Back in 2017 when we launched the official Shambala app, we built our own rather than using an off-the-shelf listings app. We did this because we weren’t comfortable with opening our audience up to the extensive data mining that comes as standard with most festival apps. Now in its third year, the Shambala app remains totally anonymous, based on decentralised blockchain infrastructure.
We’ve since been dreaming up other ways we can use the app, year round, to enable real world interactions, with positive outcomes that inspire our community to come together and do good, outside of Shambala itself. This is where our new Community Events Listing function comes in…
WHAT IS IT?
- Our new Community Events Listings functionality allows you to post your own community events and reach the Shambala audience (aka the loveliest folks in the land) year round.
- We’re inviting our audience to help us build a year-round, crowd sourced calendar of amazing happenings and events that you think Shambalans would be interested in getting involved in – whether it’s a project that needs volunteer support, a cause or protest that needs activists, arts events that need an audience, skills to share, swap-shops and upcycling exchanges, community rambles or guerrilla gardening…
- To be able to post your own community events to the app, you needed to validate your ‘community token’ whilst on site at Shambala 2019.
- Whilst over a thousand of you successfully validated, we did experience a glitch that meant a lot of you were not able to do so. Apologies for this, this is an experiment for us in creating a new digital platform that isn’t rooted in data harvesting. It’s cutting edge stuff and therefore it will sometimes take us a few cracks at the whip to get it working perfectly!
- If you didn’t manage to validate, you still have access to all of the community events on the app, so do check them out (open the app and select Community Events from the dropdown menu). We’re also beavering away with app developers on an app update which will enable those of you who tried to validate but were unsuccessful to get your tokens, so you can start posting – more on that soon!
- If you did manage to validate your token, we’d love for you to start adding events that you think your fellow Shambalans would be interested in. You can do this by selecting the little calendar icon with a “+” symbol in, in the top rght of the app’s community events section. It all helps to help keep the Shambala community coming together in positive ways, throughout the year.
WHY ARE WE DOING THIS?
- We have an amazing community, ready to be tapped into, to make good stuff happen, and mobilise against a rather bleak looking political and environmental landscape.
- We’re fascinated by the concept of creating an independent, digital network based on principles of trust. Whilst there are limitless positives to the fact that we are all now so connected, the current offering of (anti?) social media platforms are seriously flawed – geared towards maximising screen time and harvesting data from individuals for the profit of giant corporations. We all deserve better, and the technology exists for us to take the power of digital networking back into our own hands.
HOW TO UPLOAD YOUR OWN EVENTS
- If you managed to validate your token on site, you’re able to get cracking on adding your own. (If you didn’t, you can still check out the amazing array of community events on the community events listings)
- Adding events is designed to be intuitive, quick and simple. Open the Shambala phone app, select ‘Community Events’ from the dropdown menu and click on the ‘add event calendar’ icon in the top right. There are a few required fields to populate (name of the event, location, date and start time)
- You can also add an image, but beyond that there is just a free text box and the rest is up to you! The text box gives you the opportunity to fully explain the event, why you are supporting it and how it relates to the Shambala community. You can add external links to give people further insight, or a pathway to engage further.
- In this early experimental stage, all events submitted will be sent to be approved by the team here at Shambala HQ, before appearing on the listings calendar. This is a pretty speedy process though.
- Should the event you uploaded not appear at all, it may be for a number of reasons linked to the purpose and principles set out below.
- Through the Community Event Listings we are hoping to provide visibility for worthwhile events and causes. Whilst you are welcome to share paid-for, ticketed events, our priority is to support community linked events that promote sharing, community and collectivisation, rather than create a commercially driven marketing platform.
- The Shambala app is a zero data platform and you should consider what contact information (if any) you’d like to share when uploading your events. We do not request, store or harvest any personal information. You will not be required to enter contact details to submit an event, but this also means your listing will be anonymous with no automatic route for a potential attendee to contact you. You may post direct and personal contact information in the free text box, but we would urge you to always be cautious when doing so here and on the web in general. Should your event submissions be successful and listed, any contact details you post will be visible until your event has passed, before disappearing, forever.
- The year-round event listings will be available to anyone who downloads the free Shambala app.
GUIDING PRINCIPLES OF COMMUNITY EVENTS LISTINGS
Keen to list your events or projects as Community Events Listings? Please keep all of the following in mind:
- Will it do social good? We’re looking to proritise events that drum up support, engagement and strengthen your local community.
- Is there an environmental benefit? We welcome events listings that will help fight climate change, take (non violent) direct action and leave no trace.
- Is it a safe space? All events submitted should be open, public, group gatherings. Everyone should feel (and be) safe at all times and free from unwanted or uninvited advance (physical or verbal). They should be run within requisite parameters of local law and health and safety regulations.
- Is it accessible? Organisers should show dedication to ensuring their events are as accessible as possible, for folks of different abilities.
- Is it inclusive? It should go without saying, but all events submitted should aim to be inclusive for all regardless of age, race, gender, sexual orientation, spirituality or physical ability. Events should aim to connect groups of people from all sections of society.
- It it unbiased? it is recognised that religion, politics and other divisive topics are rich and important areas in many people’s lives, but the Community Events Listings should not be motivated by secularism, nor in support of a political party or in service of a commercial entity.
- Are you being transparent? The intentions and hopes for your event should be clearly defined and communicated to the community.
- Rights – Event organiser(s) must own the rights, or have permission to use all rights associated with content used at an event.
THE LEGAL STUFF…
Privacy – Organisers of community events should not (without explicit consent) solicit, harvest, record, store or look to gain from the personal information of attendees to their events.
Anonymity – Should be assumed. Events should always aim to support individuals who wish to remain anonymous. If this cannot be achieved due to the nature of the event, this should be clearly communicated in the plan.
Shambala Festival, Kambe Events Ltd and Boma Digital Ltd are in no way responsible for the content, delivery and outcomes of any community event featured as part of the in app Shambala community event listings. All responsibilities lie with the organisers, and attendees.
We’re deeply excited to see where this goes, and what we – a community of thousands – can achieve, year round, together.