Difference between revisions of "Event:2020/04/09 Delegates"

From Omni Commons
Jump to navigation Jump to search
(copy from pad)
(last meeting)
Line 331: Line 331:
== Last Meeting Notes ==
== Last Meeting Notes ==
= End of Meeting =
= End of Meeting =

Latest revision as of 19:33, 16 April 2020

Omni Delegates' Meeting - 09 April 2020 7pm-9pm

for instructions on preparing and archiving these notes, please see the bottom


  • Introductions [15 minutes]
    • Meeting Roles
    • Delegates Count
    • Access Check-in
  • Check-ins, Updates & Report-Backs [30 minutes]
    • Brief Announcements
    • Working Groups
    • Member Collectives
    • Conflicts, Mediation & Safe Space
  • Proposals & Discussions


Introduce yourself: Name; Preferred Pronoun; Affiliation; any brief announcements; say whether you're a delegate; let us know about any access needs you have†

  • WHY DO WE ASK PRONOUNS? To make space for people who are trans, nonbinary, gender noncomforming or otherwise vulnerable to being misgendered. It's not an invitation to make jokes or trivialize the idea of pronouns. If you are fine with the gender and pronouns society generally assigns to you, please just say what they are without fanfare or embellishment. Conversely, please don't pressure anybody to give their pronouns, as that can harm trans people who are closeted or questioning. The point is to prompt and normalize asking, but not to mandate or enforce. Thank you! <3 Yar

Meeting Roles

  • Facilitator/s: robb
  • Explanation of hand signals: "deaf applause", "raised hand", "point of process", "direct response"(wildcard), etc.
  • Stacktaker: Helen
  • Timekeeper: Mai
  • Notetaker/s: Roberto, Mai, jenny
  • Vibe Reader:
  • Who will out next meeting's agenda beforehand:robb
  • Next meeting's facilitator(s): Jenny


  • AB
  • Jane
  • Robb
  • Roberto
  • mai
  • Helen
  • MayAnn
  • Joe
  • Jenny
  • Patrik
  • Marc/juul


  • CCL: Patrik
  • CSC: MaryAnn
  • FNB: Helen
  • FYE: AB
  • GWS: Jane
  • LL: robb
  • Phat Beets: Inactive
  • Sudo: Jenny/Marc
  • Quorum: 7/8 (7/7 active)

Brief Announcements

  • From Max via discuss list: "Hello, Did anyone see a large cooler floating around today? It was in front of phat beets fridge at 3pm and was mia at 515. Please help we need it for our Sunday distribution event"
  • Joe: Got a message through coiuncil women - Barbara Lee's Office - looking for places to spend money. Joe will forward this information to Max, we can be part of it too.
    • Robb: There is movement, he has reached out to more established groups.
      • Jenny: Would love if i could be cc'd in the email.
  • Jenny: Also wanted to announce that the city of oakland is running drive through testing for covid-19, prioritizing health workers but also folks who are working with houseless populations. Suggest that all frontline orgs put together a list of volunteers who have been doing this work - 501c3s try to incorporate grassroots/unincorporated groups they work with: https://www.mercurynews.com/2020/04/06/oakland-opens-coronavirus-testing-site-for-frontline-workers-only/ (trying to find direct link, will email to consensus tonight -jenny) ((and will update here))
    • Helen: There is already somone from FnB that needs to be tested.
  • jenny & marc have been working with other microbiologists creating covid-19 testing, working on getting 2 locations in bay area & 2 in nyc running rn - https://renegade.bio

Working Group Report-Backs

Building & permits

  • Meetings: only the kitchen group meets regularly, new times tbd
  • https://omnicommons.org/lists/listinfo/building
  • Robb: painted some of the doors that are not high gloss
    • Jenny (post-facto): robb, my order of high gloss black was also refunded, and couldn't find any in stock avails for delivery. best home depot in-person wait times seem to be 1-3pm (they have a staggered wait line just east of the burrito bar) - can send an HD card if you're interested in such missions? make sure to wear a mask & gloves & spray down products etc - have a few extra if you need - the cashier employees are not wearing PPE and shrugged when i asked about it :/
  • Jenny: Every attempt I've made to buy disinfectants has been refunded. A comrade has extrmely good deals on bleach (spot in Vallejo, also has truck) asked if he woud drop off some at omni
    • Patrik: CCL still has isopropanol; gloves too - David Anderson came in today to do inventory. We might have another gallon of bleach.
      • Jenny: Krystof is a block away, will remind him. He has a truck and offered to do runs. ~$10/6gal


Finance & Fundraising

  • Meetings: 1st & 3rd Mondays at 5:30pm - NOW 4PM - https://meet.jit.si/omninom
  • https://omnicommons.org/lists/listinfo/finance
  • Jenny: I was trying to finish "this" before the meeting. Had to redo 2018/2019 reconcilliations becuase decided not to take the easy way out, and had to do the books. Screen is showing a comparison of 2018 and 2019 and not incorporating the village. If we were to do a quick comparisson on $6K loss difeerence from March 2018 and March 2019. We paid $3k to PGE, which means loss if really $3K (which it is). Mostly it was a loss from event rentals. This is a good opportunities to find ways to refiance and subsidies for operations. I'm compiling those and putting on the grants sheet on drive. Been playing phone tag with Jesse, want to quuery the delagates how much we want to reduce our mortgage payments. Looking at this data maybe 50-70% relief for 3-6 months would be a justifiable request. It has been a lot of work! But everything is balancing out. Spent about 20 hrs to catch up on finances for the Village for 2018 + 2019 — Not part of the arrangement but wanted to do her part
    • Where can we find this info?
      • Jenny: If people want to look at this info, ping Jenny. The best way to look at overviews in quickbooks, commons wg login view-only. Biggest expenese is mostly mortgage interest, so refinincing would be amazing. If anyone wants to do a one on one, I can really use the help. Finance and Fundraising...
    • Have a nonprofit guru who will liek to pull in to the finance working group. Sarah Lockhart
  • MaryAnn: waht happened to the Fundraising group that Matt started. What will happen to the volunteers in the group? There are exisiting proposals that need to be looked at.
    • Mai: We should check in with Matt before we drop him.
  • Jenny: There is no one else besides Katrina in the Finance WG, but have also looked at fundraising. Several people have shown interest on slack channel, including Jose Plasencia who shared an opportunity. We need help narrowing down opportunities, writing grant apps, and making those relationships.

Temporary Working Group: Security/Cleanliness

  • when does this working group meet?
  • Robb: Have been cleaning but have not gotten much structure on paper. I have been cleaning up and sanatizing.
  • Mai: were the keys changed?
  • Robb: No they have not been changed but not al ot of poeple have come through the space.
  • Patrick: Is there an email list to coordiante.
  • Robb: We can use building list - https://lists.omnicommons.org/listinfo/building
    • what are the pressing needs: need a list of members that need access.
  • Robb We need signs too, and other people helping because I get critizied.
  • Somone asked to use the bathroom, are we allowing that now?
  • Robb: We have always let the people in the outside use the bathroom, we have not stopped that.
  • That is reosanable. Whoever lets them in should make sure to clean up after them. That is, wipe down all surfaces they may have touched with diluted bleach
  • Jenny: How many people are staying inside the building? Who?
  • AB: Anka, Tom, Phil, Robb, Robert Chu, Ian,
  • Roberto: maybe we could make a schedule of folks who're in the building?

Member Collective Updates

What is going on with your collective? What are you working on? What have you accomplished? Any events coming up? Any difficulties you are encountering that you need help with?


  • Patrik: Not much to update. David Anderson came to do an inventory, Need to make a descicion where masks and alcohol should go.


  • MaryAnn: We are in the process of figuring out how to do classes and films online. We are having online meetings. We will announce when we make decisions. We will be sending the list of members who need access. To what list?
  • Jenny will send out list, share access


  • Helen: I tried to collect all people who need access and sent it to Jenny.
  • Nothing to report. Still serving with reduced forces. One of the frontline people got sick =[


  • AB: From the colelctive, e have been meeting online. Experiemntal discussion on zoom will share on calendar. Shared with the fiance group profit/loss information. Bank acount update: Matt was able to speak to a lady at the bank an can do the process online, which is good news. We have to send information over and can send that in the next 48 hours.


  • Jane: We've been organzing online, and working on Care income based on green new deal from Europe. Rachel is getting better, was sick =[


  • Robb: We have online video editing class coming up this monday. It will be on DaVinci Resolve. Still getting response from some of the film festivals we submitted to. Editing workshop is on the 14th at 6pm.
  • Jenny: Forwarded a link to FYE but will aslo send to LL, opportunities for funding.
  • AB: Thanks for sending, a couple that FYE can apply to.

Phat Beets

  • Not here, but NORJC has been hosting weekly donation distros @ Omni to N. Oakland encampments


  • Marc: Has been mostly shut down but have people working on things from home online. There is a ventilator project that has been happeing out of Jakes house, and other people. Its been a collaborative process. Project to get these old qPCR machines. Machines used to detect viruses, but are old and need old hardware/software. If you are interested ping me I can sign you up to different groups.

Conflicts, Mediation & Safe Space

  • Updates for any ongoing issues
  • Has anybody been asked to leave? asked to leave
  • AB: There is a person who used to come before but is now consistently coming and sleeping outside of the Omni. After a while she left messes, she has been super agressive lately. Have pcitures of doing drugs and leaving trash by the Omni. She is really aggresive but cannot do anything personally. Everybody on the block are afraid of her. Open to feedback, advice, thoughts.
  • Jenny: Curious if you know her name?
  • AB: calls herself Queen Elizabeth
  • Maryann: Is he isnde or outside?
  • AB: She is outside. Right now it is contained, somewhat.
  • Ab: This too is because there is a lot less activity at the Omni.
  • Jenny: is this the same small women often coming by after 1am ~ sep-dec 2019 and camping out on 48th?
  • AB: Yes.
  • Jenny: May have a lead and will reach out.


Example Proposal Title

  • Name of person, and/or, collective. and/or working group making this proposal; Date the proposal was sent to the consensus email list
  • Text of proposal

New Member Application: Sudo Mesh

  • Sudo Mesh/Mai. April 1, 2020

OMNI MEMBER APPLICATION - SUDO MESH What do you do that makes a difference in the world? Sudo Mesh develops software and assembles hardware systems to build open community networks. We are building open technology that helps connect our neighbors, support local businesses, and enable community collaboration and cultural production. In the event of a natural disaster or state censorship, community mesh networks can be a resilient means of communication and sharing of information.

Our projects include People's Open Network, a community-owned and -operated non-profit digital network in Oakland and disaster.radio, an off-grid, solar-powered, long-range mesh network built on free, open source software and affordable, open hardware. Briefly recap your history as an organization.

Meetings to build the People’s Open Network began in January of 2013 at Sudo Room. Several founding members of the project, including Marc Juul, Jenny Ryan, Daniel Arauz, Lesley Bell, Jehan Tremback, Jake Sternberg, and Matthew Senate, continue to be involved to this day.

We have continued to build off of the contributions and experiments of people who have been involved over the years. Our accomplishments over the last seven years include:

Development of our own version of mesh routing firmware, SudoWRT, which was built off of existing open source operating system OpenWRT in addition to open source mesh routing protocol Babel. Organized six Build Your Own Internet (BYOI) events where we’ve hosted hands-on activities and presentations about how the internet works and our digital network commons initiatives. Installed 30+ antennas and routers in homes and businesses to become wireless nodes in People’s Open Network. One includes a node at the Internet Archive building in Richmond, CA, which we placed there in order to distribute gigabits of donated, free bandwidth. Raised over $180,000 in grants and individual donations to support our work, including a $30,000 donation to Omni Commons and a $10,000 donation to Sudo Room (where we have hosted our meetings and storage for years). Laptops for All (another Sudo Mesh project) has given out dozens of laptops to high-need individuals.

Our most active projects are the People's Open Network and Disaster Radio.

People’s Open Network empowers communities to build and operate their own wireless networks without relying on last-mile ISPs. Using our design built on open source software, off-the-shelf hardware, and open educational materials, small groups of people can utilize existing bandwidth to share their internet connections and cover public and underserved areas. Those who connect to the network are not customers, but community members, encouraged to learn, participate, host a node or contribute to code.

Disaster Radio is an off-grid, solar-powered, long-range mesh network built on free, open source software and affordable, open hardware. It is being designed to be rapidly implemented in disaster areas by anyone who can follow written instructions, acquire the necessary components, and mount a nominal number of nodes. The nodes will be small, entirely self-contained units running low-bandwidth web apps that anyone can access with a WiFi-enabled device. We are designing them to be solar-powered.

What is your incorporation status? (501c3? Unincorporated Association? etc.) We are an incorporated 501c3 organization as Sudo Mesh, with EIN 46-4226376. We have our own bank account with UNIFY Credit Union, including sub-accounts for each of our projects.

How do you make decisions?

We are currently undergoing a transition in our decision-making process, which has been slowly evolving over the last two years. Until 2018, major decisions were made by in-person votes at weekly Tuesday night meetings by those actively involved in Sudo Mesh projects. Otherwise, decisions were made on an ad hoc, individual basis by those who had the capacity to work on different aspects of a project. For the last two years, we have been experimenting with the decision-making platform, Loomio. We collectively selected active members as “Stewards” who are empowered to vote on any major decisions, particularly those involving financial expenditures. We are also using Loomio to discuss ideas and proposals before they go up for a vote. Currently, proposals must be approved by consensus of approved Stewards.

Stewards are not able to block if they are the sole person opposed to the decision — they must work with the proposer to come to a proposal that works for them.

This has largely worked for us, but we still lack many protocols that could ensure a stable governance process. For example, we do not have minimum involvement requirements for those to remain as Stewards. We hope to address such issues in the coming months.

State your goals for becoming an Omni member collective. How would your presence in the Omni contribute to its purpose and Statement of Solidarity?

We believe in the power and potential of the commons as an alternative to capitalism, which justifies the extractive, violent, and depraved treatment of humans, animals, and the Earth. Networked communication has not only become critical for people to access and share information, it’s a necessity for community connection, social justice organizing, and to inspire and disseminate stories and art.

Sudo Mesh is a small project out of many thousands of digital commons organizations that are fighting for a more just and equitable internet. Our goal is to build network infrastructure that is truly owned by and for the public, with a more specific aim to create technology that addresses the information and communication needs of Bay Area neighborhoods.

Sudo Mesh has also long been a pillar organization of Omni Commons. Several of its members have and continue to contribute their time and expertise to maintain the wireless network in the space. Our members have helped with building maintenance and we have also used the space for our BYOI events. Our donation of $30,000 to the Omni Commons in 2018 is also a testament to our commitment to support Omni as a critical community resource in Oakland.

Explain how you will finance your Omni membership dues/rent.

We currently have some savings that would allow us to pay our membership dues for the near future. However, we will continue to apply for grants, seek individual donations and other recurring sources of funding to fund our work and all our expenses, including our rent and Omni membership dues.

Describe what dedicated physical space (if any) you need. What will you do in the dedicated space? What can you do in shared space? Will you need to make any modifications of the building? Include floor plans if that makes your proposal clearer.

We already use some space in Sudo Room: a walk-in storage space in the southeast corner mezzanine. We have considered using more space at the Omni as a regular workspace, but we currently do not have plans to expand our use beyond that space.

Discussion on proposal

  • Mai: Based on feedback from last meeting, we discussed we decided to do a flat contibtuion of $200/month and 5% of our grants we get, with a ceiling of $5,000.
  • Patrik: How much does Omni currently charge sponserd projects:
    • Jenny: Flat rate, based on space used and activities. For grant based fiscally sponserd projects we typically charge 7%
      • Patrik: Has my approval.
  • Robb: Do we need to have a discusion taht it should go to sudo or omni
    • Marc: Proposal: the $200 wil be the exact amount to upgrade gigabit internet. It will allow us to share internet with out neighborhood.
  • Mai: Several of us will be bale to help steward the network.
  • Jenny: Encouraging Sudo Mesh members to join Sudo Room members.

Question: Is sudo mesh's income mostly grants?

  • Mai: We have a fundraising campaing on Patreon. But also can be sustained by individual donations.
  • Marc: We have been pretty decent at getting smaller grants. And I am not afraid we cannot pay the $200/month.
  • Mai: Suggested $200 because members usually tend to be wealthier.

Roberto: What are the overlaps between members of sudo mesh and sudo room

  • There are alot of members who are not part of sudo room, but some overlap.
  • Jenny: happy to ensure that especially sudo room and sudo mesh delegates do not ever overlap (they don't tend to, anyways. tbh sudo mesh is far more independent and functional than sudo room at this moment in time)

Robb: what was the answer about sending money to Omni or Sudo Room?

  • Mai: wasnt sure of that was a decision for sudo mesh to make that decision
  • Marc: made the proposal because sudo mesh uses a lot of sudo room resources.
  • Patrik: Sudo Room can propose that thye pay less rent since sudo mesh will use some space in sudo room.
  • Jenny: It will be awasome if PPE equimpemnt can be made at Sudo Room.

Mai: Anything else missing from the proposal?

  • Patrcik: the other concerns was: how much overlap there is between sudo room and sudo mesh.
  • AB: Having skimmed over the app, it looks really good. It would be nice to have them join. Would like to know.... second in regards to space, there is already a space designated for sudo mesh?
  • Mai: Sudo mesh was treated as a project of sudo room, started in 2013 in the old space. now, however (as of 2018), sudo mesh is its own non-profit. Essentially $200/ month is formalizing commitment..
  • Jenny: Sudo mesh has been contributing $100/ month to Sudo Room for over a year now, since we occupy significant storage space and love sudo
  • Marc: Addressing the concern of two seat at the table: dont think its a problem since decision could be blocked by one.
  • Mai: We should not allow that one delegate represent two collectives. There are other overlaps with other collectives.
  • Robb: I am but never represent two at a time.
  • Robb: The only time it will be a problem, is when we have consensus -1.
    • MaryAnn: but that was never approved
      • Robb: it passed at the commons working group?
        • Marc: Seems like something that should be revisited.
          • Jenny: yes, would like to see documentation of that decision. commons is not delegates.
  • Jenny; I can make a promise that I will not be a sudo mesh delegate
  • Maryann: Should we take this back to our collectives?
    • Robb: We need to make a decision first as to where the money goes to.
      • Jenny: We brought it up to get feedback.
        • Mai: What I can do is revise the proposal with new contibution stipulation. I am inclined that it go straight to Omni.
          • MaryAnn: new proposal should be written up and sent to the consenuss list.
            • Mai: Sounds good, Ill revise proposal.
  • Patrik: By when do we need answers from the collectives?
    • Mai: will send out new proposal answering concerns.
      • Mai: will one week be enough for collectives to discuss?
        • ~ consenso seems yes, but let's see.. consensus is a process, not a voting deadline, y'all! -jenny

=Board Officer Elections

  • MaryAnn sent out information via consesus list:

Dear Omni Comrades,

Nominations are officially closed. Below is the list of candidates for the 3 officer positions described in our bylaws. If any of those listed with to withdraw their name, please do so before the next Delegates Assembly this Thursday, April 9.

Each candidate may provide a brief statement of why she or he want to be an officer of the Omni Commons to the consensus list. Delegates should forward the list of candidates, as well as their statements to their collectives. At the next Delegates Assembly / Executive Board, delegates will need to agree on a process for conducting a secret ballot election. Please place that on the agenda.

Thanking to everyone for your cooperation,

Mary Ann Tenuto-Sánchez



  • Roberto Martinez
  • John Torok


  • Jenny Ryan


  • Mai Sutton
  • Robb Benson


  • Maryann: Since we cannot do a secret ballot how do we do it? If we diecide to do a secret ballot what method are we going to use? If there is one candidate for office is that person automatically elected or should we send it back to the colelctive to vote yes or no.
  • First question: Secret ballot or not?
    • Marc: we have not have a secret ballot before so no
  • Patrik: no secrecy since it has to be sent back to colelctives. Ido want to have a written statement from each candidate because some people may not know who candidates are.
*Maryann: Send statements to consensus. Then it is the responsibility of each collective to send them out. 
*Robb: All need to be togherer. 
*Maryann: Some people send it last minute and will not be enough time to send out. 
*Maryann: Need more clarity with this question. 
*Jenny: Not sure ff John Torok a) knows about video chat link or that Roberto has been nominated. All for transperancy. If anyone else want to take on the role of Treasurer, open throughout the year. 
Straw Poll
* CCL/PAtrik: Open Ballot 
* GWS/Jane: Secret Ballot 
*FYE/AB: Secret 
*LIBLENS/Robb: Abstain, feel like I have a conflict of interest...but will say Open 
*FNB/Helen: Open 
*SUDO/Jenny/Marc: Open. Does not make sense how this could be a secret. 

  • Open wins straw poll - does anyone want to block? NO
  • Consesus: Open Ballot
    • Patrick: Should there be a deadline for statement?
    • Mai: By end of sunday ? is that too late?
      • Deadline for statement Sunday 4/12 at 8pm
  • Elections will be on April 23 2020

Mutual Aid Efforts

= From two meetings ago: Shift Participation and Discussion to the general discuss list

Action Items

  • comms wg reactivation
  • procuring desanitzation equip
    • let's work w/ max n silver on protoco

Last Meeting Notes


End of Meeting