Introduction about Indymedia 2.0
Politically the trend of the web is toward atomisation, in blogs and web 2.0. For incoming information there are problems of too much information - this is politicially not focused, and lacks the relation to political grounded focus on what people are actually doing. What made Indymedia different is with and part of activist group, a real network in on the website, irc, but also in the real work.
How to adapt to a changed web is a technical and a social issue.
blogs: Indymedia was initially a collabritve blog. Now a lot of indivuals empower themselves with their own individual blogs. This questions the mission of indymedia to empower the people. But there is a section of the blogger sphere that is intersting for Indymedia and there is a section that we don't want to have on our sites. What Indymedia has to respond to is the web 2.0 hype which is why we call it indymedia 2.0 as an ironic reation to that hype. we think that everybody has heard more then enough about web 2.0 but otherwise thy can dig into it, and we will avoid this word in this session.
Two points that came to our mind: rss feeds and tagging.
There is the difficulty of identies of communities and indyviduals who don't want to be coopted by indymedia. One the one hand: rss feeds is a way to go provide the free flow of information beyond the borders of identity. The problem: there is valuable content produced, but because of borders of identity they don't find their way on the Indymedia site that's why they have to be fed and pulled. But on the other hand: rss can also have very indivdualistic content. The question is how can we use the cumulative potential of rss feeds without using our collaborative practices. (This is not a technical problem but a social one). On technical solution could include producing collaborative rss feeds by combining rss feeds with tagging and web of trusts.
Present models of gathering information esp. simple feeds like rss, even with the tag clouds etc. while giving one technological answer to forming virtual network we need to develop this alongside developing real world group dynamics. It is a delight to enable opportunities for activists to wander out of their usual sphere of interest in the virtual or real pub.