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Catalyzing worker co-ops & the solidarity economy

How Guerrilla Translation reimagined itself for Open Cooperativism

The first thing we realized back in 2014 was that we needed a better system to organize the paid and pro-bono work.  We decided to adapt an abandoned open-source governance model and orient it towards our ideology and needs (the original had a strongly traditional “startup” flavor). We discussed it for more than a year but, due to lack of engagement, we never arrived at a final version. Meanwhile, GT was thriving: we were well regarded in our community, our translations were reaching more people than ever and we had an increasing stream of work offers. At the same time there was an imbalance between readily recognized productive labour, and all the invisible, reproductive work required to keep the project healthy.

Frustrated with this imbalance, some of us decided to take an extended sabbatical from the project. An exception to this pause was our very successful crowdfund campaign to translate and publish David Bollier’s Think Like a Commoner, a Short Introduction to the Life of the Commons. The campaign was important in several aspects, including the use of the Peer Production License and an innovative, distributed publishing model dubbed “Think Global, Print Local”. The lead-up to the campaign saw renewed activity on the pro-bono side, and the crowdfund succeeded in its objectives, leading to a book launch in the fall of 2016.

Read the rest at Guerrilla Translation


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