Flutterby™! : Redefining "employment"

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Redefining "employment"

2014-04-06 03:19:49.45994+00 by Shawn 8 comments

After years of thought, several weeks of planning, collecting feedback, etc. I soft-launched Life 3.0 at the beginning of this week. The next day my employer informed me they were not renewing my annual contract and cut me loose. So now this effort is getting all of my focus.

I've been watching crowd-sourcing grow for some time and feel all the pieces are finally in place to disrupt the employment industry as we know it. The new model is already a success for some producers of media and I believe it's also viable for software development. Support Shawn's work is my first step down this path. I'm not asking Flutterby readers to contribute (although it would certainly be welcome) but would be very appreciative if you would help me spread the word. The permalink is http://tiny.cc/support-cms

I'd also like to hear any tips, advice or experiences using PayPal to take donations. I'm looking for a low-friction service that will let me take one-time and recurring payments without the giver having to create another account. I've been avoiding PayPal because I've heard horror stories, but they may wind up being the best option.

[ related topics: Open Source Software Engineering Work, productivity and environment Shawn's Life Economics ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2014-04-06 15:22:19.827195+00 by: Jack William Bell [edit history]

Sorry you are unemployed. Envious you have the time to focus.

I see you are using Patreon. I've been considering Patreon for a writing project and/or for some of my music projects. I would be very interested to see how it works for you.

Looking over your 'support Shawn' and the linked dev site I am concerned potential contributors might be confused about what they are contributing to. Those who know you might not have that problem, but they will not be enough. And, yes, you have the bullet points. But you also need a hook. Something people might share on social media simply because it is compelling. And that hook must be set in the first paragraph.

(Yeah, this is very similar to the fiction writing advice one gets in a critique group. Doesn't reduce it's effectiveness.)

#Comment Re: made: 2014-04-06 17:53:37.464439+00 by: Dan Lyke

Yeah, one of the things I'm running into is that between podcasts and software I use and fiction I read and all of those other things, I'm already in the feeling like I'm not giving enough money to the people to whom I can directly trace directly enriching my life.

It occurs to me that the work doesn't have as much value as knowing what to work on. That's been my challenge, and if you can demonstrate to people that you're working on something that's directly enriching their lives they'll be more likely to want to give back.

#Comment Re: made: 2014-04-06 22:55:26.057842+00 by: Shawn

Thanks for the feedback. Good points. The page was originally meant to be a reference - a page to send people to find out what the support options are - not so much a campaign. I'm thinking now of focusing on one project and pushing that, maybe even with a traditional goal-based crowd-funding campaign.

On the taking-credit-cards-directly front, it looks like https://stripe.com/ has what I want.

#Comment Re: made: 2014-04-07 01:36:56.892257+00 by: meuon

Good luck. I'm on Life 11.x. I find it's a good thing to think of Life as chapters or versions. I went to your site to see if these was something I could find some use for or was at least interesting to me, and left slightly confused. Socialib might be useful, but it's poorly defined in terms that I would understand or could use. It required Mono and did something to shorten URL's was my really quick take-away.

I like the idea of "distributed micro-income" but it might be better to think in terms of "distributed macro-income" as in some project that several entities would way $500+ per month for. Adds up quicker and might provide more focus.

Pick a project that interests you and has value to others, focus on it, and use it as a showcase. Don't just link to it's Github or Jira pages, promote it, talk about how useful, elegant, mind blowing awesome it is and why I should want to use it and help you make it better.

The sad bad news: Boring business related stuff often pays better.

Good news: Stripe is pretty awesome.

#Comment Re: made: 2014-04-08 01:29:00.708158+00 by: Shawn [edit history]

meuon, it's still early days for all of this and I've had to kind of rush to start pushing it. I would classify SociaLib as in early alpha and beefing up its presence and documentation is one of my short-term goals.

I really do appreciate the feedback. Most often it helps me identify when I'm not being clear. I'm trying to communicate a lot of different concepts - many of them interlocking, but still distinct - at once (without having had the prep time I'd anticipated) and I hope it will all become more clear in the following days/weeks.

To that end, I've just published A new way to think about employment which attempts to take a step back and describe the larger picture - of which my crowd-funding efforts are only one part (one of the income streams, if you will).

#Comment Re: made: 2014-04-08 01:42:27.876529+00 by: Shawn [edit history]

...aaand just after publishing that I find somebody on LinkedIn giving pretty much the same advice: 10 Reasons You Have To Quit Your Job in 2014. (Although I really am sick of the "X reasons..." meme.)

#Comment Re: made: 2014-05-01 09:12:12.437382+00 by: Shawn

Jack, wish I had some feedback to give you, but have yet to see any activity there (or on any of my accounts, truth be told).

meuon, I've updated the README for SociaLib to hopefully make it a bit more clear.

#Comment Re: made: 2014-05-01 18:40:44.606122+00 by: meuon

Good README. While that would be a tool I want, it's not in tools I want to support for my very meager personal needs.

I often get asked why I do what I do... which is create and maintain systems for a very very small niche of the utilities industry. Which is a lot like other systems I have written since the dawn of time: customer info and billing + device communications. It's because people with money issues pay for such systems... because they have money.