dneary at gnome.org
Tue Jun 7 01:21:28 PDT 2011
> the question about the financing of the LGM is a very interesting one
> (and should also be considered when thinking who is the LGM's target
> and what are its/their goals).
Yes. And also, who's going to do it. Money doesn't fall out of the sky,
and I have not been involved in fundraising/sponsorship for the past
couple of years. Be aware of how much effort this has taken of the
people who have been doing it.
>> I've spent hours working on LGMs that I haven't even
>> *attended* afterwards. And then some snivel-nosed student...
> here we see that you didn't attend the last few LGMs :-)
I was definitely assuming that well-paid professionals would not
complain about paying a few euros for a museum donation.
> - getting the traveling funded is the only physical recognition of the good job done over the whole year
That's your problem right there.
Having travel paid is not a reward for anything. It's aid for people who
couldn't otherwise get to the conference.
Think of an entrance fee as health insurance. You're not paying into a
savings account you get to withdraw from, you're helping others in the
community who get sick. It's not our job to reward developers for
contributing to their projects. And that's certainly not how I pitched
sponsorship to potential sponsors, or how we pitched the Pledgie cause.
> - having to pay to be part of the conference which only exists because i'm there, would feel strange to me (and probably also to many other people)...
Then don't go. I don't mind. If you want to spend the time (and money)
organising a meeting outside of LGM, fire ahead. You could even call it
LGM if you want.
> in the whole discussion we shouldn't forget either, that very few
> people made their involvement in the libre graphics world part of their
> business. this means that there is not much money involved in the
> creation and use of our software. imo, that's part of the reason why
> it's so hard for us to collect money for the LGM.
You use "collect". I assume this is a translation issue - to me, this
implies that something is due, like collecting taxes, or collecting a
delivery. I would use "raise" since (like raising crops) there is a lot
of work to be done to get a yield.
> finally, as far i can tell, there is no big problem in funding the
> traveling of the project members who request a reimbursement (most don't
> even ask for it)...
> in my eyes, one of the problems is that there are more and more
> external people (who are very welcome at the LGM!) proposing a talk
> and/but requesting to get their traveling refunded (and in some cases
> also the lodging; which has always been refused until now).
> also, we seem to have to put too much work into collecting -- all in
> all -- little money...
There are a bunch of conflicting things here - too much time spent
collecting little money, but we have no problem reimbursing project
members who ask, but we have too many people participating in projects
asking... perhaps you should define what you mean by "project members"?
Until you have gone & tried to sell the conference to people & get
sponsorship (yes, that's what it is, sales) you can't really speak to
how much time it takes or how hard it is. I remember the first year I
ran the Pledgie campaign, I spent a lot of time selling te campaign
afterwards (blogs, mailing list posts, private emails to people I
thought might donate) - it paid off beautifully, the community was the
biggest sponsor that year. Inside the GIMP, a nulber of people (3 or 4
at least) criticised me for pushing it too hard and (in their words)
"spamming" their list.
You say that many Pledgie donors were project members... go back to that
first one & see how many GIMP developers there were.
Then again, the GIMP guys think they're rich, because of the donation
program which I set up a few years ago, and which generated them a few
grand in donations every year. LGM is their only opportunity to spend it
every year, and this year, they didn't even spend one cent on the
conference because there was no-one from the GIMP developers going.
Now, ask yourself, who is going to put time into raising funds for
people who are this ungrateful?
> i think that we really need a good discussion on how to better
> finance the LGM (even if in europe the task is much easier than in north
> america: less money to be collected, easier to collect public money).
> but the question about the target and the goals of the LGM should imo
> be answered before we get into those questions...
I respectfully disagree. With no money, there is no conference. The
starting point for the discussion is the hard facts:
* How much money does LGM cost to put on with no travel sponsorships?
* How much money do we have in the bank?
* How much money did we raise this year, and from who? (community vs
sponsors vs projects)
* How much do we get in travel requests every year?
That will tell you if we can continue the conference at all.
Then you can figure out what you want the next conference to be about.
GNOME Foundation member
dneary at gnome.org
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