[hackerspaces] Classes and costs

Shirley Hicks shirley at velochicdesign.com
Thu Jul 21 20:11:49 CEST 2016

> On Jul 21, 2016, at 11:00 AM, Pete Prodoehl <raster at gmail.com> wrote:
> Because my space sometimes has gloom and doom people, someone brought up the idea that if you charge for a class, you could be held responsible if someone in the class gets injured. This would be different than if you did *not* charge for a class because there is no (or less?) expectation of responsibility if you are not charging for your services/expertise.
> I think the thought is that a student would try to sue you personally versus the space, and there was a suggestion that individuals who teach should get their own personal insurance that would cover the teaching they do. (The space has its own insurance and waiver/disclaimer forms that everyone signs.)
> I am definitely not a lawyer, but I'd love to hear what others think of that idea. (And yes, I am in the overly-litigious United States.)

In the US: What we do is have all visitors and class students sign a liability waiver. And we have liability insurance, have appropriate safety measures in place (due diligence, follow OSHA and art studio safety guildelines and you’ll be pretty good) That is specifically what your policy is for. If you don’t know these, one or more of your working group should do the research work. It’s useful to know as your career goes along, and is applicable to other organizations. 

Know your environment, know and follow best practices for small workshops and studios, and you’ll be in good shape.

And yes, if bad crap happens, your insurance company will go up against the injured’s insurance company, and there may be duking out in court. SOP in the US.

Shirley Hicks
Red Mountain Makers
Birmingham, AL
> Pete
> On 7/21/16 10:42 AM, Silence Dogood wrote:
>> one side benefit of charging for classes is allowing the class teachers to profit.  this can be particularly important for space members who need supplemental income to afford their dues or to get them by between contracts / gigs / what have you.
>> On Thu, Jul 21, 2016 at 6:24 AM, webmind <webmind at puscii.nl <mailto:webmind at puscii.nl>> wrote:
>> On 20/07/16 17:48, Chad Elish wrote:
>> > Here’s a question for everyone,
>> >
>> > What do you normally charge for your classes?
>> > I know its a big cash cow for spaces to make up income.
>> Hmm, not here. I think most Dutch spaces mostly run on membership-income.
>> Both spaces in Amsterdam do not have a set price, LAG generally asks
>> donation Technologia Incognita mostly the same or people ask cost-price.
>> IJHack (a "space" without a space) has been doing workshops to generate
>> some income, I think they did twice the cost price to have a buffer of
>> components or be able to share kits.
>> > We’re currently at $40.00 for a learn to solder class which you take
>> > home an arduino you soldered together. We recently noticed tech shop
>> > charging $99 for soldering a blinking badge together.
>> Do a lot of spaces elsewhere use workshops/services as a way of
>> providing basic-income for the space? Do spaces have other models
>> outside of services or membership to generate base-income?
>> At LAG we're currently looking at alternative ways of generating income
>> for the rent/etc.
>> Thanks!
>> webmind
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