An Idea For Debian Funding From The Community

Why do we need more Money?

In order to be able to afford more [#FAQ_vacation Debian work meetings] ([#FAQ_number_of_gatherings 50] per year seems a conservative estimate) Debian needs more money. One can calculate with about 2000-5000USD/€ per work meeting, which would result in an overall sum of up to [#FAQ_money_corrupts 250kUSD/€]. [#FAQ_vacation Work meetings] have proven to accelerate Debian development.

How would this work?

This could work much like the [http://club.mandriva.com Mandriva Club], which "sells" a lifestyle feeling of coolness and l33tness for supporting Mandriva. As far as i know it was the [http://club.mandriva.com Mandriva Club] that saved Mandrake from bankrupcy and made it profitable again, so there is a lot of potential in this concept.

So the point is to emphasize lifestyle feeling and other activities that we want to encourage (like helping newbies, fixing/reporting bugs, keysigning and last but not least, donating money).


Hope I'm not intruding, but personally, I think the "selling of a lifestyle feeling" is nonsense. It is even disrespectfull to your future users, in that it disrespects their individuality and potential creative contribution to Debian. How would current debian developers like if "Debian" started awarding them points for updating their packages, and sell them a "debian developer lifestyle feeling"? Not a lot, I suspect. I don't think that its future users should be so lowly treated as well.

-- EduardoSilva (user)


On the other hand, what do I know? I hardly have a contingency plan as detailed as the one bellow! But please, tone down the "life-style" gimmick on this plan. Like they say, Don't imitate, inovate. As you go along and set this up, make a general invitation to non-technical users to try it, ask what they currently lack and want. Incentivate them to be creative, to come forward and use their specific talent to create a home for them in the Debian world. You'll be surprised with the reception you may receive if a honest call like this is sent out to non-advanced, users of debian .]

How could it work for Debian?

Things to sort out

Items of the Website

Frequently Asked Questions

?Anchor(FAQ_number_of_gatherings)

Wow, 50 work meetings are a lot! How do you arrive at that number?

There are a lot of groups and teams that would benefit from a work meeting: Debian-Java, Debian-QA, Security Team, Release Team, all the porters of all the architectures, Kernel Team, glibc maintainers, Debian-Edu, cdds, the Debian Policy maintainers, the KDE packagers, the Gnome team, debian-installer... If all teams only met twice per year we would most likely surpass the 50. That said: It will take some time for groups to get used to meet and we won't see so many work meetings during 2006 yet.

?Anchor(FAQ_money_corrupts)

Won't This Money Corrupt Debian?

Theoretically that is possible. But it is not likely: Other Projects have not been currupted by money yet. One example that is very close to Debian is Ubuntu, which uses money to pay developers, fund conferences, give away lots of CDs, etc. Still the community prospers and there seems to be no resentment or envy about money there. Debian subprojects used money in the past to help development: Debian-Installer and Debian-Edu work meetings were funded by SLX-Debian-Labs without corrupting people or the sub-projects. It is obviously important to do this right. But being aware of the danger will already help alot.

?Anchor(FAQ_vacation)

Are these Work Meetings just Smaller Deb``Confs? Will they be a semi-vacation to talk about stuff one does as a hobby?

No, there is a distinct difference between a Debian Conference and these work meetings: The focus of these work meetings is to work in a focused way to solve specific problems and get stuff done. There are no talks or formal dinners or parties etc. They are much more like the python sprints or collective maraton hacking sessions. Usually people attending such a meeting might want a vacation afterwards. :-)

Of course it is ok and even desired if the attendees enjoy working on the specific problem.

Work in progress

The Region of Extremadura in Spain will be making great support for Debian with international gatherings around the year thanks to effort of Darío Rapisardi. More information can be found at: [http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-announce/2005/12/msg00003.html]. Six sessions have been proposed for 2006: See WorkSessionsExtremadura.