Campaigning & Communicating
Stibasa is about sustainable transport, particularly cycling, and about sustainable living. It is focussed on Barking, where I live, but broadens to LB Barking & Dagenham and wider, sometimes. You may like to read or comment on my blog, which has a few followers of its own.
When Stibasa started, e-mail and (static) websites were the latest way of communicating. I was running the B&D London Cycling Campaign branch (‘Borough Co-ordinator’), and to make communication with the group easy, I started the Stibasa Google Group, always with the intention that it was for those interested in the Stibasa concept, especially as back then cycling was not so fashionable, and B&D LCC membership was low (as it still is).
I added the e-mail addresses of current LCC members to the group when I started it, and have continued to add addresses as others joined, so the group contains the e-mail addresses of some former B&D LCC members.
As cycling’s popularity has grown and developed, including in B&D, I have added contacts from non-LCC organisations to the group – principally Sustrans, for whom I am a local Active Travel Champion.
On 20 November 2020 I took Barking and Dagenham Cycling Campaign independent of LCC, though we will maintain a strong and friendly connection. This enables us to work freely with any/all organisations promoting cycling in B&D, without fear of contavening any LCC policies.
I am Cycling UK campaigner, too (fka Local Cyclists’ Right to Ride Representative for CTC), and for Twenty’s Plenty for Us I am the local campaign point of contact, but these organisations do not have a branch presence in the same way.]
It was inevitable that Stibasa should have a page on Facebook, so I created it at the same time a Facebook page for the B&D LCC branch was created – using a more descriptive name than Stibasa. The B&D LCC page has been changed to reflect our new independence.
I decided to use Meetup.com for creating events, and I called the Meetup “group” Hubbub as an homage to the newsletter that used to be produced for the NE London LCC borough branches – B&D, Havering, and Redbridge.
Rather like Facebook, the Meetup group has attracted its own separate following, overlapping with the Stibasa Google Group and the Facebook likers of the B&D cycling campaign. (Some Meetup group members mistakenly think that Hubbub is a group, such as a cycling club, in real life.)
The Meetup group’s event listings – like the http://www.stibasa.org.uk ones it replaced – were mainly intended for cycle rides and events within easy reach of Barking by train or bike (or on foot!). In the main, the Meetup group is just a listing service.
Events within easy reach of Barking, however, are likely to be organised by groups based in the areas around Barking. Meetup enables me to add the organisers of such events as co-organisers of the Meetup Group so they can add events themselves, but this means in fairness that they can add events relevant to their own groups, even if they are not “Barking friendly”.