Arts & Labor Meeting Minutes 12/6/11

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 12/6 Meeting Minutes
ARTS & LABOR DEC 6 MINUTES
Jason and Arland, facilitators

SCHEDULE/ANNOUNCEMENTS/LOGISTICS/PROJECTS

⁃       Meeting with A&C: solidarity statement; rotating roles within A&C
⁃       Making sure everyone contributes back to the core A&C group
⁃       “All member groups should share the core tasks relating to the A&C
group…”
⁃       Posting event information on NYCGA
⁃       Participating when possible in facilitating meetings, updating
website, sharing promotional materials and knowledge
⁃       Are people here interested in mapping various things having to do
with power and money in the art world?
⁃       A project for the Information break-out group?
⁃       Sunday Dec 18th, 2-4: another potential meeting time
⁃       Report-back about Dec. 6 Occupy our Homes action
⁃       OWS partnered with NYCC and O for O (sp?)
⁃       Moved a family into an empty home and everyone marched from the
subway stop to the empty home to announce family’s occupation of the
home
⁃       People brought housewarming gifts and food
⁃       Laura spent $200 on stools, paint, houseplants, vase, wind chime–
can people chip in?
⁃       Pass the hat after the meeting?
⁃       Direct action meets every day but often at work
⁃       Inviting all working groups to have a direct action spokescouncil
⁃       This could be a good opportunity to connect with the larger direct
action group if you’re planning actions
⁃       “Target Target Fridays”–go to MoMA and instruct visitors about the
AWC’s founding of free night
⁃       Response to public art project in town..if you want to get
involved, get in touch.
⁃       Started making graphics—is anyone interested in breaking out about
that?
⁃       Writing a letter to NYFA about not posting any unpaid internships
⁃       Action about gentrification and displacement
⁃       Had a meeting with the National Mobilization Against Sweatshops
⁃       Breakout group during the meeting? Trepidation
⁃       Maybe the outreach and information groups should have a
conversation together tonight?
⁃       There aren’t a lot of outreach folks here tonight from outreach
⁃       Keep groups: alternative economies, media and outreach, information
⁃       Rotating groups?
⁃       Films for the occupation: Dec 13-16 – it’ll be posted on the google
group.
⁃       Artspace: the invisible ___? In Clinton Hill. About new meaningful
public spaces–intersection of dance, media etc. There’s going to be a
big meeting. Tal will send out information.
⁃       Greg is an academic, visiting here, involved with an international
research project. Carrying out a research project on precarious
employment in creative fields. He would be very interested in speaking
with us. Interview or formal off-the-record conversation. He’ll be
around to chat.

AGENDA ITEMS:

MEETING TIME

⁃       Wednesday and Tuesday are neck-and-neck
⁃       Almost everyone except for four people can come on Tuesday if they
can come on Wednesday.
⁃       Everybody who can’t meet on Tuesday, CAN meet on Thursday
⁃       Alternating the days between Tues and Thurs every other week would
include the most people.
⁃       People who can’t meet on Tuesday aren’t going to be here
⁃       What about having breakout groups on different days, and then
reporting back on Tuesday?
⁃       What about alternating Tuesday and Wednesday
⁃       The people who can’t come on Tuesday can come on Thursday
⁃       Wednesday doesn’t conflict as much with other OWS meetings
⁃       Desire to meet once a week because this is already taking over my
life
⁃       The doodle doesn’t indicate that switching off would be worth it.
⁃       One meeting per week is sufficient until later down the line
⁃       Doodle results:
⁃       7 sunday
⁃       9 monday
⁃       24 tuesday
⁃       21 wednesday
⁃       12 for thursday
⁃       5 for friday
⁃       4 for saturday
⁃       Four of the people who can come on Wed, cannot come on Tues
⁃       That is a large number
⁃       Also, some people only checked their preferences
⁃       Minus C, it’s 3 people who can’t make Tuesday
⁃       People are already meeting separately, so a second day per week
would probably be excessive at this point
⁃       In A&C, they do core meetings + auxiliary meetings, to have
physical solidarity for those who can’t be here. But it’s complicated
etc.
⁃       We have four PROPOSALS:
⁃       Separate breakout meetings?
⁃       Temp check: major ambivalence
⁃       Auxiliary meetings?
⁃       Consensus about Tuesday?
⁃       Rotate days once or twice per month?
⁃       Temp check: a little ambivalence
⁃       It’s a lot to remember
⁃       If we have goals of broadening the group, this complicates outreach
because the meetings will be a moving target
⁃       Added proposal: monthly meeting for major decisions to be made for
the entire group?
⁃       That meeting could be a teach-in for us
⁃       Is there an existing calendar where meetings can be blocked out?
⁃       It’s sometimes hard to find the calendar. In terms of outreach,
having it as one day per week seems simplest
⁃       Maybe having a more unified web presence would lend itself to us
having more fluctuating meeting times?
⁃       Can we revisit the issue in the next 6 weeks?
⁃       Temp check — yes
⁃       Keeping it as simple as possible makes it easiest to move forward
with other things.
⁃       Moving to consensus: one week per month, the last week, we meet on
a Wednesday night instead of Tuesday.
⁃       CONSENSUS: we will meet on Tuesdays, except the last week of the
month, when we’ll meet on Wednesday. We will revisit this in 6 weeks.

WEBSITE

⁃       We need a digital presence. What are our needs, what could be some
solutions?

NEEDS

⁃       We need a better forum presence
⁃       99% worker blog
⁃       Archiving/document needs
⁃       Collaborative writing
⁃       Outreach documents
⁃       Archiving group activity
⁃       articles we’ve gathered
⁃       Events announcements
⁃       Another need: a place for reference documents that people are
posting
⁃       Links that are part of the research component
⁃       Overall centralized web presence.
⁃       What is / should be our relationship to OWS and NYCGA online?
⁃       Solidarity: we can beef up our presence within NYCGA / A&C
⁃       This isn’t the solution for our document needs and our forum needs
⁃       Domain name and using that to fill all our needs that the A&C site
can’t fill for us
⁃       Code-linking back and forth with NYCGA
⁃       We post our events on NYCGA, and have that copy on our external
site
⁃       Keeping a separate identity and use fancy technology to link up to
NYCGA

DISCUSSION

⁃       Considering the international nature of the art world, can this be
a platform for a variety of local A&L groups / actions that don’t just
take place in NYC?
⁃       i.e. the splash made at Occupy Miami
⁃       We addressed this when writing the mission statement a month ago
⁃       At that point in time, the whole point was to tie it to the OWS
site
⁃       This was while Zucotti was still in action
⁃       “Is a working group of OWS” not “the worldwide occupy movement.”
⁃       The language was specifically tying it to this occupation, so we
could connect up with NYCGA
⁃       A wiki for collaborative writing; file-sharing; social networking
⁃       Federicci article / znet social networking function
⁃       Possibility of A&L being its own working group within NYCGA
⁃       This would change our digital presence, structurally
⁃       This would also mean a different relationship to A&C
⁃       Is it possible to stay attached to NYCGA and have a link/intro on
that website, and invite people to our actual website, and have our
website link to NYCGA
⁃       Us becoming a working group and being able to use what NYCGA has
already established would be a lot less work
⁃       If we can become a working group, the website could happen a lot
faster
⁃       NYCGA has a lot of stuff in terms of forums, wikis, etc. but we
would have to consider our own solutions for documents. It’s not quite
designed for that.
⁃       To become a working group, we would have to propose that and have
it passed, and right now they’re not accepting any more working
groups.
⁃       The NYCGA site has a lot of functions, but they don’t work that
well.
⁃       Forums are hard to follow
⁃       Document section is hard to find
⁃       We should think about maintaining a relationship to A&C and not
being seen as competition
⁃       For the purposes of directing people somewhere, the NYCGA site can
be confusing
⁃       Even something sparse to post meeting times and spaces and a space
for links/archives, it could be really useful
⁃       The basic information for A&L would be funnelled through NYCGA, and
the details could be on our separate site. Provides a buffer for the
other organizations. You can participate in discussions on the NYCGA
website.
⁃       This wouldn’t require us to change our status
⁃       Information on NYCGA: minutes, meeting time would be on NYGA site
⁃       We already have a Facebook page
⁃       It’s really just the documentation that needs its own dedicated
website, and for cosmetic reasons it would be nice to have a calendar/
statement/etc
⁃       There are a lot of people who aren’t on Facebook
⁃       B and E are updating the minutes on NYCGA, tweeting, gmail
⁃       If anyone wants to help, that would be great
⁃       For filehosting, there are number of good sites: dropbox, etc.
⁃       Google group brainstorming about throwing out a bunch of options
⁃       Nation article: immediate plan to buy a domain name?
⁃       we do have a landing page on A&C
⁃       We don’t exist on NYCGA
⁃       User accounts on NYCGA can make pages
⁃       Do we have to make a decision about what the article is going to
link to?
⁃       Duckduckgo–algorithm that lets you figure out what people find
when they search your terms
⁃       Our google group is super information-heavy in terms of articles.
We do need somewhere to compile these
⁃       Do people want to close off the google group? Anyone who wants to
be a member can
⁃       Blithe has made it so that you have to log in
⁃       What is the invite process?
⁃       It’s not that bad if the Nation article links to NYCGA. there’s no
point in rushing these decisions just for that article
⁃       If someone feels inclined to get something started, sometimes it
just helps to have material there that people can say yes/no to.
Getting started would be great.

BREAKOUT GROUPS

Discuss structure:

Breakout group for direct action?

Group descriptions….

Alt economies summary: What does A&L even mean? What is the existing
art economy / how can we challenge it? There are some plans that are
going forward…

Information: Website, print on demand reader (in the spirit of the
anti-catalog), map, disseminating information about ourselves,
thinking about/theorizing the whole A&L thing.

Media & Outreach: media policy, group relations with outside groups,
forms of outreach with other community organizations and working
groups?

INFORMATION BREAK-OUT

⁃       Still a need for a centralized presence
⁃       A&C is trying to shift to more thematic groups
⁃       Distribution of documents: there are cloud services like box.net
⁃       Concern: we already have a splintered presence, is this a solution
⁃       There’s an important distinction between web presence and and
internal presence
⁃       Something like that would work well in terms of collaboratively
working on documents
⁃       We could use wordpress as a documents repository
⁃       We have a great group of documents already
⁃       Can’t someone just get going on this?
⁃       We can go ahead and pick a platform
⁃       independent site + a lot of linkbacks to NYCGA
⁃       Can we propose that tonight?
⁃       A starter site
⁃       Do we have an internet squad? (open to updates)
⁃       Concern: the website as a public face for the group
⁃       Distinction between internal/external
⁃       aaaaarg.org as resource or place for us to curate a set of readings
⁃       Most people go to the Occupennial Facebook
⁃       We’re a page and not a group–facebook isn’t ideal for us but we
don’t want to terminate it

⁃       Nathan’s print material

PROPOSAL

artsandlabor.org—buy that

NEXT STEPS
buy a domain name and direct it to NYCGA arts and labour for the time
being
form an internet squad
decide on a platform (prioritize ease of use on the back end)
get going on the public face website and when that shapes up
first priority on that site: archive, upcoming events (embedded google
calendar), outreach materials, links to A&C/NYCGA
work towards a blog/testimonials/other stuff

REPORT-BACKS

INFORMATION: we talked about the internet mostly, and also the
creation of graphic materials. If you want to start making graphic
materials, go ahead and make them. then get group consensus if you
want to put A&L on it.

ALT ECONOMIES: they are splitting into research groups: 1) pragmatic
action within the existing system: unions, legal action, sharing of
information, mapping, transparency 2) creating actual radical
alternatives to the current system for living and working.

MEDIA & OUTREACH: proposal coming out of meeting with NMAS. rezoning
proposal for LES and chinatown as low-income areas. propose doing
outreach to LES/chinatown art spaces.

PROPOSALS

W – proposal for website:
1) register url. artsandlabor.org is available. point it to our NYCGA
presence
2) form an internet squad to determine the tech solution. anyone is
welcome to join this squad.
3) work on a site with archive materials, outreach, calendar, links to
NYCGA, then later work towards a blog and testimonials.
CONSENSUS

L – POPS are not working. we need another meeting space, indoors with
seating and heated.
Is this a proposal or an agenda item? there is nothing to vote on.
We wanted to follow the same model: using a POPS under the occupy
guise.
TABLED for agenda items.

C – people of colour working group had a day of healing. transpeople
and people of colour weren’t having their needs respected. had a
getting-to-know-you day that they thought was really productive.
Would this take over one of our meeting days?
No, a separate meeting.
Coming here but as a hangout?
Occupy Lunch let people get things off their chest.
Highline format, or more casual.
Maybe just going around the room and introducing yourself, and what
your experiences in activism are, what you’re here for etc. Make it
easier to work with each other.
More bureaucratic introductory exercise?
Making sandwiches for the highline was kind of like that
Christmas party?
Put on the google group? Start a doodle poll and have a proposal for
next meeting about when and how that could happen?
Do we have enough information to say whether we’ll do that or not?
Is this a concrete proposal?
The proposal needs to be developed further and reproposed next as a
more concrete proposal
TABLED

Google thread about meeting on the highline

AGENDA ITEMS

We need to find a place where we’re not time-compressed
Let’s start thinking about our first Occupy Lunch of 2012!

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