The money shot

We need to figure out how to best represent the effective flow of discussion > proposal > more discussion > better proposal … getting that right will really be the key for making this tool great. I was talking with an old friend from my University Co-Op (we ran on pure consensus and sat through a LOT of long meetings together) and the very first thing he wanted to know about Loomio was how it enabled “the magic” – meaning that evolution of idea to discussion and through the discussion to better idea that no individual would have come up with on their own, but the group clearly favors. That’s the money shot.

Facilitation of group discussions

There is an art to facilitating a discussion and then sensing when it’s matured to the point where it’s ready for an actual motion to be put forward (a distillation of the idea that’s emerging). And an art to sensing when that motion isn’t getting consensus and would need to be amended. The functionality is not there in Loomio yet, but it will be. The idea is that motions will grow out of discussions in this manner, so that by the time people are stating their positions, people have had a chance to participate in the discussion and knock ideas around without feeling outnumbered or like it’s a foregone conclusion. I think this is already playing out quite naturally – the first motion is failing because it was premature, but it’s helped move the discussion forward and the next motion will inevitably be much better.
Alanna, on the timing of killing a first draft of a motion in favor of a better one evolving from the discussion