Initially, we are restricting membership to the founders and their friends and associates. This will not be permanent, and is not because we are elitist or exclusive. We simply feel that it is necessary in order to get things off on the right foot. Designing and starting a community is a tricky and difficult process. We will be signing bank loans and designing buildings together, and in the beginning, everyone needs to be on the same wavelength. Finding members outside our group is crucial to keeping the community diverse, and once there is some momentum achieved, we will open membership to any interested parties who we feel are compatible with our vision.
It is integral to the nature of an intentional community that the membership be close-knit and mutually trusting. Backstabbing, power struggles, not caring about the good of the community, these all undercut the power of an IC. For a project like this to work, it must be built for and by people who care about and are capable of making it work. This means that members must be chosen carefully. A member who does not fit weakens the entire community, while each compatible member strengthens it.
The most important quality of a member is that they can work well within a communal environment. This means a number of things:
A new member must also fit in with our particular community. We certainly don't want everyone to be the same, but a new member should have hobbies and interests that overlap with the community enough that they can take advantage of group facilities and the social environment. To a large extent, this will be self-selecting, especially because we plan to require a trial period before a prospective is admitted to full membership.
We expect the admission process to include a (not too lengthy) application and an interview. If the current membership agrees that the candidate is suitable, they may then join us for a trial period (something like 4-12 months). If at the end of this period the community and the prospective still like each other, they may join.
To learn where you can discuss the IC, continue on.