Ultimately, we believe ALL of us humans want the same basic things – to care for our loved ones and to live peacefully.
It began as an experiment to learn about people NOT like yourself.
We believe uchiMeet is truly something special, something we believe will be very powerful which is why we are moved to do this, and how you can be involved, if you choose.
In a TV special response to George Floyd’s murder, Oprah Winfrey asked, “Where do we go from here?” (Part 1 & Part 2) Racism has been on-going in the US for more than 400 years. We don’t believe there is a quick-fix and even with laws and policies, views and beliefs aren’t guaranteed to change. In fact, they continue to be passed down through the generations.
The reality is we do not tend to care for someone if we do not know them. Conversely, the better we know and understand someone, and they us, the more likely we are to care for them or, at least, respect their right to exist peacefully.
SuperSize Me creator showed it works.
Years ago, Morgan Spurlock, the creator of SuperSize Me, produced a TV show called 30 Days where volunteers agreed to a 30-day living experiment. In one episode, an Atheist woman lived for 30 days with a Christian family (S2E3). In another, a homophobic, heterosexual man lived with a homosexual man for 30 days (S1E4). In both instances it started out rough but after 30 days of getting to know each other, as people, they became good friends. The two men living together actually hugged goodbye and they both shared a profoundly positive transformation.
Join in and expand your possibilities!
If we don’t try, then nothing will change.
At Uchi, we’d like to conduct a similar, and much easier experiment, to help people of dissimilar backgrounds simply get to know each other, as people first. The conversations around racism are big ones and if we struggle to have the smaller conversations, and listen, then how can we ever expect to have the big ones?
The idea is to use the uchiTribe feature of the Uchi app and invite 10 dissimilar people (however you define that) to answer 10 questions each and share their perspective about “what it’s like being you”. Then, enjoy whatever conversation comes of it.
Since everything on Uchi is completely private ONLY the people in this private uchiTribe (which includes you, the leader) will have access to each other’s answers and ONLY if they answer that question first – Uchi Rule #1..
The most adamant racists are not our audience, yet. For now, we just want to help facilitate simple, friendly, respectful conversations, with willing and different people, where every person has a chance to share their perspective on the world and be heard. For example, “What was it like for you growing up?” You can answer that general question however you like.
Our hope is to role model constructive conversations where we all feel heard, as people. The hypothesis is the better we know and understand each other the better our world will be.
What do you say? Ready to try Uchi with your own group?
If so, bounce over to the bottom of the uchiTribe page and buy your first one today! (Note: Uchi is 100% ad-free and investor-free but we still need your support to keep going.)
Change will take time but of course,
The journey of 1000 miles begins with the first step.
What, if anything, changed as a result of the uchiMeet Experiment?
Success! Without a doubt, the uchiMeet experiment was an overwhelming success. What an incredible opportunity to bring together 10 dissimilar people who did not previously know each other.
The uchiMeet Tribe Demographics included:
- 5 Male | 5 Female | 4 White | 3 Black | 1 Hispanic | 1 Asian | 1 Indian | 1 Queer
- 10 Questions asked
- 83 out of a possible 100 Answers provided
- 277 Comments driving deeper conversations
But there is so much more to each tribe member than just these basics.
It was incredibly encouraging to have all 10 invitees accept the offer to participate in the uchiMeet Experiment. Only the leader, Kevin Strauss, knew all 10 members prior to starting and every member joined with an open mind, eager to learn and grow.
Based on the activity and engagement, not to mention the depth of conversation, disclosure, and vulnerability, all 10 members agreed the experiment was an overwhelming success. Follow-up email conversations and a video-chat with several uchiMeet #1 Members resulted in very positive feedback and excitement.
- “It was really refreshing to be able to state what I wanted others to know about me without the risk of assumptions or prejudice.”
- “I was surprised by how much I thought I knew about a topic or situation only to realize how biased my views are based on my own experiences with it. Once I began hearing other peoples’ perspectives, on the exact same scenario, my worldview completely expanded. I finally began to see the world more clearly because of someone else’s perspective.”
- “Having the time to read and re-read someone’s answer allowed me to consider it much more completely. Then, by being able to ask follow-up questions I was able to understand the other tribe member much better.”
- “It was so much easier to engage and have conversations, over time, rather than try and gather all 10 people, at the same time, on a video call. By conversing asynchronously, the conversations seemed to be deeper and were more valuable than a 30-, 60-, or 90-minute call where not everyone gets a chance to speak.”
- “What an experiment! We all understand racism won’t end in a day, a week, or a year, but we have to start somewhere and the Uchi platform makes it a lot easier to have constructive, non-confrontational dialogue. I love how each question allowed us to answer first and kept us all discussing the same topic. The more I got to know my fellow tribe members the better I was able see the world through their eyes. Talk about practicing empathy!”
As we hypothesized, the better people know each other, especially those with different backgrounds from us, the easier it is to understand them. The more we share and listen, the more opportunities there are to find common ground and respect and appreciate our differences.
As one member stated, “racism won’t end in a week” but by opening the dialogue, and having real conversations, in a safe and guided space, we can begin to learn about each and ourselves. And the more we know, the closer we feel, and it feels really good.
We don’t tend to hurt others when we feel good ourselves.
At Uchi, we hope to continue supporting “common ground conversations” for families, schools, businesses, and anywhere else improved communication and connection will benefit especially with any Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion (DEI) efforts.
Peace. Love. Connect.
Kevin Strauss, CEO
Have more questions about your own experiment?
Interested in joining a random group of dissimilar people?