best way to support Free Software financially?

Danny Spitzberg stationaery at
Sun Sep 29 01:07:25 BST 2019

I did not subscribe nor consent to be subscribed to this list

Daniel, please remove me, and please consider removing everyone else who is
in the same situation

On Sat, Sep 28, 2019 at 4:24 PM Daniel Pocock <daniel at> wrote:

> Many people in FSF and FSFE have been reflecting on whether to donate
> again given the current problems in each organization.
> It is disturbing for me that I have now had quite a few discussions with
> people who donated to these groups in the past, stopped donating and
> then completely abandoned free software altogether because they were so
> incredibly disillusioned.  That's right: they didn't just go to another
> group: they felt so bad that they cut all ties with free software activism.
> Why do these groups have that impression on people?
> The question "do I give my money to FSF/FSFE now?" isn't really the
> right one.
> A better question to ask might be: "what impact do I want my money to
> have?"
> It may feel convenient subscribing to a recurring payment.  This could
> also be the worst thing you could do.  Many organizations take those
> payments for granted.
> You need to make them work for your money.  Imagine if the same country
> won the FIFA world cup every 4 years.  Would they work hard?  Or would
> the players get fat?  When you have automatic payments to one group, it
> is not much better than that.
> Imagine you need a surgery.  Will you choose:
> a) the doctor with the lowest number of dead patients?
> b) the doctor with the lowest price?
> c) the doctor who makes you feel good and always has young interns of
> the opposite sex at the reception desk?
> When it comes to charitable giving, many people choose (c), not (a).
> Emotions win over logic.
> In recent years, we have had new options with crowdfunding.  Yet that
> also has irregularities: some projects are being over-funded and deliver
> nothing.  In other cases, developers put all their energy into making
> videos and Kickstarter "rewards", a tedious process that they don't
> enjoy, then they fail to reach their funding target and feel that the
> marketing effort was wasted time that could have simply been spent doing
> what they enjoy, coding.
> How do we correct these imbalances?  How do we fund both activism and
> code in the right proportion?  All ideas are welcome.
> Regards,
> Daniel
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