An alternative to the Scottish Independence Convention

I believe that the YES movement should have an alternative to the Scottish Independence Convention as the “coordinating body” for the YES movement and here’s what I propose. 

Most of the people who will read this post will have never read anything I’ve written before and will certainly never have heard of me. So the first thing to say is that this is not an opportunist post on a “hot topic” I’ve been discussing, agitating and proposing a coordinating YES body for almost two years.  Here’s  few links that cover my thoughts and feelings…..

A post from May this year asking for the movement to come up with an alternative.

How a coordinating body could improve what the grass roots does. March 2018.

How do the Catalans co-ordinate their movement? April 2017.

The second thing to say is that I am delighted that SIC has new proposals. I believe there is an absolute need for an organisation to coordinate the movement, if we have the right one we can secure independence.  But let’s do all we can to make sure it is the right one.

What is the Scottish Independence Convention

“The Scottish Independence Convention is a coalition of Scotland’s national pro-independence organisations, the pro-independence political parties and, through the membership of regional forums, of Scotland’s local grassroots pro-independence groups. It is just about to launch a fundraiser to start a national campaign organisation.”

This was taken from the open letter from SIC to the YES movement. And that movement includes me. So this is, in part, my right of reply. But I will let Mr Malky succinctly reply on my behalf.

Very 2014

Having read the letter in detail I think the SIC are about to create an analogue organisation for a digital age.

By their own admission it’s taken almost two years to come up with the new format. Successful organisations don’t work like this nowadays. And after the two years it looks very much like, well, how the SIC looked before.

I plan to write this response in two parts (the second one to follow will cover my concerns about SIC).

This first part covers the alternative suggestion I have and this is much, much more important. So please do read on.

An alternative to SIC created by the movement

It’s easy, actually all too easy with the invention of Social Media, to criticise the work of SIC to date and its proposals. However, any argument has less credibility when the people who make it have an alternative but do nothing about it.

So I want to suggest a way for “everyone” in the YES movement to get involved in creating an alternative to the SIC proposal. I want to help offer a choice for the YES movement.

I know that everyone involved in SIC wants the best possible organisation to support the movement so I know they will support this idea. I look forward to them all engaging in the spirit of doing what is best for the movement.

OK, so here it is.

I suggest a weekend long event tasked with creating an alternative to the Scottish Independence Convention. 

It would be an open event and anyone keen to support the movement would be able to attend the event. The event would take place from 5pm Friday to Sunday 5pm in a Hackathon style. It would also have online attendees.

If you haven’t attended or heard about a Hackathon you will be amazed at what can be created during this weekend format. I have little doubt that the moment could create an alternative to SIC over the weekend. So how would it work?

As an event organiser (with a considerable number of years experience) I am offering to coordinate, manage and run the IndyHACK.

It’s up to others to decide to get involved, take part and create an alternative to SIC.

To build from the bottom up the organisation that will help co-ordinate Scotland’s independence.

GET IN TOUCH – I am interested please get in touch when you have more concrete details. 

Here’s some more information

What is a Hackathon?

I would propose that we have “teams” who decide to work on the following areas (among others)

A constitution
A committee structure
A board of directors
An overall communications / membership platform
Donations policies
Membership benefits
Subscriptions process
An organisational structure
Job descriptions
A website
Social media channels
Social media guidance
Social media strategy
A logo
Brand and brand guidelines
A name
Health and safety, equal opportunity employment policies, etc.
Ensure GDPR compliance
A database
Funding and revenue strategy
Contractural arrangements with public relations etc.
Launch strategy
Live engagement strategy
Legal advice
Business set up
Tax position

Two weeks after the event the full details of the proposed organisation would be uploaded online. We would ask SIC to do the same and give as much detail as possible. The “movement” would choose the winning organisation.

Impossible? I doubt it. Able to happen before the end of the year? For sure. Is anyone interested in taking part? I have no idea. Let’s find out.

GET IN TOUCH – I want to get involved. 

12 thoughts on “An alternative to the Scottish Independence Convention”

  1. My concern would be that this excludes people not using social media, those with unbelievably bad broadband ( like me). We have to stop designing things for just the digital world. The analogue folks are the majority & they’re the ones who appear to be left behind all the time. Working in communities of interest as this is, you need to recognise that a variety of information routes to meet the needs of different people will be necessary otherwise folks get left behind again.

    Digital is not the solution but it is part of the solution.

    1. Thanks for the comment. I didn’t mean analogue in the literal sense. I meant that they seem to be structured in a very traditional way along traditional lines.

      1. That was also what I meant-they have no interest in digital participation but they will go to a coffee morning etc-ergo analogue activity

  2. The “movement” would choose the winning organisation.

    I’m not sure it’s worth challenging any other groups to be the “winning” organisation. If there’s a gap to fill, by all means fill it. Everyone can find their part and play it.

    1. Fair point that. However Robin McAlpine suggested a YES org would cost in the first year £150,000 so how much money and resources is there to go around?

      I would imagine a “competing” organisation may offer better value for the hard earn money of activists.

  3. Do we have to have a “winning organisation”. Surely win-win is always the best outcome? Sounds as though you would complement each other, don’t make it a competion.

    Agree with Lolly’s Mum – digital is not the solution but it is part of the solution. We have many members who do not use Facebook for ethical reasons, and get annoyed that much of our info activity is focused there.

    1. Carole, I wonder how much duplication there would be but it is a very good point. Maybe there is space for two organisations. Although see point above about the suggested spend of SIC.

  4. Interesting.
    The next campaign is likely to be short. So it must be punchy. The FM will be the figure head but no reason why we can’t have other figures, perhaps addressing different audiences on why independence is important.
    I’m tempted to say that’s how brexit was achieved but in truth the vote leave groups all had the same consistent message & the votes were mainly all for the same reason.
    I think a consistent message is important and it has to be ‘we can do better’

  5. Surely any group wishing to call itself ‘Grass roots’ must build from the bottom up, which seems to be the opposite of what S.I.C. is proposing i.m.o.
    So on that principle alone you have my attention. I am but one person, though i’m sure there are plenty of others with similar thoughts.

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