We have said that we are promoting Community Owned Internet Networks and that ownership means each person owns the antenna on their roof and the router in their household. But, what if many residents of an apartment building share a single antenna on the roof of the building. In addition, there will be group decisions to be made in a community. A given mesh network might decide to set up a nonprofit or a for-profit LLC. Each organization might use similar technologies to connect but have different sorts of bylaws for governence in their own community. In order to involve all of the members, there are different ways for members to have a voice. In more traditional approaches, all the members might elect a board of directors and officers. In addition to those traditional approaches, there are alternatives such as Sociocracy and Liquid Democracy.

Liquid Democracy

Liquid Democracy is a form of delegative democracy whereby an electorate has the option of vesting voting power in delegates as well as voting directly themselves. Liquid democracy is a broad category of either already-existing or proposed popular-control apparatuses.

Liquid Democracy Wikipedia

The red arrows in the diagram show a proxy vote being passed from left to right. If you trust your friend Mary’s opinion and experience about Internet technology, then you might delegate your vote to her. Each person in this diagram has one vote for themself and one vote from each person to the left who has delegated a vote to them. You are able to rescind your proxy and vote directly anytime.

Implementing Liquid Democracy with Software

Liquid Feedback is Free Open Source Software that anyone can install on their own server and use.

Installation guide | Front-end | Dockerfile for Liquid Feedback | Info PDF | Book

We have just begun to investigate Liquid Feedback and will be posting more here soon.