The Liberation day gathering at Casa Cervi was great. Daniele and Franco of Fuori Orario told us that we broke every record of attendance (ten thousand estimated) and food and drink sold, and from the stage we could only see a sea of people of all ages and all colors, happy to be there together. The internet campaign was also a resounding success. We started off with the aim to get 100 bloggers involved: on April 24th we had 330 participants, which yesterday had risen to 347 and counting. If you look on Flickr or Youtube you find lots of photos and videos. A Second Life Mondine Museum has been started and has started to stimulate mondine-related inworld cultural activities. Casa Cervi also hosted a spontaneous meeting of the analogic network of partisan associations, mondine, Fiamma Fumana and Fuori Orario and the the digital network, the internet of the Resistance and Italy’s collective memory. Some influential bloggers turned up: Alberto, riding his motorbike and obviously happy (he created the slogan “from Resistence to counterstrike”); Antonio, smiling and optimistic (he created the slogan “from Resistence to counterstrike”); Marco; Fabio and Roberta, in representation of the Second Life mondine group; Franca, who posted a lovely chronicle-cum-photos; the invaluable Valeria and Freddy for Mondine 2.0 (Freddy even had to replace me for a radio interview).
At the end of our set, everyone, really really every single person, sang Bella ciao together with mondine, and the emotion melted into a very long applause. I was seized by a sense of gratitude and belonging. We really had this sitting right in front of us for a long time before I actually saw it: the “no spectator allowed, only participants” logic of social networks is the same as that of democratic participation. Which means: build relationships of respect and affection with people you share ideals with. Then work with them to “do stuff” (create a mondine choir, organize a music festival, paint the walls of a Casa del Popolo, whatever), and this “stuff” are building blocks of the world that those ideals depict. This building together is the most powerful force I know, a lot more powerful than just casting your vote once every five years. The counterstrike Antonio talks about, for me, starts here.