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I am not convinced that it is true that every community can have only one government. Apart the concept of having different government taking care of different aspects, I have often toyed with the idea of what would happen to have more than one government in the same region.

The idea was born on the observation that some countries has some laws that go beyond their own border. For example, in italy the legal age to have sex is 18. When an italian is abroad, and the local law permits it, the legal age becomes 16. But even if the local law would permit a lower limit, still the limit for an italian abroad is 16. SO an Italian abroad is subject to a different set of laws than someone from a different country.

Generalizing the concept I have often wondered how would it be to have different communities share the same geographical space. With different laws to handle situation between person inside the community and persons among different communities.

I know we have started speaking about one community and many government, and I ended up speaking about one regional group, and many communities, but I hope you will be able to see how the two cases are not totally disjointed. Sorry if I can't make myself more clear.


I think it's reasonable for a particular person to be a member of multiple communities, and for communities to not necessarily be bound by locale. That'd pretty well encompass the example you give here (although it surprises me that Italian law is capable of working that way at all today). - Humphrey 20:37, 23 June 2008 (UTC)
Oh, Italians are great at legiferating. We just dob't apply them. And when we apply them the trial times are so slow that you are never convicted. But the laws are there. Just not applied.--Pietro Speroni di Fenizio 14:26, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
Maybe I'm not getting something here, but that sounds to me like double standard and to quote George Carlin "One standard will do just fine thank you very much." - Mbarkhau 11:21, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
Hi, could you please clarify in what way would this be seen as a double standard, and what do you mean exactly? I mean, for example I can see how christians would eventually be forced to accept that society as a whole has abortion, while they themselves consider it as homicide, when they do it. So in this sense, yes, I could see society as having many different standards. I remember the boom generation in Italy making a big jump when they clarified that sin and crime are two different things. (now the church is trying to muddle the water here too).

But somehow we all have many different standards. A kid might be allowed to drink according to the law, but not according to its parents. The problem comes when the situation is reversed, and society at large forbids something that your inner comunity permits. This is where problems arise. Anything from gang behaviour, to mafia, to petty crime, could be seen in this way. So I suppose the key is in having the more general society having the less restrictive laws. And then as you clarify to which sub community you belong to, you have also to follow more strict laws.--Pietro Speroni di Fenizio 14:26, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

is Metagovernment a pluralistic society? if yes, metacitizens should be able to choose their own principles and standards within communities they belong to. and this applies to so-called Basic principles as well. what if some people do not want to abide by radical transparency, for instance? should they be prohibited from participation in Metagovernment at all? or they can form communities with their own principles within Metagovernment? same goes for Metascore. why not let communities decide whether or not they use Metascore? i think almost all you have done so far should be done within a community and not in the name of Metagovernment. let's form the first community and proclaim our principles there, including procedures, how decisions are made before Metascore is implemented, where debates to be held, etc.
and who are metacitizens after all? is any person registered at this wiki a metacitizen by definition? how can we ensure a person has only one user account? i believe these issues have to be addressed before we move forward with communities.
rustahm 09:56, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
Right now, Metagovernment is nothing more than an adhocracy of some technologists and philosophers trying to make some software. Once we have software that works according to the ideas we have collectively generated, we will try to govern ourselves with it, and then offer it to other communities to govern themselves with it. We expect the software and the way it is used to both affect each other, and each to evolve accordingly.
Our principles are the kind that produce democracy, freedom, and honesty. We think that most people will find them agreeable, and we suspect that people who do not agree with them will be the kind who do not have the public interest in mind. Nonetheless, Metascore is open source, Affero GPL-licensed software. That means anyone can take it and change it as they please. So if someone wants to make a non-transparent version, they are welcome to do so. We suspect (hope) that our approach will be more popular.
As for user identities, there are various controls. First, it may just not matter: if we have a user scoring system, then a person with multiple identities would have to try to get each identity to rise to prominence before they can do any good. Second, one of our current members is an expert in developing and applying identity systems... we just haven't come to a point where it matters enough for him to be able to contribute to the software. — Ed Pastore 00:11, 16 September 2008 (UTC)
okay, i can come to the following conclusion from what you said: there is and will be no way to create metacommunities before the first release of Metascore, as every and each metacommunity must use Metascore for its governance. if someone disagrees with this they are all welcome to practice other forms of governance but do so outside Metagovernment. that's okay with me. consequently, there will be no metacitizens before implementation of Metascore.
i believe multiple identities do matter since Metascore uses a rating-based scoring system. such identities can be used to manipulate ratings. but i guess this problem should be discussed on other pages. who is the expert in identity systems by the way? is this information classified? ;-)
rustahm 04:02, 16 September 2008 (UTC)
Look up Harry Stottle in the list server archives (I don't think he has an account on the wiki). For example, he authored this paper on identity cards, and I recently heard from him that the reason he hasn't been participating on the list recently is because he has been caught up in building a major identity validation system. — Ed Pastore 21:53, 16 September 2008 (UTC)

There can be an almost inifite number of self defined special interest communities such as the Bay area chinese lesbian chess club. But certain things are finite. The ability of the environment to absorb pollution such as CO2 is definitely not infinite, ability to exploit a natural resource such as a forest before you destroy the forests sustainability, etc there must be many examples such as this. But "land use" is an umbrella which covers nearly all of them. It is very different to the inifite number of self defined communities, and therefore it should not be surprising that it is manifested differently in governance terms. Where land use policies are decided is often the forum where the interests of different communities collides and difficult decisions and trade-offs have to be made. Coming up with a governance structure to get the best outcomes for all parties in this difficult situation is what this project is all about right? What I think we need to solve to accomplish this is, (A)what needs taken account of in the process of communities making the right choices and (B)what rights and responsibilities do people have for areas of the planets surface, and (C) what "qualifies" people as having those rights.--CauliflowerEars 11:18, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

Rules of Community

Hello all,

I do not think I can add much to the disscusion about community defintion. I think community is somthing that hapens without any need for definition.

What I can add to your conversation, is rules that we found during our work, that let democratic-groups to get bigger and stronger, an therefore, enabling big groups of people to advance mutual interests or visions.

We are exploring these rules through experimentation on democratic-communities that we help to raise. These groups works with much influance and consensus with the municipal authorities. we believe that direct democracy will rise after people will learn to work together without any fixed leadership.

If the rules that we discovered may be of interest to you, I'll be glad to continue.

Please send me email on the update on this page, because I do not come here regularly.

Cheers, Tal Yaron, the Israeli direct democracy movement

This conversation was moved to the list server and can be read in the archives.