In Douglas Adams’ The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, the answer to life, the universe, and everything, was the number 42. Tony Clack and Dave Sinclair set up their non-profit organisation, Probably42, as a platform to discuss these big questions and move towards ways of making a better society for everyone.

Sounds like a big endeavour, right?

Clack and Sinclair aim to do this by simply generating conversation between people of all backgrounds, ‘Knowledge Networking’, as they call it. Fundamentally, their project is not aligned to any particular political party, making it an all-inclusive space for anyone to discuss societal issues.

Probably42: An online platform to discuss life, the universe, and everything

Photo: Probably42

The ‘Knowledge Networking’ takes place on all kind of platforms. Their website, is a good place to start. Here, you can login as a member and become an active part of the various conversations that are taking place.

Online topics for discussion include anything from overcoming the housing crisis to artificial intelligence, from job awareness in schools to gambling. It is a free space for people to post their thoughts without any pressure to back them up substantially or academically, a space that encourages conversation free of judgement… Just like conversations with friends down at the local pub or café that can lead to bright ideas and unexpected conclusions.

Clack describes the personality of Probably42 as ‘balanced, impartial, factual, respectful, and encouraging to ensure you cover both pros and cons’.

As well as the online forums, Probably42 encourages its members to set up face-to-face group meetings in a relaxed social setting, which they refer to as ‘Pie and Pint’ discussions. They emphasise that the objective of these meetings is to ‘have a good time, discuss some big issue and if something useful does come out of it, publish it on Probably42 for others to comment of, add to, adopt etc.’

Probably42 also has published a Manifesto of Ideas for A Future Society in the 21st Century. It outlines their top 10 values and principles for a future society and their top 10 strategies. These values include: working towards a fair and considerate society, reduction and removal of fear, and effective democracy and decision making.

Probably42 is a great way of getting the ball rolling towards change that can benefit everyone, through discussion of shared values that many of us wish to strive towards.

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