Says-Us (see http://www.saysus.net) is a proposal for the creation of a web facility, a portal, to facilitate the ability of millions of people to tell their own stories, to write anonymous complaints, about work, housing, health care, schools, unemployment, prison, government, almost anything, as it affects them.
Many job related web sites have already shown that, given the chance to safely complain, people will do so. Unfortunately, existing corporate sites are oriented towards helping employers find cheap labor, and to sell advertising, not to helping change workplace practices. Non-corporate sites are particular to one union or reform organization and are not sufficiently generalized or allowing of self-organization.
Jobvent.com collected as many as 100K complaints about 10K companies. The complaints were then destroyed when jobvent was acquired by Glassdoor.com. Sites like glassdoor are spaces where hard-to-organize flex-jobs seekers may read about and learn from each other’s experiences. But site users are not offered any course of action except the obvious - to avoid employment at the worst offender companies.
Says-Us will be different from job-recruitment sites and complaint forums because it will offer users opportunities for self-organization, the ability to find and address each other, as well as assistance, and organizational help to those who want it. Site users will be able to find others with similar complaints, by organization and location. If they work for the same company (anywhere in the world), have the same landlord, are dealing with the same predatory bank, government, etc they will be able to find each other by anonymous site id. They can pick thresholds of action, and choose from many forms of action, should they decide to do so.
Best practices, “pros”, will also be collected, allowing users to identify organizations that both have good employment practices as well as socially useful product. Labor unions, labour activists and trans-local social justice and community organizing / collective action / activists will be able to be “found” on the site by those in need of their services and open to their messages.
We would like to develop the ideas and build the site in line with open-source and libre philosophy: p2p, distributed, highly secure, scalable, not-for-profit, user extendable (by data fields), enabling self-organizing and empowerment, multi-lingual, web and especially mobile applicable. A simple user interface will allow people to move readily from complaints and issues to self-empowerment, self-organizing, and self determined communication and action through existing organizations.
Gateways to sites like yours as well as whistleblowing projects (like Wikileaks, Associated Whistleblowers Press, LabourLeaks, or WildLeaks) or progressive and independent unions, or relevant how-to, self-learn or Do-It-Yourself projects, hacker spaces, mediaLabs and other alternative economy-solidarity networks can be offered in the Take Action section.
This potentially important facility would need help from people of many interests, skills, and dedication. We would need help with requirements, understanding of technological possibilities and needs, simple and attractive user interface design, security and scalability, coding, open-source knowledge, coordination, legal help, multi-language translation, and financial help.
At the monent we use a doku wiki build in on our online workgroup (https://on.usilive.org/dokuwiki/972/) on the Organizing Network, Union Solidarity International. Since you need to register Organizing Network to log in and join the group, we might use another location [like a SaysUs media-wiki] to develop the ideas for the site, the user interface, and other requirements.
Can anyone envision maidsafe as an appropriate platform for saysus?