CC meeting 16 October 2017

Beth, Henry, Darling, Monkey, Princess, Ginger, Monk, Max, Sam, Puzz, Patrick, Kat, Adam, Breezy, Prost, Rabbitt, Wrinn, Amy, Clovis, Izzi

LLC Update

  • Maxine is our new Genesis AF
  • Laser cutter is now working
  • Trigger will be the Laser Safety Officer
  • New smart lock on front door gives us more flexibility for access.
  • There will be a new keypad lock on the toolroom

AF Update

  • Leads noms is going, but is going more slowly than normal. Please hype it.
  • Once that is complete, the leads-selection process will begin in earnest.
  • Really need a new Parking leads.

Regionals Update

  • There will be no GLC in 2018.
  • There are some TEDx-style webinars that BMORG is developing.
  • Myschevia happened. Sounds like it went really well. Beautiful effigy, nice temple.
  • Freezerburn had their ticket sale, and it was a clusterfuck, but not our camel.

Topic: Free vs Abusive Speech (owner: Monkey)

This is a topic solicited by Monkey from the community in response to the question “why aren’t you going to Flipside?” Combined with discussions in the default world around hate speech, it seems like we should have a discussion about it.

Should we create an abusive-speech policy? Should it be different at different places (warehouse vs event vs social media)?

Patrick: What do you think of what the Survival Guide says? Can we improve that? (quotes from “Personal boundaries” section)

Adam: Can you define abusive speech?

Monkey: No. Other organizations have done this to some degree. Other people have defined it and are living with their definitions.

Dahling: What is in the Survival Guide does not enumerate hate speech. And people have engaged in hate speech at Flipside. Should we enumerate this in advance, or deal with it as it happens? Advocates for enumerating in advance.

Prost: What’s in the Survival Guide sounds kind of weak. It talks about boundaries and talking about them, but there are a lot of situations where talking about your boundaries doesn’t work. The policy doesn’t say “don’t do hate speech,” it tells you “as long as no one tells you it’s wrong, it’s not wrong to do hate speech.”

Kat: I like the idea of a policy that goes further than what we have no, but as soon as you draw a line, people will lean right up to it. People can be crappy in a host of different ways without using a vocabulary list.

Patrick: Stephy has brought up the ComicCon code of conduct. Apart from one sentence (“harassing behavior will not be tolerated”), we’re basically there. They don’t enumerate stuff either.

Ginger: Instead of saying “don’t do this,” can we come at it from the perspective of inclusivity, in the sense of making people feel welcome?

Monkey: Online communities have found that loose policies around behavior encourage people to be terrible in those communities, and then other people leave. When people start acting abusive and that behavior isn’t checked, then other people just leave. Especially newcomers. Without formal guidelines, people don’t enforce their own boundaries because it goes against social conventions about rudeness. There are a lot of similarities in our community. There’s a belief that it’s wrong to call people on their bullshit.

Monk: Will never be comfortable around racists or misogynists. But trolling is a huge thing in our community, and that’s fine. We push boundaries in that way.

Adam: Are misogyny and racism just special cases of failure to respect the principle of cooperation? Are they serious enough that even if they are special cases, they need special observances?

Princess: Online communities have moderators. The problems we have are not problems of policy but of enforcement. Most people don’t read the Survival Guide, so they don’t know what to do. Does the community want the enforcers to be more heavy handed?

Dahling: We put a lot of effort into defining who we are as a community. I can imagine a world in which Nazis say they agree to our 3 principles. The only way I can see to get around that is to explicitly say that hate speech is not allowed at the event. Not identifying the problematic behavior allows someone to accuse us of selective enforcement. We don’t want to try to enumerate every group, but we can say that targeting any member of a group for being a member of that group is wrong.

Kat: Racism and misogyny are everywhere, but we can define what our community is about, and we can say that we don’t tolerate any kind of hate speech.

Monkey: If someone plays the self-expression card on me, I have no qualms about playing the accountability card on them. About trolling: the world has moved from the old days of the cacophony society, which pulled carefully crafted pranks that always punched up. Burning Man extended that out to everyone’s sacred cows, but not picking on people. Flipside borrowed that from Burning Man. It extended through our online presence very early on with hateful trolling on our mailing list (which everyone left, so we created another list, and another). But the world has changed, and trolling is now genuine attacks on people’s safety, such as doxxing, swatting, etc. It’s no longer funny. Our community does not generally understand that line. Some people will say “it’s my art,” but that’s not OK, and our community has lost something valuable by not distinguishing between pranks and trolling.

Prost: We need to be cautious with policy when we define the kinds of speech that are not acceptable. And we need to raise this and deal with this as a community, within our theme camps, etc. Deal with them on our own level instead of expecting mom and dad to come to our aid.

Amy: As someone who’s part of a camp that enjoys abusing people consensually, I’ve been talking about this a lot. I enjoy getting salty at the event. After six burns, someone took it too far, and was abusive to a female bartender, but that guy didn’t take them seriously. I like to come from the position of the teachable human.

Clovis: If someone tells me “it’s my art,” art provokes a response, and sometimes the response isn’t pleasant. Community response is an educational tool.

Monk: I’ve been trying to condense what we’ve been talking about here. Education is important. It needs to trickle down through departments, theme camps, etc. We need to identify when trolling is destructive and hurtful. With the intention of malice or with ignorance.

Monkey: A friend at another burn wrote that there was a burning cross as an art project that caused a lot of drama.

Kat: if everyone reacted to crappy speech the same as they do when we see a camera, we wouldn’t have a problem with crappy speech.

Dahling: One of the most effective trolls I ever saw was when French Camp decided to be nice.

Prost: Clarification requested on the burning cross.

Monkey: Simply that it may be worth talking about art.

Amy: There was something similar at Burning Man that was upsetting to a lot of people.

Patrick: What happened was that “heat” burned a sign with their name and the “t” was the last letter standing.

Rabbitt: I’ve seen burners nationwide be jerks. It seems ingrained in the culture.

Sam: Heard the story of someone at Flipside 2010 who crossed someone’s boundaries, the response being someone got on bullhorn threatened her in her camp. Ranger advised her to leave her camp for a while. It seems like we can draw a line somewhere.

Princess: Sounds like there are a lot of people who are passionate about this, but I’m curious if someone wants to put forward a motion.

Kat: We’ve heard from lots of people who don’t want to hear this kind of thing. Is there anyone who considers this a non-issue? [Straw poll: no hands go up]

Puzz: I don’t know the solution for Flipside, but I’ve been cracking down more on the Flipizens group. Now I don’t care about banning assholes, and there’s not a lot of discussion among the group mods.

Prost: Let’s talk about art. We’ve talked about the “my speech is my art” angle. Nothing we’ve said tonight is separate from art. Art doesn’t need to be dealt with separately, and if we address this in the Survival Guide, we should talk in terms of “expression.”

Amy: “Every tool is a weapon if you hold it right” Having the tools is only one part of the solution if I don’t know how to use it. Do we focus too much on self-expression without focusing enough on accountability and cooperation?

MOTION: Write and publish a statement of what is intolerable, that goes beyond self-expression, to violate cooperation and accountability.

[Special stack for motion begins]

Clovis: who will write it?

Monk: How’s this: “Speech or behavior that is abusive, malicious, or non-consensual is not tolerated at Flipside.”

Izzi: I like the direction this is going. I’m not comfortable with saying “…and will lead to eviction.” A lot of the decision-making process is wrapped up in how a person responds when we speak to them. I’d like to continue honing and crafting this.

Dahling: suggests adding this language to Flipside website and Survival Guide.

Izzi: Let’s refer more generally to “normal channels of communication.”

Monkey: Where is this going? Is this a recommendation for the event, or the warehouse, or Flipizens?

Wrinn: How about adding “in our community.”

Prost: I’m troubled by the “non-consensual” part. If I’m playing Jim Jones sermons (hypothetically) for two hours and no one likes it, that’s non-consensual. I could overhear something that wasn’t directed at me that I didn’t consent to. I understand the intent but I think it’s too broad.

Amy: Amend it to say “this community does not tolerate…” Is it a community value or an event value? We could also post it on the burma-shave signs coming into the event.

Dahling: Another thing to think about is bringing the art back in.

Monk: Riffing off of Izzi: “This community does not tolerate abusive or malicious behavior or speech that runs counter to this event’s sustainability.”

Monkey: Especially when we talk about rules, I agree that sustainability is a good metric, but it’s not the sole value. There’s got to be something else, so I’m not comfortable with that as a motivator. Just to clarify, we’re talking about a motion focused on the Survival Guide and other official communications for official AAR events. Once we’ve wrapped this up we can adapt to other venues.

Problem: This body sucks at trying to wordsmith things on the fly. AAR understands the intent, but let’s wordsmith this in a smaller venue and clear it.

Monkey: AMENDED MOTION: that we remand the specific wording of this statement to AAR, which will clear the result with the CC.


[special stack for motion ends]

Ginger: I understand how the non-consensual part is a problem, but it’s also important to recognize there are some areas where it’s important.

Izzi: It’s not malicious or non-consensual if you’re in the Brimstone Society because it’s obvious play.


Problem: We’ve learned over the past few meetings that there can be situations where a participant tells a ranger or other volunteer something and “nothing happens.” If a line volunteer doesn’t address a situation to your satisfaction, you can kick it up the chain of command.

Dahling: One difference between Rangers and Sanctuary is that literally everything goes in Sanctuary’s log. There’s a lot of variation in what Rangers tell Khaki, and maybe we could tighten up on that.

Monkey: MOTION: The CC recommends to Puzz and other Flipizens moderators that they revisit their abusive-speech policies with this discussion in mind.

[new motion stack begins]

Prost: Not comfortable with “recommends” as the CC has no authority over that group.

Clovis: BLOCK. No place making recommendations to someone not part of the official org.

Dahling: It’s worth remembering that all the CC members basically know all the AAR members and know how to get things done, so be gentle with someone who isn’t as connected.

Beth: MOTION: Officially recognize that Puzz went out of his way to come here, that we appreciate what he’s doing, and that we take the Flipizens group seriously.


Izzi: I like that y’all have recommended making a statement. In addition, I would also be comfortable working with CC & community members on crafting a statement to the community that is less official than our official channels. One good place for that would be the Flame.

Monkey: I wanted to talk about the operational part of this, including what Princess mentioned. So that in addition to making a statement in the Survival Guide, there’s the operational side. The CC doesn’t set policy for operations, but it does make recommendations, and we should recommend that operations be more proactive about enforcement. My impression is that we agree that we’ve allowed things to go farther than we like, and we should try to restore balance.

Prost: It’s important that our organization reflect our principles and values that we are trying to express to the community. If we have a CC member or lead who engages in inappropriate speech, then they shouldn’t fill that role. It’s happened before and looks bad for the whole organization.

Izzi: AAR talks with the AFs about what goes in the Survival Guide, so without an extra motion, we can communicate that.

Clovis: There are 4 AFs in the room right now. Dictating that something is an immediate-dismissal is kind of fucked up.

Monkey: Policies and the like are means for preventing bias from influencing your decision, but if you have too many rules, you open yourself up to rules-lawyering and preclude the application of wisdom. Systems that are too fluid tend to amplify the biases of the individuals involved. This is not conscious and is often counter to the stated beliefs of the people that hold the bias. If instead of a Ranger getting to decide whether a situation needs to be escalated, the Rangers could have a set of guidelines, but it’s a set of tradeoffs.

Izzi: we can offer guidelines

Beth: Suggests developing the community statement (alongside the AAR statement) in a subcommittee. Beth, Izzi, and Ginger all interested. Beth will chair.

Old business

  • Scheduling CC retreat: Will set up a Doodle for scheduling some time before end of year.
  • Scribe: Summer Nash has been suggested as a possible scribe. And one other person who doesn’t have a computer.

Next meeting: Oct 30


CC meeting 10 July 2017

In attendance
Monkey, Kati, Breezy, Problem, Izzi, Adam, Henry, Becky, Rabbitt, Kat, Beth, Wrinn, Tina, Sam

LLC Update

Not much news. Slow but steady progress on getting the laser cutter prepared for use.

Regional update

[no RCs present]

Beachside: went really well. There were 214 people who signed in, but as many as 500 who passed through. There were a few thefts. Weather was beautiful. Everyone had a really good time.

About 4200 lb of trash was collected.

AF update

[no AFs present]

Izzi points out that we need to clean up all the stuff lying around post-Flipside. We need everything cleared away before Burning Man load-in.

Stuff returning from Burning Man will have 2 weeks for pick up before it is deemed abandoned.

Discussion topics

Minors at the Warehouse

Burner Explorers is what used to be known as Burner Scouts, which has existed for about 10 years. This was created in the Burning Man community to get kids tied in to the BM volunteer infrastructure.

Becky is working on a local version. Her interest is in figuring out how to connect minors to our departments at Flipside, and enable kids to make use of the Warehouse.

Patrick: We’d like to pattern the warehouse use by minors after the existing approach to minors at the event: the parents are responsible for the kids, and the parents need to accompany the kids.

We need to let the Leads set limits for their departments. We probably won’t have minor firefighters, for example.

Henry: There’s some stuff that kids can do for the effigy, using hand tools, painting, etc, and kids have a different perspective that is valuable.

Kati: My kid can be with me for a lot, but not when I’m on a medical shift, because you don’t know what you’re going to encounter. Her kid is comfortable with rules, but a lot of kids are not. Also, a lot of people are not comfortable with kids at burns at all. I would feel comfortable with kids of 15 shadowing on Safety shifts, but not younger.

Monkey: Different departments have different training/competence requirements, regardless of age. There are plenty of departments where a minor would be able to do the job as well as an adult. Recommends considering expertise rather than age as the criterion for letting people signing up for shifts, and allow parent + kid to sign up for a shift as a single unit.

Izzi: Parents need to accompany their kids at all times, and there are some situations that can arise, e.g., for Ranger shifts, where the parent cannot bring their kid in due to inappropriateness. This means that neither adult nor minor is really filling a slot for that shift. What we’d wind up doing is having a parent + kid ride-along on a Ranger shift. In some departments this would not be an issue. Do not want to tell leads that they need to accept kids, or accept them on specific terms. Daft had specific projects for kids.

Becky: Daft didn’t want any children around the warehouse at all during the last few weeks before the event.

Adam: My concern specifically with Safety departments is that there would need to be different training for minors, which would create extra work for the leads to develop. Given the very small number of minors at the event, this may not be practical.

Beth: Ideas proposed by Austin Burning Parents: Have a child-size work station. Talk to Austin tinkering school. Have safety training for kids.

Kati: We talk about radical self-reliance a lot, but kids are still kids, and there are all kinds of possible issues. When we look at liability questions, we need to ensure the sustainability of the experiment, and sometimes we just need to say No to letting kids do stuff.

Problem: At BRC, the Rangers have one team dedicated to walking around with kids, so they can avoid putting kids into hot situations. So many departments could probably find a way to integrate kids.

Wrinn: I love kids, and I’ve used kids for cleanup. But I get nervous having kids doing stuff sometimes. Kids may get bored and distracted. Can the Lead tell the kid they’re not doing their job when the parent is (should be) right there?

Henry: Safety training can be accomplished by having a separate training at the Warehouse pitched to minors. Kids have a shorter attention span and could be signed up for shorter shifts, and it should be up to the lead.

Tina: If they can’t handle the Safetyside training, they shouldn’t be allowed on shift. There should also be clarification up front that a lead can talk to the parent if the lead is uncomfortable with the kid.

Monkey: Kids can handle a lot of stuff. We don’t need to solve a lot of problems with policy when those problems may not even exist. What recommendation should the CC make to the LLC or AFs about how to handle these situations?

Kati: One thing we need to enshrine is that if a person in a leadership position asks the kid to be removed from the situation, for any reason, the parent needs to respect that. Parents can be touchy about other people criticizing their kids, and we do need to get in front of that.

To potentially take an adult away from a volunteer shift so they can accompany their minor on the minor’s shift could deprive us of another badly needed volunteer.

Becky: Agrees that the presence of kids should be the Leads’ decision. Doesn’t think kids need to go to Safetyside. Thinks that kids would not be filling regular shifts, but doing 2-hour ride-alongs (for example).

Beth: We need to trust the parents and the leads to make this work.

Monkey: This is not a “consent” issue. It’s not “consent” if a Lead say they don’t want minors present, that’s a management issue.

Kati: “Consent” may be the wrong word. Sometimes it can be difficult for a lead or shift lead to talk to a parent about their kid misbehaving.

Monkey: We need a different word. This is a safety or operation-effectiveness issue, not a consent issue.

Beth: Parents can be more defensive of their kids than themselves. Volunteers should have some backup if they need to talk to a parent about their kid.

Monkey: How much is it going to really be a problem that a shift lead has a problem with a kid, and then has a problem with their parent? A couple of times?

Kat: Maybe we should expect that parents have previously volunteered in a given role before their kid does it so they can make an informed decision about their kid doing it.

Becky: Burner Explorers is going to need to have their own rules, which may come into conflict with other rules, parental expectations, etc.

Monkey: We should finish out the discussion of event-related issues.

MOTION: The CC recommends to the LLC and AFs that AFs and Leads legitimately consider any requests to have accompanied minors on volunteer shifts.

Beth: friendly amendment: “Continue to consider” Some Leads have taken minors on.

Monkey: strike “legitimately” As much as anything else, this is to let Leads know that they can consider having minors on shift.

REVISED MOTION: The CC recommends to the LLC and AFs that AFs and Leads continue to consider any requests to have accompanied minors on volunteer shifts.


Warehouse use by minors


  • Are there any concerns surrounding the laser?
  • Can a troop leader be treated as a legal guardian for the purpose of warehouse access?

Becky: Burner Explorers around Austin doesn’t have the kind of legal documentation that would support a troop leader being treated in loco parentis, the parents are still responsible for the kids. At BRC, Burner Explorers is directly under the auspices of Burning Man, and that won’t work here.

Patrick: We’ll talk to the lawyer, but the way this is probably going to come down is that the parents need to take responsibility for their kids.

Becky: Parents will need to be in visual range if their kids are doing something at the Warehouse as far as Burner Explorers are concerned.

Monkey: So are we recommending a change in the policy?

Izzi: No.

Monkey: So should I recommend a motion that the CC recommend the current policy on minors at the Warehouse be continued?

Patrick: That seems a bit redundant.

Additional business

Sam would like to put his name in as a candidate to be a CC member.

Laser cutter

Henry: Will the laser be taking up 1/3 of the room? Will the whole room be locked up to secure the laser?

Patrick: The laser will be pushed up against a wall. It will be hooked up to a password-protected computer to limit access.

Monkey: Why is this a bigger risk than our other various tools?

Patrick: Bodily safety is an issue, and you cannot see the beam. Some metals can reflect light into your eye, or into the laser. PVC can create chlorine gas in the laser.

And we do have policies about how you can use the table saw, for example.

Monkey: So what can the CC do in terms of setting policies here?

Patrick: What if someone wants to use the laser for their business? What if someone is on it 8 hours a day? The issues the CC can address relate to ensuring that the tool benefits the community, not one individual at the expense of the community.

Kat: The CC also has an ambassadorial role to play here, which is another way the CC can help.

Monkey: I would not be too upset if we had a general policy that the use of the warehouse was for non-commercial purposes.

Kat: I don’t know about saying that if you used the warehouse to make something that you cannot sell it ever.

Beth: There could be gray areas here. What if someone wants to work on a commercial project at our space with their own tools? We’ve hosted EAST events at the warehouse. There’s a line between using the Warehouse and abusing it.

Henry: Maybe you could develop a prototype at the Warehouse, but production should be done outside the Warehouse.

Izzi: What we’re talking about is fairness of use. We already need to schedule use of the Warehouse. I’m wondering if it is fair, or desirable, or abhorrent to schedule use of the laser. As long as everyone gets access to it that wants it is fair.

Kat: Many of our community members don’t have access to tools. Making it harder for them to get access to tools might be meddlesome. We don’t want to be standing in front of the laser with a clipboard interviewing people about how they’re using the laser.

Henry: We already have some policies relating to this in the Warehouse policies.

Izzi: That’s true for WH use, but not for specific tools. So the question is whether the laser is a special tool that would merit special handling.

Kati: I anticipate this tool will get a lot of attention. If there’s space, then it’s no problem.

Problem: I don’t think we’ll be interrogating people. We’ll know abuse when we see it. In the past, AAR has been comfortable allowing community resources being used as an incubator for art, including commercial art. Sky Candy is one example. So I don’t have a problem with some commercial use, but where do y’all come down on this?

Henry: Prototyping is fine. Commercial use is another thing, and they should find another way. We should always encourage art whenever possible.

Beth: is trying to write an announcement about the laser that reflects the community’s interests and the principles

Monkey: Put a sign on the laser that says “don’t hog the laser.”

Adam: Let’s not make a rule until we need a rule.

Problem: Just as a cautionary tale: both Hackerspace and Tech Shop have had people get into fistfights over people going 10 minutes over their laser time allotment.

Monkey: Motion to recommend the first thing we cut on the laser is a sign saying “Don’t make me make a rule.”

Other business

Town Hall producer

Not enough CC members here. Let’s find a willing producer on list.

Next meeting: July 24

Not Adam

CC meeting 12 June 2017

CC Meeting: 12 June 2017

In attendance
Sam, Rabbitt, Tina, Kai, Wrinn, Turtle Bunny, Xander, Beth, Amy, Adam, Henry, Problem, Breezy, George, Clovis, Prost, Bonobo, Doug, Katherine Baumann-Paap (in spirit)

LLC Update

  • We bought a laser. We still need to add ventilation and other stuff, so it’s not ready to use yet. It’ll be in the small-projects room. We’ll be working out a system to ensure people can use it without breaking it.
  • Flipside happened.
    • We sold 3017 tickets, 2870 tickets actually got used.
    • Parking on the other side of the road worked pretty well.
    • We did get a complaint from the county that it was possible to see into the event where the privacy fence dipped but the road didn’t
    • No complaints about new layout.
    • Fewer safety-related incidents than usual. There was the crazy windstorm right before the effigy burn, but we weathered that OK.
  • Volunteer-appreciation party is coming up.
  • Old radio tower is going to be sold, if anyone wants it.


What was the no-show rate?
5% no-show rate is down from the past two years. Flake-out rate for mailing in ticket requests was down to about 11% on the first round of ticket requests, but about 30% for the second round.
How was volunteering follow-through?
We don’t collect statistics on that consistently. Anecdotally, some departments where we don’t usually see flake-outs did have some, and we weren’t really prepared for that.
Do we have a count on first-timers?
No. We don’t have a reliable way to track it. We can look at new accounts on the website, but lots of returning participants create a new account every year.
With the high flake-rate on the second round, could that have been people just taking the quiz for fun?
Maybe, but that’s based on the number of people who actually generated requests after passing the quiz.

AF Update

Still haven’t had the AF debrief, so we don’t have all the stories on Flipside ready. Neither of the AFs present have any horror stories to report.

Cleanup update

Six red spots on the moop map

  • Fire was left burning in Corral Monday night
  • Safety HQ left 2 trash bags behind that animals got into
  • Camp 319 spray painted the grass
  • Camp 209 left glitter behind
  • A porto-potty had a closed 5-gallon bucket left in it

Overall, participants did a damn good job on LNT.

Regionals Update

  • Soak just happened, Midburn just happened. Oblivium. Apogaea. PDF.
  • AAR will probably be signing the Regional Event Use Agreement.
  • Beach cleanup coming up July 7.
  • Almaburn has two new LLC members, and a date for the next event: April 5-9.


Do we need to sign the agreement every year?
It’s complicated. In the old days, the RC signs off on the event. A few years ago, BMORG started seeking directly with the event itself. The first draft of the agreement was pretty bad, which led to an uproar. AAR has been negotiating with them for 3 years, and we’re pretty close. The idea is that it will be an annual agreement though.

Discussion Topic



  • Recycling. Let’s talk about it earlier. (Wrinn)
  • Leave No Trace (Xander)
  • What should we do for Flipside’s 20th? (George)
  • Warehouse use and equipment use; also use by minors (Beth)
  • Fall Town Hall
  • Town Hall wrapup
  • Revisit road shows (Izzi)
  • Free vs abusive speech (Monkey)
  • Mentoring solutions for leaders (Kat?, Clovis)
  • Gifting, decommodification, and corndogs (Prost)
  • Photography & privacy (add Scott Kentros)
  • Burner Explorers (Becky)
  • Seek new CC members and scribes
  • Is Flipside a white people thing? Ticketing policies, event advertising strategies, and other organization stances  as related to diversity of participants 
  • Public sexuality and sex (from a community discussion around recent events)
  • Community perception of the LLC (aloof, inaccessible, holding different values than the community, arrogant – obviously not all community members have these feelings – is this a problem, and can we solve it if so) 
  • What is the cc for? (not why was it created. What purpose is it intending to serve now, and is it doing so?) Some important LLC decisions are intentionally not being communicated to the community. This is causing some bad blood. Can important decisions be broadcast to the community without too many identifying details?
  • what’s in a theme camp, and why are there so dang many of them?  (been a while since I’ve had this discussion, right?)

Date assignments. Owners shown in [brackets]:

  • Jun 26: Seek scribes & CC members; Recycling [Bonobo]; LNT [Turtle Bunny, Xander]
  • Jul 10: Warehouse use, equipment use, use by minors [Beth]; Burner Explorers; Choose Town Hall producer
  • Jul 24: 20th anniversary [George]
  • Aug 07: Town Hall Planning; Gifting, decommodification, and corndogs [Prost]
  • Sep 11: Town Hall walk-through; Photography & privacy [Amy]
  • Sep 25: Town Hall wrapup; Revisit road shows [Izzi]
  • Oct 02: What is a theme camp [Monkey]?; LLC perceptions & transparency [Monkey]
  • Oct 16: Free vs abusive speech [Monkey]
  • Oct 30: Diversity/outreach [Monkey]; Is Flipside too white? [Monkey]
  • Nov 13: Public sexuality [Monkey]
  • Nov 27: Mentoring [Kat/Clovis]; What is the cc for? [Monkey]
  • Dec 11: Mixer
  • Jan 8: Calendaring

Next meeting

Turtle Bunny

CC Meeting 17 October 2016






ATTENDEES: Clover, Prost, Kat, Monkey, Turtle Bunny, Beth, Henry, Problem,Dahling, Cooper, Chainsaw, Susanne, Breezy, George, Switch, Wrinn, Misty

TOPIC: Flipside Principles


MOTION: Acknowledge Burning Man’s 10 principles as foundational in the creation of ours in places LLC feels appropriate.  MOTION PASSED

MOTION: We make time at CC retreat to write up behaviors and values of our community, from looking at the principles we have.  MOTION PASSED

AAR LLC Update

  • Getting a new TV!

Regionals Update

  • ‘Engulf’ is the new regional is Kentwood LA. 300 burners to start, among org. longtime flipizens, they took some notes from Flipside. They worked hard to create a solid foundation for future burns. Aside from a few circumstances out of their control. Huge territory, lots of pines and skanky ponds.

Area Facilitators Update

  • 1st real LLC AF meeting of the year. Put together permanent calendar.
  • Leads nominations close OCT. 28th
  • What time will there be notifications?
  • Nov. 2nd (before thanksgiving holiday)
  • Do we intend to post the calendar someplace so we can all see it?
    • Limited visibility, appropriate dates will be made public
    • IF you need to see certain dates bring it up and we’ll talk about it

Flipside Principles (Prost)

  • Ten Principles of Burning Man
    • Radical inclusion
    • Gifting
    • Decommodification
    • Radical self-reliance
    • Radical Self-expression
    • Community Effort
    • Civic Responsibility
    • Leave no trace
    • Participation
    • Immediacy
  • Duplicates present. Distilled down to 6.5 principles and then a further step to 3 Principles at Flipside
  • Principles of Flipside
    • Self expression – creative self expression in artistic creation and so
    • Accountability – hold ourselves resp. for our own needs
    • Cooperation – participants work together to mediate and dissolve conflicts and to create bigger things than anyone could do alone.
  • 6 principles we’re worried about:
    • Radical inclusion
    • Gifting
    • Decommodification
    • Leave no trace
    • Participation
    • Immediacy
  • Many burns are adding the 11th principle of consent in the mix, we should include that to go over it
  • Went to a really cool work shop on principles. Flipside was her 1st burn, and didn’t realize that Flipside only had 3 principles. One thing that sticks out to me is that because their so general we cant find a good barometer to gauge. How do we continue to challenge ourselves to uphold these. There are descriptive rather than prescriptive. More like here’s what were doing and this is our compass that we abide by. Lets  get more specific. Its easy to dismiss the intricacies. Where would consent fall in those 3 principles. This is a good conversation to have because if I go to another burn where they don’t have principles, is this really a burn? Ethos. Its what makes us unique.
  • Immediacy- we seek to over come barriers..
  • Our principles are very broad, Burning Man’s principles are more restrictive. More like “rules.”
  • How do you provide visualizations for our principles in action how can we show the growing community what we mean? There’s some complexity there and I don’t know what the answer is, but I think there’s an educational aspect missing. This is the challenge. We could do descriptive or umbrella everyone.
  • The principles have always been descriptive, not prescriptive. Back in the day, leave no trace meant more…We show up with immediacy and we leave without a trace to question almost if it ever even happened…3 principles are not enough. They could be applied in a church group or boy scout troop. I think 3 is just too strong. You can’t always respect the 10 principles the same all the time. You have to make a trade off. Our 3 principles allow us to not have to make that trade off. Another thing I like is that I can remember ALL of them! I’ve spoken to Burning Man employees who cant remember all 10! While immediacy and decommodification aren’t blatant.
  • A Burning Man guy calls the 10 principles “guidelines.” 3 points make a place…10 make an oddly shaped structure. It doesn’t have to be descriptive. Of everything that is our  culture. The important thing is that these set up the basis to have that type of conversation.
  • I disagree with it. Its more fundamentally a thing. What do we want the principle to do? You can get broad and abstract. WE don’t want to change anyone’s behavior…more of an identity type of thing. One of the reasons organizations write down mottos and principles is to put them down into an operational thing. If you don’t know what to do, go look at the principles.
    • Boundary between descriptive and prescriptive
    • Vagueness vs specificity
    • This is who we want to be, this is who we want you to be to…If you want to be like us change yourself to fit our aspirational principles
    • Specificity makes it easier for people to adjust to the principles. Distilling it down to 3 statements on who we are is easier than 10…again, it depends on what we’re trying to do with them.
  • How did we end up with 3 instead of 10? In between 10 and 3 are 6.5.. The main principle is genuine self exp. Fewer rules are better. Photography and videography effects on immediacy of the experience. Ice sales, etc.. Why is that a rule? The 10 principles didn’t make sense in discussion as principles…they are more like rules or guidelines. In 2008 when all the 6.5 stuff was going on, in 2010 we decided upon the 3 principles. They encompass all the things Burning Man started and the 6.5 Flipside came up with.
  • We wanted principles and not rules. We wanted a frame work to not make it so strict. We have by-laws that are general,   we have policies and procedures that are more specific. Having 3 principles makes it more flexible and elegant. More open for interpretation.
  • I think we have run into a real issue with identity. There’s probably some utilitarian systems that don’t include accountability and responsibility. On some level saying who we are is like saying who we are in a way other people aren’t. If you have a generalized thing that describes what everyone is about, people wont understand our true culture. One thing to think a bout while we’re building, how do we tell people who we are.
  • Is there something that were lacking in our expression with these 3? Checks and balances. If we had a bunch of trash in the camp sites, we probably didn’t communicate LNT well enough. Are we looking at symptoms that are leading us to think we’re not being clear enough with our ethos? Do we do check and balances on if we’re covering all 3 things? For me as a new comer, I was excited to know what made those events different. Are we encouraging 1st timers to have an experience? Nuance possibility of things when at a burn, its overwhelming. Its nice to have reins. Are we admitting that we accept the 10 principles as our foundation of the  principles? Are we still connected to that or are we just making our 3 our own? What makes us different? The principles. Are we expressing that and is it being respected?
  • In my opinion the 10 lay out the frame work that defines us as a participant created event. As a participant, when I started burning we had the 10 principles. At some point along the way there were 3. Its good to have the community discussing this. What’s the timeline for the transition?
  • The 10 principles articulated in 2003. My first year was 97 at black rock. The 2 things they stressed were participation and community. 97- early 2000’s. In many ways it came out of Larry(?) thinking of what makes them unique. It became a yard stick, without it how would you know? There was a big community discussion about burning man turning into a franchise. Burning man perspective, it comes down to “is our behavior adhering to the 10 principles?” Our 3 are a great umbrella but it doesn’t provide enough guidance. Maybe self reliance rather radical self responsibility. There always a discussion…what’s the 11th principle? Maybe we should reconsider revising the statement?
  • Are the 10 vs 3 mutually exclusive?  Can we in cooperate the 10 into the 3. Can we use them to more clearly define the 3 principles. If we adopt that mindset then its clear to me that adding in consent would fit under accountability. That’s how we can address these issues in a very specific way. We can use them as a tool
  • I think looking at the 6 things, I don’t see in our principles. If I look at the other 4, they aren’t rules but they are an important part of our community. Its hard for newbies to understand what’s going on otherwise. I think gifting would be hard to fit under one of our 3. If we can’t find a spot under the 3 principles then we might need to look at a revision.
  • I hate the 10 principles…10 commandments. However I think we lost something massive when we went from 10 to 3. It what our social norms are, how can newbies know what community their getting into? Social Norms. I learned tonight, leave no trace. Loved hearing about where that came from. I think we’ve lost somethings, too generic. Is it semantics? Concept behaviors, these example of behaviors…expanding it might be the answer.
  • I think that building a list of actions that can come from those and the survival guide. Beneficial to have on website and survival guide…these are somethings or actions that our principles might lead to.
  • Our principles might not be different enough to differentiate us…self expression does. Radical is an extreme word, maybe use accountability.
  • Something I dislike is not following the principles. Burning Man decommodification…sell coffee. Immediacy…art from burning man to go out into the real word. Their photo policy sucks. The 10…compromise their principles. Gifting is a guideline. We don’t define what a gift is. We could talk about adding that but is gifting what makes our event what it is? Festivals are starting to sound like us. That might be a signal to differentiate ourselves and change our language.
  • Principles provide umbrellas for us. Who we are and what we do. What I want is for us to have a list of descriptive elements of what we do. We throw events where there’s no vending. We do sell Ice…we have been doing this for a long time…its not a principle but the ‘what we do things are descriptive.’ Having a list of what we do…descriptive list of things we have observed our events being. We don’t have to have the same list for every event. We can change them to be more appropriate. As long as we make sure that none of these ‘What we do’ statements doesn’t go against one of our principles. It would be best if, for everything we say we do, we draw a line back to some principle. Wrinn and switchs’ idea…I don’t believe that the 10 are divisible into the 3. They are aspects of our 3. Lots of layers there…I don’t think consent should be stuffed into the accountability bucket. 3 principles provide a great foundation for us, we can still have a list of things, perhaps we don’t have to number it. We could potentially take things off the list and not leave a numbered hole.
  • Beliefs and actions. Good idea. If you say this is how we apply these principles. Helping is something that distinguishes us from Burning Man. Could say that’s gifting. Communal effort. I feel that’s what makes this community special. Everyone is a helper.
  • I am sitting here looking at the website. The website is our outside voice .Most people don’t look at survival guide unless they’re going. Keeping it at 70,000, to say there is no way to allow vending there, is kind of crazy. They want to put peoples art into the world because that’s how the artists make their money.
  • So I’m looking at survival guide. 1st burn Flipside 2010. I didn’t get a survival guide, I went on the website. I didn’t know about gifting till the Friday after we got there. I was utterly in disbelief. After going to Flipside I like the idea of having the 3 to give people an idea. Reference burning man but we’re smaller. Having our 3 principles with the break out stuff on the website. I wouldn’t be able to remember to 10 if I was having a conversation.
  • Consent. Self Expression is offered as a gift to others. I’m gonna pick on gifting…We talk about this as an experiment of a gift economy but if we’re not describing that as a principle then how is it getting through? When you volunteer, build theme camp, it’s a gift. What’s the most important thing? We’re falling short in describing a few things in this puzzle we’re putting together. I came across this because I went to show someone and it wasn’t there. Education…hey look! This is part of this!
  • Further point on gifting. Self-expression Is a form of gifting…that’s how generic the triad is. The thing I want to talk about, noticed a couple times about principles being descriptive vs prescriptive. There’s no advertising, decommodification…event not based on money transactions.
  • Fast food commercial used Burning Man to sell. For Flipside, how have I seen this manifest in my own personal experience. How dies that change when we do a town hall? How likely am I to take a teachable moment in any of these places where our community meets. When someone has not gotten the memo. People clearly don’t know if they drop a cig on the ground…are we evaluating a deficiency in our expression and sharing of our principles? Also, by not stating clearly that we value certain principles, are we not owning them in a way? Does that imply a lack of value because these 3 are not specific enough. How do we deal with these things in action? Are we expecting a level of education on these principles? How do we use them as tools and not weapon. Participant got made fun of for lack of costuming…that is the antithesis of our principles. IS there a lack of expression of these expectations?

MOTION: Acknowledge Burning Man’s 10 principles as foundational in the creation of ours in places LLC feels appropriate.

  • Do we need to base all of our principles off of Burning Man? You can go to each website and see for yourself. We don’t need to connect the dots for people.
  • Are our principles Burning Man principles? Is our comm. Buring Man comm.? Cultural divide, there is a difference in principles. Saying we’re inspired by Burning Man is one thing…to say the 3 are a distillation of the 10 is another. What are we now? I feel like there is a distinction.
  • False equivalency that if we do this one comparison, we have to do these other 30 things. I think this motion is for the 3 principles. I think all of these are our principles even if we don’t spell them out. These things are compatible, not in conflict.
  • Ex: Whenever looking at 3 principles on website, I see you’re looking at the 3, did you know these are based on the 10 from Burning Man?
  • Our principles follow us we for all things all year round. We do a good job of abiding by our principles, not Burning Man. We aren’t living the 10 year round, we are living the 3.
  • Recap the motion.
  • We’ve moved beyond that.
  • Suggestion. You’ve never heard this in a CC…why not just give the explanation of how we got to the 3, a history of where we’ve come from.


MOTION: We make time at CC retreat to write up behaviors and values of our community, from looking at the principles we have.

  • We aren’t sure what we want to say…enough evolution has come, been with 3 for a while, reevaluate what we want them to say. We need to take some time to decide where those lie now. Moving this to a retreat makes more sense with more time allotted.
  • I don’t think we can sit in this room and word smith something. I am wary to have this discussion outside of the community. Do we explore a different format? WE have 4 non CC members here. I would like to see the community more involved. We can have this talk again, are we really gonna make progress at the retreat?
  • Community principles expressed in our event, historically is to facilitate community. I agree, maybe there’s a better way…there’s a cognitive dissonance between old and new participants.
  • Idea behind my motion is a list…things like gifting, decommodification. So when we bring this to the community we have something to offer. That’s why I suggest a basic list at the retreat so we can encourage a larger group of people to give feed back. Emphasize this info at the mixer. These are behavior/values our principles do…so people have a clear idea of what to expect.
  • Opposed to 2 sets of principles. They are for the community. And AAR…we’re broken if we do that. WE cant run AAR and the year round community. Can’t function on 2 sets. I like the fact that the current 3 are year round. Anything else we add needs to be just as cohesive.
  • CC retreat, discussion of Flipside and potentially separate and with burner culture. Purpose of clarification and understanding of where our next steps are. I don’t feel comfortable making recommendations on our culture at CC retreat. We should keep it to CC business. It’s one of those things that’s better to have the conversation first and then ask the community. Sounds like a great place to have that discussion.
  • Simplified: I would like to put on the CC agenda a further discussion of Flipside and burner cultures and values at the retreat.
  • There’s only so many of us who can show up. The flip side of that, effective communication with community at large is ongoing problem. Best suggestion, surveys? Lots of displaced info on FB.
  • That’s an issue. The reason that I don’t want to have this discussion at CC retreat: the community isn’t present statistically and uninvited. If we’re gonna do something where people aren’t invited its because its so involved that our venue doesn’t work for it. It’s a means for us to prep discussion and not actually the policy discussion.
  • Discuss at retreat without coming up with hard solutions.


  • 4th principle- AGENCY. Idea that setting ourselves apart from other places . One of the things that’s really special is the idea that if you want to be in charge of things you can, if you want to make meaningful decisions you can. You have agency at our events and we value that highly. We try not to make rules to not limit peoples agency. We specifically go out of our way not to do that. Do-ocracy. Agency is important, to take action and do stuff for yourself is important to us. The biggest difference of doing to a rave or a dance party at Flipside is I  helped build the dance party.
  • There’s a lot of stuff that we value that isn’t reflected in the 10. You wouldn’t come up with consent per say. But we have a paragraph on accountability. Avoidance of unnecessary rules. You can derive that from our principle but not explicit. Do-ocracy comes out of something else, AAR’s 3 purposes. I like monkeys idea, few broad philosophical statements and then the things that grow out of those main points. I support that approach.
  • I’m on a branding/marketing kick. Bigger problem of marketing our principles to people. The cream of our crop can’t remember! Being able to live in the year round principles…we need to somehow make these memorable for people.
  • 10 or 3 are descriptive. Don’t worry about backing ourselves into a corner. If we brought everything we needed we’d be islands of people who had everything we need. Not to get hung up on ideals…every event goes this way? Year round? Maybe there’s some things that are more lax.
  • I’m fine with not living up to one principle if we are picking up on another principle. Our principles are a triangle…sometimes you have to give on one for another to make it work.
  • Just because you do something that’s not in line with a principle doesn’t mean your against it. Unfortunately money is the way the world goes round. It would be a financial disaster to include ice prices in the tix cost. Blind tiger wasn’t radically inclusive, you had to earn it. There’s give and take. If you choose to have a fund raiser, you’re doing it to raise money to gift.


CC Business

  • CC Retreat
    • Check your email. 12 so far confirmed. Staying in a Villa. We can add people to bring our cost down. Happening in a month.
    • How can we pay you back?
    • Pay cash, Paypal, etc. Not getting enough email responses.
  • Old Business
    • Reschedule volunteer recruitment and retention
    • Confirming member status for Sparky.
    • Does anyone know if Kate is on sabbatical or stepped down?


TOPICS: Recycling; Accountability


STACK: Pixie

CC Meeting 26 September 2016





ATTENDEES: Mer, Cooper, Button, Adam, Problem, Clover, Henry, Pixie, Rocky, Prost, Beth, Izzi, Babbage, Breezy, Christie, Turtlebunny


MOTION:  Do scribe interviews next Monday, October 3.  MOTION PASSES.

7:44 AAR Update (Adam)

  • Thomas and Princess stepped down, let the record show that they served the board admirably. We have a process for bringing on provisional members

AF Update (Mer)

  • We had Town Hall, and we had a retreat.
  • There was a warehouse cleanup. [woots all around]
  • Our policy on the warehouse should be: don’t treat it like it’s your house, treat it like it’s your best friend’s house.

Town Hall Recap

  • So the way this works is, we talk about the positive things first, then do feedback. Good format for all sorts of things/meetings.
    • Kudos to Bean, Squirrel–they painted the bathrooms.
    • Dano led the charge on disposal of trash.
    • Henry helped get rid of a bunch of stuff.
  • Other things people liked:
    • Having the meeting outside worked.
    • Set-up and tear down was quick, kudos to a well-organized group of people
    • The fact that Izzi called out hands for tear down meant that it got done quickly
    • Storm clouds helped the impetus for teardown efficiency
    • Okay so we’ll make sure to schedule a tornado for 5min after close next year
    • From what she’s heard, the feedback is that voting inside the meeting space/room was good. People getting a few minutes of AC helped.
    • Three tents + chairs were good. Plus, we were able to get chairs out of the conference room: we got to use the event as a way to reorganize things. We didn’t get complaints from neighbors.
  • What can we improve on next time?
    • I think we need airflow in the tents outside.
    • We had a few extra tables that we didn’t need and weren’t being used.
    • Maybe we need fewer tents for the AAR booths?  [It becomes apparent that the referenced tables are the ones we set up in between the shade structures to cover up the AV cables being run for sound]
    • We should engage volunteers and departments and make those tables available to them ahead of time.
    • We should encourage, not ask, if the AFs want to use the tables
    • Anything we can do to help the voting process go more smoothly?
    • [Re: marking participants as they acquired stickers and came inside to vote]: We went with sharpies over stamps, we won’t do that again. Sharpies weren’t going onto people’s hands because of sweat and sunscreen.
    • Next year: need a stamp
    • It’s helpful to have a table.
    • Was there a bottleneck of people at the stamp/sticker table? How can we fix that?
    • Ut was slower because we didn’t have a stamp and the sharpies weren’t working
    • We should have 2-3 people doing stamps
    • I’ve always viewed the corruptability of the voting process as a feature.
    • It’s better to print out theme names instead of writing them out
    • How was the sound setup at the back?
    • Historically the people at the back get louder, so you can’t hear in the front, so if you put speakers in the back ….
    • There’s no such thing as perfect
    • So no change. Thank you for bringing sound, Babbage
    • Liked sound level, didn’t blare in her ears.
    • Felt like CC presentation was boring (even though it gave the LLC time to count votes)
    • Maybe we can figure out a way to make it more dynamic and interesting
    • Was it a conscious decision to have the art AF present on DaFT selection?
    • AF didn’t want to do it, so I stepped up
    • I don’t think we did as great a job of reaching out to speakers.
    • So we should set expectations with speakers earlier
    • We should maybe do that in the middle of august

Respect Discussion Recap (Kat)

  • Do we want to defer until Kat can be here?
  • Only about seven community members showed up. That was okay, because you can have a different discussion with a smaller group. Some people might have been scared about the length of time we allocated for the discussion.
  • We need to look at the scheduling of those things to give ourselves protection, timing it so that more people can attend.
  • We thought that scheduling it around town hall would mean that a lot of people who were in from out of town could come, but I don’t think there were many out of towners that showed up
  • We should check in with kat re: scheduling and participation [for events like this in the future]
  • We should ask community members what they want to talk about
  • It was a lot of info to take in. I liked the open discussion format. Kat had trouble with the wifi and that impacted her flow.
  • Maybe we should check that out the day before to make sure it was up and running. I always have a hotspot I can bring and deploy. Problem, we have several different access levels to the wifi, maybe there’s another level that can be used for meetings like this?

CC Business

  • CC Retreat
    • We’re down to 12 ppl right now, doesn’t include a scribe and an LLC. looking at $150/pp. Was wondering if people were willing to give financial help, right now it looks like a crunch unless we ask people for specifics. Personally stressed about putting this on my CC. have 8-9 ppl who can afford to go, 3 who can’t, 1 who said they can help. Should we move forward?
    • We could have a day long meeting at the warehouse
    • The CC can use our place for the retreat if they want
    • OK I’ll kill the reservation but protect the dates
  • Scribe Interviews
    • How are we going to deal with scribe interviews?

MOTION:  Do scribe interviews next Monday, October 3.  MOTION PASSES.


TOPICS: Revisiting the Three Principles




CC Meeting 12 September 2016






ATTENDEES: Button, Cooper, Kataluna, Pixie, Prost, Adam, Turtlebunny, Problem, Dahling, Kati, Izzi, Clover, Mommacat, Starckle, Clovis, Babbage, Sam, Bonobo

TOPICS: Flipside Volunteer System Requirements; Communicating Open Positions; Town Hall Walkthrough



8:00 — Meeting starts

  • Henry’s topic of volunteer recruitment and retention is being postponed. Not sure if he wants to own it or if someone else wants to.
  • Dahling: if it could be stacked onto someone else volunteery, that’d be awesome if we could talk about it at the same time.

AAR LLC Update (Problem)

  • Not much to talk about because of That Thing in the Desert, we paid rent on the WH so that’s settled.
  • So wait, we pay rent for a whole year at one time?
  • Yes.
  • Triple net lease means the actual money you pay in rent is their profit. Taxes, utilities, rent, and maintenence, divided by square footage.

Area Facilitator Update (Dahling)

  • Relatively quiet, gearing up and assessing for leads recruitment and ready to put out a blast, have our retreat this weekend, pretty much it.
  • That land search poll that Sexton put out, has anything been done with that? Are we going to get to see the results, or was it just social media masturbation?
  • Scott is the land search lead, just today I was doing number crunching on the raw results and there were 373 respondents, asked how many hours people were willing to drive, bias towards number of hours people were willing to drive–people were willing to drive more than three hours, 231 said they were from Austin, 38 from DFW, 13 from San Antonio, 7 from Corpus, 20 from elsewhere including Canada. Bias from respondents from Austin is disproportionate to the — ⅔ respondents from Austin, in reality about half of FS comes from Austin, based on mailing addresses. A little bit of a bias from people wanting to be closer to regions they were closer to, but not as much as you’d expect. For the purposes of the survey, we divided the state into five pie wedges. The SW was by far the most popular region. Bias towards that, but not as much as you’d expect. The SW region was overwhelmingly popular. Houston has their own regional, Unbroken Spring. DFW wanted it to be in their backyard. Asked about swimming and trees, had the scales reversed–general bias to swimming holes and trees as more important but wasn’t as clear cut, people wanted trees but swimming holes wasn’t as important. I have a lot of concerns that will make me think “we’re not going to have FS there, even if it checks everyone’s boxes, but I’m not going to say OK to a property that checks nobody’s boxes.”
  • The info on how many people are coming from a theme camp (TC) and badlands, not necessary key for picking land, but it does help us re: portos, roads, etc. We’re thinking about population totals, rather than focusing on who’s where and how we’re picking land.
  • One way the data would effect it is if you have a greater concentration of TCs then we don’t need as many trees because they have big structures. Our current land is better for TCs. Kind of odd–tree cover and SW TX is mutually exclusive (IE there’s not many trees in SW TX). Also the way that the survey was structured made you pick one region instead of being able to pick multiples.
  • I remember thinking about this when I looked at it at the survey, but I’m willing to drive up to five hours, but that’ll have a big effect on how many Work Weekends (WWs) I can make it to, and don’t know if that was something that was considered when the survey was made.
  • Google forms makes it easy to add a five point scale, so that’s how the survey was designed. 259 said they camped with TCs, 97 with a few friends, and 19 by themselves.
  • In response to what Prost said, trees are actually still really important to theme camps. I haven’t set foot in our current “swimming hole” since 2011–back then it was to stagnant and sketchy, and recently it’s been like “don’t go near it, you might die”. So to me, swimming holes definitely aren’t as key as they were back at Flat Creek and there was no shade and we needed the swimming hole to stay cool during the day. But speaking from a TC lead’s perspective, yeah, we have big structures, but that shady space for tents is absolutely key to keep our campers happy.
  • Trees are great but murder trees are not so great. 1-2 downed trees per event is kind of scary.

8:20 Regional Update (Clovis)

  • I took it upon myself to go check out our other regional in Gerlach, pretty nice, fairly big. Big PnP (Plug and Play) camp got vandalized. I ran short of cables for the temple burn, inducted a young provocateur to come with me and grab some cable from that PnP camp, so it probably happened during temple burn (everyone who was there murmurs that they agree). Myschievia is coming up, Engulf (New Orleans) burn coming up.

8:27 Flipside Volunteer System Requirements (Dahling)

  • Before I became the Volunteer Coordinator (VC), I had this master plan of re-coordinating the volunteer system. Right now it’s a combination of private excel spreadsheets, google docs, wikis, and I want it all unified into a system. The wikis have been a pain point for rando 1st time volunteers. They don’t know what to click on, maybe the lead entered it wrong, and uhhhhhhghghhh.  I want a system that keeps volunteer shifts in a database, for example: the Sanctuary (sanc) page knows if you’ve been trained or not, makes the shifts available to you at the discretion of the lead, etc etc. I had a meeting before BM and hashed out a doc for requirements for this potential system. Big question for the CC that we couldn’t resolve w/o community input: we’re storing crap in a database, tying it to your BFS account, have ability to mark how many shifts you’ve done over your time in the community etc etc. It’s good for leads appreciation because we can track line volunteers who work like 40hrs per FS, because right now we don’t know how many or who those people are. It’d be nice to be able to track those volunteer hours. But there’s the privacy issue about the things people are doing at FS. We wanted to open this up before we did anything.
  • We have buy in from many leads, not many keys–the topic is, do you guys think there’s a problem with tracking this data–what about performance data like “never shows up to shift” are there concerns with that stuff being documented and kept
  • There’s already a privacy concern with wikis that are gathering emails and phone numbers. Would like to see system that removes those from public consumption.
  • Point of inquiry: does that mean you’re happy with this even though it means we’re storing it privately and permanently?
  • Yes.
  • Like the idea of shared volunteer database. Having filled out the same form for the same department over multiple years, it’d be nice to have the ability to put all of it in every time and tell them my qualifications, that’d would be helpful for the user and the volunteer who wants to participate. As well as people who want to weed through the volunteers they have in their cache to get a good matchup of volunteers for a single shift. I did the sanc schedule this year, and figuring out how to reconcile sanc shifts with Ranger shifts was a pain in the ass. If we could work together that’d be fabulous. Regarding privacy issues: the institutional knowledge we have about people’s skills can be sensitive–not be the best info to pass around departmentally–but I like where this is going overall.
  • Agree with Clover. I jumped in feet first at Burnt Soup, noticed where people were strong and where they were not. We had an issue at greeters because there was a miscommunication re: signup sheets and a lot of slots didn’t get filled, and the sheets weren’t available on site. Having those sheets available so leads could go in and grab those things seems like a great resource for a lead. Looking at it from a planning aspect, a database (DB) like this could make things flow easier.
  • In favor of having this DB. But feel like it’s my job to catastrophize, so–If we do have this persistent data or how you performed, we know a lot of other burns give discounted or free tickets to volunteers based on previous years. If you’re tracking this info, why aren’t you using it? People will look for ways to use that info once they know that we can track it, and they might start to expect discounted tix or omission from a potential lottery, etc. We want to be able to say to people that their volunteering was a gift. If we don’t, it gets into weird minimum wage issues that we can’t possibly meet. There are probably moral hazards that I haven’t thought of yet that a system like this could lead to.
  • In general this sounds like a great idea. Depending on who has access to this info–
  • We’d have different access levels for the volunteer, the lead, AF, LLC.
  • Given lead turnover, you can let go of this staying private info. 60-something leads with web access–it’ll be there and hackable with your real name and proof that you’ve been at this place, but it’s all there anyway already.
  • Yes, if you hack the site you could get at everyone’s stuff
  • There’s a fine line between “I can find it if I can search Google vs I can find it if I hack this website”. Some people like Prost never enter their real name into the website.
  • Would you be adding any safety info in there, ICS training, first aid cards, any time sensitive documents?
  • There could be an expiry date for things, as an option for leads
  • Probability of hacking might be low vs the convenience of having that info at your fingertips
  • Volunteering is a gift, they do make the event go but they’re not the only people who do it. There are lots of people who contribute in lots of ways–TCs contribute too.
  • I like idea of consolidation, and a historical perspective. DBs are only as good as the data entered into them. Favoritism that might result from the data that gets entered, makes me nervous. How do you grade some of this stuff, maybe too subjective? That leads to liability issues.
  • I’m not sure there’s much impact to the potential problem that Adam pointed out. If people start getting entitled and expecting special treatment or discounts for tickets, the only thing that’s going to lead to could be potentially a shitload of emails to Dahling asking for special treatment, which could be easily solved with an auto-response message.
  • I like idea for a central repository for one year’s event–like having it be stored until after leads appreciation. Might be nice to make it easy to sign in, but I’m not comfortable with using it as a system of reporting on the volunteers and how they’re doing. One of the things we’re about is growth, and I don’t want the fact that someone did poorly last year to prevent them from trying to do it better this year. Leads are human, and they might read a report and nix someone from volunteering, and thus prevent them from ascending. Don’t like the idea of carrying it year to year, I like it as a tool to keep volunteer info in a central place, including shift info.
  • The devil is in the details. There are lots of personal details I have to deal with when scheduling sanctuary. I’m a masochist and I love spreadsheets. Red yellow green. Wanted to balance experience and newness vs training. Relying on info that people had provided for maybe the sixth time while signing up was difficult. I like idea of institutional knowledge for the facts, but not necessarily the potential bias. I like the central space. I don’t assume anything I put online is private. I don’t like relying upon info that’s been shared in seven different places to gather data for planning. If it could all be gathered together in a single spot it would help.
  • As it turns out, I’m a professional data scientist!
  • I like this as a tool and would hate to see us get caught up on the details on opinions of a person’s performance. If I can see they’ve been to the last three Safetysides or regional events I’m going to put that person on that shift, as opposed to someone who’s brand new. People might want to branch out and try out a different department and if that doesn’t work out it, I don’t want this big scarlet letter on PERMANENT RECORD. I filled out census from BM and didn’t want to rate my transformational experience on a scale of 1 to 7. If I’m a lead I want someone who knows what’s going on and is prepared–and I want to know there’s a balance in our shifts. Rather than knowing someone who screwed up their last shift because they screwed up their last timeslot. Can we use this as a tool but not a weapon to build a community?
  • Specificity is important. We shouldn’t create permanent records, that sounds insane. Centralizing info for who wants to do what is good, a place to say “person has done these things” is fine. Considering permanent report cards = taking power and experiential learning away from leads and potential new ones, getting away from the here and now. For example, I don’t want to be on fire team because I don’t want to get near a big fire. But I know I’m a good spotter, but not the guy who wants to rush in there. This creates too many opportunities to let someone’s volunteerism die. If we can centralize info for people who’d like to do a new thing, that’d be great. Permanent records doesn’t work so well, doesn’t tell you anything about where someone is right now, or what their actual capabilities are. If they got into a position with a lead who was like “they sucked at everything” that doesn’t help. If we can create username that signs government name and login fine, but not to track everything.
  • Don’t mind people having their certs known. Re: volunteer evaluations: never gonna write one down, kiss my ass. If you want to know my opinion, you can ask. Several reasons. 1) too subjective 2) putting that info out is… 3) if I’ve got something shitty to say about someone I’m goddamn sure not putting it down to paper. But having people being able to track their participation would be wonderful.
  • Depending on the DB, maybe no one but the VC could have access, or maybe leads could have it, set those controls so each lead only sees the people they need to see. Need to know basis. Only use playa names on schedules. Disclosure waiver info–thank you so much for gifting your time and abilities, we really appreciate your gift to this event–inform them you’re putting this in a DB so if someone’s paranoid they’ll tell you. Would give people peace of mind in terms of knowing where their info is going.
  • When I bought my ticket and signed up (for Burnt Soup) it asked for my info anyways, and I don’t know where that’s going. Knowing where it’s going makes me feel comfortable. We don’t know where people are printing it out and leaving it on their kitchen table. If it’s in a DB then it’s in more secure anyways. If it’s on a wiki then people can google it and tamper with it. 90% of this info is on people’s computers and phones and on paper anyways. Anyone could walk by and see it. Certificate records–all they keep track of at work (in kitchen she works in) is “AB has their TABC effective, this date”, managers have it listed in case inspectors come in and want to see the actual certs.
  • I see three tools here: 1) a volunteer scheduling tool in single place to facilitate and organize those activities; 2) a skills and experience DB; 3) an evaluation DB. From my experience, that’s a huge scope of work. I’ve very rarely seen the evaluation portion done well. Leads/volunteers/afterburns — that’s how that gets passed around. Certification pieces are black and white. I have first hand experience in this– and certification pieces can range from “god’s honest truth to complete fucking self promoter.” Trust the leads to figure that out and that’s the art of being a lead and scheduling shifts. Resource management– I’ve got so many horror stories about 1) signing up 2) stay signed up 3) know where they’re supposed to be at the event. In terms of the scope that’s being laid out here– we need to take baby steps. Bite off the scheduling piece first and get that nailed down before we start jumping into the other things.
  • Clarification on re-certs
  • So that part is in the bag. That’s all.
  • 1) In the past there’s been Rangers engaging in inappropriate behavior on shift. There has to be a method of institutional knowledge of that person doing that. Beyond not showing up etc– like, “this person is a dangerous person to do this shift.” Needs to be communicated to other depts. Would there be more comfort with this notefield if it was only AF accessible–? 2) half of my motivation is the “volunteer roulette” process is horrible. It literally took me 100hrs to sort through all the data this past year, and all the individual emails. 3) security. I’m an info security pro. I know about a lot of these concerns already. Literally nothing’s perfect. We’re not being cavalier with your data.
  • I don’t want us putting things in a DB about what people did. Nobody is perfect, and I’m not going to try new things if I know that’s happening. I like the idea that Starckles raised–I’m going to give BFS dot com my base info and trust they’re not going to fuck me over. I don’t have qualms about having the shifts I did listed in my profile–but without the comments.  Just year by year, event by event. In a DB you add as many filters as you want, while figuring out levels of access. I’ve agreed to have my info on a DB by signing up and giving my name and phone number, that’s my permission. Our community is aware of the situations that happen, and would like to think that that info could be handled and is being handled and I trust the org to do so. But it’d be cool to have a way to know if someone went to Saftetyside, or how many times, etc etc.
  • I’m still for keeping track of this stuff, but I don’t see it as burner report card–while you guys trust us and that’s great, people don’t talk smack in their afterburns or in general and so a lot of this stuff doesn’t get back to us. We do the same thing with lead feedback, CC feedback, etc–so to make it self service for the people coming in, filling this thing out, would stop double cross signups. You can’t be on call for two depts at once.
  • Is this actually a problem that needs to be solved? not the scheduling but the side info–like someone shows up drunk for a shift?
  • Sometimes it gets up the chain and sometimes it doesn’t. (Shares example about one time he was khaki, put an incident in the log, but doesn’t know if it filtered up or not.)
  • Keeping track of situations/one timers: I can see wanting to have the info. The shift lead or lead can report it, and it should be rare occurrence. We’ve had situations that were reported, and we’ve have asked volunteers to not volunteer in departments. When you make AAR aware of it, we can take care it. I don’t want that electronically stored in a DB. When they’re reported, our policy is to resolve it with the people involved, but I don’t want to make that a policy. If we start tracking that info, we’re breaking our own policy. Don’t feel comfortable making that change without a deep discussion.
  • There’s issues with legal issues, don’t want that to become subpoenas. Groups should be able to keep their info if they want it. Info that they’re volunteering to share. As soon as we get into evaluations, credit card numbers, DOBs–It’s out there and it’s a hazard to even retain it if it’s about personalities or evaluations.
  • Garbage in, garbage out: how is the lead expected to fill out report cards re: all their volunteers? Why don’t we have a single wiki DB? Because it’s too hard. Either this new tool is going to be either super simple or people are going to go back to use excel. Or they’ll revert to their own systems and then go back to email to getting the changes they need made.
  • I’m in the “teachable human” camp. You are a teachable human, and you are dynamic. There are some people I know that aren’t going to be able to do sanctuary again. That institutional knowledge is relevant, and word of mouth is important. If we can create something that’s as basic as we need for jobs, scheduling, attendance, great. It could be a marriage of oral history in the community with what has “actually happened”…we can’t come up with a panacea for volunteer input/output. We’re presented with a challenge that isn’t clear cut. I don’t want to create a monster. I don’t want something to replace the one on one experience. There should be info that should be kept off the record. I don’t want info turning into swiss cheese, where I feel less capable as a department. I want access to the tools that I need in the moment. I want to know that I can show up and not be turned away or taken advantage of in a position of vulnerability. I want to have access to info that volunteers don’t have to re enter every year into the same form.
  • Alot of this discussion is rooted in scope creep, and the question of “whose job it is to know these things?”. Morning meetings (Safety meetings with AFs and LLC, each morning at FS): this may or may not be the time to let people know that this person should or shouldn’t be allowed to staff shifts etc. We create space where you don’t have to let someone know that “this or this did or didn’t go well”. Interpersonal communications is key, and if we’re failing at that, maybe we should be talking about how to get that info year to year, month to month, locking someone into past behavior isn’t the thing. Knowing where to put someone: that’s the job. The whole point is we’re all volunteers, figuring out how to cull people is moving in the wrong direction. Tools for departments seems like it makes sense. Figuring out who’s good for what spot–that’s the job.
  • So, I’m hearing: scheduling great, credentials great, tracking great.
  • Straw poll: 1) leads: don’t write it down at all, ever  2) google docs, SQ 3) central control
  • 4th option: ways to keep info w/o…
  • We already know within departments who’s unsuited for a shift
  • So, where we ended up in this discussion is: the collection of info is great. My experience tells me that the problem with exception reporting is that it’s, you know, problematic. This is a good topic for the AF retreat. If there’s an incident, we need a process to collect that data, at the end of the day the AFs and the leads are accountable–and sounds like those incidents got handled. I don’t need to know about that if it got handled.

9:40 Communicating Open Positions (Cooper)

  • I don’t know what the current process is for identifying open lead positions–we need to reach out. The babies are coming–there were seven infants at the last town hall, and they’re being had by key volunteers in our community. We need mentorship. We have to get more engagement–to keep the event at its current size, much less grow it. Not going to get the penalty free environment anywhere else.
  • A lot of people who could be leads in ‘17 can be LLC somewhere now. We need to take that seriously. We need to be recruiting and appreciating volunteers, just because we don’t know them well enough. My experience as a lead: you should be terrified of it, you should do it, and you should be fine.
  • Froggy has done an awesome job. And she’s young and she could be a bigger part of our community. I like the idea of recognizing folks and engaging with them and trying to get them more involved. Much twinkles to Cooper and it gels with my topic (scheduled for a November CC meeting).
  • Informal volunteering/shadowing seems like a good model–popping into the shifts when you can. As volunteers and leads, we need to encourage people and rope them in. Encourage it throughout the event, not just at TH. They see the “do you want to volunteer” button when they buy their ticket–they click no because they don’t know what volunteering is, they don’t realize it’s just another, different kind of party. Need to do something to invite people within the event. Half the people I talked to at burnt soup didn’t know what volunteering was.
  • I don’t think we’re in a race to chase volunteers from other events. Not in a race to make someone a lead for our event just because they’re an AF at another event. We can always learn from younger and older events. We should cross train organizations so we have a ready pool of volunteers for critical positions. There are ways we can get people into gateway positions and make them excited, and that’s good. Communication and enthusiasm is key. Make people aware that FS doesn’t happen in a vacuum. There’s no magic bullet, just takes more communication.
  • I appreciate Starckle’s perspective, it definitely works for line volunteers. Leads and AFs need to be recruited in Dec/Jan or before. We don’t have criteria for recruiting leads and AFs except for a few departments–which we call liability leads–where they have to run it by the LLC. But what you do need to have, because we have one person departments where you don’t need to have experience in that department before you can become a lead in that department. Lots of examples of people who…(I missed something in here) you need to be more plugged in, to have someone nudging you.
  • One issue with recruiting leads for FS: we have this reputation of having our shit together. We try to structure our lead roles so that people can fail, fall flat on their face and not break FS. People are intimidated by the organization and we need to do something about that.
  • Volunteer recruitment is a hellacious job. You could do it year round and it wouldn’t work that well. In non profits, it’s a full time job, year round. Announcements and standing on a stage doesn’t work. Asking people “in person” is the only reliable way to get people into positions.
  • Smaller events are looser, more free form, don’t appear to have their shit together as much, but that might be a perceptional barrier. We might be good enough with this that it might be an issue.
  • (Shares story about Orfunner ‘08, getting held a radio and told he was khaki now.) There’s beauty in knowing you have coverage. Freedom in knowing a 300 person event is going to self manage in a way that a 3K person event isn’t. 800 people is the breakdown point. I hear this from more people than I want to: “hey my hundred best friends are throwing a party for 2900 people I hate”. Search your heart and soul for the new person, for the outsider, because this is pointless if we’re not welcoming the outsider.
  • All it takes is a nudge. Volunteering with someone else, they’re doing amazing. Pulling people in on the fly. They all interacted with LLC on the fly. Encouraging people to grow as a community and other burns. People get stuck in the sanc and PETS rut and it’s good to let people know they’re not being pigeonholed.
  • This community is great at empowering and enabling people. The only promotion I’ve ever gotten, I got in this community. Penalty free environment to learn new things and expand what you think you can do. Clovis is the best boss I’ve ever had–when I was Transpo lead he told me, “Honey, it’s okay to make mistakes. Just don’t make the same ones a few years in a row and yer fine.” How do we become more accessible? Less intimidating? Ava, Stephy, other huge networkers are good people to ping to try and find more new folks who would be good fits for various roles. Problem says people are intimidated by FS because we appear to have our shit together–I feel the same way about BM. I don’t know the first thing about how to volunteer for BM. There’s a potential problem with recruiting from the volunteer pools of other regionals, too–people need their “fuckoff burns” and we don’t want to be seen as “poaching” their volunteer pools.
  • It’s not about poaching people, it’s making sure that people who are your friends don’t get burned out. If it weren’t for Clovis I wouldn’t have kept going. You should encourage people, ensuring that your family doesn’t harm itself.

Town Hall Rundown (Pixie)

  • We know the things that need to be done, need to put them out there.
  • Mer, Cooper and Pixie will produce
    • MC: Dahling
    • Sound: Problem and Babbage
    • WH mgrs: make sure the WH is unlocked
    • Organizing community members to present themes: Pixie
    • Copy/repost the msg for people to come get stuff
    • Kati will get in touch with Russ re sticket
    • Izzi will organize portos
    • Mer: TC list on FB
    • Parking: need someone with a safety vest to tell people where to and not to park

CC Business

  • Retreat destination hasn’t been finalized. People who aren’t able to support themselves vsl people who can give a little more (Nov 11-13). Goal is to get a space to accommodate everyone who can get out there. Clover will resend the google doc. One individual is going to have to take it on financially.


TOPICS:  Respect Discussion Recap; Town Hall Recap




CC Meeting 22 August 2016






ATTENDEES: Samantha, Babbage, T-Rey, Susan, Prost, Izzi, TurtleBunnie, Pixie, Gwen, Adam, Henry, Decibel, Wrinn, Jerry, Bonobo

TOPICS: PETs and OTC Medications; Town Hall Planning


MOTION: Recommend that the LLC add OTC meds to the “must bring” list in the Survival Guide.  MOTION PASSES

MOTION: Recommend that City Planning encourage theme-camp leads to stock a first aid station including OTC meds in their camp. MOTION PASSES

LLC Update

  • New AFs:
    • Dotti stepping up from Art AF
    • Stephy moves from City Planning AF to Art AF
    • Mercedes stepping down into City Planning AF role

PETs and OTC Medications (Adam)

  • Should PETs stock OTC medications? This question came up on the PETs mailing list, but there needs to be a community discussion about this if they’re going to stop stocking them. Participants should rely on themselves for their own foreseeable needs, and should be able to turn to their neighbors for the stuff they don’t have, but is there a line beyond which people should not be expected to provide for their own needs? Also, how much do we want to stand on principle, even if it makes someone’s burn suck as a result?
  • We insist on bringing a first-aid kit. Everybody should be accountable for their experience. We should begin with theme-camp leads and educate them about having a first-aid station. If we do a better job on education, we should reduce reliance on PETs.
  • We should cover our own needs, and it should not be the PETs’ responsibility. Most places won’t accept the liability of keeping OTC meds. Educate people on what they should have in their first-aid kit. This is mostly an operational thing that should be up to the PETs lead and LLC.
  • Agrees this is an operational question. How many people are we giving OTC meds to at PETs? Is it newbie burners hitting PETs up? People should use PETs only in case of emergency.
  • Clarifies that the initial discussion on the PETs list was not about PETs being a place of last resort, but simply whether they should stock OTC meds at all.
  • Speaking as a participant, has never occurred to him to go PETs for OTC meds. If needed anything, would rely on self, campmates, or do without. Speaking as a Ranger, always carries a first-aid kit and has some first-aid knowledge.
  • May be the only person in the room who has used OTC meds from PETs, when she was really sick, and no one around had what she needed. So it worked out for her, and in her case, timing was important, so it is beneficial that there was a place to go rather than asking around at other camps. Asks whether the impetus to discontinue OTC meds was due to over-reliance on them by participants, or the expense of replacing expired meds.
  • It was about the expense and management overhead of replacing expired meds, keeping them at safe temperatures, etc.
  • Responding to the question of whether this experienced but lazy burners or newbies using OTC meds at PETs. There are people who come to Flipside as newbies at the last minute and haven’t been reached by education efforts. These people can’t really be held to account. [Sidebar on the problem of meds being required to be in packets, discussion about whether that’s really true for PETs.] Rebuts a comment from Henry suggesting that individual PETs volunteers have first-aid packs, saying this sets a bad example and is an unreasonable expectation for volunteers. Anything that can’t be handled by the contents of a first aid kit would go straight to the ambulance, so if we don’t have first-aid kits, why have PETs?
  • First year volunteering for PETs. Pulled 3 shifts, 18 hours. Gave out one dose of Immodium, treated cuts, gave out gatorade. A lot of what PET provides is assurance, that someone can look at your problem and know the right way to treat it. If the actual medication part were pared down, it would make PETs a lot easier to deal with organizationally.
  • Supports the idea of PETs deciding not have meds, but playing devil’s advocate, says, it’s better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.
  • Started out being in favor of the self-reliant approach, but is moderating that in the cours of this discussion. Newbies might not feel comfortable hitting up a neighboring theme camp or even know that they can. The Survival Guide says that PETs is for 24-hour first aid.
  • How much do we spend on this?
  • Not exactly clear, but has written checks for as much as $300.
  • So is this a point of principle?
  • No, it’s because the health inspector dinged PETs for having expired meds.
  • If we shuffle the responsibility for stocking and keeping current from the PETs department to individual volunteers, we’re just kicking the liability can down the road. Jerry has also gotten OTC meds from PETs when a PET observed him breaking out in a rash while he was volunteering, so PETs having meds can help support other volunteers.

MOTION: Recommend that the LLC add OTC meds to the “must bring” list in the Survival Guide.  MOTION PASSES

MOTION: Recommend that City Planning encourage theme-camp leads to stock a first aid station including OTC meds in their camp. MOTION PASSES

  • We need to balance participant needs and volunteer needs. If a volunteer is finding it onerous to stock OTC meds, we need to consider that.

Stack closes 8:48 PM

Town Hall Planning (Henry)

  • Set agenda; Identify speakers
  • Henry volunteers to be producer
  • We have a template agenda in the CC handbook
  • Need to find an MC
  • In the process of composing the next Flame. Are we soliciting volunteers for Parking? No, people park on their own out on the street.
  • We have a new neighbor, and need to make sure they’re cool with us having a Saturday event
  • Off-season events coordinator also helps wrangle volunteers.
  • Our former one, Emily, has resigned from that position, but might be willing to help One Last Time. Will check with the 360 AF, Mer.
  • Jerry is happy to talk at Town Hall about volunteering and leads selection.
  • Do we want to have volunteers ensuring we don’t piss off neighbors by people parking in front of them? Also, the Warehouse may need some cleanup.
  • It takes 6 people minimum to set up, and we’ll need at 2 people minimum as well to wrangle parking. It takes 6 people to close up.
  • The Off-Season Events Coordinator has organized theme camps to take on those setup/teardown roles.
  • Jerry is happy to create a signup page for Town Hall volunteering in the wiki. Also suggests we move the stage to the overhead doors, facing out.
  • Suggests there would be a lot of distracting sounds.
  • The neighbors might be open, and not want us to be projecting into the parking lot.
  • There is stuff in the CC handbook we need to cover
  • Are you expecting AFs to have booths in the fall?
  • We’ve been doing that for the past couple years.
  • [A great deal of conversation about how many shade structures the AFs need, if any, ensues]
  • We need a sound engineer: Babbage volunteers himself and his equipment with backup from Bonobo and Decibel.
  • Do we need a timekeeper? Tabled until next meeting.
  • We need an MC: Jerry volunteers.
  • Proposed agenda
    • Welcome/pledge/LNT
    • AAR update
    • Theme presentations & voting
    • Break
    • Stickets: check in with Russ
    • DaFT proposing: check in with Stephy
    • Warehouse: check in with Mer
    • CC update:
    • Closing
    • LNT reminder
    • Community announcement
    • Theme announcement

Stack closes 9:30 PM

CC Business

  • The subcommittee on Flipside work experience guidelines met last Tuesday.
  • The minutes for our last meeting were very long, and named names. Should we remove the names?
  • We’ve been doing the giant pieces of paper for theme voting. It takes a long time to write out all the themes. Can we do something simpler?
  • Bonobo: people are leaving shit lying around again. Is going to bug people to remove it.


TOPICS: Flipside Volunteer System Requirements; Communicating Open Positions; Town Hall Walkthrough


STACK: Decibel


CC Meeting 8 Aug 2016





ATTENDEES: Prost, Adam, Problem, Apple, Pixie, Cooper, Babbage, Kati, Beth, Cooper, Rabbit, Judge, Clover, Breezy, Susan, Kataluna, Clovis, Wrinn, Monkey, Bonobo, Turtlebunnie

TOPICS: Surveys and Censuses; Capitalizing on Flipside Work Experience


MOTION: Within two weeks, list [survey] questions that we want answered. If we don’t come back with questions, we don’t have a survey. Post questions on CC list. MOTION PASSES

MOTION: Create subcommittee to explore guidelines to presenting work experience. MOTION PASSES. Subcommittee: Beth, Kati, Monkey, Prost.

MOTION: Schedule CC retreat Nov 11-13th. MOTION PASSES.

ACTION ITEM: Clover and Pixie will do a poll re: places for retreat.

AAR/LLC Update (Problem)

  • We have a meeting with the company who runs gate soon, talking about what went well and didn’t, seeing if they’re interested in next year, or if we need to find new gate staff

Area Facilitator Update (Mer)

  • The CC needs a scribe–ideally, a pair of scribes–and I’ll arrange scribes until we make that happen.
  • The warehouse needs to be reorganized and cleaned up; the leads need to put their gear up in the mezzanine to help that occur. We need to take ownership of this space and that’s difficult to create; it didn’t just move along with the warehouse.
  • Site Ops will come on wed to put their gear upstairs, could be good opportunity to get other teams in on that effort. CN = bring your work gloves and get the WH organized. Team Awesome Pants get the bridge out. Can the scrap wood be disposed of?   Who makes that call?
  • It’s so freaking hot in the WH that nobody can stay upstairs long enough to move gear. We need a railing on the staircase. Need to address the airflow issue upstairs.

8:00pm Censuses and Surveys (Clover)

  • Should the org conduct surveys/censuses of the community, if so, how and when–what past efforts have occurred, and how was the data used? Is this something [the CC or AAR] wants to take ownership of, and how/why are we going to use that information? Is there a history of this, attempts, etc?
  • What kind of census/surveys should we do? Are we tracking the demographics of the community, or the interest level of participation and volunteerism, theme camps, age range? Should we do this or have someone else do it? How could we use that information and what’s the benefit?
  • Seen exit polls done at various events, might be good idea to gather this info, good to get a pulse on various issues–like whether or not to keep recycling.
  • Kiwiburn had a great exit survey and would probably be willing to share the template or online tool they used. Also, in order to get to the form to buy a ticket, you had to do a type of multiple choice questionnaire thing that helped you determine what kind of volunteer you were–that was really cute and fun.
  • One potential use would to be able to break down Flipside population along demographic lines, depending on design
  • We’ve had past attempts (in ‘12 or ‘13?) specifically about the Mass Gathering Permit (MGP) and other data, for the most part it wasn’t overly useful, it just confirmed that there is a confirmation bias. There was a census done by Tom in (‘14 or ‘15?) and didn’t find useful data. Pretty much what the CC says is what the community is feeling. Unsure of usefulness of another survey. There’s very uncomfortable data that can come from open-forms–people naming names and explicit issues in a way that you’d have to hand off to AAR, it can be an uncomfortable position to be in. Even closed CC list is too public a forum for that kind of data, so I’d want to keep the data inside AAR to avoid putting someone else in that difficult situation.
  • Question: do we want to include this reference to the content of previous surveys?
  • Clarification: free form comments = uncomfortable data?
  • Sensitive acts were named, even though specifically asked to be omitted, got mentioned anyways.
  • Asks about the Kiwiburn survey. What’s the point of getting this information? Flipside hasn’t struggled with population or growth, is this info the kind of thing we’re going to try and affect policy change with, or is it just mental masturbation–who would have access to it, who would have responsibility of going through it. Lots of people don’t want to look at that kind of thing immediately after the event is over. Are we trying to address any problems with this info or is it ego stroking?
  • As an org, I wouldn’t want to run a survey unless we’d identified problems that a survey would be the best way to solve. Another problem is there’s no way to ensure that we’re getting a representative sampling. If the people who respond are the ones who want to respond, it’s not representative in any other dimension–therefore the info might not be that useful
  • Kiwiburn data is very boiler plate, they use it to track trajectory of the event over time–population over time, distance traveled, did you bring an art project–growth curve, assessing potential needs for the community out in the future. 25-30 % response rate, pretty high. We don’t have the ability to easily make that trajectory comparison. If we had it, maybe we would use it–how is the general population changing in size and scope?
  • Surveys might not be a way to solve problems, but could be a way to identify problems. While the respondents might not be an accurate representation of the event, it’s the most data we’re going to get. Might be a useful metric for survival guide content, folks who are likely to read the survival guide are pretty likely to go and fill out a survey. Surveys can obviously be useful–we have one out about land–if we ran a survey consistently, we could get valuable data tracking.
  • Rangers have been doing surveys on “how did your shifts go?” for at least five years. Ghost also did a general safetyside survey, got 39 responses, of those 29 were Rangers–out of 100 total rangers for the event. While the entire safety dept wasn’t well represented, they got good feedback from Rangers. Probably because [Rangers] are drawing in people who like to problem solve, and that’s a good way to get data. Rangers have also come to expect surveys, so they take notes during the event on what works and what doesn’t. Consistency in calling for feedback, making it easy, causes good turnout. Having an explicit goal is key.
  • What are we trying to solve? Could help identify problems. “If you don’t measure it, you can’t manage it. If you don’t know where you are, you don’t know where you’re going.” Do we want more diversity? We have to know where we are in order to identify problems or establish baseline in terms of whether things are getting better or worse. If you conduct a survey and don’t get much response, doesn’t mean we should stop. It’s not scientific and representative to do volunteer polling, but the science of online polling has evolved a lot and we can certainly find info to figure out how those numbers could work for us.
  • We have a lot of this data. ⅕ of the population doesn’t camp with a theme camp. Ticket registry data, etc. We have a lot of this data via other means. Graphs of when people enter the event. When we’ve used polls in the past have been specific questions–what do we do with the effigy if we can’t burn it, is a MGP good for this land? Narrowly focused polls are better at getting us the data we need. Generic polls aren’t very representative of population–five percent newbies on the poll respond, when we have 25% actually attend the event. Margins of error were double digit.
  • You can take data from one source and marry it with another source. Can extrapolate conclusions based on different data sources–data you already have vs data you gather.
  • We have a lot of information but no correlation. Ex: How does the number of newbs we have correlate to whether they camp with a theme camp or not. In that case, correlation could help us ID edjumication possibilities. Maybe polling people at the event would increase response.
  • If we have 25% newbs then we need to have burner charm school. Polls and surveys could be a solution looking for a problem. We could track the way the badlands grows–there are so many other ways to find out, not sure it’s worth putting the energy into this other thing.
  • Value in surveys is breakdown in demog data, correlating with other data sets. How much data do we already have? Number of years people have been coming to FS? We should have data collection year to year in order for it to be useful.
  • Breakdown is as expected but the participants were self selecting. If we want to keep track of demographics, figure out why and what the goal is–do we want to encourage more people of color? Of course. The real question is, how do we fix that problem, not necessarily how to gather data on it. Comes down to the problem we’re trying to solve. We had more people who have been to eight Flipsides responding to the survey than we had newbs.
  • We’re talking about two different types of surveys. There’s demographics, and then there’s questions like “did you feel safe at this event?” or “how did you feel about the FEG burn?” We already know basic demographics, but pointed questions would be a good place for surveys. I’d rather know what they think about the event rather than who we are.
  • The way scientists design experiments is based on the results we’re trying to show. Draw the graph you’re trying to see. Until you know what you’re trying to answer, it’s just button pushing.
  • Button pushing is awesome. Two methods: targeted and directed vs data mining/amorphous/undirected. Maybe you want to collect as much data as possible because you don’t know what part of it is going to be useful. Or, what interventions would you take if the data said a particular thing? For example [the data field from] “duration you’ve been at FS” (assuming it was a survey taken at the event). What interventions would the CC consider recommending to the LLC based on that data? Depending on data outcome, how does that change what we recommend? Interesting data is cool but that’s not who we are. We should be addressing problems directly and using data to do so, or we should be trying to improve our event directly and using data to do so–unless we have a feeling that a wide amount of unknown data might help us at some point in the future. Doesn’t feel like us.
  • Does collecting too much information makes us look like the NSA? Surveys should be anonymous unless we do a focus group type thing. There’s a lot of existing data points but they’re hard to correlate. We don’t know how many newbs are in theme camps–if there’s one in a TC they probably don’t need to go to charmer school, but if they’re in the badlands, that’s the population we want to reach. Let’s enumerate some of the problems that we’re interested in, and design a survey that goes towards that, design followup survey on that topic. Do we know how many cars come to FS? Should we start with the kind of questions we need to answer?
  • “What is art?” And make it a True/False survey
  • One way to use this info would be building and sustaining volunteerism. What attracts people to certain departments, are we attracting people outside their comfort zone or are we encouraging burnout by asking people to do things for FS that they do outside the event? Demographics is scarier than questions that are pointed towards sustainability and participation. Is this a problem that we’re having? Our needs for surveys would be different than Kiwiburn’s survey for example. There are certain people who will fill it out, and people who will read it. How do we reach more people in the community? On site safety survey shift survey–while it’s fresh, immediately following a shift. Land survey had so many responses–will it always be the same kind of people who fill it out?
  • For newbie edjumication, addressing this is key. It’d be good to know if most newbies were showing up with a ticket they got on immediately before the event. Then something early on like Burner Charm School isn’t useful to most newbies.
  • How do we communicate with people? How do people get their info about FS? How do you get most of your info about events? Would be a good data set to have as the CC and as the full organization.
  • One place to figure out the questions we should be asking is to look back at safety logs. Senior volunteers for those departments and site ops etc can point to recurring issues that need to be addressed–like people not wearing shoes and getting hurt. Could create surveys to be interactive teaching things–turn responses into knowledge distribution that could grow our volunteer base. Could ask questions that could test to see what people know about what it takes to volunteer for, say, medical.
  • People will claim to know a lot more than you think they would have.
  • There’s nothing stopping a participant from creating a survey and tossing out on social media. The question is how much does the org want to be responsible and liable for it.
  • Targeted surveys aren’t a big deal–those are fine. Scattershot, seeing what sticks kinda survey–doesn’t promote the radical individuality. Let’s just address the problems we identify. Let’s have the discussions rather than having people take tests, possibly feeling like a barrier to entry. Let’s do this with intention rather than just seeing what’s going on. We know where the holes are, let’s just address those.
  • Should this be a doacracy? If people run off and make surveys and ask questions that make the community uncomfortable? Could ask questions that influence responses in a way that’s not good for our event? Need cooperation between individual who want to do this and the org. Should form list of problems we’re seeking to address with the data, if we’re going to do that.
  • The CC has a long history of deferring to personal interaction. It’s a doacracy, but TH interaction is more important than FB stats. Social media usage–what’s our goal? If we know numbers about participation means we can set that goal. We’re more interested in the people who show up (to CC meetings). We don’t have interest in random techno-skewed sampling. It’s an opportunity for issues to come up that are up to the community to solve, and serve specific subsets of interests–the CC can do a better job of soliciting feedback. Would much rather have people show up (to CC meetings, or the WH events in general) and voice concerns, rather than picking for possible conflicts. If you go fishing for opinions, we need measurable goals for what we want, what kind of participation we want. Kiosk at TH? Social media doesn’t neccesarily contain the audience we’re interested in.
  • The 200 people who show up at TH are no more representative than the 200 people who would fill out a survey. We (the CC) don’t have a history of doing this well, we struggle with social media and community engagement. We ask for topics and get a handful of people and the DaFTies who happen to be here anyways. Surveys and censuses are just another tool in the toolbox.
  • Straw poll:
    • ”Does anyone feel like no surveys?” (none)
    • ”Should we do surveys targeted at specific problems?” (majority)
    • ”Are surveys too big brother”? (handful)
  • Straw poll:
    • Is this something “we” should own and run (CC/the org)? (majority)
    • Should we bless someone in the comm? (majority)
  • Should we rec to AAR that a member of the org should run the census, or should we seek a non org person? If we’re going to make a rec to have a census as the CC, do we want it to be official or unofficial?
  • That’s a false distinction. If we’re tasking/blessing someone re survey, then they’re defacto part of the org. If the CC runs the survey and then someone who is running it, then it’s putting that person in a difficult situation.
  • What’s the distinction–does the CC own the surveys regardless of who does them?
  • Too abstract. CC has done survey in the past. Very targeted–what to do with the Effigy if we couldn’t burn it. Would have great issue with the CC doing a free form survey like that. Too abstract to adequately address whether or not we should do this.
  • Don’t see a reason why the CC cannot hold things in confidence. Interactions with the community, people tell us things that we can hold in confidence. There are members who could be trusted to figure out which comments should be kicked over to the LLC and which shouldn’t.

MOTION: Within two weeks, list questions that we want answered. If we don’t come back with questions, we don’t have a survey. Post questions on CC list. MOTION PASSES

  • If we’re going to do a survey, maybe limit it–people are more likely to give feedback if they have to do it less often. Kick it to the AFs first.

9:14 Break

9:25 Reconvene

Regionals Update (Clovis)

  • ”The Gerlach regional is fixin’ to happen”
  • Lots of international burns happened with success: Nordic, Nowhere, Montreal
  • George and Shayne are having an online newb orientation
  • BMORG is being charging entertainment tax for artists who were being their own entertainment.
  • Could be NV state politics, the tax charge
  • Myschievia, Freezerburn and Burnt Soup tix are going on sale soon

Capitalizing on Flipside Work Experience (Prost)

  • Lots of people are talking about how what we do as an organization is valuable in the mundane world in terms of professional experience. Do we need guidelines for doing that? How do you list your FS experience as an AF, for example? Is it okay to list as AAR or Burning Flipside by name? On Linkedin, there are 37 people who claim work experience with AAR, 9 are LLC, the other 27 claim different titles–consultant is popular. “Conflict resolution specialist.” There’s a Burning Flipside group (on Linkedin) with 25 members. Do we want to provide any sort of guidelines to volunteers about how to list their experience on their resume or on Linkedin? Or provide guidelines to how you might translate FS titles into “real world” titles? Who do you represent, how do you get that work experience validated, who can back you up?

MOTION: Set up subcommittee to set up guidelines to come up with recommendations. SECONDED

  • Supports subcommittee idea. Who’s the customer of the outputs? Is it the org or the community? Based on numbers listed, a very small number of people list FS as their work experience, but when I talk to people about what they get out of their FS experience, it’s opportunities and skills they can use in their other jobs. We’re missing an opportunity for communicating skills development that are readily applicable for helping people progress in their current jobs. We can connect work experience at FS to volunteer experience inside FS and connect that to progression in outside work.
  • If subcommittee provides set of guidelines, would that be a valuable tool?
  • Ping people who’ve translated FS resume into default resume for subcommittee membership
  • Subcommittee needs to figure out who can sign for things and vouch for people
  • AAR has written letters of recommendation for people.
  • It’d be nice if AAR had a policy on what they will do, always do. Some companies want to verify dates, titles, eligibility for rehire, strongly recommend LLC not be generic “reference”. LLC needs to come up with a policy so people know what to expect if they list AAR as a reference. That part shouldn’t be up to a CC sub comm. It should be up to the LLC.
  • Big gap between companies/HR/legal requirements about what you can reveal about your employees that people on the LLC might not know. Part of the basis is create your own reality–it’s an ever changing community organization. You say as individuals, will you vouch for me? Talk to each other about who’s going to vouch for each other.
  • Am I allowed to discuss my role as an AF, I’m referred by a potential employer? How do I translate my job description to default terms?
  • People are going to embellish their resumes, we should be talking to each other re: what is going to be said. Helping people translate that experience is a good thing to do.

MOTION: Create subcommittee to explore guidelines to presenting work experience. MOTION PASSES. Subcommittee: Beth, Kati, Monkey, Prost.

  • Offer AFs participation and will ping AF list.
  • I’m happy to continue to provide recommendation letters until requests become a barrage. I don’t want to be too bureaucratic. If someone asks me to provide a reference–don’t make me lie for you. Is [the job you did for AAR]  relevant [to the job you’re applying for]? Are you comfortable asking me to be a reference for you?
  • [To the LLC]: Take it up with your lawyer if you’re going to adopt a policy.
  • Being able to put it on my resume is not why I volunteer. It’s a benefit, but it’s not why I do the thing or show up. It can help explain gaps in work history, and it’s the longest running thing I’ve got on my resume–”involved with safety teams since 2000” looks astounding on a resume and we don’t often get to do that–but that’s not why I volunteer.
  • Corporations have official policies of no recommendations. On the side, though, you’ll probably find managers who are willing to vouch for you.
  • What are the deliverable items we’re looking for out of the subcommittee? Want to be able to give helpful community guidance as an organizational gift to our volunteers? “we’ve thought about this, if you want to be able to put this on your resume….” Not a list of rules of what you can or can’t list, or this is the official way, but as a gift and a help, a resource to community and volunteers. Include placeholder for whatever LLC is wanting to say re policy surrounding it. Don’t want to phrase the thing as a carrot to encourage people to volunteer as a lead. One of the neat things about our work experience is that it’s incongruous with other people’s work history, and we provide people with opps on work that they might not otherwise get–some people don’t understand that they can use these things on a resume. How to translate the material.
  • Let’s not limit it to lead positions (that the subcommittee gears its advice to). One of my campmates got a job chasing down weather balloon’s for Google’s global internet project based partially on his experience driving a truck for me when I was Transpo lead.
  • There’s a diversity of experience and skills [you can get through FS] that people might not appreciate. If we had a roundup of the range of skills that you could list….


  • CC Retreat
    • Fill out the Trello.

MOTION: Schedule CC retreat Nov 11-13th. MOTION PASSES.

ACTION ITEM: Clover and Pixie will do a poll re: places for retreat.

  • Trello Access
    • A member of the org has asked to be able to view the CC Trello board, so that they can figure out if it will be useful for their part of the org. Are we okay with that?
    • There’s nothing particularly sensitive on the Trello, although it’d be nice if non-CC members had read-only access. If anyone from the org wanted to look at that board, it’s okay
    • Let’s have a start date and end date
    • We should know who’s on the board


TOPICS: PETs and OTC Meds (Adam), Townhall Agenda

FACILITATOR: Turtlebunnie

STACK: Pixie


CC Meeting 25 July 2016


MONDAY, JULY 25, 2016


STACK: Pixie


ATTENDEES: Henry, Bonobo, Monkey, Blister, Pixie, Kat, Kati, Beth, Clover, Decibel, Clovis, Edie Cosmos

TOPICS: Planning the Next Respect Talk; Standardizing Dates for Town Halls; Date of Flipside; Land Search Survey


MOTION: At this time the CC does not recommend that the LLC change the date of Flipside. MOTION PASSED

MOTION: Fall Town Hall will be held, typically, the 4th weekend of September. MOTION PASSED

MOTION: Spring Town Hall will be held, typically, the 1st weekend in February. MOTION PASSED

MOTION: 1st CC meeting in June and November the Town Hall date will be confirmed. MOTION PASSED


7:58pm LLC UPDATE (Blister)

  • Volunteer coordinator has created a volunteer database/management system. Discussed last Tuesday.

7:54pm AF UPDATE

  • 3 candidates will be interviewed for 2 positions.

7:55pm TOPIC: Planning the Next Respect Talk (Kat)

  • Do we want to have the discussion before or after TownHall. What kind of time is needed? Do we do it as World Cafe round table or full lecture/discussion? Who was here last time (out of towners, new people?) Last discussion was well attended for short notice. Approximately 40 people — some out of towners, some people who had never been to CC? Is it better to be separate (different wknd) than TH so people aren’t burned out or is it good to have it close so people are available. Workshop style would be a learning platform of interaction to make it inviting to people who don’t want to be talked at, combined with better timing and promotion. In last, Kat began with talking and then there was a great deal of talking by participants in the room. If it is directly after TownHall, you’ve got people from out of town, as well as people who are excited about Flipside because they just finished TH. People can be encouraged that if you are interested in FLipside, this is also an important conversation to join in the community. People who are from out of town, who have shown interest, will be in town so can can participate in an event they’ve shown interest in attending. Whichever one we pick, let’s stick to it so that people know there will always be important discussion after TH. We always have parties & tailgating, let’s talk about something important to our community is conjunction with TH. In light of out of towners, can we address it in a way that they can take this back to their communities — a crash course in the topic so they can share it back home. This way we can focus on message growing into San Antonio, Houston, Dallas, or wherever so people don’t always feel pressure to be here. Second on the idea of important community conversation attached to TH — great opportunity for “newbie classes” such as Burner Charm School as well as bigger conversations.
  • This conversation is also about the vocabulary so people will have the tools to begin the conversations of respect. If we break out in groups, we need to have 4-6 hours to thoroughly move from vocabulary to practice. Can we have food budget for a 4-6 hour course so people will be able to stay and be fueled? Is this a one part conversation or something broader that can be split into two groups. A deeper conversation about history of racism can certainly happen, but we can have a respect “beginning” conversation one or two more times first, as well.
  • Idea: If there are a certain number of words, if we could display & use them for additional discussion and can be used periodically to simply read them in the meeting room. Other thought, is it possible to have something split out – 101 and 201 or 101 and World Cafe. If we do it over time, we can do the 101 and later in the day have a 201. Another thing that might be beneficial, is to have a 101 and then a set date for 202. Maybe before that, training for people who want to facilitate. That might be good to do in the morning, to have it within a World Cafe situation.
  • Date for Respect Discussion: Sunday, 25th September
    • Noon: Discussion facilitators training
    • 1pm: Respect 101
    • 3pm: World cafe style discussion
    • 4pm: Respect 102
  • Announcement on official channels: Announce Submission form will be channeled to Announce and Flames, Burning Flipside Facebook, Flipside website.

8:27pm TOPIC: Standardizing Dates for Town Halls (Adam)

  • It is nice to have it mutable to account for special occasions of one-off needs.
  • Having a set date makes all of the other planning easier so we can always plan on that date in advance.
  • Set a firm date, with three (arbitrary number) exceptions that it can be moved for.
  • LLC likes to say “rules or dumb, but rules of thumb are not.”
  • If we would successfully post dates for the year would there be less conflict, especially if the dates were stuck with for the meetings/events. There are so many regional events that establishing a date will allow others to plan around the bigger events. Houston March, San Antonio likely in April, Freezerburn in January, so TownHall in February fits in well. Also, there is a Texas burn organizers calendar so everyone can see what dates are filled. Seems like a rule of thumb is the direction we are moving, but is this the meeting where we are discussing if we have a rule of thumb or where we actually set a date FOR the rule of thumb? If this is about the community, it is something that the rule of thumb should be flexible for other events in the community, but regularity allows the ability for community to join the event — almost like a New Year’s. If we are going to have a mutable date, we need to be able to announce that by a certain date, say three months out, the date will not be changed.

MOTION: To halt the discussion of TownHall date until the date of Flipside conversation is completed. MOTION PASSED.

8:45pm REGIONALS UPDATE (Clovis)

8:48pm TOPIC: Date of Flipside (Monkey)

  • This conversation is for a couple reasons: We haven’t talked about it in a long time so do we keep the sacred cow of the date or sacrifice the date.
  • There are several things that make it easier or harder, the biggest of which is weather. The rainiest month is May, followed by June and October for Austin, Houston, and Dallas. On our land, the historically highest weeks of rain are the two weeks pre-Flipside. This year (2016) was above average rainfall, but not by much, only approximately 20%. We’ve had several el nina, so these years have been drier than historical average.
  • Some participants have only experienced Flipside in the mainly conditions so it is what they know. But then a suggestion of new location came up so there is an excitement that maybe a new location would allow different weather, which leads to a different date might improve the event as well. We should consider changing it so the weather challenge doesn’t make people give up on the event.
  • The delineating mark for the rain in those months is 98the meridian, 2 1/2 inches to our 5.
  • Maybe venue is part of the deal, you have the parallel, but we have a water feature and a water feature has been historically significant — though it can be too full or too low.
  • The three day weekend is important to many because people can get the extra time off, especially many hard-core volunteers, so if we changed the date, we may have to consider shortening the event.
  • As long as I’ve been going, there has been wet, there has been dry. The date allows for college kids getting out, which might be third of our population, but families take kids out of school to go.
  • Some details that have been picked up when community members have talked about the date: Holidays are nice for three-day weekend. Memorial day: Many professional artists have to work Memorial Day because it is one of three weekends in which they make a lot of their incomes. A lot of people want holiday weekends, so it’s difficult for many to take Memorial Day because lots of people have already taken that time. As far as class, people who have the disposable income and time can often take it, but those who have less disposable income and time can’t go, often holiday or otherwise, but often less likely on holiday wknd.
  • Regarding the water, the first years at new land has always been gorgeous, then the water progressively gets less appealing. Onto scheduling, we can’t have a comfortable event in Texas May, June, July. December and February aren’t good months. But there are no sacred cows, so we have seven months, but not sure April is a good month because that rainy season moves.
  • A good portion of why DaFT was okay for 2016 is because the effigy was designed such that no machinery was needed to build the effigy because the lead knew the weather could be a factor.
  • Many issues are peculiar to date and location. When we do land search, which we should always be doing, we will be looking with a much beadier eye for history of weather and location. The process of moving location is not as big of a factor as the checkboxes for the date, it would be a pain for a couple years, but not too bad.
  • Is there a date that would be suggested? Early July has a heat index that is similar to mid-May. The best May is about the same as best July, but the best May is way better than the worst July. Rain plan however, is much easier for July. The cost of needing the right things for rain is much more cost prohibitive than getting the right things for the heat. “Magical date” is middle of July.
  • My main comment is contentious: This is a classist event regardless of the date, so it makes more sense to focus on developing new land relationships than to change the date, because the land is vital to the event.
  • I don’t think we have to be so concerned about creating the perfect burn experience.
  • This is a privileged event with a high barrier for entry, but this is also a transformational event that forces participants to adapt and react. Are we being masochistic with this land that seems to keep trying to purge us. But that is part of why I like going to burns, because it challenges me and I see what I can push through.
  • The weather for Flipside has always been fickle.
  • To LLC, is there a land search? What is actually going on for the land search?
  • Scott Sexton is leading the research for land search. If you are interested in helping – calling counties, maybe traveling to possible sites – contact him. He is creating a survey to ask the community about ideas for land search.
  • Any changes that are beginning discussion now would not manifest into a new property for 12-18 months. A location change is a long-term action.

MOTION: After a long discussion about the date of Flipside with respect to the weather, at this time the CC does not recommend that the LLC change the date of Flipside. The CC supports the organization’s ongoing quest for new land. MOTION PASSED.

9:57pm Return to TOPIC: Standardizing Dates for Town Halls

MOTION: Fall Town Hall will be held, typically, the 4th weekend of September. MOTION PASSED.

MOTION: Spring Town Hall will be held, typically, the 1st weekend in February. MOTION PASSED.

MOTION: 1st CC meeting in June and November the Town Hall date will be confirmed. MOTION PASSED.

10:05pm TOPIC: Land Search Survey

  • Does putting the land survey out to the community make it appear to be a democratic when the decision has to be made from many considerations when the decision can’t be fully democratic. Some considerations include, for example, distance from Austin versus Houston (2 to 4 hours, potentially); geographical considerations; weather patterns.
  • Just moving the event 1/2 mile could potentially completely shift the safety issues on the current land. We’d still have the weather, but safety would be improved. Location – E,N,W,S – is it convenient, how does it serve our community best.
  • The survey is going to be ultimately useful just to see how the community feels. There is not really a negative to having the community input on a decision.
  • Some people really like the idea of traveling further from their current reality to experience something different.
  • This survey lets us rely on the community to help provide ideas for possible land solutions.
  • Is there anything in particular that we need to tell Scott in regard to the survey?
  • There is a lot more on the survey than just the location. Shade, water, navigability, etc. So the LLC is definitely going to look at the survey to consider what the community wants in the land.


  • Doodle for CC retreat if you have not completed it, do complete. Currently, 11-13 November is the best.
  • Decision on date at next CC Meeting.

10:27pm End of Meeting

Next meeting: Monday, August 8, 2016

Topics: Survey & Consensus (Clover); Flipside as work experience (Prost)




CC Meeting 11 July 2016


MONDAY, JULY 11, 2016



SCRIBE: Chim-Chim

ATTENDEES: Hezzy, Vonn, Tornado, Clover, Adam, Problem, Babbage, Henry, Dahling, Chim-Chim, Clover, Prost, Izzy, Kat, Turtlebunnie, Bonobo, Clovis

TOPIC: CC Calendaring (Topics, Dates); Town Hall


MOTION: Start the Combustion Chamber nomination process with the intention to take at least 1 new member; MOTION PASSED

SELECTED Town Hall Producer: Henry

ACTION ITEM: Create Doodle poll (Clover)


7:52pm LLC UPDATE (Problem)

  • Volunteer appreciation party occurred recently
  • AAR/AF debrief meeting occurred the following day; Some AFs stepping down this year


  • Mini re-org meeting coming up once new AFs are in place
  • Leads selection to be scheduled sooner than later

7:55pm TOPIC: CC Calendaring

  • July 25
    • Respect Talk Planning (Kat)
    • Standard Dates for Town Halls (Adam)
    • Date of Flipside (Monkey)
  • August 8
    • Capitalizing on Flipside Work Experience (Prost)
    • Surveys & Censuses (Clover)
  • August 22
    • Communicating Open Positions (Cooper/Izzi)
    • Town Hall Planning
  • September 12
    • Town Hall Walkthrough
    • Volunteer Recruitment & Retention (Henry)
    • Flipside Volunteer System Requirements (Izzi)
  • September 26
    • PETS, OTC Medicine and Self-Reliance (Adam)
    • Respect Reflection
    • Town Hall Post-Mortem
  • October 17
    • Revisiting the Three Principles (Prost) 10/17
  • October 24
    • Accountability (TurtleBunnie)
    • Recycling (Adam)
  • November 7
    • What/When/Where Guide (Clover)
    • Mentoring for Leadership (Turtlebunnie)
  • November 21 – Canceled due to holiday week
  • December 5
    • Paid/Comp Staff (Monkey)
  • December 12
    • CC Mixer
  • January 9
    • Calendaring

8:53pm REGIONALS UPDATE (Clovis)

  • Burning Man is fighting fiscal charges from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM); Turnover in BLM mgmt; Would like to see justification of costs
  • Oblivium is coming up
  • Beachside was hot: 5500 lbs of trash picked up on beach
  • Lots of art projects going out to Burning Man


    • Identify producer: Henry
    • Town Hall date: 9/21
    • Look into ways to cool down the warehouse better
    • Coordinate info from CC; Develop agenda
    • LISTS: CC list; Closed CC list
    • Current CC: 20 ppl; Should pressure ppl to step down; Do we need energy for more ppl?;
    • Our lack of inaction could be a reflection of the older members, but new members may not know what’s going on; There needs to be a balance; Would like to know who is stepping up or down; One AAR member is at least stepping down (Princess)
    • Is there anyone we know who should be brought up?
    • Handle prior to the retreat; Put out feels for anyone interested in joining CC;
    • Ask on list/personal conversation for those who haven’t been showing up to meetings; Keep informal; If it’s decided someone needs to step down, we’ll have that conversation
    • Year off, sabbatical, or step up—Put call out to list for active cc members to assert their intentions
    • In the past, have someone reach out

MOTION: Start the process with the intention to take at least 1 new member

  • Don’t constrain; Make enough space to take in a person we like; To interview with intention to onboard


  • CC will get together; Announce on website
    • ACTION ITEM: Create Doodle poll (Clover); October/November tentative date

Final note: This is Chim-Chim’s final meeting as scribe (due to relocation)

Next meeting: Monday, July 25, 2016

Topic: Respect Talk Planning (Kat); Standard Dates for Town Halls (Adam); Date of Flipside (Monkey)