[linux-audio-user] License free Linux ??

Mark Constable markc at renta.net
Sat Dec 6 11:51:44 EST 2003

On Sun, 7 Dec 2003 02:07 am, Mark Knecht wrote:
> Over a year ago I floated the idea that to get (friendly) support from
> these lists you really should pay some money. Just a very small amount
> like $1/month or $10/year. If you contribute a bit of cash, and ONLY at
> whatever level you're comfortable with, you'd get your name on a web
> site of program supporters, and you don't get cajoled when you ask for
> help. None of us would have to know what anyone else paid. If you pay a
> penny you're covered.
> ...
> Anyway, thought I'd just share the idea again as I think that there are
> better ways to get money into the developers hands on a long term and
> sustaining basis.

Great intent but I suspect the honest and fair management of this
kind of thing is why it doesn't happen. There's all sorts of possible
variations on the general theme, encourage developers to put PayPal
accounts on their web pages etc, but even if 600 people donated $10/yr,
each, sure it would help, but only a little depending on local currency.
For a western developer it might be some useful pocket money compared
to weeks worth of wages for developers from undeveloped countries. I'm
not saying anything that's not already obvious but one way to go would
be to emulate what Mark Shuttleworth is doing aimed at the Mozilla 
project where he has a certain ($3m I think) budget for open source
(again, I think) and offers "bounties" whereby developers for projects
can apply for funding and if it's approved they get it.

In other words I suspect if a more central fund base could be set up
where developers apply for more-than-insignificant funding then it
could end up being more useful in the long term in that some developers
could find themselves employed/engaged full time for many months at
a time. It could also allow (the lucky few perhaps) to be more
responsive and dedicated towards what they love doing instead of
just in their spare time or when time permits. I think there have
been, or are right now, systems to do this but the egg/chicken
situation exists that a funds base needs to be built up before it
can be usefully dispersed and that fund base needs to be trusted
before folks will commit real dollars to it.

This is a very worthwhile thread so I hope others show some interest
in seeing the basic idea evolve and perhaps one model could be an
approach to Mark Shuttleworth asking him if he wouldn't mind helping
us to expand on the base he already has established, if suitable
for our needs, and perhaps he could seriously help kick it off...

This is really a general open source issues and not just an ALSA
thing so maybe a wider solution could be looked at. Regardless, I'd
certainly be willing to contribute if a) it was easy to do so and
b) I felt comfortable the donations got to where they are genuinely
useful and not unduly siphoned off or frivilously frittered away.

I'm not suggesting this is an ideal system or anything but at least
it's an example of something that is actually happening as opposed
to being just a good and honourable idea...



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