This project is about freedom and privacy but not necessarily about free beer. We feel like it was a mistake on our side to state there will be no costs, because clearly we have huge expenses, your server hardware will have a price tag and then maybe you'd like to have some extra features that need to be developed.
It's fair to say that users with basic needs will have no monthly costs. We were also way more productive and effective per dollar (or euro) than commercial projects and learned a lot on top of it. An earlier version of this document contained a rough number, but at the end of the day it doesn't matter.
Basically all established OSS companies make 90% of their revenue with enterprise customers, that's why private users and single developers typically get everything for free. Obviously that doesn't work if you have only private users that refuse to share their data on top of it. In our opinion it would have made sense to finance this like all public infrastructure, our expenses are peanuts compared to building a road.
Looking forward, specific solutions for funding development and maintenance could be to...
- sell a tested & supported version in the app store while our contributors and other developers can continue to use Docker or build from source
- offer a geodata, public events and maps subscription since OpenStreetMap doesn't want us to use their development API for production, which is perfectly fine
You're most welcome to support us via GitHub Sponsors, especially if you need help with using our software. They will match every donation in the first year. In addition, you can find us on Patreon and PayPal. Our sponsors and contributors will get for free whatever we might have to charge for a geodata subscription later.
Also please leave a star on GitHub if you like this project, it provides additional motivation to keep going.
Thank you very much! <3
Public and corporate sponsorship¶
We spent weeks asking organizations like The Prototype Fund for help and also tried to cooperate with companies like Mapbox and Cewe.
If any of those organizations changes their mind, they are welcome to reach out to us.
The bigger picture¶
The funding situation of independent Open Source projects is especially bitter in the face of massive money printing by central banks worldwide.
Did you know the Swiss National Bank owns more A-class Facebook shares than Mark Zuckerberg?