[okfn-discuss] New crowdfunding system in the works exclusively for Free/Libre/Open resources

Aaron Wolf wolftune at gmail.com
Fri Dec 7 20:46:21 UTC 2012

Hi everyone,

I have been working for several months (after years of general research and
interest) on founding a new fundraising system dedicated to Free/Open
works: software, data, research, art/music, etc.

There are several things which distinguish our proposed system from the
existing platforms:

1. We will require all listed projects to accept approved Free/Open licenses

2. We are not doing one-time fund drives. We are looking to slowly build
broad communities of donors for long-term support of projects and authors.

3. We have designed a novel mechanism to address the problems with
encouraging as many people as possible to join the community. A simplistic
explanation is: each pledge starts near zero and increases only when more
people pledge as well. Essentially, each donation is contingent on everyone
else donating; like matching funds but achieved geometrically across
everyone in the system, growing further with each new donor.

Furthermore, we are going all the way with our ideals on this project. It
will be run cooperatively, it will have an honor system, and it will focus
on duty, freedom, and common good over calculated rewards to individual

We have a detailed proposal, a website and system in progress, and many
partially-formed ideas for how the whole thing will eventually look and

At this point, we are recruiting a steering committee to help us see the
project through. We will have online discussions about the precise
policies, the details of the site, and more. There is room for anyone
supportive to be involved even if you cannot consider joining the
committee. Feedback is appreciated. We're going to get the code on GitHub
soon and are looking for extra contributors to that. We're also networking
and trying to connect to anyone sympathetic to our values who could play
any helpful part in the process.

Please let me know if you are interested in even just learning more about
the project at this stage, potentially to be involved in some way.

The site is http://snowdrift.coop but you'll need to have me send you a
personal invitation code to access anything right now, since we aren't
public yet. We'll add a publicly accessible contact form ASAP, but until
then you could let me know how to reach you by posting here or writing to
me at aaron at wolfune.com

Aaron Wolf
Ann Arbor, MI, USA

Aaron Wolf
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