[hackerspaces] Establishing hackerspace and getting people actively involved

Paul Bohm paul at boehm.org
Sun May 9 23:12:54 CEST 2010

Oh - and with no social events i mean: we stood up and left after we
had discussed the items for the week - no sitting around and being
merry. We didn't want to bond over anything, we just wanted to build a

You don't need to simulate what a space would be (with projects and
talks), you just need to be genuinely excited and show people you're
going to do it - with them or without them. They'll come.

On Sun, May 9, 2010 at 2:08 PM, Paul Bohm <paul at boehm.org> wrote:
> Hey Jarkko,
> When we started Metalab, there already was a group who'd been trying
> to start a CCC clubhouse for 2 years unsuccessfully. They had projects
> and regular social meetings.
> We instead opted for explicitly doing no projects and no social events
> - everything was goal oriented, and we tried to get people excited
> enough to sign up on our announce list (low traffic, so unsubscribing
> would be harder than just dealing with the trafifc), and then just
> regularly sent photos from spaces we looked at, mockups of space
> layouts, drafts of our financing plans, meeting reports, ... to show
> people we are serious.
> This meant our bi-weekly meeting were only attended by 4-12 people (at
> most), but that everyone there was really the getting-shit-done type.
> I think this really helped in defining our initial core group. Based
> on that experience I'd personally avoid social gathering before the
> space is there at all costs - it attracts what I consider to be the
> wrong crowd.
> Enki
> On Sun, May 9, 2010 at 8:06 AM, Jarkko Moilanen <Jarkko.Moilanen at uta.fi> wrote:
>> Hi,
>> We have problems getting things started here with our hackerspace. We have
>> punch of people hanging around this still virtual hackerspace. In our
>> meetings, there is only about 5-6 participants. People seem to be reluctant
>> to start any projetcs. The reason for this reluctancy seems to be that we
>> are still missing our IRL space. I disagree partly. Not every project needs
>> a separate space. To get some activity (projects) we need active
>> participants. When we have activities we become more attractive and gain
>> more members. Of course the space is in the top 2 wanted list.
>> But again, no members -> no funds and no funds -> no space. We (well this
>> means at least me) are now willing to lower our expectations for the first
>> space and just get one.
>> People seem to wait that 'someone else' does all the work. I have seen
>> enough that type of people in my life. I was not expecting to see that type
>> of people in this hackerspace 'project'. Have I gathered (lured) wrong type
>> of people from the start. Where are the doers and makers? We dontä need
>> people who just talk and talk. How do we get people more involved? We are
>> still in the beginning and kind of stuck. We started (well I did) gathering
>> people for this hackerspace about 10 months ago. The hangarounds (about 10)
>> seem also reluctant to participate to community related issues, in other
>> words building virtual tools and environments for the community. Community
>> which is starting does not happen itself, it needs people to DO stuff.
>> Moreover it needs things to be done that are not so important to single
>> person but for the whole community. I am loosing my faith in establishing a
>> hackerspace in Tampere. Any thoughts?
>> cheers,
>> Jarkko, mode 5w hackerspace
>> ****************************
>>  Jarkko Moilanen
>>  M.Soc.Sc. (Political Science)
>>  PhD Student, Information studies, University of Tampere
>>  Blog: Extreme activities in cyberspace - http://extreme.ajatukseni.net/
>>  -------------------------
>>  Founder of Hackerspace 5w, Finland, Tampere - 5w.fi
>> ****************************
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