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Consulta Coordination Team Meeting

Friday, Sept. 25, 2009 at Noon EST / 11 am CST / 9 am PST


Rishi, Washington, DC, Program and Culture WG/Consulta subgroup
Alicia Garza, San Francisco, California,
Reggie McGee, DLOC Anchor/Communications WG
Mallory , New York, ICT WG
Dee, Silver Spring, Maryland, Outreach WG
Walda Fitzman, Maryland, Program and Culture WG
Oya Amakisi, DLOC/Program and Culture WG

Facilitated by Rishi


1) Workgroup Updates

Consulta Subgroup (including NPC feedback on form)

• Comms
• DLOC/Anchor Organizations
• Outreach
• ITC (tech)
• Culture Subgroup
2) Workplan to 10/15 launch: Set benchmarks
3) Outstanding tasks (e.g. translation/language access)
4) Scheduling next meeting

Intro to the Consulta Process (Rishi)

One of the Program/Culture workgroup tasks included proposing themes to organize workshops and assemblies during the forum, and to propose a consulta process to get feedback on the themes. In a recent meeting with reps from Program/Culture, Outreach, Tech, and People’s Movement Assembly, which included NPC members, it seemed better to send a multi-purpose communication that 1) requested feedback on themes; 2) publicized the forum and PMA’s; and 3) collected contact information.

This document focuses specifically on proposed themes and consulta process and is broken down into Context for Reviewing Themes, Consulta Process and Questions, Proposed Themes. The Proposed Themes and Consulta Process and Questions are what we are proposing to send to participants.

We want to get the Consulta form online in the middle of October Have feedback by November. We are shooting for a launch of the form in December and trying to make sure that all the WG have a voice on the consulta process. Consulta subgroup is a part of the Programming and Culture Committee and it expanded to reach out to other working groups (Program Culture, Outreach, Communications, ICT, PMA, and DLOC Anchors) are a part of the process.

Communications Update (Reggie)

The goal is to have an audio visual form online in addition to text. Reggie was not able to connect with Josue, but will contact other groups to assist with the process. Getting a print version of the Consulta to make it accessible to people who are not online. Decide which press to send it to. Left Turn Magazine is a possibility. The form will be in multiple languages. We have to work with the translation team.

There can also be a PDF form that can be filled out online.

Focus on identifying the target audience. Communications will work with Outreach. Does anyone remember that the forms will be in English and Spanish, and other languages may be included later? Rachel will look into this with the translation working group. We will have Spanish for now and possibly ASL (American Sign Language) later.

Consulta Subgroup (Rishi and Alicia)

On our last call we talked about the need to explain the process in a very accessible way, so that people will know what they are expected to do and they know how the Social Forum works. The goals is to engage a broad group of movements to shape the programming. Alicia put in less than 6 sentences what the consulta is:

Consulta Social Forum Process (Alicia)

Consulta is a word in Spanish that means “consults” or “consultation.” A consulta process, then, is a way to consult, or seek advice and guidance from others.

In the context of the Social Forum, the consulta process is a way for the Planning Committee to seek advice and guidance from others; in particular, others who believe and who work towards making another world possible and another U.S. necessary.

The consulta process is referred to by the International Committee of the World Social Forum as a type of “methodology.” A methodology is a set of rules, principles or ways to accomplish something. The consulta methodology is an integral part of how the Social Forum comes together and achieves success. By consulting with other grassroots organizations, networks, alliances, and social movements, both in the local host site’s city and state, across the United States, and around the world, we can make sure that the Social Forum represents and is relevant to a broad range and scope of movements.


Reggie: I think it was good it hit all the basics and explains why we are doing it. It is fairly short. It can be a little shorter, but it is fine. Rishi: It is very accessible. I think it was really good. I was wondering about the length too. We were trying to make it short and break it down to one or two pages. In terms of the language that we were missing in the larger document it was great. Walda: We appreciate you doing it. We have to be clear on what we are asking feedback for. Recommend that you add a transition sentence to define what you expect. Reggie: I am looking at the document and I think it is already made clear.

Data in the Consulta Form (Rishi, Mallory)

Augment our list for the social forum, and to do some level of assessment to find out who is aware and who are not about the USSF. There is a since that labor is not a part as they should be.

Name, email, phone, sector of work, organization, do you want to get involved in planning the forum. Mallory had the concern if it is a long form people may not fill it out. The solution may be to list some of the fields as optional. Only require name, contact info.

Even with registration we are not going to ask them for more than their name and email address. What is the ultimate purpose for us gathering this information?

Rishi: I think that you are right that it may not be necessary.

Dee: It may help in getting feedback and doing outreach.

Mallory: After 2007 and we have a large data base and nothing happened with the data. There is no plan in place. I don’t think more information will be asked beyond the name, email, and organization. Is the consequence to acquiring date just having a large database that is not used. I think it is important that we think that we have a plan before we start asking people for this information.

Alicia: Has there been a discussion for outreach to find out how that information will be used? There can be ways that outreach can create a plan for its use.

Reggie: Since 2007 was our first one, If we had the ability w/o stretching to much to establish a movement identity. That might be helpful for us. Later we can direct email (outreach) to specific groups.

Rishi: Name, email, organization. Ask Outreach to review additional fields and create a plan for its use.

Alicia: I think that we need more conservation before we make a decision.

Proposal Form (Rishi and Alicia) These are the ways that you can prepare self organized workshops:


We discussed not adding plenaries to the online form. Adding info about the plenaries may make the process more complicated. Then we would have to explain the plenaries as well. Stephanie suggested that we also get feedback from the plenaries as well. Rishi will follow up with Stephanie. The plenaries are usually decided by the NPC to shape broader political conversations. The form will list the Workshops and PMAs.

Culture (Rishi and Oya)

What are the types of cultural expressions at that USSF? Differentiate between people propose culture based workshops opposed to the cultural expressions that the Culture committee recruits. We will work on this over the next few weeks.

IT (Mallory)

We have a rating system ready to go. We are focusing on how to deal with registration. We have form developed. We are going to change the website layout. It may not be aesthetically pleasing.

We talked about how to log feedback with a 5 star rating system to rate each one. Instead of their being a log of individualized feedback, there will a comment page that people can give feedback. Reading the comments can be set up as an option. The Rating may be followed by some questions and check boxes. Do we put the consulta info at the bottom or top of the form? How do you engage with web forms?

Rishi: Can we see a draft of the web forms?

Mallory: When?

Rishi: A day or two before the call.

Reggie: When is the next call?

Rishi: Next Friday. Can we get it by next Thursday?

Mallory: I think we can do that, and I can send it to Rishi.

Rishi, will you send it out the list.

Rishi: We are planning for some space for video and audio and the set up of the forms on the website.

Mallory: That is easy to do

Outreach (Dee)

Mapping Social Movements and how we are reaching out: Dee, I don’t know about mapping. I have to ask the outreach group.

DLOC /DLOC Anchor (Reggie and Oya)

It is very important that we are a part of the process. It is very specific and it gives us something to focus on. How do we translate all these issues into goals for the USSF 2010.

Reggie and Oya will meet with the Anchor group on Tuesday and will have feedback on the next call. What is the feedback that we need from the social movements in Detroit and nationally to make that happen?


Next Friday, October 2, 2009

The subcommittees needs to develop a question or two around the axes.

Recommend a time line with specific goals. It needs to be put in prints. In the internal document and something included on the forms.

Communicating with the Outreach working group on what we want the date used for. Dee will bring it back to the work group.

Outreach will come up with the list of sectors that people will choose when entering their info in the consulta form.

Questions from PMA will be answered.

ICT will post draft of the online form

DLOC feedback

Translation and design done, hard copy of form completed, send out completed online form to NPC for trial run

Monday, October 12, 2009 or Tuesday, October 13, 2009: Goal to have audio/video ready to go.

Thursday, October 15, 2009: Launch by next week’s meeting we are trying to integrate a have edited language on the form

Alicia will you add a few sentences on how groups can use the consulta form as an organizing tool. Make sure that this question is added to the NPC agenda for October.

Next Meeting

Next Consulta Coordination Team Meeting call will be on Friday, October 2, 2009

Conference Call: (712) 775-7040 Code: 4621682

Notes taken by Oya The notes will also be posted on the Wiki. If there are any additions, corrections, or suggestions please contact me and I will update the info on the Wiki.

Return to Program/Culture WG main page.