• first elements about dibco1 wsf discussion initiative

last modified October 28, 2019 by facilitfsm

 @1origin of DIBCO1 idea  - @2  Need for discussions in WSF - @3 DIBCO1 initiative -  @4 relations GTI / DIBCO -   @5 next steps for DIBCO

ELEMENTS ABOUT  A  DIBCO1  WSF DISCUSION INITIATIVE  and its first  step  "around GTI discussion on WSF"

 dibco1-logo-seul-EN-90-petit.png                                                                                     dibco-GTI-EN-petit-90.png       





Roberto recommended a series of contacts  to take part to the discussion announced in GTI website with the not too engaging name “farewell to WSF?”. This is based on the relationships developedin the first decade of WSF when there was a “communication commission” in the IC WSF(http://openfsm.net/projects/communication , communication being  a challenging issue indeed in WSF horizontal context.

Checking the GTI website shows Paul’s prominent role there, and the fact that it is an English speaking only website, based on discussions, with one third of about 1000 GTN discussant community members living in the USA, and the presence there of about 40 at least people linked to WSF context.

We all noted the comparatively low number of people participating in the GTN discussion: 15 discussant in one month, that is, 4 times lower than the recent hit about Climate justice movement in the same website . https://greattransition.org/gti-forum/climate-movement-whats-next (noting that 16 inputs were selected in the public version of the discussion among 60+ internal inputs). 

Two reasons may account for this comparatively low popularity, beyond the fact that WSF is not anymore a new issue attractive for “intellectuals”: 

  • 1/ There is a relatively low number of occurrences of “WSF” or “world social forum” in the past discussions records. (see http://openfsm.net/projects/gti-and-wsf/gtiandwsf-searching-world-social-forum-mentions-in-gtn-discussions the search function was not working and Kathryn helped unlock it , even though its operation is still not very clear). This may reflect the more distant relationship of Anglo-Saxon “transition oriented community” with the social forum idea and praxis, which has been basically sustained from Latin America and Europe. However, what about the silence of 25 people out of  the 40 mentionned above, and probably more, GTN members that have or had some level of involvement in WSF?
  • 2/ The notification system of the GTN community might not be working properly, and the 25 people who could have sent an input about saying farewell or not to WSF might havewell  never received a notification about this discussion. Many of us have been contacted by Jonathan, but have never received an email from the GTI site regarding the “Farewell to WSF?” discussion, despite the fact that our email is recorded in the profile description of GTN members.
  • It is an occasion to ask again to 14 co discussants “Have you/do you receive notification from GTI website?”.

Also, while following up on the consecutive appearance of the 15 inputs, the GTN discussion appeared to be  in “star format”, with an opener input, then inputs answering to the general issue set by the title of the discussion, and each input developing its own approach , may be triggered informally by the reading of preceding inputs, but with only a few of them mentioning explicitly others.  

Hence the idea : Why not use the inputs  resulting from this “star format interaction discussion”  to fuel a second type of discussion, proposing, for a first step, discussants to make “comment-inputs” about inputs of others. A diverse enough set of inputs may constitute an interesting "base for comment", and the format of comment-input leads to come to grasps more explicitly with the vocabulary, expressions, and arguments of another discussant.

In GTI site, these “star discussions” seem to be the current norm. The Node functionality, beside the fact it is visible only to GTN -English speaking - members, seems to have not been used in the last four years, after its first four implementations. 
https://greattransition.org/nodes/what-is-a-node  and eg https://greattransition.org/nodes/catalyzing-a-global-citizens-movement-node.

That is how  the idea of an invitation to a discussion, specifically based on “comment-inputs”, took shape. It appeared as quite complementary to the current regime of discussion held in GTI site, and not redundant with it, So it could coexist quietly, one among many possible and useful discussions about WSF, considered as a "common" inviting to a constant discussion activity , hopefully helping some WSF participants to reflect on the nature of this original process they are involved in.






Many WSF participants  are keen on helping sustaining, wherever and however possible, a level of good quality public debate around WSF, between WSF participants or ex-participants. We do not consider WSF a fading away social phenomenon, or an outmoded academic topic, but as a potential massive self-organizing format, that could reach counter-hegemonic scale, under certain conditions.    

As a format with years of practice, and also with its current lively and visible manifestations, (see the WSF calendar of events http://openfsm.net/projects/wsf2012-support/wsf2018-calendar), WSF deserves being transmitted to younger generations. This in spite of a certain inability of its founding generation (of which all the present discussant are somehow part) to have developed it, in the course of last two decades, as space-process-tool, to “counter-hegemonic size” against “neo liberalism + combined dominations”or “capitalism + combined dominations"

This implies that, inasmuch energies and willingness about initiatives for discussion around WSF appear somewhere, they are welcome, and can coexist, all the more if they are proposed from a viewpoint of "WSF participant", consistent with the generic values described in the Charter of Principles, as seems the case for the GTI  broad ideological positioning,  and having some simpathy for the development of this WSF process..

Valuing debates about WSF includes also keeping track of discussions in the WSF international council, which deserves video recording and transcriptions, inasmuch possible, although in precarious conditions http://openfsm.net/projects/ic-extended.

One can go further back to a “WSF future” discussion in 2012 - http://openfsm.net/projects/wsfic_fsmci/wsfic-icfuture-home .This discussion is formally along the same “star mode” as the current GTI discussion, and it could make some sense to include in a base for comment, some older inputs that would appear as still useful for discussion. There was also a wide discussion in 2008 ...

A more political view can be proposed, from a “WSF process participant point of view”, which is described http://openfsm.net/projects/gti-and-wsf/gtiandwsf-input7-formal-view-wsf/#1and where WSF process can be considered a “common”, along with the inputs proposed by WSF particpants about it, wherever they are published. A same input can be used in several WSF discussion initiatives.

In this view, Initiatives for discussion about WSF, or "WSF discussion initiatives", are all welcome in a "WSF friendly" context, as they are fostering collective reflexive activity about this “WSF process common”. It is of course better if these initiatives 1/ are clear in the discussion protocol proposed and have a trustworthy facilitating team ( however small), 2/ use  input texts with the agreement and further contributions from their authors, and 3/ endeavour to outreach to more people considering themselves participants in WSF process, english speaking or not, used to academic style discussion or not.. 
Combined with experience of point 1 , this point 2 creates a  stimulating background  for proposing a specific WSF discussion initiative, using as input, with their authors consent or cooperation, inputs made in other WSF related discussions







  • DIBCO1 is an acronym for Discussion Initiative based on Comment-inputs" - so DIBCO1 WSF/FSM  is an initiative focusing on 1/ selecting inputs about WSF   that their autohrs accept to contribute to a "base for comment"  and 2/ stimulating  expression of comment inputs  about those input to be commented, sequenced in sections that are ready to be comment . 

WSF discussion?

  • DIBCO1 is focused on fostering discussions among participants in WSF process, considering this process as a "common" , and on a diversity of ways for formalizing it, communicating it,  developing it and deepening it  in relation to the announced "WSF process development program"  broadly exposed  in its  Charter of Principles  


  • Usually, format for "discussion through documents" is several people making an input about a proposed issue- the dialogue between each inputs is often not very explicit
  • Comment inputs are easier to make than input, since there is no blank sheet effect, and the structure of the comment-input is defined by the structure of the input being commented
  • Comment input format invites to an explicit "dialogue" getting to grasps with ideas and vocabulary presented in the input that one wishes to comment

DIBCO implementation steps :

  • a DIBCO1 Session starts with a phase of mutual comments-input between authors contributing inputs to a base for comments of the session, then there is widening of the comment circle to more WSF participants, through an online form, circulated widely, inviting to contribute either  a short comment about a comment input, or a complete comment input (without having to bring an input)
  • DIBCO1 testbed is  "around GTI discussion on WSF"  with a base for comment of 15  inputs made in a "Farewell to WSF? discussion held in GTI website 

Facilitation of DIBCO1, as self organized WSF discussion initiative

  • Some contributors to this frist DIBCO1 discussion session may want to be part of a DIBCO1  zero budget facilitating team ( contact through the on oline form to come)   Tasks are : constituting "base for comments", in dialogue with a community of authors, translating inputs,  stimulating dissemination of invitations to contribute in the sessions , processing and editing the received comments and comment inputs in the DIBCO1 space  etc, 





The DIBCO1 invitation includes using a long standing publicly accessible space, related to WSF through its name and content : openfsm site.   
The fact that material for comment-inputs in this session results from a discussion originally held in GTI website 
is  valued by the name ”Around GTI discussion about WSF”.        

The idea of starting another discussion initative was supported by Roberto, and on October 7th , an explicit invitation was sent to the 15  “Farewell to WSF?” discussants, including Paul considered as discussant#0. 

Answers came back throughout the week, and were positive enough to enable announcing the start of this WSF discussion initiative first session .
The initiative for this exploratory session of DIBCO1 is based on a group of 12 people agreeing to their input being used as a public base for comment inputs, and 8 among them announcing  in principle an intention to contribute some comment-input.

Then  some concern have been expressed:

-A/ Low user friendliness of the openfsm.net space used for this discussion

User friendliness in openfsm may be deemed as not optimal, in part due to its horizontality. It is also a question of practice. Here are two guiding elements for navigating in the DIBCO1: Around GTI discussion on WSF space

  • in each page of the discussion initiative space,  there is access to the 16 base inputs, numbered @0 to @15. Click on the @sign to access the input
  • Then each input page gives access to 1/ the comment-inputs made or received by this considered input, 2/the chronological list of comment inputs  3/  the comment input “base for comment “, and 4/ when available the public link to the corersponding input in GTI discussion
  • So, if we think of a public of "comparatively motivated WSF participants", the level of user friendliness should be acceptable.

GTI & WSF | @I0- @I1 - @I2 - @I3 - @I4 - @I5 - @I6 - @I7 - @I8 - @I9 - @I10 - @I11 - @I12 - @I13 - @I14 - @I15   

Commented by   :                                                            C7I0  

Commenting on  


-B/ Cooperation or articulation or interlinkedness
 between “farewell to WSF?" Discussion initiative in GTI website and “DIBCO1 : Around GTI discussion on WSF” discussion initiative in openfsm website 

A background vision about stimulating  "WSF related discussion initiatives" has been exposed in part 2.  In this vision following elements can be considered about connections between the two discussion initiatives:

  • Consultation of authors about this new discussion initiative has included from the start GTI website main inspirer. and also Roberto who seems to have been pushing for the holding of this discussion
  • GTI website characterization in the openfsm space “around GTI discussion on WSF” can be of course adapted along indications given from GTI editing team.
  • There is no significant overlap, and there can be interlinking, between the kind of discussion that GTI has been hosting in the past years, and what the starting discussion initiative in openfsm, can, modestly, develop into:  based on “comment inputs” and development in Spanish and French, and among wider circle WSF participant or ex participant community, beyond a community of authors.
  • 10 of the 12+ inputs forming the “base for comment” in this new DIBCO1 WSF discussion are now publicly accessible in GTI site, through links provided in  each of the 16 input pages of DIBCO1 Around GTI discussion . So the connection and tribute  to GTI site  from this DIBCO1 session is quite visible  through those links and the title of the space " DIBCO1: around GTI discussion on WSF".
  • GTI website, when promoting the currently closing “farewell to wsf? discussion to its readership, can also display, in the page dedicated to this discussion, a link to the openfsm  space, presenting it as a related discussion initiative about WSF.
  • GTI website might reactivate a Node discussion in English reserved to GTN community (see part 1) , for further comments, and which probably would not be based on the specific format of “comment input”
  • Some discussants in GTI discussion, have not yet answered  the invitation to the present DIBCO1 discussion initiative. Should they opt out explicitly,  their input will not be exposed to comments-inputs, and just the link to their input in public version of GTI discussion will be shown.in this space.

The list of elements can be completed along the way .



5/ NEXT POSSIBLE STEPS AND PERSPECTIVEs FOR THIS DIBCO1   session  "Around GTI discussion on WSF" and Beyond 

The editing context for this DIBCO1 WSF discussion initiative step  "Around GTI discusssion on WSF" is ready, and there is no deadline for sending inputs. The next steps depend on:

  • 1- Capacity-willingness of current 8 declared “potential comment input discussants” for effectively sending their announced comment-inputs in a not too distant future.
  • 2- Capacity of participating authors to translate the existing base inputs and comment-inputs in ES FR , (their own input and input of others). the set of pages for spanish and french version of inputs  is being prepared 
  • 3- Assessing possibility to include new inputs in the “base for comments”, and If the formula is perceived as interesting by other authors, assessing start of another DIBCO1 session, without specfic linkage to GTI website  
  • 4- Activity of authors involved in this first DIBCO1 session  about spreading around them the invitation to participate, first on  informal basis, then progressively using a DIBCO1 public invitation kit to the discussion .
  • 5- Capacity of some authors to cooperate about the further opinions and comment-inputs corpus of documetns, produced in the frame of this initiative. They can possibly form, among them or with new contributors in the discussion, a modest volunteer DIBCO1 facilitating team for the initiative
  • 6 –Capacity of this potential DIBCO1 facilitating team to consider, propose, and implement, at zero budget, relevant further steps, along with the community of authors, once there is enough discussion material received

Openfsm space, dedicated for the” DIBCO1 : around GTI discussion on WSF”  discussion initiative, can be receiving from a number of WSF participants, at the pace they will come, comment inputs and synthetic opinions about inputs and comment inputs, partly in Spanish and French. It might move to a DIBCO1 dedicated space if the first session proves well enough perceived   

Whatever can be achieved, this  DIBCO1 initiative will be a contribution to the collective task in WSF (ex)-participants’ community, about proposing useful thought-provoking material about WSF process.    

Let us see how far this DIBCO1 initiative can go, at zero budget, as one dialogic initiative in WSF process, among many others possible,useful and welcome initiatives, including the "farewell to WSF?" debate, and possible further discussions  on WSF, proposed in  GTI  website.

Developing discussions about WSFwithin WSF process  is important, and we can keep interlinkedly active about it, in a variety of ways .  

PIerre (input7)