Alternative Platforms for Social Activism

Hi Guys,

I need some help.

I’m one of a number of new ambassadors for All Out, which is a global network campaigning for the rights of LGBT+.

Some of us have expressed a wish to be more proative - and so, recently agreed to move away from our Facebook group to a platform where we can plan and carry out our activities.

Can anyone suggest an open source platform - preferably hosted - where we can build something to what exists and is ocurring here on the EdgeRyders platform?

Note: I’m not particularly techy and nor is anyone else in the group.




The software powering edgeryders is called “discourse”, and is Open Source Software. However, discourse hosting is (was?) relatively expensive, and it will not install on the typical 5€/month webspace (because it has some technical requirements that are typically not met by “cheap” webspace).

But my last research regarding hosting costs for discourse for NGOs dates back a few years, maybe the landscape changed. The organisation that is the main developer of discourse offers 100$/month packages, but I am sure you can find cheaper (but if money is not an issue it might be a good idea to support the core developers more or less directly). edgeryders itself offers hosting (sure enough somebody will answer here). I’d be happy if you share insights here if you you find an overview of hosting costs or a decent hosting offer for NGOs.

Hi Jason, maybe some of the people in the internet of humans conversations can point you in the right direction when it comes to existing activist platforms. Also maybe @hugi has some advice to offer as to what is out there, and what they are building in the Participio (where edgeryders is hosting a lab build experimental software and methodology for decentralized organizations and co-created culture)

@MariaEuler and @johncoate are doing the community management for that subcommunity conversation so maybe they can ping/make the connection somehow?

As for communities setting up and maintaining an edgeryders like platform. Edgeryders hosts and manages federated sites making it easier for people in different communities to connect and engage in one anothers’ activities, use common resources etc. Whether it is appropriate for your needs/requirements is something our Tech Director @matthias or could maybe help you figure out?

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Hi, happy to hear of your work!

Could you tell me a bit about what you are hoping to do on this platform? Engage new people? Strengthen the connectedness of the existing network? Make decisions together? Do work together and replace email lists?

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Like @nadia says. Welcome, @jasonschumann!

As Felix mentioned, the company behind Discourse is a great address for Discourse hosting.

That’s still true, but they also offer a 50% discount on packages for registered non-profit organizations (see).

As Edgeryders, we don’t exactly offer Discourse hosting but sub-communities. Means, we don’t compete in the Discourse hosting market, we have a niche for people looking for a forum associated with an established online forum in the activism / grassroots innovation realm … plus getting the discussion analysis tools that we build around here. For the details, see here.


Hello @jasonschumann,

great to have you here! Looking forward to having you part of the discussions here and if you have any needs, questions or suggestion please just tell me. As suggested, there are members actively working on ideas connected to improving online communities and discourse. @JollyOrc comes to mind who also recently did a community call on the topic. You can find the recording of that one which was edited nicely by @johncoate here and a glossary made in preparation for it here. (if you have feedback on that one we would be happy to hear it :slight_smile:

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Thanks, Felix!

As the group is only weeks old, we currently do not have a budget.

I thought about asking EdgeRyders, but as this would be a global platform, I automatically assumed it would not be an option. I will, however, take a look at the link you posted.



Thanks, Nadia!

I will take a look at Participio.



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Hi Hugo,

The Facebook group is only three weeks in - we are only at the meet and greet stage.

A few of us, however, have taken an interest in what others are doing and posting about their LGBT+ activism; independently, or as part of their day-to-day work.

This has prompted a few connections and discussions about supporting each others activism and from there a discussion arose about what the purpose and function of All Out Ambassadors is to be.

A consensous of opinion has confirmed that Facebook is not an ideal platform for us to be more than a talking shop and be more proactive. How we enable and make this work will be discussed in the coming weeks.

My own wish is that we work much in the same way as the communities of EdgeRyders do, but from a global, regional, and national perspective.

Again, how and what we do and function has not yet been formulated. For now, we have agreed we need to set up a platform to enable us to come together.




Thanks, Alberto!

I have been on EdgeRyders since April this year, but due a car accident in JuneI was hospitalised and had a long home recovery, so I am just getting back into the swing.



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Maria, hi

The podcast Christian Buggedei has some useful aspects, but as a closed group and small space, some of the concerns aired will not be a factor in what we will be setting out to do.

That said, I am now going to put together a survey to find out what people want, is necessary, and desired, for such a platform and how it should function, including user tools, interactions and etiquette.



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Well, glad you are back in the saddle. Keep up the good work, let us know if we can do anything to help.


Look at, it’s open source and fairly similar to the software in use here (Discourse), but with a different tech stack, making low cost SaaS hosting possible. I’m developing it.

Can I ask, what are your thoughts about Talkyard’s not-for-profit price plans? — It costs less for non-profits. I’d like this software & hosting to be affordable for the things you have in mind to do.

In Talkyard, by default, the discussions are threaded and the more interesting thoughts and replies surface to the top of the discussion. (Maybe this should be configurable.) There’re chat topics, similar to Slack channels.

What don’t you like about using Facebook? (Personally I don’t like FB for discussions, and … I’m curious about your perspective? :slight_smile: )

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Can I ask you to please send me a message (click my username), with your findings, when you’re done with the survey?

Or maybe post the result here in this topic?

(Best wishes with the recovery after the accident)

Hi Kaj,

I have just been given the go ahead to conduct the survey, so will send you the methodology, data, and report, once the survey has concluded.

I am imposing a 2 week time limit and with a membership of 430 individuals, I am anticipating a minimum response of 5%.

I will also post links to the same information here.

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I have taken a look at Talkyard, but that’s not a stage where, we, at All Out Ammbassadors, are at to consider.

I am waiting on the results of the survey I mentioned and then will seek further guidance from All Out HQ.

As a not-for-profit, I think it’s reasonable and something I will consider with the permission of HQ.

I am not as technically minded as many you, so I favour ease of use, as will most All Out Ambassadors members.

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@JollyOrc, would be great to have you in this discussion and maybe some people here are interested in your workshop idea as well :slight_smile: