DiEM25 Volunteer Guidelines
DiEM25 Spontaneous Collectives (DSCs) and Municipal/Regional/National DiEM25 Committees
The idea is not new. It reflects the Scottish Enlightenment’s notion of ‘spontaneous order’ as well as ideas or practices of self-management and cooperatives, Rick Falkvinge’s ‘swarms’, etc.
DSCs: DiEM25 has given the notion of self-organising participants a new twist, combining physical meetings at Town Halls with DiEM25 spontaneous collectives (DSCs) of members keen to promote the Manifesto’s goals. To remain effective and flexible, DSCs are envisaged to comprise 5 to 15 members only.
Local: For most activities, DSCs are best suited for people who live reasonably close to one another.
Horizontal: DSCs are self-governing, with no need to validate their actions from the CC. Each DSC elects one person who will be responsible for maintaining communication between DiEM25 at large, the CC and the specific DSC.
Guidelines: DSCs cannot promote causes or values other than those outlined in the DiEM25 Manifesto and the current DiEM25 campaign(s). To ensure that all DSC actions are in line with the Manifesto, and to have some quality control over how the public will perceive DiEM25, DSC members are obliged to ask a specified number of DiEM25 members to approve any texts/images/videos/actions destined for the public – if this peer review process approves them, the DSC member can proceed in the name of DiEM25. DiEM25’s Volunteers Coordinator will make available detailed DSC Guidelines (e.g. on the peer review process), to be approved by the CC and the VC.
What can a DSC do?
Essentially anything that will make DiEM25 a success:
Spread the ideas of DiEM25 (through media, internet, events, etc.)
Develop proposals for our Progressive Agenda for Europe and for local actions.
Bring in new members (asking them to register at https://www.diem25.org/)
Organise gatherings, debates, presentations, events, campaigns. In order to refer to these as official DiEM25 events “organised by <DSC in name>”, they need to be open to all DiEM25 members in the same local community, town or country.
What can a DSC not do?
Engage in illegal activities
Promote ideas that violate the spirit of DiEM25’s Manifesto or DiEM25’s ongoing Campaigns
Collect or spend money outside of DiEM25’s established system of collecting and spending donations
Use DiEM25’s name, logo, platform or organisation for commercial purposes, including selling merchandise and other products or services to DiEM25 members
Promise or show support to other political organisations and political candidates, except if the alliance has approved by the CC. If a DSC feels that such an alliance is important when the CC disagrees, the said DSC can ask the CC to organise a membership-wide referendum on the matter.
Enter contracts on behalf of DiEM25-International or otherwise engage in actions that the international level of the organisation will be held legally responsible for
Organise DiEM25 Assemblies (Nb. unlike gatherings or events, Assemblies are to be organised by the CC)
Purport to represent whole cities, regions or countries without the approval of DiEM25’s CC. For this purpose, it is expected that they adopt names such as DiEM25 London 1 DSC, DiEM25 Barcelona 1 DSC, etc. so that when other DSCs appear in the same vicinity they can adopt the names DiEM25 London 2 DSC, DiEM25 Barcelona 2 DSC etc.
To make clear that opinions expressed are those of the particular DSC, and not of DiEM25 for the whole region/country in which the DSC is located, DSCs will use the white background logo for public online posts, while the broader organisation will use the orange/red logo. DSCs will also sign all press releases and other materials with their DSC name or with “DiEM25 Volunteers in …”, so as to distinguish them from messages by elected representatives of DiEM25. (See details on Social Media Rules for DSCs and Volunteers)
How to create a DSC
You can view the up-to-date list of DSCs at www.diem25.org/local-groups-dscs/ . Of course several DSCs can form in the same city, but an informal coordination between them would be nice. If you want to create a new DSC, go to the “Meet Local Members” forum navigate to the subforum for your country or region. Either create or answer a post about forming a DSC there. Then write an email to firstname.lastname@example.org in order to be added to the official DSC directory and to receive help in advertising your DSC.
Principles of successful DSC meetings
Small group discussion is the key element in empowering members. People become more committed through the physical act of speaking. Conversely if people do not speak at all in a meeting or very little, then they become passive and feel disempowered. The primary aim of DSC meetings should be to motivate and empower its members through peer-group activities that build a collective identity and a common political outlook.
DSCs must strive to find answers to the question: What do DiEM25 values and principles mean in practice? How can meetings make participants leave the (physical or digital) room feeling enthused rather than alienated?
DSCs are encouraged to discuss within them, but also across different DSCs, the rules of inclusive engagement so members are aware of them from the beginning, and to avoid having to conjure them up after anti-social and coercive behaviour is observed.
Municipal, Regional and National DiEM25 Associations
DSCs are DiEM25’s cells and backbone. However, DiEM25 must also organise campaigns at a municipal, regional and/or national level in a manner that requires organisation transcending the capacity of DSCs.
The CC will, in consultation and jointly with all relevant DSCs, organise (as a pilot programme initially, maturing into a pan-European network) for DiEM25 members of a certain language, city, region or country to form official DiEM25 organisations for the purposes of running city, region and/or national level campaigns, e.g. DiEM25 in the UK, DiEM25 in Italy, or DiEM25 in Dublin. These committees will, in association with the CC and all relevant DSCs, be responsible for policies, campaigns and activities that are specific to that Municipal/Regional/National jurisdiction. All such agglomerations will need to be approved by the Validating Council (VC).