need new and expensive tools to create colaboration. More generally, if a collective has no resources, but a good idea, how can communities aggregate outsiders in digital platforms? The #SerenataDeAmor Operation is a collective effort to mitigate and visibilize small leaks of money (due to corruption and unethical practices) that runs in politics (so far in Brazil and Italy). The project used very cheap infrastructure based in free/open source tools and commercial social media, to go beyond the activist bubble.
#BuyTwitter (Danny Spitzberg)
The campaign #BuyTwitter (https://www.buytwitter.org) aims to democratize the Twitter platform, with broad-based ownership and accountability similar to a co-op. Danny Spitzberg, a researcher studying cooperative conversions, is one of the volunteers behind this effort and will share what the group has achieved so far, as well as several scenarios they’re exploring with Twitter, other platforms, and rural co-op ISPs, too.

The Eastern Conference for Workplace Democracy (ECWD)

June 9th-11th – Fordham University Lincoln Center

The Eastern Conference for Workplace Democracy (ECWD) is a non-profit cooperative organization established to aid in the continued growth of the workplace democracy movement. The ECWD is managed by the Coordinating Council, which is a group of worker-owners and members of support organizations that were elected by the general membership of the ECWD. The ECWD works in cooperation with the U.S. Federation of Worker Cooperatives to promote and develop worker-owned enterprises regionally and nationally.

ECWD exposes people to the concept of worker-owned businesses; strengthens existing worker-owned businesses; develops relationships between democratically-owned businesses, labor institutions, and resource organizations; and builds the movement for workplace democracy. It is held every two years in the Eastern United States.


Employee Ownership Workshops

The Mayor’s Office of Economic Development in Boston will be hosting two upcoming workshops on cooperative business ownership. They’re free, and we hope you can attend and/or spread the word. Both workshops will take place at the Roxbury Innovation Center, 2300 Washington Street, Dudley Square (the Bolling Building).

Wednesday, May 31, 10:00-12:00: Employee Ownership Workshop
When a business owner wants to retire or do something different, selling the business to the workers is a great option, for many reasons. Learn about selling businesses to employees, different types of employee ownership, and improving business by engaging workers.
Learn more and RSVP

Thursday, June 22, 10:00-12:00: Employee Ownership – Making Business Better
If you have a great idea for a new business, why not make it a co-op? Cooperative ownership—that is, ownership of the company jointly by the workers—has many benefits. Co-ops can help small businesses access resources, achieve scale, and save money.
Learn more and RSVP

Renters Tax Deduction Bill Hearing Set for June 13

The Mass Association of Housing Co-ops is supporting a bill to allow resident owners of housing co-ops to take advantage of the Commonwealth’s renters’ tax deduction (if they do not also take the federal homeowners deduction). This would benefit about 1,000 people each year, many of whom are lower income and may greatly benefit from the deduction.
The bill (H.3334/S.1520) will be heard before the Joint Committee on Revenue on Tuesday, June 13, at 10 am in State House Hearing Room B-2, in the Annex.
Housing co-op members are encouraged to contact their legislators to express support. In particular, the MAHC hopes that constituents will reach out and contact:

Legislators who are members of the Joint Committee on Revenue
Legislators from Boston and Cambridge, where many housing co-ops are located

Co-op residents are encouraged to contact their legislators and send a copy of letters and communications to MAHC.
Not sure who your state rep and senator are? Search here.

Disco-Tech – Discover Technology May 1st

On May 1st 2016, the MIT Co-Design Studio team, Research Action Design, Intelligent Mischief , the Detroit Community Technology Project, and Boston Civic Media (bostoncivic.media) are calling on YOU to join us at the Boston Co-op DiscoTech.

Where: SEIU 32BJ

26 West Street, 3rd Floor, Boston, 0211, MA

The Co-op DiscoTech (shorthand for a Cooperative Economy Discovering Technology fair) is an event designed for people of all backgrounds and skill levels to learn about how technology can be used to support the growth of the cooperative economy – worker-owned cooperatives, consumer cooperatives, housing cooperatives, and more!

If you’d like to know more, or you want to present your work or host a workshop at the DiscoTech, please contact Katie: klarthur@mit.edu

More info: http://codesign.mit.edu/discotechs

*NOTE: *If you’d like to eat free, delicious food when you come to the DiscoTech, *please RSVP here: **https://www.eventbrite.com/e/coop-discotech-boston-tickets-23441822121***

We’ll focus on creating welcoming spaces where a wide range of people (not just techies!) will feel welcome sharing and learning about each other’s experiences with cooperatives: worker-owned co-ops, consumer co-ops, housing co-ops, hybrid cooperatives, co-op support organizations … pretty much anything that has to do with the cooperative economy! We’re also inviting cooperative organizations, technologists, developers, and designers to come to the DiscoTech to learn, teach, sprint, hack, meet up, explore projects, and build community together.

We’ll dive in deep to understand worker cooperative tools, systems, and histories, through speakers, skillshares, workshops, and activities open to all. We’ll also get hands-on with tools and approaches that can strengthen worker, consumer, housing, and hybrid cooperatives. We’ll link existing co-ops, technologists, designers, and community organizers to strengthen our strategies and tools for a cooperative future!
After/Party at Make/Shift, 7pm+