Collective feedback, help and questions

A place to post any questions about the Collective and getting involved, or feedback on the process of joining, getting started as an active member, or being a member generally.

Unsure how to login to Mattermost? Issues with payment of membership fees?
Had a great welcome into the community and want to thank the members who helped?
Found ways our docs could be improved but not sure how to make changes?

This is a topic for you.

1 Like

Great topic @laura … I’ll keep a beady here too and help out where I can. For now, a helpful link for any member drawn to this topic is:

1 Like


I may be unsure how to log into Mattermost :slight_smile:

I have created an account and logged into Discourse. I started to do the Member orientation. The first item sent me to Mattermost where I tried to log in with the email and password I used to start my account. It said that “we couldn’t find an account matching your login credentials”.

Am me or discobot gone wrong?

Hi Owen,

Mattermost is a different set of username and password to Discourse. So you
need to set up your Mattermost account separately. You should have the info
in an early email from the Collective - let us know if not!

We know this is a pain and work is planned to help us get to a more
convenient ‘single sign on’ system - but not there yet sadly.



for others who might be confused here: == Mattermost, our members only online chat system == Discourse, our public web forum (that you are
reading now). Available on web or as emails.

1 Like

Hi Laura,

Thanks for your replies. I cannot find a welcome email in my archives or Spam folders. I have, however, fished out some other interesting mails from Diglife from my Spam folder. I have now finetuned my Spam lists so all diglife mail addresses I have mail from are whitelisted :slight_smile:

Here is what I think happened. I learned about Diglife at the start of December 2017. I joined with a $10 subscription on December 8. I was in pre-Xmas mode and failed to notice the welcome email in my Spam folder. I purged my Spam folder at the start of January for an entirely unrelated reason. The mails I found are all from January and February 2018.

Is it possible to have a welcome mail resent, or otherwise get login credentials for Mattermost?

Many thanks

No worries Owen - I’ll dig out your email address and send you the emails
and mattermost info now.



1 Like

i’ve been a member of the collective for over a year. When I found it I was sure it was what I was looking for. I tried to read what was going on and I promised to give feedback. I’ve tried a few times to work out whats happening in the collective, but it’s a long time since i made my promise…

Some part of the reason I can’t work out whether or not this is the group of people I was looking for is my mental health. After five years of persistence, I pesuaded a professional in the local health system that I’d benefit from professional help. I was told I’d probably have to wait six months for free treatment. That was a year ago.
When I’ve tried to work out what it is that you are doing as a collective, I found it difficult to figure it out from mattermost. That’s maybe because of the technology and maybe because of my crippling inability to use social platforms because i’m really fucking shy. I haven’t worked that out yet.

So when I try to work out what it is that you are doing, the evidence is cryptic and spread over loads of different places. I wonder about the way to interperet the collective’s activities. Here’s the shortlist:

  1. I don’t know enough to know. I can’t work out what it is that I need to know to understand what’s going on.

  2. The collective is focusing on problems that don’t seem important to me because I don’t understand enough about the technology or the politics to see how solving these problems is the what will allow the us to tackle important problems later. It’s like trying to understand why teaching a computer to win Go is important before you understand that teaching it to win Go is how you learn to teach it to do actual useful stuff.

  3. The collective really doesn’t have a radical vision, although some members clearly do.

It’s hard to justify throwing number 3 at you, given that numbers one and two might be true. I definately get the feeling that what happens in the collective is aimed at being beneficial, but it is also clear that there is the normal sort of politicking going on that you get in any group of people. That stuff is sometimes good, sometimes bad and sometimes in between, but it always gets in the way of someone looking in.

Here’s what I want:
I’m after finding a group of people who are looking for real solutions, and who look to make changes at the very root of what’s wrong. The task in front of us is huge. Absolutely fucking massive. We need to find working models which provide what we need without destroying the planet. The solutions we seek have to put power at the fingertips of all the people, so that even the people who seem to break any kind of tech just by looking at it can use the tools that put their choices in their hands. We have to make a viable alternative to the status quo.

Remodelling the whole economic system is only one part of our task. Loads of really amazing work is going on to try out alternative models. Progress is going to take a lot of work and probably several sparks of genius/collaboration, some of which will hopefully take.

Conflict resolution is another thing we have to solve. I look at the network knowledge the big silos hold and imagine how you could use that to crowd-source conflict resolution. If the person you mutually trust is your mum’s auntie’s mate you might just be incentivised to put your point of view across in non-threatening terms. A scalable, decentralised justice system that non-techy people trust would solve problems right at their root.

I’m getting ahead of myself. There is a world of problems to solve. One of them is the problem that the IT solutions that are pushed on us are net problem-creators. There are technologies emerging to give us the connections we want without the specific problems the silos create but focusing on fixing those particular problems is only useful if it’s the thing that progeesses us towards being able to tackle the root problems. I don’t know how to evaluate that in this collective.

My questions to the reader are these:

Are the things that the collective is doing the things that it needs to be doing to progress towards finding radical solutions that address the problems at the roots of our world, or is the collective fucking around re-arranging the deckchairs on the titanic?

If the answer is the one I want it to be, how do I find the people in the collective who can help me to contribute? My tech skills extend to running stuff on a server and building websites, but maybe I can contribute in different ways. Any guidance appreciated.


Hi Keith

Thanks for that.

Re the Titanic, we’re probably be the ones making a raft from the deckchairs. Trying to solve the big problems the best way we know how - hard work and smarts.

The quickest way to find ‘your’ group in the collective would be to sign in to the new mattermost instance and request access to the Social Ledger + CaaS channel. A lot of nuts & bolts work going on there - running servers, wrangling code, UX /I … and always someone to answer any specific questions you might have.

For a quick ‘meet the team’, there’s a Tech updates and open tech conversation on Zoom every Wednesday, 17:00 – 18:00

Hope that helps



Hi Keith, thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts, all of which are entirely relevant lest you think I might think otherwise. Another way of putting it is, we’re trying to break the Catch 22.

We want to free ourselves from the Surveillance Capitalists (a good part of the net problem-creators to which you refer), and establish distributed, co-operative digitally-mediated networks. But those centralizing behemoths have it comparatively easy given their dedication to centralization (easier to architect) and the consequential enormous cash flows. Created a Facebook group for the Collective would have been easy, but, well, you can see why that would be a non-starter.

So with very little resources except a couple of hundred members and a few thousand quid in the bank, we’re slowly edging forward without resort to any of the big tech. It’s hard work. It definitely isn’t rearranging deckchairs. And it wholly contributes to our mission, although clearly falling significantly short of being sufficient of itself.

In terms of sufficiency, that’s why we are dedicated to co-operation. In helping host a collective of collectives if you like, with wholly compatible values and complementary goals, we can aim to have an effect on the world greater than the sum of the parts.

Is it a destination? No. It’s a long, hard journey, but one that many of us feel 100% worthwhile. I feel like you’re getting the occasional glimpse of our highs and lows, but don’t yet feel like you’re on the journey with us. Given your mention of shyness, if you feel like a 1:1 chat would be preferable to jumping on a group call with a bunch of (at that point) strangers, please just let me know here. That would be my pleasure.

Best wishes :slight_smile: