What are the core pillars of BMS?

When I first started our wiki, I picked 3 principles that I thought were important for BMS and called them the three pillars of our culture. I wanted an easy way to summarise all of our policies and cultural expectations. For reference, they are currently be respectful, be honest, and make good choices.

A lot has changed since then, so I want the BMS community to come up with some new ones. If you haven’t used this forum before, please give it a go and join this discussion. Members and non-members, everyone is welcome.

I think it’s important to have 3-4 core pillars that you can refer to when participating in the space. No-one can remember all of our policies, especially newer members. Having guiding principles makes it easier to do the right thing more often.

I’ll post some suggestions below to get the ball rolling, but I really want to hear from everyone. :slight_smile:

Make good choices

I actually borrowed this one from work, because I really like it. This works because we have a great culture and trust our members to do the right thing. If you’re unsure how to handle a tricky situation, or even something our policies are unclear on. Just ask yourself “is this a good choice?”.


This may be a new concept to some people (if so check this out). Up until last year, BMS was run “by me” and most decisions were left to me. This isn’t the case anymore, so we need the community to step up and just start doing stuff! A do-ocracy is when members are empowered to do things themselves. Want a new shelf - put one up. Think the space needs more plants - bring some in. Combined with make good choices above, I think they work super well together. We’d obviously come up with some do-ocracy guidelines - but that’s the general concept.

Respect and Honesty

A community space like BMS can’t exist without mutual respect and honesty. You should always show respect for other members, visitors, our neighbours and the physical space itself. Treat people with kindness and empathy, leave the space cleaner than you found it, and be honest when you make inevitable mistakes.


All of our meetings since becoming non-profit have been run this way. Consensus decision making (read more here) effectively means you consult everyone who may be impacted by something. Together, you come up with a decision that everyone agrees with enough not to block (even if you don’t agree fully). A consensus decision comes up with the least worst outcome for everyone - much more fair than a simple majority rules one. Our rules require all meetings to operate this way, but unofficial decisions could/should also be made this way. We don’t need a formal meeting motion to say move a tool somewhere else - just ask who it impacts and come up with a consensus.

Hmm… i dont know anything about running anything, other than a tap. But a few things that are important to me are…

I feel honesty is a pretty solid principle.

.if you wouldnt donit infront of others, dont do it.
.if you offer help be sure you can fulfil the persons needs or do the task enquired about.

Im very driven by responsibilities, rather than rights.

.is this a responsibile way of useing a tool.
.is this a responsible way of treating another member.
.responsibility is knowing our action are our own, instead of blaming ithers for our condition, our language, our feelings ect.

.it isnt essential to like some one, to be kind and curteous.

.every one is owed the same respect and kindness as any one else. How we feel about them, isnt their problem.

Im not sure what else to add :grinning:

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Just want to add to what already said above:


  • ALSO the fish
  • Something that was reminded of us all the time from stage hand work - “clean your worksite”. When you finish the job, clean up your area/mess, and any other nearby mess. Make the area tidy and SAFE for others.

Plus an OH&S thing, is just tidy/address issues if they are there. Cable in the way - move it. Something fell over - put it back up.
I noticed sweeper bot getting stuck on power cables, so I moved / lifted them. Even sweeper bot needs to be able to do his job safely.

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