Friday, 1 June 2018

ACEing Made to Stick - An Extensible New Power Essay

I picked up New Power (@thisisnewpower) earlier in the week, a book that came highly recommended to me by Tim McDonald (@tamcdonald) and have read the first four chapters.

What's the point of writing this post?
What is there of any value that I might be able to provide that all the professional book reviewers, thought leaders, successful entrepreneurs and business people have not already said? That's a great question!

My Twitter handle and blog are called EdTech Stories because of "Made to Stick" and because of an early attempt to tell a story I'm still trying to tell: Tech Story, where I borrow characters from Pixar's Toy Story.

Does that mean this is going to be a super compelling, concise, edge of your seat yarn? Unfortunately, probably not! (*Sigh*)

Will the post be too long? Include too many disparate references? Be too random ...or controversial? Will the ideas be too abstract? The answer to all of the above is: Quite Possibly! (*Sigh*)

But I also know that whatever the ideas and however the post looks today... the ideas will be so obvious to all in 6-12 months time that explaining them would be just pain silly!

This post will indeed pull in a number of ideas from different sources - including my own experiences - but hope it will be ACE enough for a few key groups and people to read... discuss... reach out to each other and (hopefully)... collaborate on the Summary & Solutions section at the end.

In New Power (@thisisnewpower) Henry Timms (@henrytimms) and Jeremy Heimans (@jeremyheimans) upgrade Made to Stick's 'Success' for the social media age by adding some ACE advice.

This post is an attempt to make the book "Extensible" and hope the ideas speak to either or all of the following three groups:

1) Educators
2) Policy Makers/Politicians
3) If the argument made is compelling enough I hope that #EdTech developers might see a development where young people, employees and employers could learn the kind of skills that saw AirBnB and the 2014 IndyRef movement thrive.

My last 3 posts have included references to Jane Jacobs, Ayn Rand and Stewart Brand's work. In a recent post I consider how much online dissatisfaction was a result of offline factors in

How the SNP could get back to Team56

This post will do likewise by asking a few questions about Glasgow's history and our young people's sense of belonging.

By the end of the post I hope that the idea of an Edcamp and an EdTech incubator with a strong #DigCit/#Cmgr aspect might be a serious discussion that a few key groups decide to get involved with.

...A Quick Word About Stewart Brand
I have been referencing "The Well" ever since I read Kate Hafner's (@katiehafner) book a few years ago.

I'm not entirely sure why I hadn't done this a lot sooner, but earlier this week I checked out what Stewart Brand (
@stewartbrandhas done more recently.

And boy! What a treat... Brand talking about his work, Jane Jacobs and - through discussing the shortcomings in the world of architecture - feel the hero (or, depending on your perspective, anti-hero) of The Fountainhead: Howard Roark, is represented in this article too.

Brand, Rand and Jacobs all in one article? What bliss!

"There's only two people I'd rather be than me: Brian Eno and Jane Jacobs...Brand's beef with architects is that too many of them make buildings which fail in their function and are actually designed not to adapt. A Highly Distinctive Brand

In 1999 I did an 
Understanding Cities Open University course and... given that How Buildings Learn aired in 1997, I simply cannot understand why such an awesome program wasn't part of this course!!

I binge watched all 6 episodes earlier in the week, what a great series!

We've all heard of the Homebrew Club, right?
The place where Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak developed the Apple I.

But...did you know, Stewart Brand played a role in establishing the Homebrew Club?
No, neither did I?! Check this out: 1960s Rebels - Stewart Brand Tech Visionary

"Stewart Brand has always craved a sensation of wholeness, a feeling of belonging and authenticity" 
Fred Turner in Counterculture to Cyberculture via 

"Brand's natural optimism is tied to a very attractive contrarian streak... if everyone else agrees about something, Stewart always starts to wonder what you would find if you disagreed"

#NewPower Scottish School Girl Vs The US State Department
I have discussed the sense of belonging that The Well provided to many of it's members, the Well Beings (What a fantastic name for your community members!), in previous posts.

I also find that it can be useful to wonder if we disagreed with the crowd a little more often.

The only Scottish example that I've read in New Power is the story of Aqsa Mahmood 

"Who grew up in a moderate Muslim family in Scotland. She attended good private schools and loved Harry Potter. She was described as someone who didn't know which bus to take to find her way to downtown Glasgow...She became a "bedroom radical" and went to Syria when she was 19. Having been recruited into ISIS, she now turned recruiter, mastering the tools of online engagement and enticing others to follow her example...The US State Department's "Think Again Turn Away!" wasn't too effective. New Power

Offline Bullying ...and Sense of Belonging
There are a number of contrarian questions to be asked here, but I'd like to focus on the same issues as the one that Anita Sarkeesian (@anitasarkeesian) raises with the gaming community... And her observations whether her online harassment has it's roots in societies views about women offline?

deeann fitzpatrick
"Boys will be boys"
Westminster Must Take Responsibility for its Bullying Culture
Just as the ideas from New Power can be used to affect positive movements and change... it can also be devastatingly effective with spreading division and hate.

In his book "They F**k You Up" Psychologist Oliver James highlights how being social marginalised in some way can lead to people being innovators and over achievers.

This is something we see with the number of migrants in the US who are startup founders, or through The Farkas study of Post WWII Jewish migrants. Who succeeded because of their humble origins, not in spite of them.

The other side of the coin is the maginalised groups who turn to hate and violence. One key difference between 2nd and 3rd generation Jewish immigrants is that they blend in... not quite so easy for 2nd and 3rd generation Asian and Afro-Caribbean migrants.

There's a lot of concern about the risks of online bullying, but...

How much discussion is there about offline bullying at school leaving marginalised young people looking for counter-cultures online? 

In many cases these will be harmless spaces and communities - geeks, comics, gaming, sports, goths - other spaces may not be quite so harmless as young people look for the kind of solace & sense of belonging their school and fellow students should provide but, for whatever reason... doesn't?
Is this because it's easier for politicians to blame the tech companies... than a lack of #DigCit in edu? 

Or because it's easier for schools to think of the big bad wild west of the online world... than it is to question whether the school values of respect, inclusiveness, tolerance, and diversity may not actually apply to every single student?

If we need any evidence of this suggestion:

"The Reddit world is made up of its users, who skew young, male, and geeky, and do the upvoting, linking and commenting...In the months prior to the #RedditRevolt the CEO had tried to create new rules to shut down offensive content and hate speech on the site. Predictably, this had clashed with the somewhat outlaw, libertarian ethos of Reddit. Many suspected these efforts were not driven by a moment of moral awakening but rather were an effort to clean  up the site so it could be more easily monetised for advertisers. The speech that the CEO was targeting was extreme: Revenge porn, attacking transgender people, white supremacists... It was also easy to sense gender dynamics at play on a platform whose users were mostly male" New Power

How many many of these young male and geeky kids found in Reddit the sense of belonging that they were not finding at school? The 'outlaw ethos' being a result of anger at being bullied or marginalised at school?

"Brian recalls why he chose to become a volunteer moderator when the site introduced them 'You got to build a community. You build a policy structure that keeps it thriving, keeps it going. That's why Reddit was successful. You feel like you own it"

Courtnie talks about her identity as a super users like this: 'Reddit is my community center, it's my YMCA'"

New Power

How many hate groups tapped into this by going where your audience is to recruit and add fuel the the fire in forums like these? 

"Reddit also has a big impact on politics - research has shown that Reddit was one of the most important online spaces for Alt-Right Trump supporters to congregate and coordinate as they successfully wages the so called "meme wars" on social media during the 2016 elections...Reddit Co-Founder Steve Huffman estimated that users they looked to silence, the 'toxic 0.2%' who polluted the space for everyone else. " New Power

Many highlight the history of Silicon Valley as part of the magic. What of Glasgow?

Could it's history and attitudes have influenced Aqsa Mahmood's decision to turn to ISIS? 

Here are just a few points that might be worth considering if, how and why the history of places might affect people's sense of belonging today.

A (Very) Brief History of Glasgow
18th Century: 
Scotland's banks were a key sector and many trace their roots and/or early growth with the slave trade. 

Like many of the grand buildings, the balcony's of Glasgow's Modern Art details the history of the building and links with the slave trade. 
BBC Bitesize revision for Higher History
19th Century: The other period where grand buildings in Glasgow have their beginnings when Glasgow was "The Workshop of the Empire".

Jane Jacobs, Stewart Brand and, through describing Apple's offices, Jay Elliot highlight the way our built environment affect us... What role is Glasgow's past affecting progress? 

Will the success in the Industrial Age mean that we lament the past, which means it's slower to adapt to change compared to areas like Silicon Valley with their earlier, more innovative and collaborative history?

"The 20th Century was built from the top down Society was imagined as a great machine, intricately powered by big bureaucracies and great corporations. To keep the machine humming, ordinary people had critical, but small standardized, roles to play. Do your drills, say your prayers. Learn your multiplication tables. Serve your time. Sit for your year book photo. Many of us were relatively content to play a minor role in a larger process" New Power 

Before any critics decide to say "Stop harking on about the past" this stuff doesn't matter:

Exhibit A) Our football teams seem to be wrapped up in the past about a war that took place in 1690

Exhibit B) The Windrush arrived from Jamaica in 1948... it appears to be a topical political issue today

Exhibit C) "A startup messed up at it's foundation cannot be fixed" Peter Thiel

Check out the culture & attitude of a sector that grew because of the slave trade: banks... and how has their culture and attitudes affected people over the last 10 years?

Exhibit D) Politicians all celebrate the brave suffragettes and civil rights activists - It's right that these groups get celebrated - but which group caused and/or could have prevented this suffering? Their political predecessors?

So a contrarian question might be to wonder which marginalized groups politicians will be celebrating and/or apologizing to 100 years from now? 

Muslims? Iraqis? Migrants who lost their lives at sea on perilous journeys to escape whatever horror was at 'home' for them?  

When we needed more workers in times of prosperity we invite people from the commonwealth.

Racism was blatant! I wonder if there was a dismissive "Oh! it's just boys being boys" comment if anyone complained about the commissioning of programs with characters like Alf Garnet 

It's not the title the person who uploaded this video that's troubling... it's the group think and/or a sign of the times when the script writer, actors, producer, viewers etc etc all felt this was acceptable programming

Compare this with what happens when someone from an ethnic minority questions if Britain is air brushing the less welcome views and actions of our national heroes

2001 One thing I'll never forget about September 2001 is walking through Glasgow the day after the 9/11 terror attacks...and the body language of Muslims I saw. You'd be forgiven for thinking it was one of their family members who flew the plans into the Twin Towers.

Iraq, Libya, Syria... then follow this up with seeing pictures of people dying on rickety boats in an attempt to escape whatever misery (Whether economic or political) and see barriers - physical and political - being put up.

Then follow that up with Nigel Farage and Katie Hopkins and fanning the flames with Brexit. 

For sure I think that Glasgow and Scotland are a lot more tolerant of migrants than what the media tells us happens in other areas of the UK.

But when even one teenager feels so out of place that they not only turn to violence, but encourage others to do likewise...questions need to be asked!

It's very sad that the only reference to Scotland in a book like New Power that gets a mention (From what I've read so far) is a case study in the savvy online efforts of a teenage ISIS recruiter who out maneuvered the US State Department with their (clunky) counter terrorist response.

I think (And not for the first time in the last 5 years ie #DigCit Vs the Trolls) it's a good time to consider

"Could we be doing more online - and offline" 
Or at least more than MPs saying either
1) 2015 What can we do? (In a helpless tone)
2) 2018 Matt Hancock (Who launched FELTAG in 2014)... Tech cos need to do more

Then there is the media, not in a Trump "Fake News" way... but with the genuine and concerned question of

"What's the value of a life" 

And, are the phone hacking, untrusted & politically backed media the best group to provide the answer to this question? 

21st Century Glasgow has reinvented itself as shoppers paradise with 4 of the UKs largest shopping centers in and around Glasgow.

With retail in decline, millennials being a lot less materialistic, the chances of a job for life employment (Full time complete with union representation and pensions... replaced with uninspiring prospects and zero hour contracts) and retail with their the inauthentic advertising... Do people who are different feel at home?

To what extent is Glasgow's "The Workshop of the Empire-turned-Retail-Hotsport" built environment in a time when retail is dying giving it's inhabitants an identity crisis? 
  • To what extent is Aqsa radicalisation "her problem" and the choices she made? 
  • What role did her environment affect her search for belonging 2,500 miles away?
  • How out of place do you need to feel to find belonging with terror organisations? 
  • To leave home, travel to Syria... but then to encourage others to do the same?
  • What could have been done to prevent this development?
  • Could the cultural conditions of #Indyref have helped? 
  • Could we see those cultural conditions of "Hope over Fear" and the promise of change return?
“From the early grades Steve Jobs had been something of a troublemaker. Then one teacher, Mrs. Hill, recognized he was really very bright, and bribed him to buckle down and study, using money, candy and a camera building kit. Steve became so motivated that he even ground his own lenses for the camera. In the Smithsonian oral-history interview, Steve said, “I think I probably learned more academically in that one year than I learned in my life.”

Quite a testimonial for how one teacher can change a students’ entire history. 

"I’m a very big believer in equal opportunity…equal opportunity to me more than anything means a great education… it pains me because we do know how to provide a great education. We really do. We could make sure that every young child in this country got a great education. We fall far short of that…I’m 100% sure that if it hadn’t been for Mrs Hill in 4th grade and a few others, I would absolutely have ended up in jail. I could see those tendencies in myself to have a certain energy to do something wrong. When you’re young, a little bit of correction goes a long way.” Steve Jobs via The Steve Jobs Way (P5)

It's great that people like Billy Connolly celebrate what Glasgow was like when we had ship yards and how he has a sense of belonging with the city, not a feeling that all residents have... How can they when they are living through such an uncertain (And in many instances, such a horrible) times.

I don't have any sense of belonging in Glasgow or Scotland (And I am white and was born in Scotland!)...But how could I feel like I belong given my experiences to date?

But I'm not alone, take a walk through Glasgow at rush hour and see how many happy people you see.

Senior VP of Apple, Jay Elliot, highlights that he never felt like he fitted in until he went to Stanford, Elon Musk and John Hanke also felt a need to get away... they headed west.

An aspiration that this I-am-not-my-credit-rating-the-banks-got-bailed-out... Scotland-is-not-a-great-place-to-be-a-JAM-and-try-to-innovate-in-Education/EdTech... get-me-to-Silicon-Valley-Scot share. 

John Hanke & Google Maps
In his classic "Bowling Alone" David Putnam laments the loss of community... but what about the fact that many of the institutions and rituals that he misses might have further marginalised those who felt out of place?

Check out the answer Google Maps and Pokemon Go creator, John Hanke gave to the following question

Why are you so obsessed with maps and location? 

"I grew up in a really isolated town in West Texas, so I kind of grew up daydreaming about other places.

And I think a lot of people who grow up in small towns share that feeling of 'I can't wait to go out and see the wider world."
 Inside the Mind of Google's Greatest Idea Man,John Hanke

Some Blue Sky Thinking... AirBnB
Just like with Sam Conniff Allende's "Be More Pirate," where he observes that Pirates were out of work sailors who were 'just trying to get by' during periods of unemployment...
The founders of AirBnB were just looking for ways to pay the rent on their apartment.

As the concept grew the brand voice was built to cultivate a sense of community and participation, and executives are betting that this will be a key source of competitive advantage.

AirBnB looks set to become a Unicorn company this year... 

How many Scottish businesses are Unicorn companies? Two?
How many see community as a competitive advantage? Not many I bet...

How many soon to be out of work call center staff get the time, resources or space space to reskill to #NewPower models? None?

In my Community Manager Resource Declara Collection, which I put together to share what I've learned about #NewPower from other #Cmgrs, there are a few great articles about AirBnB.

Here's what Jeremy Heimans and Henry Tims had to say about AirBnB and a post by companies Global Head of Community

What Have AirBnB & Scottish Politics Got in Common?
"AirBnB introduced a logo and make it more meaningful for a host's own purposes... It signaled the way AirBnB saw it's community - as a place you could both belong and be yourself. That's consistent with Marilynn Brewer's behavioural science concept of "Optimal Distinctiveness," which suggests that the right recipe for building an effective group is making people feel they are part of it and that they can stand out in it.

Along with the new logo, AirBnB retooled its corporate language with a manifesto more like that of an alternative living community than a Silicon Valley money machine

We used to take belonging for granted.

Cities used to be villages. Everyone knew each other, and everyone knew they had a place to call home. But after the mechanization and Industrial Revolution of the last century, those feelings of trust and belonging were displaced by mass-produced and impersonal travel experiences. We also stopped trusting each other. And in doing so, we lost something essential about what it means to be a community. After all, our relationships with people will always be the most meaningful part of our lives. You just need to get to know them.

That’s why Airbnb is returning us to a place where everyone can feel they belong

Belonging has always been a fundamental driver of humankind. 
Belong Anywhere

Culture! Culture! Culture!
"Our next team meeting is dedicated to Core Values, which are essential to building our culture. It occurred to me that before this meeting, I should write you a short letter on why culture is so important to Joe, Nate, and me.

After we closed our Series C with Peter Thiel in 2012, we invited him to our office. This was late last year, and we were in the Berlin room showing him various metrics. Midway through the conversation, I asked him what was the single most important piece of advice he had for us. He replied

Scottish Independence Referendum (#IndyRef)
  • In 2014 I got interested in politics. I felt that there was a real genius behind the #IndyRef #VoteYes campaign and people who knew what they were doing. I got involved. I wrote over 30 posts in support of the SNP #VoteYes 
  • In 2015 after #GE2015 I wrote this Ideas for MP/MSPs Ideas for 2016/19
  • In 2017 I had successfully predicted every election since #IndyRef
Let's compare what the New Power authors have to say about AirBnB with the 2014 #IndyRef.

1) AirBnB logo... and "Academics for Yes," "Asians for Yes," "Students for Yes" and the way the "Yes" message was adapted and adopted. These groups were part of it and stood out. 

Also, does Jeremy's experiences with GetUp sound in anyway familiar to people who got involved with #IndyRef? ...It sure sounds a bit 2014 "Yes Scotland" to me:

"The team thought of the GetUp brand as less as an organisation and more as an individual with a consistent and distinctive personality - a compassionate, smart, idealistic, but not too earnest person. They also thought about who this person wasn't - a political hack, a know it all, an angry fringe-dwelling ideologue.

When the team noticed people showing up to GetUp protests with their dogs dressed in bright orange GetUp Tshirts, and when the phrase "I am GetUp" surfaced on social media, it was clear that the identity and voice of GetUp had aligned with - in fact merged with - the identity of its members"
New Power

2) AirBnB's language of an alternative living community... The upbeat, non-partisan "Yes" Vs The SNP and

"A fair and just society"
"Bairns (translation: Children) not bombs" 

Is more like the the language of Gaskin and McClure's Tennessee Farm, the 1970s commune than the competing 2014 adversarial and decidedly political "No Thanks" message

3) The culture... The culture was well and truly "f**ked," as Peter Thiel might put it the weekend after the referendum when there was a #NewPower storm brewing.

The No Thanks camp decided to "celebrate" in the form of a BNP riot. The #VoteYes camp didn't go away... but the SNP leadership did. They took the weekend off.

"The art of turning someone else's crisis into your opportunity is far from new, but the new skill is doing it in an age when the opportunity to mobilize a crowd comes and goes in minutes. The American cookie brand Oreo understood this when a power outage in the stadium caused lights to go out for more than 30 mins during the 2013 Superbowl. Oreo struck quickly, tweeting a picture of a lonely well lit Oreo and the caption 

"You can still dunk in the dark"

The tweet went viral, 'won the superbowl,' and became the stuff of legends in marketing circles. Often left out of the story is the fact that Oreo had a 15 person team at the ready during the game for exactly this kind of rapid response. 

We don't all have Oreo's resources, but its handiwork reminds us that storm chasing requires infrastructure to do well. Anyone building a crowd should be on the look out for storms that might galvanize their base, and be prepared to act on them within minutes or hours, when the need is greatest and people's emotional response is at its peak. Many old organisations take days just to cobble together a press release. But organisations now need to be set up to move faster, to soak up the energy in the moment and turn that into new supporters. Byzantine bureaucracies requiring multiple sign offs aren't the right tools for storm chasing. New Power

Want to know where I was the night after the #IndyRef result... and the entire weekend after it?

On twitter DM'ing influencers in the #VoteYes camp encouraging to try to keep the message positive

"When they go low, we go high" 

And all that jazz. I also tried to get in touch with people at The SNP to try to get all the "Yes Scotland" Twitter accounts to take the lead, in a way that only they could have. 

This was understandable given how new everything is/was, but it did mean that the absence of the "Shapers" meant that others filled the void... and ended up taking a positive movement which had the potential to be fun and inclusive, and turned it all angry and political.

Leaders not understanding the process meant that people (Like me) who was starting to feel a sense of belonging with the movement and who spent 2 hours+ a day laughing at some fantastic banter in what had become the national water cooler... meant that it turned angry and political and people voted with their feet. 

#IndyRef New Power Meets Old Power
My first experience of New Power meets Old Power was during the 2014 #IndyRef, the public rallies felt like walking into a model Jane Jacobs space.

People I had got to know online - Btw many of who had great ideas but were marginalised in one way or another - suggested I join a party or attend a meeting. All The SNP ever said was 

"Join the Party! Join the Party! Join the Party! ...Become a card carrying Yes man" 

Erm, #NoThanks! 

I attended a meeting in Sept 2014 and the difference between public meetings and a private one was night and day - Old Power Vs New Power. 

It was angry. It was "political." It was militant. It's the kind of energy I imagine that the Nurenbrg Rallies fed off. 

I felt as uncomfortable as I do when a Glasgow Celtic Vs Rangers match or England Vs Scotland football match is on (NB That's not a comfortable feeling. We try to stay home on those days).

I left after 10 mins and as I left "Bye then... must be a 'No' supporter... a Spy in the camp" 

How very inclusive, thinks I.

In the 20th Century, participating in politics or social change could feel like a test of will. To join a political party, you'd often have to pledge your loyalty and support for a long list of policies, some of which you might not actually agree with. To participate, you'd have to show up to procedural meetings at your branch where your most exciting moment might be seconding the motion to approve the minutes from the last meeting. And for this privileged, you literally "Paid your dues" - up front and then at a regular interval.

...The single most important factor behind the early success of GetUp! was how easy it was for people (Frantic, information overloaded, but well intentioned 21st Century people) to participate. No member dues, no pledges of allegiance to a platform, no immediate requirement to take to the streets. Rather, GetUp! asked people, on joining, to sign a single petition on just one issue they cared about.

Image result for new power participation scale

...On the far left of the scale are the definitive old power behaviours: Complying and consuming... Many of our most important social and economic institutions still mostly run on them.

But if you're trying to build a movement or a crowd, you'll need to unlock a series of new power behaviours. You get people in the door via simple, low barrier asks toward the bottom of the scale - for instance asking people to consume and then share content, or by affiliating: In Get Up terms, by signing your first petition. Once you recruited these new participants, the job was to keep them engaged and to move people up the scale, toward higher behaviours like adapting or remixing the content of others, crowdfunding a project, creating and uploading their own unique content or assets, or, at the top of the scale, becoming a shaper of the community as a whole, with the capacity to influence the strategy, norms, and culture of the crowd, often without having any kind of formal authority. New Power

The New Power Participation Scale exemplifies the extract from the AirBnB "Belong Anywhere" post above... when we find belonging we get involved. 

GetUp (@GetUp)demonstrates that Old Power may be "Bowling Alone" but civic responsibility didn't disappear... it went online.

"New Power loves to affiliate, but affiliation in this mindset is much less endearing. People are less likely to be card carrying members of organisations or to forge decades-long relationships with institutions, but they are more likely to float between Meetup groups or use social media to very visibly affiliate with a range of causes, brands, and organisations, and rally their friends to do the same. They tend to opt in at particular moments, and then opt out again. We shouldn't confuse this with lack of engagement. Rather it's a different way of taking part. This shift has big implications for organisations large and small"

This paragraph perfectly articulates my involvement with politics. I am not an SNP/IndyRef devotee (Far from it!)

But I do check in on all things Politics and #IndyRef from time to time and offer input, observations and support from time to time (When the cultural conditions are promising).

I live in Scotland. My kids are in the school system here. I use what I've learnt and my skill set to try to encourage the change I see happening elsewhere, that I feel could work well here.

I have checked in on politics over the last few weeks, and am exploring the idea of an Edcamp that I feel could empower educators and deliver some positive outcomes.

Summary & Some Solutions?
So... as far as I can see #IndyRef, #GE2015, #GE2016 were indeed the result of "Network Effects" and "Feedback Loops," precisely as I had suggested in my earlier politics posts.

But I'm not so sure it was the genius campaign as I had thought in 2014... It appears to be more a case of one or two single strokes of genius (Which I now believe were more of a happy accident than anything planned).

1) The language changed "Yes," "Fair and Just Society" etc
2) Allowing people to use 'Optimal Distinctiveness' - to be part of #VoteYes and stand out with their customized and adapted "Yes" flags (The use of the Saltire can't have done any harm for nationalists either).  

Three things hampered the SNP's progress after this point:

1) They didn't "chase the storm" in the weekend after #IndyRef
2) They slide down Jim Collins 5 stages of decline from 2015-2017 (Which is understandable)
3) They used "New Power" methods to win fans over... but reverted to "Old Power" once in power

IMHO the polls will never be accurate again... that is until a party/leader comes along and actually delivers on the change that they promise they will on the campaign trail once in power.

But what of Aqsa Mahmood and others like her who lack a sense of belonging in Glasgow?

"I place a great deal of faith in our young people, they don't have as much trouble accepting new ideas" Jane Jacobs The Nature of Economies Interview

This is a sentiment that Jeremy Heimans and Henry Timms appear to agree with and...The Center for Strategic Counterterrorism Communication is starting to as well.

"After these false starts, the United States began to realise it needed to take a different approach. CSCC coordinator Alberto Fernandez laid out a new direction, speaking to Congress in 2015:

"You need to find a way to form loose, open source communities of interest or swarms that can swarm back and push back against the ISIS message. It's not an impossible thing to do. It can be done"

The new inter-agency Global Engagement Centre is trying to make this happen. Discarding the top down hectoring tone of the Think Again Turn Away campaign, the centre is trying to build a "Network of positive messengers" to share not just counter narratives, but alternative narratives drawing people away for more extreme positions, amplifying the messages of its partners, from religious leaders to schools.

One promising effort is the P2P (Peer-to-peer) Challenging Extremism competition, which partners with Facebook and hundreds of universities around the world. The brief here is loose: students come up with creative ways to 

"Push back on online hate, prejudice and extremism while empowering their peers"

A group of Finnish students launched a movement of pop-up restaurants where asylum seekers shared their native foods with locals. A US team created a Snap Chat campaign. A class from Azerbaijan created a tolerance toolkit for teachers to use in the classroom.

You can't help but wonder about the sense of not belonging had on Aqsa Mahmood's decisions

...Or what impact campaigns like Peer-2-Peer Challenging Extremism and other #DigCit initiatives could have had to channel her impressive online skills and energy to help other disillusioned young people to find ways to fit in instead of encouraging them to turn to violence.

To get a glimpse of what I think could be possible check out what Be More Pirate's, Sam Conniff Allende (@SamConniff) did with Livity (@LivityUK) & Live Magazine to empower young people and give them a sense of belonging:

I am considering organising an Edcamp that could assist with things included in this post.

I also feel that an EdTech incubator with a very strong #DigCit/#Cmgr element where young people (And others... Like soon to be unemployed call centre staff) can develop these skills and learn the power of New Power.

However, as The State of Community Management 2018 Report highlights, community professionals are susceptible to burn out... I'm running on fumes (Have been for a while now!)

I'll only be spending a few more weeks on this... and I'll need a little help.


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