A commons for social software in Switzerland? Some preliminary thoughts about architecture

Recently the swiss blogosphere saw some interesting services popping up as well as some good discussions. But with profusion, there is also a bit of confusion now. What do we want in the future? I try to address some of the issues and ask for a commons, but also for some rules to play by.

* What will be the final address of sub.scribe.to and the ping hub too? To become generally accepted services in the long run (it’s the long run that’s hard for such services), I think it would be good if these services are available via one address. This doesn’t mean that the services itself must reside on the swissblogs.com server.

* How do we avoid to have the several resembling services. I think at the moment only blog.ch is an established service which tracks swiss blogs. All other ping or aggregators do not have a long history, are lacking some maintenance or are tied to companies (we have a running ping service – which we don’t use these days) which also means they almost always include blogs which are not swiss. As companies we have interests and agendas (influence anyone) and I think before everyone starts pinging and gathering and… I don’t know, we should start taking a break and thinking…

What do we want?

I can only say for myself that I really would like to see a place, a commons for blogging and social software here in Switzerland. All major players of today’s blogging landscape should be part of it anyway and membership should be possible for any blogger. Yes, I also think we should create a swiss weblogs club or an independent blog usergroup, as Alain pointed out. But it should have to be a community project, and it should be „open“.

But before doing this some of us have probably to talk politics too and write up kind of a policy of how to deal with the commercial interests. Recently two community projects more or less failed because the hidden agendas weren’t talked about upfront and it would be sad to see this again.

Anyway, the commons should have a core group which meets every month or so, a wiki, a mailinglist where we should debate about architecture and upcoming stuff. If there is a will to work together, I think we can go far.


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