As part of the NGI Zero consortium I was made aware of the call for proposals just in time. I had not seen any public call either. I do not have a clue how they selected participants. This is part of the Brussels’ labyrinth.


Curious, I tried to reverse engineer a viewpoint of the activities from the previous event (its every two years):

Unfortunately, the past is as encapsulated as the future.

I suppose registering in the portal is the way to trade away this ambiguity.

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I’ll be talking to the event organizer soon and report here.

Is there any Twatter user on the SocialHub who can describe their experience there vs. here (i.e., the Fediverse)? I think I did not connect to that platform for the last five years or so, so I must be biased.

I updated the original post to add the event at 2023-11-16T13:00:00Z2023-11-16T14:00:00Z as well as the description of the workshop.

Here is how I envision it:

  1. First I ask the audience about their social media usage, so as to determine what kind of software they’ll be interested in.
  2. Then I form groups from this poll, some will be using Mastodon/Pleroma (Twatter), others Pixelfed (Instagrim), yet others Peertube (Yourude), etc.
  3. Help with setup, as we discuss specifics and differences.
  4. Wrap up, taking notes of what to add to the report; post a report here.

Happy to discuss details!

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I assume it involves fedi clients. You may collect some screenshots on various popular ones, as people would like to choose what appeals to them the most

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Im still happy to help however necessary.

Given point 1.:

First I ask the audience about their social media usage, so as to determine what kind of software they’ll be interested in.

I should probably install a burner operating system, as Guix has gaps in terms of federation software.
I expect Debian would be a good all rounder.

Given point 3:

Help with setup, as we discuss specifics and differences.

Is it possible or worth the time to get a bunch of USB thumbdrives with these softwares preinstalled?
It could be a nice gimmick and provide nice momentum for people post event?

Its worth aggregating such information and contexts for installation
Ideally this could be done collectively under this initiative:

If not also additionally, with the usage of the portal

As @aschrijver states, using this repository would be useful:

Indeed, we should collect screenshots.
Perhaps we could create a PixelFed account for the event to store such screenshots (perhaps in parrallel?)?

Given point 4:

Wrap up, taking notes of what to add to the report; post a report here

Was there any interest in doing recording or interviews during the event?
Judging by your updates it sounds more like smaller huddles and pair programming - which is more than fine

Is is possible to adjust the timezone in your previous post to CET - with an emphasis on Brussels
(we dont want people rocking upto Paris in confusion…)

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I guess you can count on your Android phone: we’re going to focus on clients and use existing servers with open registration—a list of those could be handy. Would you like to help with the presentation?
Do you think focusing on the clients would still require USB drives? :thinking:

That’s a good idea. Maybe a hashtag? I’m not sure but I would expect PixelFed offering people to post to the same collection not necessarily the same account. I would suggest using one or more server instances with the following characteristics:

  1. hosted in Europe
  2. open registration
  3. general purpose or EU-related (e.g., for Mastodon)
  4. latest server software installed

If I can identify a number of instances, and check with the admins if they’re interested, we can have a ‘special welcome’ for the workshop participants, that would be great.

It’s only one hour, and I expect the participants will not be too technical. It’s more about the culture and usage than about services.

It’s linked to your preference :slight_smile: Mine shows Brussels!

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Im happy to do a presentation - but Id need some guidelines in preparation
(… can you imagine that I like to rant?!?).
I always have to reduce the technical discourse with presentations, though knowing its an EU crowd makes me feel that maybe I can just try and behave like a public affairs wonk
(I did that kind of thing in a previous life, speaking in facilities like that back in the day).
I could always describe a ‘heros tale’ to them and imbibe the importance of subsidiarity; pluralism and federation to that crowd, as well as the importance of having resiliant tech and communities within Europe.

Yes, a hashtag and confluence of vanilla European instances would be a steady approach.

Regarding USB sticks, I in any case reached out to the developer of a NixOS flavour, MarigoldOS:

Perhaps they may be able to make a better case.

I reckon that ‘goodie bag’ type approaches do work
(or at the very least EU bubble crowds come to expect totems),
so its not worth abandoning as an idea.


somebody has correctly pointed out that USB sticks are of course an attack vector -
even if I and the aforementioned person are behaving responsibly perhaps it would not be a good demonstration of good hygiene - alternative solutions I may investigate

Somebody has in any case suggested this:

provide access through it over VNC/RDP or allow for sandboxed inspection via a web app for example

I may hammer them over that as an option

I do not have phone that can operate Android or any other insecure operating system like that.
When I am unencumbered by having to sift through non libre stacks that can operate with full user data protections I shall get around to it.

In any case, making or directing towards shortlist of clients that would be presentable /ahead of time/ would permit me to calibrate.
Otherwise I may relent and pickpocket/borrow somebody’s mobile device on the way to the site.

… Btw, I have always felt a little uncomfortable with the monkier ‘Twatter’, as being a Londoner ‘to twat’ means to punch somebody in the head to render them unconscious - with the ‘-er’ suffix almost sounding like it has a silent ‘h’
(I feel this is only me but it always makes me feel awkward reading it).

I wrote: help with the presentation — because I do know your love for rants :wink:

We’re gonna have stickers :slight_smile:

Sounds about right for describing the “service”, doesn’t it?

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… well at least conciseness is one less burden during November :wink:

I have in any case been building up a cache of different opinons from across the Fediverse, which I can compile in time.

I guess ill drop a compendium in a few weeks.

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Is it worth liaising with this community in advance of the presentation?:

They seem keen on the fediverse wrt European institutions.
Ive hovered in the community and alluded to this event but it may be worth being more concrete prior to their upcoming meetup (25th September 10AM (CET)).

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… speaking of which:

For all who want to encourage their public administrations to use the fediverse please have a look at #Fedigov

(The question came up at the #FediverseFachtag )

c/o Fedi Integration for EU Institutions

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I’m always surprised at how much work in sister organizations (e.g., EDRi members such as FSFE and Digital Courage, and to a lesser extent petites singularités) is done in parallel without much knowledge of other’s ongoing work. Fortunately we have eyes everywhere. :wink:

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I became a technologist having fallen into eGovernment prior to finishing my Economics and Politics degree.

The impact from breaking down silos really made a deep impact on me.

Skipping forward the dynamics for silos are still there, albeit like many things the drivers and inhibitors have changed.

Hopefully, in November you can impact how multifaceted federated technologies can be to (positively) alter information flows in the public space.

Heres a Brussels event re Mastodon:

Mastodon : Remettre l’humain au cœur du réseau social
lundi 09 octobre 2023
Le DK – Saint-Gilles 70b rue de Danemark, 1060 Saint-Gilles

Durant cet ate­lier, nous nous pro­po­sons de vous faire décou­vrir Mas­to­don et d’accompagner vos pre­miers pas dans cet uni­vers décen­tra­li­sé, si dif­fé­rent des pla­te­formes aux­quelles nous sommes accoutumé·e·s.

Moda­li­tés pra­tiques : Dans la mesure du pos­sible, venez avec un ordi­na­teur, ou, au mini­mum, un smart­phone ou une tablette per­met­tant de vous connec­ter à internet.

c/o Constante ASBL -

Ah nice. @natacha and I might be there if that does not encroach too much on our writing residency.

Any updates with the event?

Im still happy to assist however you require.

Feel free to contact me bilaterally via Matrix to give me parameters.

“Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more” now can we try and speak with a “common language” and/or disagree “constructively” while listening to views we don’t understand is always the issues with events like this. #mainstreaming is the hardest thing to do well, if at all, let’s try and hold some ground as a first step :slight_smile:

Plenary sessions 15/11 - Next Generation Internet Forum 2023 This is on, and they have moderation on the comment syteam, so the is a big delay for comments to go through that is if they go through #NGI #EU

The is NO public chat, so the participants CANNOT talk to each other at all. This removes the best part of these events, they try to do this at this every event, normally we can force them to turn this on, but this time they are using a custom CMS do you think it has this function if so can people please ask them to turn this on thanks.

  • I have asked them to do this on all the social media #NGI #EU where is the public chat for the streaming video at this event

  • #NGI #EU please turn on the public chat, so the people at this public event can talk to each other #4opens

  • #NGIForum23 The is NO public chat, the participants CANNOT talk to each other. This removes the best part of these events. People please ask them to turn on public chat, thanks.


Had a look thought the #Particify site, and it seems to be only a ONE-WAY tool, with controlled/shaped feedback. Which is why whoever organized #NGIForum23 used it. This is not “people to people” and it’s not “trust”. How can we go about putting in an official complaint to #NGI and their sponsors about this mess they keep pushing #EU

Anyone up for helping with this.

@how I wanted to thank you for making sure that ActivityPub were represented in the form of a workshop.
It pleased me that your conversational approach for the workshop worked and that your chairing enabled that everybody got a chance to speak and the topics of discussion were representative.
Im sure this is in part why you seemed to be so well considered by many who I had the pleasure to interact with over the last few days, which no doubt feeds into wider confidence regarding ActivityPub regarding the NGI initiative.

Given my understanding that NGI events had historically overly technocratic and not giving space for technical coding orientated people to be on the stage I feel that this (in all likelihood) has been an improvement.

While its understandable from both in venue and online attendees had specific/general misgivings regarding some of the corporate emphases that existed within the event (most egregiously in the panel discussion concerning the digital commons), I do feel that the balance was overall reasonable (ie, there was a representation of different types of stakeholders and one viewpoint was not overly prescribed to the detriment of others).

I was a little embarrassed that my volunteering for the workshop had the unintended consequence of my lanyard stating ‘Socialhub’, as in no ways would I consider myself to be fully authoritative, representative, or exemplary. And I stated it as such.

However, it did mean that I did receive some feedback.
As such, one person felt that the culture in these forums is too hostile for their tastes and cited an example, whereby somebody was dangling support in quite a chiding and embarrassing way.
Given, that, we may need to consider finger waving and overly competitive behaviour encouraging outsiders not to participate in discussions.
Additionally, the ‘rocks’ domain name was considered as brash and offputting.