Commons Creation Collective

UPDATE: the first Commons Creation meeting was held at Limehouse Town Hall on Sunday 21st January, 2007. A copy of the presentation given can be downloaded here as a PDF (1.1Mb) file. Enjoy! 🙂


The Commons Creation Collective is all about harnessing the wealth and power of our networks and working together to raising funds and awareness.

It will initially bring together conscious event organisers, radial media publishers, and their supporters, to collaborate on two complementary projects:

  1. The Commons Creation Fund
    Lots of people contributing a minimum of £5 a month into a common fund and deciding together how to best to invest it in shared infrastructure. Purpose: to create a commons; a pool of collectively owned/ shared resources (thereby building the foundations for a scaleable community banking and exchange system).
  2. The Commons Creation Flyer
    A regular A3 (folded to A6) flyer, distributed by members, that encourages people to become a member of the collective (i.e. contribute £5 a month, help distribute flyer, promote the collective), give details of all the events organised by members, and links to news and issues they deem important.Purpose: to ensure the success of the Commons Creation Fund, and to inform as many people as possible about all events organised by members, and all the news/issues they deem important.

So, what’s the deal?


To become a member of the Commons Creation Collective, individuals agree to:

  • Contribute a minimum of £5 per month to the Commons Creation Fund
  • Help distribute the Commons Creation Flyer/ promote the Commons Creation Collective (this can be as simple as inviting friends and forwarding e-mails, or getting involved with day to day admin jobs etc.)

In return, members:

  • Become shared owners of The Commons, our pool of collectively owned/shared resouces
  • Decide together (using Dotmocracy?) how best to spend the money contributed to the Commons Creation Fund
  • Are kept informed about all the latest news and events relevant to the collective
  • Can submit and rate news, events and short articles to be included on the flyer
  • Get FREE entrance to exclusive member gatherings and parties
  • Get discounts from other members of the collective (eg. concessionary ticket prices, cheap books, CDs etc)
  • Get fair access to use of the resources in The Commons (obviously, you own them)
  • Get connected to other people and groups who share similar values and/or are interested in the same things (all the other members and the wonderful people you’ll meet at member events)


If a conscious event/radical publisher/other group wants to get involved they agree:

  • To put a link to on their website
  • To put a link to on all their flyers/mailouts/publications
  • To offer discouts and/or special offers to members of the collective

In return, groups will get:

  • A profile on highlighting all the good work the groups does, including details about how to get involved and links back to their own site etc.
  • Details of all events organised by the group included on the Commons Creation Flyer
  • A link to the group’s website on all copies of the Commons Creation Flyer
  • Additionally, and perhaps most significantly, groups will gain discounted access to and use of the resources held in The Commons (eg. web experts, CD burners, printers, vans, lighting rigs, staging, land, venues, etc.)

Who needs to be involved?

Event Organisers:

Radical Media Publishers and Bloggers

How will it be financed?

The aim is for the whole thing to be self-financed by member contributions (we encourage those who can afford to contribute more than £5 a month to do so). Some seed funding will also be sought, but there is nothing stopping a group of co-operatively minded people from pooling £5+ a month straight away.

Next Steps:

  • Gather some of the people who need to be involved and get agreement on the above (or at least something very similar to what is outlined above)
  • On the back of this initial agreement, get more of the people who need to be involved signed-up, whilst also working on the initial website and flyer

Suggested Initial SMART Goals/Objectives (specific, measurable, acheivable, realistic, time-based)

  • Get first version of up (a nicely designed site explaining the idea, who the existing members are, how and why to join, etc.) no later than one month after getting initial agreement from some of the people who need to be involved.
  • Design and produce the first version of the flyer no later than one month after getting initial agreement from some of the people who need to be involved. Start to distribute flyers.
  • Get 400 members to sign-up and start contributing £5 a month by December 31st, 2006.
  • Hold a monthly member’s gatherings (meal and jam session), starting no later than Januray, 2007.

Suggestions about where to put/invest money

  • La Base – “Some seek to destroy the pyramid by taking the power of the top. La Base creates by giving power to the base. When the base rises, a new structure rises with it.

    What is La Base
    La Base is rooted in the idea that real democracy and human rights can only be meaningful when accompanied by economic rights and autonomy.

    La Base is not an organization, but a fund of productive capital owned in common. Access to this resource is universal but entails an obligation to ensure its sustainability for all, now and in the future. Those who use La Base are free to create their world as they will.

    La Base’s resources are currently used as fair loans to individuals to help them pursue their economic independence in democratic collectives. Loan repayments go back to the common fund to be used by others. To learn more about loans and other practical applications of La Base, please see the actions.

  • Rootstock – “supporting co-operatives working for social change”

    Rootstock is a social investment society set up as an initiative of the Radical Routes network of co-operatives. Radical Routes is a growing network of housing and workers’ co-operatives working for social change.

    Radical Routes co-operatives are active in many fields, including:

    Sustainable land use through permaculture, land restoration, woodland creation, and growing and distributing organic food.

    Communal housing – co-operatively owned housing is a resource for the whole community rather than a commodity for the profit of a few.

    Resource centres for communities

    Information through publications, radical bookshops and practical support for new co-ops.

    Campaigning on issues such as ecological preservation, animal rights and housing.

    International peace work

    Home education

    Electrical, plumbing and small scale building work

    Support services including Book keeping and accountancy, Computer services, Training and consultancy, Mediation and group working

  • Triodos – Europe’s leading ethical bank that only finances projects wtih affect positive social, environmental and cultural change.
  • Ecology Building Society – a mutual building society dedicated to improving the environment by promoting sustainable housing and sustainable communities.
  • London Rebuilding Society and other CDFI’s (Community Development Finance Institutions)