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From Shannon Jacobs <>
Subject Would like to help, but...
Date Sun, 17 Jun 2012 04:51:10 GMT
Feels like I should start by saying that I'm actually one of those weirdos
who used to pay for shareware and such. I admit that I mostly used the
freely available software freely and without paying for it, but there were
also a number of times that I paid for the premium versions, and even a
couple of times when I paid the ransom after the free trial period had
expired. Unfortunately, I never felt that I got more by donating and in
most cases the programs in question soon disappeared anyway. I mostly
concluded that competent programmers aren't going to stay with that
economic model. My best guess is that some of them were hoping to strike it
rich, but they didn't, so they gave up. However, why would I want them to
help them strike it rich, even if their program was great? I don't Las
Vegas economic models, either.

Meanwhile, I hate the anti-freedom anti-choice policies of Microsoft,
Apple, Oracle, and increasingly the google, too. However, their economic
models work.

I would prefer to support you with some money, but I still doubt you'll
survive. Actually, the Sun fiasco has had me using LibreOffice most of the
time these days...

What I would like is an option to pay by the feature on a small project
basis. I would buy one or more shares in features that I wanted, where the
project budget would include such things as testing and programmer time,
etc. The new features would be selected as enough people agreed to pay for
them. The structure I would suggest would actually leave you holding the
money as a kind of charity stock brokerage. Some of the projects might
involve support in various forms, of course.

However I've been advocating this sort of thing for some years. The closest
thing I've seen is Kickstarter, but they seem to be completely lacking in
project management. My suggestion would be more like "reverse auction
charity shares". Unless someone does something like that, I'm not likely to
donate again... I'm convinced the economic model is as important as the

Freedom. It's about meaningful and unconstrained choice, not beer.

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