Nov 30, 17 / Sag 26, 01 23:55 UTC
Website, elections and Asgardian engagement ¶
First of all, hi everyone! I’m a little late “to the party” but since Asgardia’s ideals have spoken to my heart, decided to become a candidate. (It said I need to be over 18 years old, despite of what’s written in the constitution… so I guess it’s alright for now, even if I end up disqualified later on).
In any case, here is what I would like to bring to your attention, after my first experiences…
1. So far, everyone in Asgardia - if not straightforward policy-making, which is good - seems to be focusing on things with no practical use for the Asgardian community of today (and near near future). What I mean is… space mining, what to do if the member of the parliament dies, advanced sciences divisions, basic income for everyone (how!?) or whether Asgardia should have military, to name a few… It’s all great for far away future consideration of what Asgardia should aim to become but… aren’t there more pressing matters at hand? Matters that will decide whether Asgardia has a chance to survive? I guess what I’m trying to say is that many people treat it like an occasion to dream about some distant future that is suddenly going to appear “out of nowhere” (thanks to this project) but nobody is actually putting their right mind to it, only entertaining a thought of how good the Asgardian life “will” and “must” be. But before anything can evolve to appropriate level (many years from now), we need to set foundations first and focus on practice. I think the candidates (and the future parliament/government) should work on finding ways how to efficiently engage the Asgardian community in efficient activity for the sake of Asgardian growth and integrity as a nation. Because we really want to have the real thing, not just a “space forum” for people to post about fictional future and share disorganized ideas.
2. Forgive me for saying this (I’m also reluctant since I’m new and don’t want to be judged for it, but whatever, individual insight shouldn’t hurt anybody) but the layout of the website and election process (particularly the huge font on the candidate profile and the way blog pages are constructed) is INCREDIBLY confusing and definitely not user-friendly. Probably can't do anything about it at the moment and the failure is on whoever designed this, but well, it needs to be said, if it wasn’t already. If someone is super dedicated to Asgardia, probably will be fine for now, but nevertheless - I believe it already takes its toll on user engagement which brings us to the next point...
3. If I'm correct, it's only month to the end of the elections and there are plenty of candidates but when it comes to candidate activity… you people who post in this section are like 4-5 persons only? It's weird, to say the least… pretty weak engagement from people who want to lead Asgardia… Unless I’m missing something, like other platform, or another special thread. In any case, there is also another thing: there seem to be deficit of candidates in some districts and whenever that’s not the case, I noticed that people seem to be favoring/voting for top candidates only. Maybe it doesn’t matter… since it’s the first election process and all… but… if some 10 percent of the parliament were chosen by the majority (whereas the dominative percentage of “Asgardians” won’t be voting at all), the rest of the parliament would be filled with throw-away candidates where difference of only few votes decides. It’s a democracy, after all. Things tend to happen, sure. Let’s be glad there were elections at all. Only I’m not sure how will it affect the efficiency of THE FIRST Asgardian government - where the task is very crucial because it’s basically to lay foundations for years to come and ensure the nation’s growth. Not really the issue that can be tackled now or after elections, when everything is said and done, but… Hmm, it raises some alarms, looking at how things progress. Unless December will see a massive activity in voting process.
I wonder what are your thoughts on these issues. Also, after the government is established and is actually financially resourceful (if? I guess it’ll be from donations only?), the primary objective would be to change/fix the website/forum issues and make it more user-friendly, with better news feed maybe. Also, to engage the users/citizens, there should be some regular content involved. Maybe even something that could become a unifying cultural element, because as I state –Asgardia needs its own culture, starting with some small foundations of it, else it’ll be difficult to continue (and progress) as a “nation”, especially with all the people being active locally within their own culture and political environments. Plus, we can’t allow the problems that occur in our respective nations/cultures to destabilize Asgardia (if we want it to survive long-term, that is).