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Loomio overview: May 2015

Ben Knight
Ben Knight
Ben KnightCo-founder at Loomio

An overview of the traction, impact, and future direction, of the collaborative decision-making platform Loomio.

Loomio overview: May 2015

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creating a world where
anyone, anywhere can
participate in decisions
that affect them
Loomio is an online tool
for collaborative decision making,
built by a team of activists, open source technologists
and social entrepreneurs in New Zealand.
`
Loomio emerged from the need for a
scalable way to make inclusive group decisions
during the Occupy movement in 2011.
We experienced the transformative potential of
participatory decision making, as well as its severe
limitations: if people have to be in the same place at the
same time to participate, it can never scale.
“Digital communications tools may expand reach but rarely scale engagement.
Ever tried to use email, Skype, group text or Facebook to make a decision?”
Jason Tashea, Greenpeace Mobilisation Lab
“Loomio unlocks the internet’s potential to bring people to consensus,
rather than polarized debate.” Douglas Rushkoff
We set out to build a solution:
using the Internet to give
people an easy way to make
decisions together,
wherever they are.
It’s called Loomio – like a loom
weaving diverse perspectives
together.
— SOLUTION —
In Spain, 27,000 citizens
have joined Loomio to
connect a nationwide
grassroots network to a
rapidly growing political
party.
Wikimedia Foundation’s head
office moved their discussions
off a messy email list and into
Loomio, enabling
collaborative decisions with
180 staff.
Harvard Law students and faculty
are using Loomio to build a
student movement around the
treatment of sexual misconduct
on campus in response to Title IX.
The City of Provo, Utah, is using
Loomio to foster increased
community participation in city
government.
“Loomio is user friendly and well designed to improve debate and arrive at better consensus.”
Miguel Catania, Lead Digital Strategy Advisor, Podemos
— IMPACT —
In the last two years, Loomio has been adopted by
thousands of change-making organizations,
communities and social movements
City governments use Loomio to involve citizens in policy-making.
Social movements use Loomio for grassroots organizing across distance.
Companies and NGOs use Loomio to engage staff in workplace decisions.
Community groups use Loomio to organize events and manage
projects collaboratively.
Schools use Loomio to involve students in decision making with
teachers and parents.
“Using Loomio in the Wikimedia office means we no longer have to go round in circles
trying to make decisions by email.” Chip Deubner, Wikimedia Foundation
— IMPACT —
Loomio is open source, because we view it as public infrastructure for
community democracy.
Wherever people have a need to include diverse
perspectives in their decisions, they’re using Loomio
Ad

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Loomio overview: May 2015

  • 1. creating a world where anyone, anywhere can participate in decisions that affect them
  • 2. Loomio is an online tool for collaborative decision making, built by a team of activists, open source technologists and social entrepreneurs in New Zealand. `
  • 3. Loomio emerged from the need for a scalable way to make inclusive group decisions during the Occupy movement in 2011. We experienced the transformative potential of participatory decision making, as well as its severe limitations: if people have to be in the same place at the same time to participate, it can never scale. “Digital communications tools may expand reach but rarely scale engagement. Ever tried to use email, Skype, group text or Facebook to make a decision?” Jason Tashea, Greenpeace Mobilisation Lab
  • 4. “Loomio unlocks the internet’s potential to bring people to consensus, rather than polarized debate.” Douglas Rushkoff We set out to build a solution: using the Internet to give people an easy way to make decisions together, wherever they are. It’s called Loomio – like a loom weaving diverse perspectives together. — SOLUTION —
  • 5. In Spain, 27,000 citizens have joined Loomio to connect a nationwide grassroots network to a rapidly growing political party. Wikimedia Foundation’s head office moved their discussions off a messy email list and into Loomio, enabling collaborative decisions with 180 staff. Harvard Law students and faculty are using Loomio to build a student movement around the treatment of sexual misconduct on campus in response to Title IX. The City of Provo, Utah, is using Loomio to foster increased community participation in city government. “Loomio is user friendly and well designed to improve debate and arrive at better consensus.” Miguel Catania, Lead Digital Strategy Advisor, Podemos — IMPACT — In the last two years, Loomio has been adopted by thousands of change-making organizations, communities and social movements
  • 6. City governments use Loomio to involve citizens in policy-making. Social movements use Loomio for grassroots organizing across distance. Companies and NGOs use Loomio to engage staff in workplace decisions. Community groups use Loomio to organize events and manage projects collaboratively. Schools use Loomio to involve students in decision making with teachers and parents. “Using Loomio in the Wikimedia office means we no longer have to go round in circles trying to make decisions by email.” Chip Deubner, Wikimedia Foundation — IMPACT — Loomio is open source, because we view it as public infrastructure for community democracy. Wherever people have a need to include diverse perspectives in their decisions, they’re using Loomio
  • 7. Loomio goes beyond discussion forums and endless email chains, and beyond majority-rules polling, with a consensus- building process that empowers groups to build shared understanding and arrive at clear outcomes. — HOW IT WORKS — Discuss Decide Act It’s a powerfully simple concept: an online space enabling groups to come together, talk about any issue and agree on a course of action. Loomio is the only online tool combining dialogue and decision making into one user-friendly app
  • 8. First, talk things through Start a discussion on any topic. Bring in the right people. Share diverse perspectives and develop ideas together. — HOW IT WORKS —
  • 9. Next, build agreement Anyone can propose a course of action and engage the group in a decision. You can see how everyone feels, and why. — HOW IT WORKS —
  • 10. Then, decide together Develop your thinking together, addressing any concerns that arise. Arrive at a decision that works for everyone. — HOW IT WORKS —
  • 11. By April 2015, people have made 26,403 collaborative decisions using Loomio. 80,638 members have created 18,012 groups. 54% of groups in the last six months were created by people already using Loomio. 94% of new Loomio members were invited by existing Loomio members. 20% of the total member-base is active within a given month. “After only a few minutes of testing we have confirmed that Loomio even works on a microbus speeding through the desert. Great stuff!” Sherief Gaber, Mosireen citizen journalism collective, Cairo Monthly active users On average 200 people join Loomio each day 80,000 people • 93 countries • 26,000 decisions — GROWTH — Loomio members span 93 countries and the software has been translated into 32 languages.
  • 12. Rich Bartlett Co-founder and lead software designer, citizen activist, open source hardware hacker “Loomio seems to have a good mix of political savvy, technical knowhow, and design sense.” Cory Doctorow, BoingBoing Ben Knight Co-founder and Executive Director, community organizer, collective intelligence researcher Rob Guthrie Co-founder and lead software architect, software guru, hacking code for 20 years Alanna Krause Co-founder and consulting lead, management activist, director of Enspiral Foundation MJ Kaplan US growth lead, strategist, teacher (Brown University), facilitator, dot connector Vivien Maidaborn Co-founder and Chair of Loomio Board, Executive Director of UNICEF New Zealand We’ve brought together a passionate team with the right skills to take Loomio forward — TEAM —
  • 13. Joi Ito Director of MIT Media Lab, Co-founder Creative Commons, Board of Mozilla Foundation Katherine Borsecnik Former Senior Vice President, AOL, Vice Chair of Root Capital Sascha Meinrath Founder of X-Lab & Open Technology Institute Douglas Rushkoff Bestselling Author, CNN commentator, media theorist Matthew & Brian Monahan Cofounders of Inflection, Namaste Foundation We’re backed by an Advisory Council with some of the brightest minds in tech and democracy internationally — ADVISORS — “21st century participatory democracy requires a new set of tools for digital enfranchisement; Loomio provides the essential platform for empowering communities around the globe” Sascha Meinrath, founder of X-Lab & Open Technology Institute
  • 14. We take scalable impact seriously. We’ve built a mission-driven organization with a social purpose at its core. — OUR PURPOSE — Loomio exists to make it easy for anyone, anywhere, to participate in decisions that affect them. We measure our impact in the numbers of people and groups involved in decisions and the first-hand stories from inspiring people around the world using Loomio to make change in their communities and organizations.
  • 15. We’re driving for financial sustainability to scale our social impact — SUSTAINABILITY — “Loomio has a particular strength at bringing out a wide range of ideas from the community at the very beginning of the process.” Jaime Dyhrberg, Wellington City Council Income by calendar year We’re dedicated to scaling Loomio in a mission-aligned way, to maintain independence and the freedom to push boundaries. We’re consciously avoiding non-aligned venture capital and extractive business models based on selling user data or pushing advertising. Our income comes from three streams: Donations from users and supporters, and grants from impact foundations Software subscriptions from commercial customers Collaboration training provided to large organizational customers Forecast
  • 16. Scalable infrastructure ● Modular, ready for API interoperability with other platforms & internal plugins ● High-performing, built on open web technologies (AngularJS & HTML5) Loomio is already having real impact, and we’re just getting started We’ve validated our solution with a beta prototype that’s already delivering impact to thousands of organizations and communities. Over the last ten months, we’ve developed a whole new product with the capacity for scale: Loomio 1.0. The full product release is set for late 2015. “Loomio is set to be the Facebook of the citizen web.” Jon Alexander, BBC Radio 4 — FUTURE — New interface ● Mobile-first, designed for seamless use on any device: mobile, tablet, laptop, desktop ● Accessible to disabled web users ● Email integration to remove barriers to participation
  • 17. — PRESS — Tech President: Can social software change the world? Loomio just might GigaOm: Meet Loomio, the small- scale decision making platform with the biggest ambitions Wired: Out in the open: Occupy Wall Street reincarnated as open source software RT America: Protesters – there's a fantastic new app for you – Loomio Fast Company: Loomio – An App That Helps Groups Make Actual Group Decisions BoingBoing: Democratic decision making tool inspired by Occupy VICE: The Future of Protest According to VICE Shareable: The Occupy-inspired app for consensus decision making Greenpeace Mobilisation Lab: Can an app help movements grow by scaling higher level grassroots engagement? Globe and Mail: Digital innovation propels political success story in Spain New Yorker: In Spain: Politics via Reddit
  • 18. — CONTACT — MJ Kaplan, US Operations Lead mj@loomio.org @mjkaplan +14012588892 Ben Knight, Co-founder and Executive Director ben@loomio.org @benjaminmichaelknight +642102325433 USA office Suite #100, 10 Davol Street Providence, RI 02903 USA New Zealand office Level 2, 89 Courtenay Place Wellington, 6011 NEW ZEALAND