ADA Disability Consensus Items for Tues Meeting (6/23 and 6/30)

Uhmm, this is definite ableism, and does not have to do with privacy. Allowing disabled peoole to attend our classes should take priority over ableist “need” to “read the room” or “prompting people” (which you could do on a live stream), etc.

A block is the beginning of a discussion.
I’m trying to meet you halfway and see what would help remove your block.
However since you’re not actually a capital M member or identifying yourself or willing to come to a meeting, it makes it kind of hard.

I didnt write this consensus to include this provision, but changes can be made if people raise important blocking issues, and in the spirit of trying to get access to the space and satisfy privacy concerns, I’m willing to have a discussion around this.

I mean you could stream a class anonymously, wearing a V for Vendetta mask or whatever you desire.

But keeping disabled people out of classes as a requirement for your teaching? That seems most unexcellent and I for one would not grieve for losing that kind of contribution.

There is an odd mix of friendliness and ableism in this post. The whole point of these consensus proposals is that it’s very hard for me to interact “irl” because of my disabilities. I’m trying to make Noisebridge accessible for myself and other disabled members.

Does anyone know who broccoli is? Are they an active capital M member? Since they won’t engage in discussion here (ironically, because of an accessibility concern), will they at least be coming to the meeting tomorrow night?

This argument is odd, says:

  1. They block because they feel consensus items shouldn’t be passed during Covid-19, claiming this consensus item for disability access is being “pushed through.”

That sounds odd to me given how much discussion has happened on this thread alone.

And how do we cancel big C consensus for what…3+ months since shelter in place started?
We still need to make decisiona as a community, even with this unfortunate crisis.

That block doesn’t make much sense to me, especially since this is about remote access to Noisebidge for those of us with disabilities (amd non disabled as well).
It almost sounds like retaliation for my proposing the consensus items to have noisebridge closed during Covid for safety.

Their second reason to block makes even less sense.
“Let’s go above and beyond” so Im blocking this?

That’s like saying, “No, you can’t have a wheelchair ramp cuz you didn’t also ask for handlebars in the shower.”
It’s complete nonsense.

Sigh, it’s really sad and hurtful to read the pushback here just for trying to make access for disabled people.

This proposal is literally just to make Noisebridge compliant with the American with Disabilities Act.
So much passive-aggressive stuff in here (with weird insincere phrases like “I think this is a really great initiative”) really hurts and makes no sense.

@anonymous25 / @anonymous26 , I want to let you know that as I read them, your stated reasons to block @Zach’s consensus items all have the implicit subtext (is subtext always implicit?) that you value and prioritize the comfortable participation of people who have the option of being in the space physically over the participation of those who have not. When you express concern that this consensus proposal (continued remote meeting access) would exclude the former group and give this as a reason to block it, you’re also making it clear that the alternative - namely the continued exclusion of the people whose participation the proposal would enable - is more agreeable to you. This makes me really sad. Several very excellent community members, long-time Noisebridge contributors, and good friends frequently find themselves in the latter category.

Regarding the remote meeting participation through the notes, participation through typing is sadly not an option for everyone - there are many conditions that affect the hands, as experienced every day by members of our community. By the way, I’m curious why you would suggest this, yet not use the option yourself to be present on Tuesday?

With regard to your take on livestreaming classes, I have to say, I agree with @Zach that valuing your comfort as a teacher over facilitating remote access to people who would otherwise be excluded from participation by physical disability is ableist. From other statements, I take it that’s unintentional, so I hope you’ll consider embracing your discomfort and taking the opportunity to work with us to address your privacy concerns and enabling you to reach a broader audience with through your teaching.

Since you clearly feel strongly about this, would you be willing to explore options for satisfying both sets of concerns / considerations? It sounds like any solution that meets your standards would likely be palatable to many others, too, so getting your input could be very valuable. Maybe there are technological solutions (e.g. face / voice obfuscation / obscuration, actual / better encryption, custom streaming apps running on private Noisebridge-hosted servers, etc.) that we could apply to enable everyone to participate in the meetings and classes without violating anyone’s privacy? I mean…we’re hackers, right?

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Broccoli (David) is a Capital M member in good standing.

https://www.noisebridge.net/wiki/Meeting_Notes_2019_12_03

Amazing. We have a full-on capital M member stopping Noisebridge from complying with ADA law. At least other people brought up valid privacy concerns. The tactics used in this thread are interesting.

  1. Have they stated the accessibility reason why they can’t join this discussion here (can you ask?)

  2. Will they attend the meeting tomorrow?

  3. A block is the beginning of a discussion. This “hard block” of all items without joining the discussion doesn’t seem excellent, and I’d like an opportunity for them to join here or tomorrow night and further discuss their reasoning behind these blocks.

Zach, your rhetoric and false accusations are really over the top.

broccoli isn’t refusing to engage on Discuss any more than you are refusing to engage in Slack. Should he start grandstanding about how bad you are for that? Because you’re doing that to him.

You keep framing it that way but ignore the cogent reasoning from broccoli and @themanmaran.

Does every concert, Meetup group, movie screening, and every other in-person event that is “not accessible to those with disabilities” violate the ADA by being in-person events rather than remote ones? Of course not.

People too poor to have computers can’t read what you just typed. Does that make you a classist bigot deliberately excluding the most impoverished? That’s what your own logic implies here, and it’s absurd.

Something Better

The constructive way to go about all this would be to encourage people to host remote events so that more people can benefit from Noisebridge, especially those who are disabled or cannot make it to Noisebridge for any other reason.

Accusing @themanmaran of bigotry against the disabled for promoting do-ocracy over bureaucracy, and accusing @anonymous25 / @anonymous26 of the same for catering in-person events to people attending in-person, is a really disgusting thing for you two to do. I would like you to apologize to them for those smears.

Try to conduct yourselves in a way that doesn’t rely on specious logic and over-the-top accusations to try and get your way. “Going the extra mile to make your events online-friendly is even more Excellent!” will get you a lot further than ~“you are a bigot”.

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@elimisteve

  1. I was asking the access reason why broccoli doesn’t want to join this forum. They specifically stated they don’t have access here, so I was wondering what the access issue is. Using slack is hard with my disabilities, even harder than typing in here with voice recognition software.

  2. There is bigotry and ableism in this thread. Whether or not it is intentional, is another issue. Denying that is just silly. I’m not going to apologize to people for behaving in oppressive way and asking that I apologize is a bit odd and weirdly paternal.

I’m not asking for any apologies, I know bigotry exists and most people are bigoted unconsciously. I do call it out when I see it though, which is still somewhat taboo in our passive-aggressive culture.

  1. Your response around the American with Disabilities Act clearly suggests that you should read up on it and wow, clearly you have strong views against improving access.

Most of the things I’m asking for here are required by law, and getting pushback for basic disability access (which is readily available, by the way) is troubling, to say the least.

  1. What I’m asking for it doesn’t even cost money. At least when the community wouldnt repair the elevator at 2169 or raise money for it, there was some argument around cost and effort. This however, is totally unbelievable.

Hi Zach I found a way to log in finally. Discuss wasn’t allowing me to reset my password for ages so I havent had access to Discuss except to read what people wrote. I REALLY don’t appreciate you calling me a biggot. The tactics and name calling you are using right now are totally uncalled for. I don’t have any major issues with the stated goals of your consensus items. What I do have a problem with is the climate of this discussion, maybe the wording or interpretation of the consensus items, and possibly of how they will actually be implemented. I have a big problem with you calling me a bigot and I think its emblematic of the way you are approaching this.
Overall I’m also not happy with how the discourse has gone on during the pandemic over these zoom meetings and I don’t think that the full community is being engaged.

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Great, can you explain exactly what you do have a problem with in some detail here? As I posted above, I can’t make sense of the concerns you raised.

Can you also explain why exactly you don’t want Noisebridge to be in compliance with the American with Disabilities Act? Thats all that these proposals do.

Your answers to those two questions would help me understand where you’re coming from a little more.

I’m honestly not sure I can really engage with you right now after you called me a bigot, then want to twist things into saying I’m somehow against the ADA. I have a problem with the CLIMATE of this discussion.

The reason I’m asking these questions is so that I can understand where you’re coming from and retract my previous statement, if needed.

You’re the only capital M member issuing hard blocks against passing all consensus items that literally quote the American with Disabilities Act and requires noisebridge to allow disabled people to access the space better.

As a disabled person trying to access the space, I find this very hurtful and would appreciate some discussion and explanation of your position.

Let me know what we can do to improve the climate, (carbon footprint aside).

My main concern is passing more consensus items when we are in a state of emergency and when Noisebridge is closed. This is how I feel and several members of the community have voiced similar concerns. I don’t think zoom is the same as Noisebridge. I don’t think this forum is the same as Noisebridge. I don’t think it makes sense to rush consensus items through when the community is not intact and you can’t have one on one or group discussions with people. Instead I see discussion getting shut down, name calling, and any question or concern that people might have about the wording or meaning of your proposal (expressed through this particular medium) and suddenly they’re an ablist biggot.

So to recapitulate this conversation, the pro/con are:

Pro

  • (Online NB meetings / classes) Many people can now participate that haven’t before due to online meetings, notably the disabled.

  • (ADA signs / posts) Do-ocracy alone isn’t permanent enough of a measure because it can be overriden at any time.

  • Legal precedence : by refusing, we are specifically acting against a standard law and thereby making a statement in opposition to it and whom it protects (i.e. the disabled).

Con

  • (Signs and posts) Making laws on topics everyone at NB agrees on is abusing a process reserved for significant or controversial changes only

  • Passing expansive measures when Noisebridge is technically closed will alienate many members of the community

  • (Online meetings) Meetings and classes will be more difficult to conduct due to lack of visible social cues in video meetings.

Where in the ADA does it say that every in-person event must be augmented to become a remotely-accessible event? Do you really believe that Circuit Hacking Mondays have been illegal this entire time due to their in-person nature and no remote option for attendance? Do you believe that it should be illegal for Noisebridge to provide Circuit Hacking Mondays in person only, as per your interpretation of ADA, and that Noisebridge should face heavy fines for not somehow providing remote options for everything we do?

(I would appreciate it if you would answer these questions.)


I’ve dug into this further and found the following: Title II doesn’t even mention the word “remote”, and Title III says nothing relevant except for the small excerpts that you have quoted then provided misleading commentary on.

There is nothing in any of the articles I found that supports your legal theory that implies that in-person-only Circuit Hacking Mondays are illegal and that all other in-person events in the US are illegal unless people can remotely attend.

The closest cases ruled upon seem to be for disabled employees trying to work remotely. 70% of these cases (21 of 30) ruled that remote accommodations cannot be legally demanded for remote workers under ADA, much less those seeking a service from a nonprofit:


Your comment is not an honest portrayal of this situation. You are trying to get what you want through demonization, which is not Excellent.


If someone running an in-person class wants to go the extra mile and be extra Excellent by providing a remote setup, great, but I think you should argue this on the merits and not make up legal interpretations that are not supported by US law as you continue to insist:

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Thanks for clarifying.

  1. Is this the sole reason that you are blocking?

  2. Will you be attending the meeting tonight?

  3. Would you withhold your block if we were in a situation later on where Covid is over and the space is physically reopened, or would you block for other reasons?

@culteejen I appreciate you trying to help summarize things, but the summary here has some inaccuracies.

  1. Are you a member in good standing blocking this item(s)?

  2. Will you be at the zoom Tuesday meeting tonight?

@elimisteve
I understand that you do not want to provide equal access to those with disabilities. Access is a right, it is not a privilege to be granted on the whim of whoever is teaching a particular class to be “extra excellent.”

  1. If you have more questions about the legalities of the ADA and how it applies noisebridge, we can discuss that at the meeting tonight.

  2. Are you a capital M member in good standing and are you blocking these item(s)?

  3. Will you be attending the meeting tonight?

This thread can go on for a long time, I hope people can attend the meeting tonight so we can have a fruitful conversation discussing these issues and hopefully come to a compromise where we can support those with disabilities having access to Noisebridge.

Zach, I hate to say it but I really doubt that we are going to have a fruitful discussion tonight. I really thought this thread was going to go in a more productive direction when it started.

But I feel you are really failing to understand the consensus process. By calling everyone who disagrees with you a “bigoted ableist” you’re not facilitating discussion. You’re shutting it down.

Also your constant question of “are you a Big M Member” seems to indicate that you only care about the individual if you feel they could legitimately threaten your proposal(s). The goal of a consensus discussion is to include the entire community.

Finally I would like to remind you that the “be excellent to each other” rule applies online as well as in person. If someone were to engage in the same level of namecalling at Noisebridge itself, they would be asked to leave.

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That is factually untrue. I have called out one persons bigotted behavior and a couple of ableist comments. It has not been “everyone who disagrees with me.” I’ve also pointed out that most bigotry and ableism is unconscious and I ask for no apologies.

There has been some good discussion in here and hopefully there will be some better discussion tonight.

I hope that you and others can keep an open heart and an open mind so we can make progress on these consensus items and improve access at Noisebridge for those with disabilities.

For my part, I will listen to concerns about privacy and other valid arguments and do my best to hold my tongue when I believe people are behaving it an ableist / biggoted way.

I will not be at tonight’s zoom meeting but I may be at future ones. I have been a bit frustrated by the zoom meetings which is why I stopped going to them. I’m definitely not going to a zoom meeting where someone is going to be calling me a bigoted ableist and attempting to twist my words while others transcribe it. I will definitely make sure to read the notes though, and in the meantime if there is an overwhelming indication that I’m being a tyrant then I will withdraw my block. I’ve stated a few of my concerns already, and others have also raised concerns worthy of consideration. My top concern is the fact that Noisebridge is closed due to a state of emergency, and that I can not have the one-on-one or group conversations with the community that I am used to (zoom is not the same, neither is discuss). I don’t see the immediate urgency of rushing to a decision on these consensus items during the pandemic. After the state of emergency is lifted and Noisebridge is open again I don’t see any clear reason to block; I would simply like the opportunity to listen to what the community thinks when it is intact.

(Re-)affirming the right to telepresence and recording in the space (during volunteer-run classes or otherwise) seems like a really interesting and important topic and I hope we can continue the discussion through Noisebridge’s re-opening while being open-minded and respectful of oneanother. I have a feeling that any consensed right to telepresence in the space will by necessity need to be very narrow and have it’s wording carefully thought through. I certainly do not want to be at the center of this discussion (having the burden of being a “capital M member”) but I am happy to participate.

This will be my final comment in this thread,
as, I just need some time to meditate and
think about life. I’ll take it upon myself to
learn more about ableism in general. I found
some things on wikipedia about it as a
starting point, but any books on the subject
recommended by the noisebridge communnity
would be very much appreciated.

In the spirit of responding to all questions
asked of me, I’ll do so, but please know that
there is no intentional malace coming from
my end.

I usually am present via this option. While I
usually don’t comment at all during the
meetings (even when we were open), I enjoy
being online even-if no one knows who I am.

The riseup pad is heckin’ awesome because
it requires no account, no request to join,
and is truly anonymous, but, you bring up
some great points that I can’t ignore about
it: More thoughts on this later.

While I probably won’t be present via riseup
this time to give myself some mental space, I
have expressed my thoughts here, and, as dumb
as it sounds, spent hours on those two short
replies & this post as well :3

Posting here on discuss let’s me move at a
slower & more comfortable pace when it comes
to online communications with the wider
Noisebridge community.

With in-person Noisebridge meetings, I have
nowhere to hide. While I might be hella
awkward in these meetings, a real-time
discussion can happen there, and, I can use
an alias hiding who I actually am in the
meeting minutes on riseup — but, typically
I’m silent anwyays.

With lectures, well. It’s basically the same
except there isn’t a concept of broadcasting
in those scenarios, and, I’m usually the one
doing most of the talking.

Social anxiety is a fault in my character,
and, someday hope to truly overcome it.

Totally. I dislike the current state of most
communication platforms today (unfree,
backdoors, walled-gardens, …). It’s been an
active dream of mine for years to break away
from all of this.

Had the fun (dumb?) thought this morning of
having a “monitor/screen per person” that
could be placed in the room that would solve
the whole “can’t see you, but you can see me”
sort of deal. Noisebridge always receives a
bunch of donated VGA computer monitors that
could be put to use! Still has the issue of
“remote users could be recording this” and
what-not, but, again, it’s more of a personal
fear of mine when it comes to online presence
than any technical barrier.

As you mentioned, and, I never really thought
about it before: riseup is kind of terrible
for true real-time participation remotely. It
never really bothered me personally, because,
well, I’m kind of a social recluse.

e.g. When folks remotely participate on
riseup, it’s typically in chunks of
pre-written text, and, they have to be
noticed by the meeting going on to be
recognized. By me communicating here in this
discussion, I view it as an extension of the
“general meeting” in a format I’m more
comfortable with during this time.

I like the pace of discussions here, as, it’s
not a single “meeting” of sorts — like —
it doesn’t feel so fast, and, allows for slow
discussions.

hell yeah we are!

and.

thanks your reachout. :heart:

I’ve got a lot to think about.

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