The Connection Manifesto

The Connection Manifesto tells the story of why there is so much hurt and sadness in the world, and what we intend to do about it.

This manifesto is the heart and soul of the Connection Revolution. We poured ourselves into it. We wrote, tweaked, adjusted, agonized, and rephrased ’til we got it just right.

But really, it’s about you; how you can improve your life and the lives of others, how you can find and create connection, and most importantly, how you can change the world.

It’s 100% free to download, 100% free to share, and 100% free of affiliate links. This is not a money-making document, this is a world-changing document.

Our goal is to share this message with everyone in the world who would be touched by its message. One simple thing you can do right now to help is share this manifesto with anyone it will inspire. Forward it as an email attachment. Stumble it. Share the link to this page:

Together, we can spread the word and change the world!

Download the Connection Manifesto (PDF)

Download the print-friendly version (PDF)

95 thoughts on “The Connection Manifesto

  1. I saw a mention of this manifesto on Live Journal. Was very excited to read it and then forward to my thousands of freaky friends, but after multiple tries, I can’t get the PDF to open. Is posting an HTML version on site asking too much?

    Renee Christy
    Mistress of Merriment

  2. Congratulations on the launch of this important, world-changing document. I’m hugely honored by the dedication.

    Both of you have so much to give to the rest of us, and I’m glad to see you doing that through this manifesto. Good luck on getting to one million readers. Sometimes these things take time, so be sure to allow a week or two for the first half. :)


  3. You know I strongly disagree about the growing foods in harmony with nature bit.

    Food is an instance, where maxing yield is very important, and nature be damned.

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  5. @Lame: Before the word “paradigm” became a buzzword, it was used by Thomas Kuhn in The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. We’re using it in a more Kuhnian sense than a buzzwordian sense. (: It does suck that such a potent word has been robbed of its power, but I prefer to reclaim it rather than abandon it.

  6. Isn’t it fabulous when you freak out the other freaks with your freakiness? :D

    I too would prefer an HTML version. I greatly dislike PDFs, so I have not downloaded it yet (whereas if it were in HTML I would just click it and start reading right away!) If there’s any chance of an HTML version happening soon please let me know. Either way I’ll be excited to read it.

  7. So it begins, my fellow freaks. I arrived here from MetaFilter. Pace & Kyeli, am reading the booklet on my other monitor. Design is nice, your positivity is admirable. I’ll learn more over the course of the next block of time.

    Why settle for mediocrity when you can be awesome?

  8. You need to conserve some of that bandwidth and NOT use PDF–you’re freaks remember? Here’s a Djvu version of the manifesto, a 1MB download instead of 6MB.

  9. @Torley: Thank you!

    @Acrylicist: Thanks! The only difference I noticed in the lossy compression is that the nice gradients became all blocky. Still, I wonder why that takes 5 MB.

  10. @Acrylicist (& @quonsar, I guess): I hosted the DJVU version on our server and made it another option for folks to download. Thank you!

  11. @Blade: Hmm, both we and the CNN article are talking about connection, but I don’t think the article is actually supporting a connection paradigm at all. The CNN article talks about friends and acquaintances in social networks. We (the Freak Revolution) are talking about heart-based connection and empathy with others. There is some overlap, for instance the concept of the monkeysphere, but the CNN article is still coming from a control-based perspective. It talks about how we can control obesity and control epidemics by taking advantage of social networks, and that’s control paradigm, not connection paradigm.

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  13. Came across this place via a link to The Usual Error. It’s awesome to see that I’m not quite alone in my small-scale optimism.

  14. Hm, should’ve read first, then posted. I’m still glad to see that I’m not the only optimist of my kind, without a doubt. After reading the manifesto and browsing the site a little I’ve found that I don’t quite agree with everything I see around here. I’m not sure I’d be quite comfortable here, but I might just have another look after next week (terribly busy for school, but I promise you this is by choice ;). If I don’t show up, I wish you all the best as I definitely support your cause. Rest assured that I’ll do my part to make my bit of the world an awesome place, too.

  15. Thank you, Mark @ Heart of Business!!!

    Pace and Kyeli ~ Have you considered submitting this (the Manifesto) to *Change This*?
    This is from their quarterly email:

    “ChangeThis is a vehicle, not a publisher.
    We’re here to spread great ideas.
    If you have any, let us know.

    Bright Blessings!

  16. @Kharmin: Yes, I asked ChangeThis if they accept already-published manifestos (as opposed to manifestos specifically written for ChangeThis) and they have not gotten back to me yet…

    Bright blessings to you too!

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  18. I guess I’m one of those eye-rollers. You talk about breaking free of stereotypes, and in the same document you stereotype everything. You take complex situations and boil them down into easily digested but not very true tidbits. It’s a good sales technique, and sure to get the blood of some people pumping, but not very genuine. I consider myself a bit of a freak and an outsider, and though I admire your spirit and enthusiasm, I found this document to be a bit self-important, very judgmental (odd, since it is in support of those who are often judged unfairly), and more like a self-empowerment seminar than a revolution. You get points for not asking for money.

    Here’s what I am asserting: negativity is not always a bad thing. Life involves balance, and if you surround yourself with those who jump up and down incessantly, you aren’t living in reality: you’re George W. Bush. You surround yourself with people who only agree with you and support your ideas, of course you’ll be happy. But you won’t grow. Trees kept out of the wind have weak trunks. Children kept in germ-free environments don’t develop immunities. So have some eye-rollers in your group of friends, and learn to argue. Who knows? Maybe there’s good reason for the eye rolling.

    As for the evils of TV and public schools, I was a teacher and I taught my students to think for themselves, to love reading and art, and to play chess. TV is just a conduit – be aware of what’s coming through and make smart choices. There are poor teachers and poor TV shows. Again – part of life is learning how to deal with adversity. Wrap yourself in padding and hide in a tree, or live bravely and learn.

    I’m sure you will get a lot of needy people to give you a thumbs-up. This freak says “meh.”

  19. Oh, and just so that I’m not overwhelmingly negative, I really like the design work! The character drawings are first rate. And the whole thing has a charm and whimsy to it that was initially appealing. I think that’s why I was more disappointed in the content. Sorry if it came off all jerky. Just my opinion, which is worth as much or as little as whatever weight you care to assign to it. :)

  20. @Jack: *nods* I see what you’re saying. What you’re calling “not very genuine”, I call “writing boldly rather than precisely. It’s a tough tradeoff we purposefully chose when writing the manifesto, and this is the down side.

    And I actually agree with you about balance. What we’re advocating in the manifesto is to diversify your monkeysphere as much as you can without being brought down by unhelpful naysayers. Naysayers are super if they’re constructive and help you learn and grow; the unhelpful naysayers we advocate letting go of are the ones who simply bring you down without any benefit. I realize we didn’t express this point very clearly in the manifesto, and I’m sorry about that.

    Thanks for your comments, Jack. I appreciate you taking the time to write.

  21. I downloaded it, started reading it, and then at one point got angry and deleted it. Then I undeleted it because I deleted it for the wrong reasons, and I finished reading it. Then I went and modified my embryonic business plan to more clearly characterize who I want to be doing business for, because this document helped me finally pin it down.

    I want to disagree with you on “work”… but then I remember something I read elsewhere:

    “Learn at first concentration without effort; transform work into play; make every yoke you have accepted easy and every burden you carry light.”

    So, I think I still disagree with you about work. Even when I am doing what I am most passionate about, sometimes it just turns into a slog and sometimes the heavy lifting on any project gets burdensome. But all of the bigger problems I have worked on just seem to require annoyingly burdensome work in order to get everything else to hang together.

  22. Jack said: “As for the evils of TV and public schools, I was a teacher and I taught my students to think for themselves, to love reading and art, and to play chess.”

    Right. You taught them….

    Question is: What did they learn?

    I don’t doubt that you were a breath of fresh air for kids stuck in school. But. You were still part of School. One little, teeny, tiny part of their yearafteryearafterdrearyyear of institutionalization. That they didn’t ask for.

    A friendly jailer is still a jailer.

    Do you not see the joke of “teaching them to think for themselves” when “I think I want to leave now” is #1 on the list of contraband thoughts???

    But a friendly jailer is better than a mean jailer. Because those kids were stuck there whether you were there or not. Better you than some I can think of.

  23. @Savanni: What exactly do you disagree with about work? It seems like you’re disagreeing with something that sounds like “If you’re doing what you’re passionate about, you’ll love every moment of it,” and I don’t remember myself or Kyeli writing that, so I’m a bit confused. I read through the manifesto to double-check and didn’t find the passage you’re replying to. So I remain confused. (:

    And out of curiosity, who do you want to be doing business for?

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