The Five Pillars

All of the foregoing utilities (dashboard, spaces of exchange, internal currencies) would be available to all members: sustainers, creatives, workers, and everything in between. Now we’re proceeding into intended functionalities that may only meet creative members’ needs.

Cosmos aims to provide lifecycle care to members’ creative works. This means providing support for Incubation, Community, Production, Publication, Promotion . These are referred to as the Five Pillars. They are necessary for the creative lifecycle, and Cosmos is primarily oriented to fulfill creative members’ needs.

Scope

The Five Pillars discuss all the things Cosmos would actually deliver in service to creative members. These offerings would be dynamically resourced from within the system as much as possible: e.g. 1) Worker members would provide them, 2) sustainer members would help sponsor creative members so they can afford to utilize the creative-suite affordances, 3) creative member investments of various types—these all fuel the provision of the “plug-in” products and services within the functional categories of the Five Pillars.

Cosmos would seek to provide an “in-house” suite of services and platform functionality, that could be “added on” (see Plug-ins) and configured custom to a user’s needs. This would be resourced internally through user feedback and engaging “worker members,” and would evolve over time and as resources permitted (see: buckets, fundraising). One example would be the centralized blogging platform for Cosmos, Theory of Everybody, to complement existing utilities like Infinite Conversations (forum), Metapsychosis (online journal), etc.

Cosmos additionally provides programmed process templates for ways of engaging each pillar, enabling the autonomous use of a custom-configured “formula for action” that brings desired results. Users can “amend” and customize these to one’s projects & goals in one’s dashboard. These processes could be undertaken by any actor—e.g., the individual artist, a collaborative team, a motley configuration of skilled users who are contracted to assist the creative member, etc. Such templates are modular and can provide added structure to moving toward stated goals. (See: production process, marketing process maps [TBD]).

Leveraging a comprehensive relational database, MindfulAI would prompt suggestions from within the Cosmos “ecosystem” of both Cosmos-offered and user-offered amenities to users based on their inputs regarding goals, aspirations, and things they are looking to gain, do or attain through Cosmos.

Differences in Pillar Implementation

Incubation tends to occur in spaces of capital exchanges: e.g. conversations (where intellectual, social and creative capital is exchanged), fundraising/project buckets (financial capital), etc. There will also be informational templates (see: Process Templates) for incubation of individual human potentials. The dashboard will bake in incubation of member self-actualization through functions like “Enoughness” and Goal Setting. Incubation thus may be a more organic domain of user interaction - with less measurable outcomes.

Community also shows up in moreso organic than measurable ways. Community is addressed by spaces/conversations, by cultivating a supportive culture, and other dimensions of Cosmos. It is not itself a process of the creative lifecycle so much as a necessary ingredient to creative success. (And “building and maintaining community” may be viewed as a process unto itself). Community = audience, sponsors, cheerleaders, champions, especially nourishing in early stages, that supports the heart and soul of the creative so they are not isolated or starved from feedback (which is support!) A main generative role this pillar plays in users’ experiences is the social validation and catalyzing presence of a supportive community (peers who sponsor, amplify, challenge and champion you). Community can serve a distinct role in the incubation process (e.g. by exchanging early-stage feedback & support). In this way, it is related to how the other pillars are realized, but it is a stand-alone value.

By contrast, the domains of Production, Publishing, and Promotion may require more dedicated, resourced, and focused spaces, as well as more complex processes to implementation. These domains will undergo distinct journeys of becoming fully developed based on user feedback. At the current stage with limited resources, efforts will involve fundraising to build certain “next” felt needs (such as the blogging and podcasting production platforms), and creating informational templates, drawing from the ongoing activities of communities of practice who are doing these things now through collaborative discourse. To be followed by orchestrating the material build-out of these domains.

Contents of the Pillars

:revolving_hearts:Community
COSMOS provides a sacred community for artists, arranged to function in ethical, reciprocal and generous ways.

This manifests in the following ways:

Platform Affordances:

Spaces for socialization & conversation

  • Social Media profiles / Social Network
  • Forum
  • Live/virtual events & activities
    • Conversations, panels
    • Open mics, performances
    • “Shut the fuck up and write” nights
    • Reading & Study groups

Sociocultural Patterns:

  • Sponsorship

    • Can look like: Mentorship, Patronship, Champion/Cheerleader, etc.
  • Gift economy

    • Litcoin and in-kind gift-giving
  • Conversations & activities

    • Initiating, leading and maintaining activities such as reading groups, movie clubs, poetry workshops, etc.

:sparkler:Incubation
COSMOS fosters the development of artists and their works.

There are three main ways of getting services: 1-COSMOS staff provides directly as a benefit of membership, 2-P2P, 3-Marketplace.

  • Editorial
    • 1-Submit to Metapsychosis, get feedback from editors (E-Zone)
    • 2-Creative Studio, live events, workshopping
    • 3-Members selling their services in the marketplace.
  • Educational / Practical Training
    • 1-Courses, Tutorials, Skill-builds offered directly by COSMOS as a benefit of membership
      • g., How to Podcast, Charles Gammill
    • 2-P2P sharing of practical/education resources in form of mentor/sponsor relationship (in part)
      • g., Clean Language for Writers & Artists (John Davis)
    • 3-Members selling their services in the marketplace.
      • g., Carmen, “Bitch-slapped by the Muse”

Fostering new artists (through functions of sponsorship, mentorship, community guides, creative studios).

:studio_microphone:Production
COSMOS fosters the production of works. Main revenue source: member utilization of “plug-ins” by fee (opt-in benefits).

This includes:

  • Text
    • Books
    • Articles & essays
    • Journalism
    • Creative
    • Poetry, fiction, and creative/experimental
    • Blogs (integrate with forum)
  • Audio
    • Podcasts
    • Experimental (e.g., “meditations”)
    • Music
    • Visual / Multimedia
  • Film
    • Documentary
    • Short
  • Digital art
  • Print art/illustration
  • Graphic & web design
  • New media & virtual reality

Italics = undeveloped as of yet.

:mega:Publishing/Distribution/Promotion
COSMOS publishes, disseminates & promotes its members’ works and conversations. Main revenue source: sponsorships by fans, “plug-ins” by fee (opt-in benefits).

Passively:

  • Websites
    • com (magazine)
    • FM (podcasts)
    • com (forum)
    • Theory of Everybody (blogs)
    • coop (engine of platform)
    • Niche sites, experimental
  • Podcast hosting & syndication channels
    • iTunes
    • Stitcher, etc.
  • Marketplace to sell your work to members and the broader public (direct to consumer channel)
  • Fundraising platform to raise donations and other forms of capital from patrons/fans

Actively:

  • Sponsorship functions of member interactions (mentoring, Litcoin “tipping,” etc.)
  • Marketing platform with high quality brand for your media outputs, while producers retain control of their works (licensing–mutual use)
    • Mailing List
    • Legacy
    • Facebook
    • Twitter
    • Google
  • Partnerships
    • Watkins Media
    • North Atlantic Books
    • Others…

Future goals: Cosmos functions as a high-profile and cooperative “brand” of affiliated artists (slightly similar to Stocksy), able to push members’ creative products and negotiate as an agent & advocate on behalf of its members (by consent, of course) to amplify their works to other media outlets, essentially brokering better deals for affiliated artists by infusing a “value add” through Cosmos’ collective brand. In this way, Cosmos attempts to infiltrate and stretch the boundaries of the “mainstream” cultural discourse, influencing a shift in aesthetics, substance and media toward more planetary futurist aims.