Feneas handover


I’m new here, so I will defer from expressing my opinion with regards to the proposed handover. Just a couple of short comments on the political aspect of the discussion.

I think there is a confusion here. Being political doesn’t mean you have to affiliate yourself with a specific political party or even register as one.

Which also sounds problematic. Last HOPE Conference had a similar term at their CoC (“Everyone is welcome regardless of (…) political beliefs”). Guess what happened when fascists showed up. They let them stay, because they accept all people, regardless of political affiliations.

Being neutral, is actually a very strong political statement.


Hey @jaywink , when you do read this, I just want to say I’m sorry you’re feeling stressed out by this discussion, and to once again acknowledge your good intentions. Just to be clear, I wasn’t making any accusations against you or Fenneas, and I didn’t see anyone else do that either. The concern is what might wander through the proprietary door if it’s left open, and how to mitigate that.

Maybe anyone continuing with the discussion could focus on brainstorming solutions we could help Fenneas enact, regardless of the final outcome of the proposed merger?


Let’s have a small poll. My target is not to have a majority vote here - I just want to capture the state.

For transparence(?) I would like to state that I am pro Feneas handover, mainly because administration seems to have stalled (New category for ForgeFed?, Email notifications)

If you oppose the handover, I would suggest to leave a reply why so your concern can be addressed.
Feel free to also leave a reply why you support, accept or have no opinion.

If your concert is already part of the previous discussion, a summary should be enough.
(For example you could state that you have concerns regarding opening up to proprietary/non-free actors.)

The poll is configured to not pay attention to who votes, your vote is “secret”.

Clarification Edit: This poll is about the opinion on the specific feneas handover, not whether this offer should be the one taken.

I … the handover of socialhub.network to Feneas:

  • support
  • would accept
  • oppose
  • (No preference)

0 voters



Feneas now has a FOSS manifesto as an additional guiding document. There will be a link on the homepage to it as soon as someone updates the blog theme. At first we were going to approve the manifesto in the next annual general summer meeting in May, but it seemed unlikely that anyone would object, so we instead decided in our committee meeting to email the members and ask if anyone objects. Since no one did, it is now merged and a part of our guiding documentation.

This is not really anything new. The founders, committee and (AFAICT) members are FOSS enthusiasts to the core. This is merely documenting what had already existed in the hearts and minds of the committee and members of the association.

We also decided in the committee meeting that we’ve spent enough time on the offer of making SocialHub a healthy discussion forum for federated web folk. If you have questions or suggestions about the offer or the FOSS manifesto, or any other Feneas related questions, please do contact us either at the Feneas chat or directly via email (contact details). The discussion here has been comprehensive and we believe everything has been said that we can possibly say. Our offer has been given and if the SocialHub admins and community wants us to help maintain the forum, then please do get in touch.


this issue was discussed for 2 weeks and then left hanging undecided; and there has been no activity on it since in over 2 weeks; so i predict that the last comment from jay has put this particular discussion into a stale state - my suggestion would be to make today’s poll “offficial” and conclusive, and to act on it, whatever the result may be, immediately in say, 7 days

i have no stake in this forum myself, so my personal preference is not important - my only interest in either feneas or socialhome is that i have been helping with the forge-fed project, and we wanted to move public discussion away from github, notabug, and the existing maliing list - this forum was suggested as a good fit for the project and we asked for a forum category - that was in january and we have been waiting patiently for something interesting to happen here; but we still do not have a suitable venue for discussions - i got one email reply from MXB back in january - it had an enthusiastic: “yes we would LOVE to have you guys here”, which appeared quite promising, but i have not gotten another word from him since - there is clearly a serious problem in the administrtion department; and though i have no particular preference myself as to who operates the site, jay has at least been in continual communication with us since last summer - for that simple reason alone, i would be inclined to give his organization my vote - at least someone is “minding the shop” at feneas

that being said, if the only problem is a lack of admin resources, thats seems rather easy to fix - just get a few more admins - i would volunteer some of my time to fill the void there if need be, and someone else did earlier - in any case, we should not have needed to wait four months for a simple “yes” or “no” decision - something is critically broken at this forum now, and that needs to change ASAP - you can not operate an internet forum or chat without admins for very long - it can and will turn to crap - proprietary software devs will be the least of your problems once the spammers and trolls find an un-moderated forum to vandalize

if nothing interesting happens here within the next 7 days, im inclined to simply ask jay and the fenaes group to move forward with their own forum so that forge-fed can finally have a suitable community venue - again, that would not be to take sides on whatever political/philosophical debate thats going on here; this is plainly because we are tired of sitting on our hands about this, and i believe they will actually get the job done


regarding the poll BTW

how exactly would the option “would accept” differ in semantics from the “no preference” option? - it seems to me that those are equivalent; and therefore the options would be comprehensive with only one or the other of those - in fact, the options would be comprehensive without either of those; because “no preference” is equivalent to abstaining, for all practical accounting


Hello Bill,

some time back I saw an interesting talk regarding decision making using a discussion that does not has the target to have every one say “yes” (consensus) but instead having no one say “no”. (I unfortunately forgot how this technique is called, but I remember the technique itself.) This is where the “would accept” comes from, it’s the “not saying no”.

Writing this I have no strong arguments for having both “No Preference” and “would support”. I just think having a option besides yes / not an no / no is better than not having it. Why aggregate early when you also can do later? Aggregating early and reversing it later is simply impossible.
So in the end it’s just keeping options open. :slight_smile:


ok, whatever is the logic there, im just saying that there is only one single clear-cut decision to be made, and it is a simple binary choice

  • yes, merge with fenea
  • no, do not merge with fenea

regardless of what those two entail, no other conceivable options would have any practical effect on the future of this forum - however passionate one may be about their s’causes, no one ever changed the world through indecisiveness

again im not a stakeholder here yet, so i can only leave it the same as jay left it - the ball is in your court now - please make a decision and let us know the result, and please do not expect us wait another 4 months


I would like to stress that my poll was explicitly not about making a decision.
It’s about capturing the state of opinions. That’s why it’s not yes/no.

I, too, do not want to wait longer, that’s why I bumped the topic. But I also have, like you, not a big (timewise) stake here, I also came here for ForgeFed.

My bigger stake here is keeping up and running the forum of an somewhat(?) established community around federation, which I only recently discovered and would be sad about seeing the forum being left unmaintained.

I will try to make sure the topic does not stale this time, I would love to get that forgefed category rather sooner than later. :slight_smile:


Forgot to mention this; my strategy is to try getting that not-all-yes-but-no-no consensus in a timely manner.
I think with Feneas FOSS Manifesto that type of consensus should be possible.


Hi, thank you for trying to make this moving forward. I completely agree that this site must have administrators who respond in a timely manner. I find the lack of response by @mxb and @dansup irresponsible. I have moved groups, discussion and people here with the timely help of @mxb back in January before FOSDEM so that this community could thrive, but since then the admin team has decided to remain silent and I find it a lack of respect for the work done so far.

I have repeatedly proposed my help to fix pending issues (both publicly and privately to the admins), and eventually to provide all the necessary help for this community to thrive. Therefore I appreciate the move to make things happen. That said, I find it manipulative to offer a poll with only options to consider the heavily contested offer of Feneas and not my offer as well.

I think the fairest move now would be that @mxb and @dansup decide to grant admin privilege to people willing to fix the current issues, and then let the community decide, in a second step, what to do with the handover. As domain and server expenses are not an issue, we have time to think about it in a more open and collective manner.


There seems to be a great partiality in this poll, as feneas was not the only organisation to propose to handle the forum, and the poll does not even mentions other propositions.

I think there should be a proper presentation of the different options and a proper discussions of the possibilities, if Feneas intends to moderate the forum in such a partial way, I do not feel like trusting them.


l do not speak for Feneas, the misrepresentation in the poll is my personal fault.

Please also note that this thread, at least to me, is specific to the Feneas handover, this seems to be the reason I completely missed @how’s offer, sorry for that.

I would suggest to open a new thread for discussing @how’s offers, and maybe an additional one discussing which offer does fit better. I think splitting this up helps staying focused.


I’m totally not disrespecting anybody in here (at least not on purpose). I was just passively observing how this debate will end. But it’s not going anywhere so far. If i did not responded to anyone or promised something and didn’t done that later - i’m sorry, i’m just super busy with my real life, work and Prismo development and i lost track of things that needs to be done on socialhub. That’s why i want to hand it over to someone else as i’m not handling it well. I wanted to pause any changes / new category creation and hand it over together with entire forum to a new owner as i was sure it will go smoothly. It turned out that was a terrible assumption.

As for now i can’t see it going anywhere, like it or not - i think the most fair option would be to close this thing completely, share the data exports with anyone interested and obliged to receive them and let you guys open your own discourse instances (that’s relatively easy to migrate data from one instance to another, even in a selective manner). If my voice matters - i’m fully for the Feneas handover. But it seems there is no way to make everyone happy, no matter what the final decision will be.


Why don’t you simply give admin to willing people instead of letting the situation rot? When I proposed to move Plume’s team, and other people involved with ActivityPub in January, you took the time to make the move. I trusted you to keep things going, but you did not trust me to do things right, apparently, since I have no admin rights here, which would have fixed all flaws within a day, and you’re ready to give up and handle the thing to Feneas without even a look back at people’s arguments. I’m very sad of the situation here.

In the meantime, the Discourse team has secured funding to implement an ActivityPub proof of concept to bring the forum to new heights.


I can see a lot of frustration here and that’s understandable. I think it comes from a combination of our passion for the federated social web, our intuition that this forum serves an important role in its evolution, and the difficulty in making a decision among a group of volunteers who are all working remotely, and mostly don’t know each other. Let’s remember that despite our disagreements, we’re all allies here, and we’re all here because we want the fediverse and this forum to thrive.

Let me summarize what I think everyone in the discussion agrees on:

  • it is clear that the people who set up this forum are not able or willing to continue running it, and a new admin team must be found.
  • the sooner this happens, the better
  • if some kind of consensus can’t be reached, @mxb will shut the forum down, which would be a real shame
  • if the Fenneas folks do not become involved in the admin of this forum, they will likely set up another one

Can I suggest a way to resolve the impasse? How about @how is offered an admin role within a Fenneas team running this forum? They are obviously passionate about the forum and willing to volunteer time. If they are willing to work respectfully and constructively as part of a Fenneas admin team, it seems to me that would provide a way forward that everyone could live with. Thoughts?


I pitched this idea to the Fenneas folks on the FOSS Manifesto issue on their GL instance. The response was quite promising:


for sure the admin team of SocialHub should imho be expanded. At no point have we suggested that Feneas take full control, actually the opposite, ideally we would only host and maintain it, leaving admin to a dedicated team of people who don’t need to have a direct relation with Feneas.


As already said elsewhere, I don’t think Feneas should control the forum admins. I would personally like to be one, but mainly to help, not to spend a considerable time. We’re mainly offering to host, pay and maintain a quality service. The admin team should be decided by the admin team of SocialHub, imho.

So for sure, if @how wants to be an admin, why not, unless someone from the current admin team disapproves. However I don’t think that is the blocker here, AFAICT it is the fact that if Feneas hosts the forum, we’re not prepared to block people from registering to the forum unless they break the Feneas code of conduct. If Feneas hosts the service, anyone using the forum must agree to the Feneas code of conduct and privacy policy. This means also the admins should agree to these policies.

As email notifications don’t work, any important messages to reach us, please use our GitLab or chat.


If this happens, please let us know - we already had a discourse server running for a while and can bring it up very fast :slight_smile:



i think the most fair option would be to close this thing completely

I think this would be a shame. Can I propose a different approach?

It seems to me there are two related but separate issues under discussion here:

  1. the urgent need to identify and approve new admins for the forum, who have the time and willingness to catch up on deferred maintenance, onboarding and so on
  2. the longer term hosting and governance of the forum

Here are my proposals:

  1. We have at least two volunteers who have offered to take on admin, @how and @jaywink. I propose that you give both of them admin access right away, so they can deal with urgent matters under the existing, minimal governance arrangements. With that taken care of, we can discuss future options in a more leisurely fashion, instead of a crisis mode that easily devolves into mutual mistrust and sabre-rattling.
  2. I propose that we continue the discussion here about the Fenneas proposal and any other governance and hosting proposals.

I strongly urge those who don’t support Fenneas taking over the forum to come up with a formal proposal of your own, including details like:

  • exactly who would be in charge of admin/ moderation (at least to start with)
  • how governance would work (rule by admins? Rule by community consensus as in this discussion? Something else?)
  • what moderation rules you would apply (CoC? Safer Spaces Policy? Wild west rules? Something else)
  • how you would pay for ongoing costs, including some level of detail on where funding would come from, how it would be collected, and how it would be paid out

One advantage of Fenneas being a legally incorporated org is that this these kinds of details have been worked out and the information is available on their website.