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What we’re about

Utopia, from the Greek meaning "not place" is that perfect hypothetical state of affairs that by definition can not be achieved.

In contrast, Kevin Kelly describes Protopia as "a state that is better today than yesterday, although it might be only a little better," which naturally over time, approaches the best state of affairs our collective wisdom and diligence can produce.

Protopianism asks thoughtful, curious, capable people to take an active and personal role in the betterment of their society, but it does not presuppose a specific course or outcome.

This group holds meetings in which we discuss our efforts, review their effectiveness, and reflect on ways of improving or expanding them. We also host speakers, to educate ourselves on existing and potential future efforts. Our mutual goal is to address the problems and express the potential of our day.

Examples of possible Protopian actions:
* Picking up litter
* Gardening or re-wilding a natural space
* Supporting beneficial transportation alternatives
* Raising or educating a child
* Starting or joining a beneficial company, co-op, or charitable endeavor
* Contributing to open source software
* Making art or comedy that comments productively on society
* Engaging in political activism that achieves positive change

The set of actions will naturally and necessarily change with time as new understanding and circumstances develop, and is necessarily personal as we all have different inclinations and priorities for what we're comfortable with and how we choose to spend our time.

Group History
We publish a newsletter at:

As of Protopians #2, the group has identified a few key themes of interest:
* Reducing the cost of living - such as through housing development and homeless services
* Fostering community / Contributing to the commons - such as through little free libraries or improving our local political decision-making processes
* Decentralizing / Localism - such as through supporting local agriculture or energy production
* Reducing negative externalities - such as through picking up litter or reducing sound pollution

Note these goals reflect the participants and circumstances of that time, and are open to revision.

As of Protopians #3, the group identified these projects to concretely address some of the points above:

Austin Approves - to establish a 2024 initiative to adopt Approval Voting in Austin
Austin Homelessness Solutionaries - to efficiently, effectively address homelessness, such as through the Laundry Love program

Note these projects reflect the participants and circumstances of that time, and are open to revision.

As of Protopians #8, the group identified a Web of Trust or Trust Network as a promising technology to benefit Austin