funding a dedicated server

Geocaching Australia governance issues
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Team Piggy
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Post by Team Piggy » 04 February 08 8:53 am

I think the fact that so far only 45-50 people (out of about 1000 possibly active) have put their hand up to donate, that kind of proves my theory in my last post so far. :roll:

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GIN51E
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Post by GIN51E » 04 February 08 6:40 pm

Team Piggy wrote:I think the fact that so far only 45-50 people (out of about 1000 possibly active) have put their hand up to donate, that kind of proves my theory in my last post so far. :roll:
Correct word to use -

Theory :
a proposed explanation whose status is still conjectural, in contrast to well-established propositions that are regarded as reporting matters of actual fact.



Of the possible 1,000? Active Members since the poll was created only around 215 members have visited the forum. so we still have a lot more to come online and tick the appropriate box.

Many of those 1,000 members may never visit the "Geocaching Australia Senate" forum and of those that do only come on the forum once a week could easily miss the poll when they are inundated with so many unread posts and are bound to miss a few.

Then there is also the fact that a quick browse through recent polls that the max amount of votes is around the 40-60 mark with one of the highest polls being the "Is it cashing or ka-ay- shing" recording 90 votes.

We could then start talking about how many members out there use the GCA Website and never enter the forum who would still be happy to donate.

With the value its up to now i think that's a very good effort and i can only imagine it getting higher with more time and publicity.

One other small part is i selected $40 but its highly likely that in a couple months time I'd chuck in another $40 or if there was a rolling target and i could see we were only a few hundred short I'd likely chuck in some more.

And I'm sure I'm not the only one who would do this.

All i can suggest is have a little more faith, maybe not in the general population but at least in the members of GCA :D

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Post by Dooghan » 04 February 08 7:50 pm

GIN51E wrote:Of the possible 1,000? Active Members since the poll was created only around 215 members have visited the forum. so we still have a lot more to come online and tick the appropriate box.

Many of those 1,000 members may never visit the "Geocaching Australia Senate" forum and of those that do only come on the forum once a week could easily miss the poll when they are inundated with so many unread posts and are bound to miss a few.
If that is the case then the Admin's should be able to send out a general email to all forum members. Let people know what is going on. That option should be part of the forum software. There might be another way to do it also.

Dooghan

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Post by CraigRat » 04 February 08 8:14 pm

Dooghan wrote:There might be another way to do it also.
We know where you all live...expect a visit....at midnight :lol:

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Post by caughtatwork » 04 February 08 8:16 pm

Dooghan wrote:
GIN51E wrote:Of the possible 1,000? Active Members since the poll was created only around 215 members have visited the forum. so we still have a lot more to come online and tick the appropriate box.

Many of those 1,000 members may never visit the "Geocaching Australia Senate" forum and of those that do only come on the forum once a week could easily miss the poll when they are inundated with so many unread posts and are bound to miss a few.
If that is the case then the Admin's should be able to send out a general email to all forum members. Let people know what is going on. That option should be part of the forum software. There might be another way to do it also.

Dooghan
I think that falls into the category of SPAM even though you may have a "relationship" with us. We don't like to SPAM people. Even banana benders :-)

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Post by Dooghan » 04 February 08 9:00 pm

caughtatwork wrote:
Dooghan wrote:
GIN51E wrote:Of the possible 1,000? Active Members since the poll was created only around 215 members have visited the forum. so we still have a lot more to come online and tick the appropriate box.

Many of those 1,000 members may never visit the "Geocaching Australia Senate" forum and of those that do only come on the forum once a week could easily miss the poll when they are inundated with so many unread posts and are bound to miss a few.
If that is the case then the Admin's should be able to send out a general email to all forum members. Let people know what is going on. That option should be part of the forum software. There might be another way to do it also.

Dooghan
I think that falls into the category of SPAM even though you may have a "relationship" with us. We don't like to SPAM people. Even banana benders :-)
Your informing people about what's happening to the server. You have to take the good with the bad caughtatwork and it's only one email. What about putting it into the daily email???

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Post by caughtatwork » 04 February 08 9:15 pm

There is new functionality for the daily email, not sure if it's up and running yet. That's probably a better way anyway.

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Post by listmaker » 05 February 08 11:55 am

I'm a regular listener and forum member of podcacher.com, and I decided to email the owners, in my capacity as an interested, ordinary member of gca, to ask about the success of their various fundraising initiatives. They have 'tip jars' for monthly/yearly donations, and have produced a geocoin.

I explained that gca are in the process of debating ways of supporting the site.

Here's their reply, which I received today:

"No worries. It's not a problem to ask. For us, the coin sale has been the most successful so far. BUT, this is mainly because we traded advertising for the coins which greatly increased the profit margin, and we sold them at a higher-than-normal price because it was a fund raiser for the show.

If the organization can get a great deal with a coin company and if people are willing to pay a bit more for a coin to help support the site, then I'd recommend this direction.

As for monthly or annual support, this also works pretty well for us. The main thing to think about is what value do the people get from the website and would they be willing to donate for that value (or better yet, for extra value that only members get). I imagine they don't want to be like geocaching.com, but the value you get from premium membership is well worth the annual fee in my opinion (and many others as well).

Hope this helps
S&S"

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Post by mtrax » 06 February 08 4:49 pm

I have quickly scanned some of the previous posts and can't say I've read them all but I did see a mention of just using a existing webserver eg webcity would be a whole lot cheaper, was there a reason you wanted a colo server ?

ie would a server with LAMP (apache/mysql/php) be enough? assuming its got enough grunt.

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Post by caughtatwork » 06 February 08 6:59 pm

mtrax wrote:I have quickly scanned some of the previous posts and can't say I've read them all but I did see a mention of just using a existing webserver eg webcity would be a whole lot cheaper, was there a reason you wanted a colo server ?

ie would a server with LAMP (apache/mysql/php) be enough? assuming its got enough grunt.
Dedicated RAM and CPU are the problem.
With webcity it's all shared.
We need (at a minimum) 1GB RAM and a 3.0GHz dual core CPU.
That's going to run us to more than a couple of thousand a year.

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Post by caughtatwork » 11 August 08 11:14 pm

Just referencing a slightly different discussion from here:
http://forum.geocaching.com.au/viewtopi ... 433#115433
mtrax wrote:perhaps we should look are moving part of the service off , would that make it cheaper? or is that fee for h/w or co-location? since its an annual fee I assume its the housing of the server that's the cost.
If you split the service then would you be able to use a std web hosting as that would significantly reduce the cost.

Otherwise perhaps we could try and try an snag a donation from an ISP to locate the server.
BTW if you want to raise some funds then perhaps some coin sales or geo-hardware would be the way to go.
Coin sales would kind of defeat our purpose :)

Geo-goods is a risk in that an outlay for goods is not always translated into actually cash. i.e. People who say they will buy don't always come and buy.

Also making and selling geo-goods turns it into a profit business which is subject to tax and I do not want to go anywhere near something that might affect me financially. I'll donate, but I won't be a financial owner (unless we can make millions and then I'm right there).

The difficulty about getting funding is that the two developers are nerds (sorry CraigRat). We code stuff. (Actually I'm a senior Project Manager in real life). We don't know squat about getting someone to give us lots of money. As a PM I'm generally spending it at a rate of knots, not asking people to give it to me.

While the community has said that they will provide donations for a new server, it is yet to be proven. I suppose we could take a leap of faith and suffer the consequences should be fail.

The Tasmanian Geocaching Association has also said that they would be willing to accept donations on behalf of the GCA Server Appeal, but at the moment that is just a willingness. There is no-one who has taken on the task of asking for money and harassing people to get them to pay up.

We have a lot of willingness for people to say the right things, it just seems that there is no-one who will actually step up to the mark and make things happen.

CraigRat and I will code whatever is necessary to support the donation system. e.g. Recognition of donations, special avatars, lists of people who financially support the site, etc, but I can't be both developing the site and asking for money. It's not what I do.

The same goes for businesses. You have many groups of people all who specialise in what they do. The marketers market, the managers manage, the coders code, the venture capitalists provide funding.

With all seriousness we need about $5,000 a year to keep going and allow for additional growth in useage of the site.

Is there someone who will put up their hand to take the lead in getting donations towards that goal?

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Post by Richary » 11 August 08 11:48 pm

Raising money isn't my forte either. One reason I hoped there would be a national association instead of a state based one. $5k from voluntary donations sounds like a fair bit to rely on and I don't know the legal/tax implications of an individual taking that on.

So far thanks to ideology for providing the server, caughtatwork & craigrat for doing the coding, and anyone else involved behind the scenes.

Short of donations, the only option I can see (which I don't like) is farming it out to a commercial service with web clicks appearing at the top and getting paid per click. I have no idea what sort of money that makes however. That would need someone who is commercially involved with websites to comment on.

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Post by caughtatwork » 12 August 08 1:16 am

I run Google Ads on one of my websites.
Not a plug, but if you go here http://www.caughtatwork.net/demotivations/index.php you can see them in action (as long as you don't have an ad blocker running).

I get about $200 a year from those ads. It's not a huge money spinner, but it helps to cover the costs of my hosting. For that site I pay around $500 a year in hosting.

Here are some stats on the ads on that site since July 2007.
816,600 ads shown
1,086 clicks
$244.82 earned.

A metric butload of ads for a meagre return.

Part of the original idea of Free and Open being GCA was that there would be no ads.

I wonder (just as an idea before my brain dies) whether an OPT-IN for ads would work.

Normally sites offer you the chance to STOP having ads shown if you donate. What if we ran ads for people who chose to HAVE them shown. That way they could choose to see ads and if anything was there of interest, they could click and we could get some moola.

For those who didn't want to see ads, then didn't have to do anything as it would only be ads on an OPT-IN basis.

Anyway, off to bed. Maybe the moola faeries will be in overnight and we can all stop worrying :lol:

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Post by Dooghan » 12 August 08 8:19 am

I've got no problem with a few ads on the page if it's done right. Just don't make it wall to wall ads like on some sites.

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Post by mtrax » 12 August 08 8:25 am

is there only 1 option eg $5,000 pa version or is there a cheaper option?

is it possible to have a list of options so we can get some "group" to vote and move this forward?
ie if we can put forward a proposal to the community and perhaps some opportunities may pop up if some of the "components" of the proposal can be donated etc.

I'm not sure if H/W is require but a one-off purchase I think can be achieved just the ongoing co-lo housing of server is an big issue, is co-loc a package which includes bandwidth?

so we have three components
1. new H/W maybe 1 or 2 boxes
2. housing of server. annual fee
3. bandwidth

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