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(en) France, Union Communiste Libertaire AL #308 - Digital, Framasoft, militant agenda: Mobilizon nous (de, it, fr, pt)[machine translation]

Date Sat, 24 Oct 2020 08:52:54 +0300

To offer a free and respectful alternative to the giant Facebook, the Framasoft network has launched the militant agenda project Mobilizon. Where is this project at ? ---- No one is unaware that Facebook currently captures a large part of the ads for activist events. This practice has unfortunately become the norm for several years, with its share of unpleasant consequences, and in particular the facilitation of surveillance against our will, on the part of Facebook itself, but also of States, and also - albeit to a lesser extent. - from the extreme right. ---- Quickly create an ad? Invite as many people as possible? See the popularity of the event? As often, the "convenience" of a practice sets it in the landscape and makes it essential. Facebook, with its resources, has been able to meet the finest expectations, even those coming from revolutionary and anti-capitalist activists.

Knowing that there have always been alternative, militant and ethical tools to announce political events, such as the Mutu or Indymedia networks or even the late Demosphere (see box), but that these have essentially remained confined to one use niche, aimed at activists who have already been trained, there are many challenges for the sustainability and development of these alternatives. One of the notable challenges is the monitoring of developments in digital practices, "modernization" as the startup-nation would say.

Framasoft launches Mobilizon
In this context, at the beginning of 2019, a fund was created by Framasoft for a project called Mobilizon which is "free software that will allow communities to emancipate themselves from events, groups and Facebook pages" . The donations exceeded the expected, showing once again the confidence and the support that the libriste association receives in its popular education project and its willingness to participate in broadening the field of autonomy vis-à-vis large digital capitalist platforms.

Manolo Prolo
Mobilizon offers a decentralized and federated approach to the publication of events, where each collective, organization, union, can create its own body and connect it ("subscribe") to other bodies [1]. The UCL could, for example, open its own body, in order to list and publish all its activities and public events.

Any event announced on this instance would be moderated by the UCL itself. A level of control over the technology that Facebook users have lost the habit of but which constitutes the heart of Framasoft's action.

First stable release for fall
Mobilizon is also full of cool features that casually attack Facebook's generalized surveillance model. An example: the same person can have several accounts (an identifier and a name to display are sufficient), each corresponding to a category of events (political, sporting, cultural, etc.), and manage them together from the Mobilizon interface .

Unlike Facebook which officially prohibits multiple accounts, Mobilizon encourages it and puts itself at its service, aware that the partitioning of identities is sometimes a necessity for survival, for example for young people discovering an orientation. (political, gender, etc.) that does not please those around them.

Obviously, the management via a single page of all the accounts does not protect against a super-villain capable of collecting the IP addresses and cross-checking them, but in the face of such an adversary the solution is known: very carefully compartmentalize all identities. always using Tor [2].

Currently, only a test version (called "beta") exists [3]. You can already register, play with and discover the features offered[4]. However, be careful, this version is not intended to become sustainable and should not be used for real event publications.

Framasoft was not spared by the health crisis and containment (quite the contrary) and the development of Mobilizon has therefore taken a little delay, but the first version should despite this be delivered in the fall of 2020. It will be delivered. This is a priority project for Framasoft, which considers Mobilizon as an essential building block of the "nextworld" [5].

UCL activists are eagerly awaiting the first stable version of Mobilizon, which could well be a giant leap in our activist practices.

Marouane (UCL Nantes) and Léo (UCL Grand-Paris-Sud)

At the beginning of May, the administrators of the activist agenda Demosphere Paris Ile-de-France announced the end of this tool. The project, carried by a small team over more than 13 years, was one of the essential sites of the activist agenda in Ile-de-France. It was enough to go on the latter to remove any doubt about the address, the schedule of an event or just know what was going well in a day. The diversity of publications, those of collectives, and political lines allowed a large audience for all the events that were published there. A well-known symptom of centralized functioning, the workload, both technical and political, for the staff of Démosphère Paris was colossal. This colossus unfortunately got the better of this project and all the good intentions that animated it. Let's hope thatMobilizon will pick up the flame and carry it with greater durability thanks to its decentralized structure.

Marouane (UCL Nantes) and Léo (UCL Grand-Paris-Sud)


[1] "Network: Understanding the federiverse", Alternative libertairen ° 300.

[2] "The imprudent do not have Tor", Alternative libertaire n ° 293.

[3] Test.mobilizon.org.

[4] " Mobilizon : we lift the veil on the beta", Framablog , October 15, 2019.

[5] "What Framasoft will do in 2020, post containment", Framablog , May 6, 2020.

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