On Wednesday 30th August 2023 the Farm freelancers networking event was in the beer garden of the Battle of Trafalgar pub, Brighton. 14 people came along.
This is some of what we talked about:
Motivation and regaining it
Controllers and synths
Anti-work and David Graeber
The exploitative aspects of work (both for full timers and freelancers)
Mastodon and improving communities
The legitimate end of NFTs is dead
AI help writing code
Large companies using new tech politically, e.g. pushing their own programming languages as gatekeeping
Who trains managers? The lack of good management within UK companies
London meet ups and recruiters
Synths from the ’80s
Keeping iOS apps up-to-date
People coming to the Farm from London
Last week we had someone come from London to join us (sorry, I don’t have your name) and this week we had Sevan, a long term Farm member and ex-Brighton native, join us as he was down from London. I find it surprising people occasionally come all the way from London to join us, although I do appreciate it.
From what Sevan said, lots of tech and business meet ups in London haven’t returned after stopping during the lockdowns, which is the same for Brighton. He also said many aren’t great there. A lot of tech events are dominated by recruiters, to the point where it is difficult to meet other techies at them. So coming to Brighton and going to a good event may take time, but is more enjoyable than going to a local event where most of your contact is with people being rather aggressive pursuing their goal of adding you to their books.
Hopefully, the situation improves. A lot of freelancers have a love-hate relationship with recruiters, but as someone who worked in-house within the recruitment industry before going freelance, I know a good recruiter is worth their weight in gold. Sadly, it seems those are not the people joining the tech events.
You may have heard of NFTs, Non-Fungible Tokens, a way of having a piece of art connected to a digital contract showing you own the art (to simplify it right down to basics.)
The interesting part of NFTs for me was that the original artist could retain a share of the ownership of the piece of art, so when it was re-sold, they would get a share of any profit. This felt like an interesting way for the digital world to help artists and encourage them to make more art, and make being the artist a more sustainable way of life.
Sadly, early on the NFT space became dominated by images that few would regard as art of even the most modern variety, most famously badly drawn apes, and now the exchanges which help people buy and sell the NFT/artworks have stopped supporting the type of contract that allows the artist to earn money from re-sales. This marks the end of them being more useful than standard ways of buying art and relegates NFTs to merely a way to gain sales from people who can be convinced the art will be worth more in the future (which is a scam for most of the art sold) or launder cryptocurrency by making it look like art has gone up in value by someone reselling to themselves.
Hopefully the idea will resurface in the future under better circumstances.