[hackerspaces] Hackerspace drama, oh my!

yar yardenack at gmail.com
Thu Jul 3 19:44:45 CEST 2014

Hi folks, this is my first time posting to this list! I'm a Sudoroom
member and organizer, and I created a proper posting account so that I
could reply to this thread. Nice to meet you all.

Naomi Most wrote;
>> We're watching as Sudo Room, for example, gets into its 2nd year and
>> starts to have the same squatting problems we have.

Our "squatting problem" was mostly caused by our previous landlord who
was making an extra buck by letting people live in his vacant offices.
We had many problems with this previous landlord.

Al Billings wrote:
> sudoroom has the same problems as noisebridge because it explicitly
> modeled itself on noisebridge with consensus decision making, an
> open door policy to the street,

Are you all aware of what Sudoroom has been up to lately? Just this
week we moved into a new space in a large building which we will be
sharing with 10 other groups, including:

   Bay Area Public School http://thepublicschool.org/bay-area
   Counter Culture Labs https://counterculturelabs.org/
   East Bay Food Not Bombs (your friendly anarchist "soup kitchen")
   a film collective (Black Hole)
   a feminist dance troupe (OMNIdance)
   a bookstore/cafe (La Commune)
   ... and more.

We are open to members and guests, while preparing the whole building
to be "open to the public" this fall. We are all working extremely
hard, and proud of what we are building together. We hope it will be
such an inspiring model of a "non-tragic" commons as to overshadow
conversations such as this one.

Noisebridge is part of our lineage. We do have a consensus model, and
we did fork NB's bylaws. Just like at AMT, some of our members
consider themselves "Noisebridge refugees" and have treated NB as an
anti-pattern as much as anything else. But we also have deep respect
for both NB and the people who work hard to keep it going. We believe
hackerspaces are capable of reinventing themselves many times over. We
believe in having strong, wide community ties. We are one of the
founding members of the BACH (Bay Area Consortium of Hackerspaces).
Many of us ARE members of other spaces, including AMT, Noisebridge,
Double Union, LOLspace, HayHackers, and beyond. Naomi, I believe
you're still on our board of directors. :)

Naomi wrote:
>> No Occupy required.

And yet, for all that, we did proudly host a few General Assemblies
during the cold winter months. Go figure.

Al wrote:
> and a political, social justice mission. They've gone as far as to
> say a space isn't a real hackerspace if it isn't political.

Who said that? Maybe they were sarcastically deflecting your rhetoric
back at you. Remember all those times you said Sudoroom isn't a real

In any case, I find it ironic to be shaming others for being
"political" in a thread that began with a trans woman's story of being
kicked out of her hackerspace by cis men who believe that hormones
made her crazy. In fact, it seems in this case that the very
iconography of "hackerspace drama" is their incapability of working
respectfully alongside people different from them. Honoring the
experiences of socially marginalized people happens to be one of the
Sudo community's core values. If you think that's a bad thing, this
may not be the best thread to make your case.

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