[hackerspaces] Need suggestions regarding some issues

Avinash Sonawane rootkea at gmail.com
Thu Jan 9 14:14:14 CET 2014

On Wed, Jan 1, 2014 at 8:07 PM, webmind <webmind at puscii.nl> wrote:
> On 01/01/14 15:16, Avinash Sonawane wrote:
>> Hello everyone!
>> We are "Hacker's Den", a budding hackerspace at Pune, India. We
>> started 4 months back. Currently we are doing fine but we are
>> facing some issues (mainly administrative issues). I am here
>> looking for some suggestions from the community like how you deal
>> with these situations.
>> 1) Do you fund members' projects from your hackerspace's account ?
>> Or the money in hackerspace's account is utilized only for funding
>> hackerspace's projects (like doorbot, hosting charges for official
>> website), for buying tools and for arranging events ?
> At Technologia Incognita (Amsterdam), the membershipfees only pay the
> rent + electricity + cleaning materials.  Roughly. All projects &
> tools are paid by individuals or groups of individuals.
>> 2) How do you decide to buy a new tool for your hackerspace ? Do
>> you use voting or it's absolutely necessary that each and every
>> member should say yes for that particular tool since the expenses
>> will be paid from the group's account ?
> Technologia Incognita has a 'pledge' system, works as follows:
> 1) person thinks it's good to have tool X
> 2) person sets up a wiki page with a description of tool X, why she
> thinks it's needed and how much it costs
> 3) other people pledge to contribute to paying for tool X
> 4) redo 3 until required cost is reached
> 5) person who said up the pledge collects money and buys tool X, or
> buys tool X and collects money
> 6) space now contains tool X.
>> 3) We have a group of members who built a quadrocopter and then
>> they donated it to our hackerspace to be used for whatever purpose
>> the group thinks the best. So what do you do with the donated
>> hardware projects ? Do you give it to other member(s) who want to
>> hack on it (and might burn it to ashes in doing so ;) ) on first
>> come first serve basis or do you try to retain that project (as
>> it'll continue to inspire new members/projects) by asking the
>> interested members to built their own replica ?
> Technologia Incognita has no clear policy on donated stuff, but
> generally it's used for activities for, in or by the space.
>> 4) Dues Policy a) What's your dues policy ? Let's say a member
>> broke some group's tool then is it his/her responsibility to repair
>> the same or whole group bears the expenses ?
> I'd say common-sense, you break it, you fix it. Then again,
> common-sense is not always common :)
>> b) If member has to pay for what (s)he has broken then is it
>> compulsory to pay the full expenses or (s)he can get away with it
>> by paying just a part of it ? In later case additional punishment
>> can be imposed like restricting the access to the space for few
>> days so that financially weaker hackers wont have to say bye bye to
>> the space if they don't have the full amount.
> I'd say this in general is up to the parties involved and only becomes
> a problem to the community of a space when it escalates.
>> c) If member has to pay for what (s)he has broken but (s)he simply
>> refuses to pay and walks away then what do you do ? How do you
>> ensure to get the dues from members ? Is there some legal
>> arrangement or something?
> Technologia Incognita does not have any specific arrangements on this
> topic outside of what the dutch law provides.
> I'd think you want to look at these things on a case by case basis.
>> 5) Borrowing a) If a group of members are in great need of a
>> particular tool and a member X has that particular tool but (s)he
>> don't want to donate it to the space rather (s)he is willing to
>> lend it. Then whom (s)he lends the tool? To the space (The org) or
>> to a particular person whom (s)he didn't even know and was willing
>> to lend just because those group of people were the members of the
>> same organization (s)he was ?
> at Technologia Incognita borrowing stuff that is not of the space is
> generally considered a personal arrangement. I think most people ask
> before borrowing unless it's labelled as 'you can use this, but don't
> break/hack it' or something.
>> Please pardon me for so much of text. Looking for your valuable
>> suggestions. Thank you!
> pleasure answering, do note that I speak only of my own observations
> on how I believe things are working at Technologia Incognita and are
> not formal statements by the organisation (e.a. other members might
> have a different interpretation).
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Thank you webmind for your valuable inputs.

Avinash Sonawane (RootKea)
PICT, Pune

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