The FSFE and its community aim to offer a friendly and peaceful environment for every participant at the FSFE's events, online and offline. All participants at any FSFE event are expected to behave excellently towards each other. As representatives for the FSFE we adhere to our Code of Conduct. If there is a Code of Conduct at the event we also adhere to this.
Make a good first impression
There is no second chance for the first impression, so pay attention to your appearance!
- There should ideally be two people at the booth the whole time. If you are two person, one can be behind and the other in front of the booth. Being in front of the booth is sometimes more welcoming, but you then need to be clearly identifiable as a booth staff by having a suitable t-shirt or similar.
- Do not sit at the booth! Sitting produces a lazy impression, so keep standing all the time. If you want to take a rest, go elsewhere.
- Keep your hands off private laptops, mobile phones, etc. These things should never be around at the booth. If you want to check your emails, go elsewhere.
Make sure that the material you have is presented properly. For more details, see the separate Wiki page on booth design.
- Keep your eyes and arms open, look welcoming and easy to communicate with.
- Do not wear a brand of any disputable organisation including political parties, soccer teams, national flags etc. In the best case you wear an item of FSFE or something neutral.
- Do not leave anything else on the booth-table than the booth-material (eg your water bottle, food, a text-note etc).
Form a good team
The booth coordinator
- Any booth has a booth-coordinator. Without other agreements, this is the person who registered the booth at the event and on the FSFE website.
- With agreement of the initial booth coordinator, the team can temporarily or full-time announce another person to be the booth-coordinator.
- Role of the booth coordinator is to be the spokesperson of the booth towards the local organisers and the FSFE.
- Role of the booth coordinator is to ensure that local rules by the event are adopted to the booth.
- Role of the booth coordinator is to have an eye on the booth, the team and the material. That does of course in now way mean, that the booth coordinator has to do every little task or observe the team members all-the time. It is more a role in that you should ask yourself every now and then: "Does this booth look like a booth I would like to come to and ask questions?" and if not, then the booth coordinator should try to take measures towards that goal, _together_ with the whole booth team.
- Role of the booth coordinator is to facilitate decisions inside the team and - if necessary - take the decision. Example decisions are to wrap the booth earlier then the official time due to lack of interest or extend the booth time, moving the booth in line with the organisers, allowing third-party stickers etc.
- Role of the booth coordinator is not to be in charge of everything but to facilitate group dynamics.
Booth team players
- As a participant of the booth team, please inform yourself who is the booth coordinator. Any booth participant should supports her/his work. Be a team player!
Act professional and make a good first impression. Find tips below and on our Booth Design page..
- Be friendly, have fun and enjoy our community.
- As long as you are behind the booth or appear to be part of the FSFE's booth please support the FSFE policies work, campaigns, material and decisions. You can sometimes state that you have a slightly different opinion on something but you must refrain from pro-actively object or counterargue the FSFE as long as you appear to officially represent us.
- Any private or third-party promotion material (including your own) is not allowed at FSFE booths. Excpetions can only be made for FSFE associates in line with a decision by the respective booth coordinator.
- If the team or the booth coordinator takes decisions you do not agree with, please accept them. In the next debate you will be with the majority again.
Spread the word
- Use social media to get more prominence for your booth using pictures and hashtags from the event
Talking about Free Software and FSFE
Everyone at a booth should be informed about recent campaigns, because people are liking to ask questions about them. However, no one is supposed to know everything, so you don't need to stress about details. As a team, we should be able to answer to most of the questions, or be able to direct them to someone who can. Of course, you can also always say that you are "not directly involved in that activity, but you can call or email our office at <contact AT fsfe DOT org> and they'll get you in touch with the right person to ask." Or you can take name and e-mail, and assure someone gets back on the person.
- Actively encourage people to join the FSFE mailing lists. This is how we stay in contact and form a community.
If people are interested in a specific field of work within FSFE's activities, try to establish contact between them and the responsible coordinator within FSFE. If you don't know who the coordinator is, encourage them to write an email to <contact AT fsfe DOT org>.
If people tell you that they find our work useful, encourage them to support it by considering to become a supporter of FSFE. Give them one of the business-card sized cards with FSFE's donation URL.
Distribute promotion material
The production of promotion material is cheap. Please encourage visitors to take stickers, postcards, posters, and balloons, as many as they like.
You can of course collect donations on behalf of the FSFE. Obviously, you have to make sure that in the end, the money is transferred to FSFE's bank account, usually the booth coordinator is responsible for that.
Anybody can confirm that money was received. However, an official donation receipt allowing tax-deduction in Germany and some other countries needs to be signed by the President.
If somebody requests a receipt for a donation done in cash at an event, please ask the donor to register at https://my.fsfe.org/donate and note the payment reference displayed at the end of the registration process. On the booth form, there is a section where you can fill in the name, the payment reference, and the amount for the donation.
If somebody wants to pay the supporter contribution in cash, you can also fill in the name and the amount in the booth form in the same section.
If you sell merchandise, there is no need to keep track of what you sold. The FSFE office staff generally counts the items sent to you, and again the items received back, and assumes that the difference is what you sold.
On explicit request, it is possible to write a receipt for merchandise sold. If somebody wants this, please note the name, postal address, and email address of the customer as well as the items bought (don't forget to note the color and the size as well!) and make sure that the booth coordinator receives this information. The booth coordinator can then forward that to the contact person in the FSFE office, who will make sure an invoice is written and sent to the customer.