NYR IndyApp Concept: and its current functions
So, what is the NYR IndyApp?
The IndyApp is a bespoke networking tool for the Yes movement. It is designed to locate and then network all the campaigning experience, enthusiasm, creativity and organisational talent developed during and since Indyref1. To allow easy connections to be formed between those activists within the existing autonomous group network and encourage new people to find and join the Independence movement through their local groups. This encourages new groups to form and dormant groups to reform
It is important to recognise that the creation of the IndyApp networking tool has been a long term process of discussion and negotiation with active grass-root pro Indy Groups located all around Scotland. More importantly, once the App is launched to the public, development will not stop, it will continue and intensify as every group grows their collective capabilities. This will be done through IndyApp’s key functions. By explaining those functions, the grass-root capabilities of the IndyApp become obvious.
Function 1: The ‘Front Door’
Each group has a public ‘Front Door’ on the App. This displays information such as, Group name, google map location, meeting times, venue, events and group campaigns. It also has a group profile page with the option of a paypal ‘Donate direct to this local group’ button. All information on ‘Front Doors’ is the responsibility of the Group. Most importantly of all, each ‘front door’ has a Contact/Join button to give direct link from public to Local group.
So, on FREE download of the IndyApp, interested members of the public with no previous experience or contact with the movement can simply type in half their postcode and the App directs them to their nearest 21 Indy group ‘Front Doors’, to peruse, contact and be warmly welcomed into the grass-roots through. Now, previously difficult to locate local groups are visible and making contact is simple! This is key to encouraging participation in the Yes movement, as it makes local contact with the grass-roots simple, just as soon as any individual shows an interest in getting involved.
Groups can also be searched for by Town, Name and ‘Web’ for internet only groups.
Function 2: Private Messaging
By joining their group on the IndyApp, every member automatically has the ability to direct message all their fellow group members. Either individually, as a selection of individuals or as an entire membership collectively. No need for email lists.
National Editor Messaging
Every Group Editor (three from each group) also has the ability to contact every other Group in the Network (currently 125 and growing). This is done by messaging individual group Editors, A selection of Group Editors or the entire Group network of editors collectively.
Every local group can now easily contact every other group in the network!
The NYR can also private message all IndyAppers that have downloaded the App but not yet joined a group.
This function alone is already a massive communication breakthrough for everyone in the grass-roots. However, private messaging is really just the precursor to the ‘local forums’ and ‘national forum’ as far as group communications are concerned.
Coming Functions IndyApp 2.0
Function 3: ‘Local Forums’
This allows an entire Group membership to network with one another easily, 24hrs a day. As well as post and comment on their local forum, each group member can also read what’s going on in the ‘National Forum’. This means folk can dip in and out of local activism ‘as and when’ they can. If that means picking up messages and discussing local or national campaigning ideas before work or late into the night then that is possible. In this way membership interests can start to easily lead debate and influence campaign direction within their group, between regular meetings as well as during them.
Function 4: ‘Resource Button’
These allow each group to list their local resources, such as Membership skill sets, Equipment, Suppliers, Venues, Media contacts etc. In this way the groups give their entire membership easy access to local campaigning information and group capabilities. This will encourage and simplify self-starting ideas for campaigns within each group, no matter how big they become or busy things get during the heat of Indyref2. Accessing group resources will remain a simple and practical process.
Function 5: The ‘National Forum’
This allows each local Group, acting collectively, to post campaign or event ideas so that all IndyApp members of Local groups can read, assess and then perhaps encourage their own group to discuss the proposal and get involved. In this way support for ideas can quickly gather support from local groups across the country, sparking national campaigns from successful local initiatives or popular ideas.
The ‘National Forum’ also has its equivalent national ‘Resource button’ to allow groups to share any of their own local resources that they feel suitable for regional or country wide application. Any group missing a particular resource locally, can alternatively easily source it nationally. These resources can also be used to supply and support the running of national campaigns instigated on the National Forum.
In this way, each individual local group (as an entire membership of individuals) is networked nationally with their fellow groups. Able to influence and help the movement with their own practical ideas, skills and enthusiasms while being fully aware and informed of how our grass-root movement is developing across the country…
Function 6: The ‘Committee Rooms’
Once new campaign ideas have been identified or proposed in the Forums, the ‘Committee rooms’ are used for developing those ideas and practically enacting them. They allow individuals locally and Groups nationally to organise themselves effectively across the country.
A good practical example of this IndyApp function is how Yes merchandise ordering by the grass-roots could be achieved locally and nationally.
A ‘committee room’ is set up at national level, where each group puts forward a ‘merchandise member’ responsible for their own group’s Yes merchandise needs and for coordinating their orders with all those of their fellow ‘committee room’ members (from groups all around the country). This creates a collective mass order, made up of all the local orders and paid for by each groups share. This ‘national’ ‘order’ is then placed by ayeMail (or a similar pro indy organisation) in order to take full financial advantage of economies of scale when dealing with suppliers. Once the order has been filled, It is divided back into the original constituent group orders, distributed locally to each group and then out to their community through their own local group’s ‘merchandise’ committee room.
This is the relatively straightforward mechanism through which Yes merchandise can be ordered, paid for and distributed nationwide by the grass-roots themselves. No need to rely solely on a central Yes HQ again, which would inevitably become another over centralised ‘pinch point’ during the heat of our next referendum campaign.
Other Committee Room examples
As with merchandise, Committee Rooms will work just as well for Wee Blue Book distribution or for groups setting up national tours to effectively share speakers, musicians, films, fundraising events etc. among other interested local groups. It can easily bring together specialist knowledge, skills and experience previously locked away in local group memberships spread throughout Scotland. It can be used to bring all that knowledge to bear on difficult campaigning issues deemed important to the grass-roots. Those ‘committee room’ deliberations can then be posted on the ‘national forum’ for any group to discuss, consider and if desired, act upon locally.
This is how even relatively complex issues can start to be tackled by the grass-roots and then solved at local, regional and national movement levels. It is this natural in-built community focus that gives local group campaigning its power and is why the NYR IndyApp platform has been built around them, as the building blocks of our network. Local autonomy is a foundational principle of Scotland’s grass-root movement and it remains the IndyApp’s guiding principle.
Each local group is free to select and adapt whichever ideas or campaign strategies they feel are best suited to bring their own communities toward that vital Yes vote.
I hope this outline of the basic functions of the IndyApp has made clear the ambition and scope of the National Yes Registry (NYR) project. Please remember however, this is an App and it has been carefully designed for simplicity and ease of use, so articles trying to explain it in any detail are by their very nature much, much more complex than the IndyApp is itself!
And so… if you want to see the formation of a powerfully networked non-party political Scottish grass-roots movement and help this 3 yearlong project reach fruition, please donate what you can.
Many thanks for all your support.