- About the FSFE's Supporter Program
- My account
- Local FSFE groups
- Is there any kind of online communication between supporters?
- How can I get in contact with other supporters in my area?
- How do I know about FSFE community events?
- How do I invite the public to FSFE events?
- How can I send a mail to all supporters in my area?
- Can I contact FSFE supporters with some news or an event?
- Can I use the FSFE logo?
- Where can I get promotion material?
- Can I use technical services for my project or event?
- Can the FSFE sponsor activities?
- Can I sell FSFE merchandise at an event?
- How do I use this wiki?
About the FSFE's Supporter Program
What is a Supporter?
Supporters are FSFE's sustaining members that enable our financial autonomy and empower our work. Every supporter is important to us, motivates us, supports us and gives us valuable feedback for our work.
I just would like to donate money to FSFE - how do I do that best?
If you would like to donate money to the FSFE but you do not have interest in community activities, still the most efficient and best way would be to join as a supporter. This is, because you keep our administrative overhead as low as possible if you donate by being a supporter. During the registration process, you will be asked if you are looking for contact to local FSFE groups. Just leave this box unchecked and we will not bother you about it. In Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland, your supporter donation will be tax deductible just as any usual donation or a single donation to us.
How do I become a supporter?
To become a supporter you have to join FSFE. To join, you can easily fill out our online form. You will then receive a mail with further instructions about payment methods and your registration process. Payment can be done monthly or yearly. As a last step, you pay whatever you have stated to contribute as your donation. That's it - welcome to the FSFE!
Is the FSFE contribution tax-deductible?
We have set up a page with information about TaxDeductibility of contributions in some countries.
Besides being part of FSFE's community - do I get something?
Yes. You get access to our system and can use our infrastructure. A good starting point is the FellowshipServices page, where you can find all services that you as a supporter can use.
Can I change my username?
Changing your username is actually possible; it will take some manual work (also from your side), depending on the amount of data you created in the Fellowship services.
Please note that this procedure has some disadvantages, notably:
- You won't be able to access data on services using the old username anymore, so you have to update your client-side software configuration, and possibly other public information (e.g. if you published your old username or email alias somewhere)
- For some services, it is not possible to preserve your old username data; e.g. the jabber account data (contact list, etc) can't be preserved, so you will have to start over with a fresh account.
If you understood the above, and you are still interested, please let us know your desired new username, and follow these instructions:
- If you created any protected pages in the wiki (i.e. pages with access control rules that prevent other users from reading/writing their content), please back up these data, as you won't be able to access them when logged in with the new username
When you have finished this tasks, please don't change anything else in your account, write to email@example.com and we will deactivate the old username and activate the new username, after which you can setup your services on the new account.
How do I change my password?
Log in to the Account Management System and change it. The change will be immediately effective for all services that use the FSFE login credentials.
I've lost my password. How do I get a new one?
Just go here and enter your user name or primary e-mail address.
That is: click on the Forgot your password? link in the Fellowship login page.
I've received a message that my Paypal subscription was cancelled, how do I set up a new one?
Paypal has the bad habit of cancelling all subscriptions if the bank account or credit card information for a Paypal account changes, e.g. when your credit card expires and you have to set up a new credit card. We have no possibility of avoiding this.
It is of course possible for you to set up a new subscription once the bank account or credit card information has been updated. However, please note that Paypal immediately does the first transfer when you set up a subscription, so do not set up a new subscription before your next contribution is due, otherwise you will pay too early.
If you are not sure when your next contribution is due, log in to your account, go to the "Personal settings" page, and click on the "Request Setting" button. You will receive an email which, among other things, contains the date when your next contribution is due. At the same time, this email contains a link you can then use to set up a new subscription.
I want to end my contribution. What do I have to do?
In case you have set up an automatic yearly or monthly payment with PayPal, credit card, or direct debit: Please write a note to firstname.lastname@example.org stating that you want to end your contribution. The financial team will cancel your automatic payment. When your next contribution is due, you will receive up to three payment reminders by email, which you can safely ignore, afterwards your status will be set to inactive. However, you can reactivate your contribution at any later time if you want by following the instructions given in these reminder emails, so you might want to keep at least one of them for future reference.
- In case you have not set up any automatic payment: To end your contribution, all you have to do is stop your payments. When your next contribution is due, you will receive up to three payment reminders by email, which you can safely ignore, afterwards your status will be set to inactive. However, you can reactivate your contribution at any later time if you want by following the instructions given in these reminder emails, so you might want to keep at least one of them for future reference.
Local FSFE groups
What is a local group?
Local groups are people that meet in real life in a certain area. These local meetings often consist of supporters and other volunteers. Local groups undertake activities ranging from a comfortable beer to running a public awareness event, take part in a campaign or give and hear a talk during their meetings. One big point about these meetings is to get to know the people in your area that feel strong about software freedom and to interconnect each other. When you sign up for the FSFE, you will be asked if you like to get in contact with a local group. If you do so, our staff will get in contact with you and connect you with your local group - if there is one.
Is a local group meeting only for supporters?
Of course not. Local group meetings shall be public meetings and open for everyone interested in Free Software and the work of FSFE. In fact, it can be really interesting to gather people from different groups and to profit from synergy-effects.
Is there already a Local Group in my area or can I start one?
Can the FSFE pay a local rent for a group?
Yes. If a local group meets up in place or generally uses a space where they are asked to pay a rent the FSFE can pay for that local rent under the following considerations:
- Regular meetings in that space have to be held with a minimum frequency of once per month.
All meetings that have financial help by FSFE or are held in spaces that are paid by the FSFE are public by default and to be announced on the FSFE event web-pages: https://fsfe.org/events/ -> The easiest way to put your event online is to use our event announcement: https://fsfe.org/community/tools/eventregistration
All events by the FSFE are held under the FSFE's Code of Conduct
A local group getting financial help by the FSFE must have an official coordinator as contact person towards FSFE.
- The rent should not exceed our internal cost-value-ratio: That is that the local rent divided by the average amount of participants should not exceed 4 Euro/participant. Means, that if for example the rent is 20 Euro, there should be an average number of participants of 5 people or more.
- The maximum amount of financial help is 40 Euro/month.
Is there any kind of online communication between supporters?
Yes, we have various mailing lists and an IRC chat to offer online communication between supporters.
How can I get in contact with other supporters in my area?
The FSFE will not hand out any data of our supporters. Still, you have plenty of possibilities to get in contact with other supporters. First, you can have a look if there is already a Local Group in your area. Usually, Local groups share a common mailing list. Hence, if there is a group in your area, you can get in contact with them via their mailing list. If there is not a local group in your area, you might be able to contact your FSFE's country team, which you can also find listed on the wiki. You can ask them who else is in your area or how you can get in contact with them.
How do I know about FSFE community events?
FSFE aggregates and promotes community events by supporters of FSFE. You can find them directly visible at FSFE's home page in the section "Events" as well as on the wiki.
How do I invite the public to FSFE events?
Use our announcement tool where you fill in a web form and submit the details to us. Our team will then upload your event often within 24 hours so it's visible on our web pages. If possible, we are happy to upload translations in other languages as well.
How can I send a mail to all supporters in my area?
For special purposes, there is the possibility to send an email to all supporters in your area or in another specific area. "Special purposes" are all kind of activities like: finding supporters to set up a new group, participate in a FSFE campaign, held a meeting and everything you plan to do collaboratively and you are looking for supporters to join you.
To contact all supporters in a specific area, please write an email to email@example.com including:
- Description: What is the purpose of the mail and what is the area you like to reach Fellows. Please provide us specific postal zip codes to define the area you are looking for.
- Subject: Please give us a subject so we do not have to decide about the subject on our own.
- Text: Obviously, your mail needs text that we shall send out. Actually, the text box is the part that we will send out.
- Contact: We will send out the mail from our administrators account. If you would like to receive feedback, do not forget to deliver some contact details about you in your description!
Can I contact FSFE supporters with some news or an event?
If your news or event is non-commercial and relates to Free Software, please send information about it to our team. If it is appropriate, they will forward your information to supporters.
Can I use the FSFE logo?
The FSFE logo can be used in association with any Free Software related activity performed by FSFE supporters, or to promote FSFE. However, if you do not have a mandate by FSFE, we ask you not to create the impression that you speak officially for FSFE, or that FSFE has certified or endorsed you in any way.
Where can I get promotion material?
If you like to spread the word about FSFE, we happily offer you to order FSFE's official promotion material. Just look around what material you are specifically interested in, use the given form to order and get it delivered for no cost.
FSFE activities are various. Actually, each Local group is different and has a different cultural background. So, there is not a list of general activities. However, many groups prefer the following activities every now and then:
- Meetings: Formal or informal - every group of course has a meeting from time to time to actually form a group.
- Setting up a booth: If there is a Free Software conference in your area, you can apply for setting up a FSFE booth at this conference. Being present as FSFE with a booth is a very important activity for spreading our word and is fun. Many Fellowship groups have done so successful in the past.
- Public awareness: Try to do some activity that gets you into local press, public announcements of your meetings or give talks in the name of your group.
- Participation in FSFE campaigns: There are some FSFE campaigns, that heavily depend on participation, like our Document Freedom Day campaign, Ask your candidates or I love Free Software. See all campaigns at our campaigns page.
- Anything else: be creative and feel encouraged!
Can I use technical services for my project or event?
Yes, please do so. Supporters are encouraged to use FSFE' services to coordinate their work and other Free Software related events. Of course you can also ask us if you are unsure about our services.
Can the FSFE sponsor activities?
Yes. FSFE might be able to help you or your local group to cover travel, material or activity costs. Of course, we will only sponsor an FSFE related activity and not any kind of miscellaneous Free Software activity (although they are also important). To boost our community and the relationship between different groups, FSFE is also very likely to sponsor different kinds of visits and travels between local FSFE groups or their coordinators, respectively.
To get a sponsorship for your local activity, please use our Expense Request Form and fill out the following (see Screenshot for an example):
- Who? Please use "Local Fellowship Group" here (should be default)
- What? Please give us an idea what you are planning to do and for what you are planning/need to spend money. Also be sure to include your name and contact info here.
- When? Please tell us a date when you are plannning your activity
- Why? Please tell us why your event is important or contributes to FSFE mission
- Estimate Please estimate how much money you need in total
- Budget 1 Please choose "GROWING local activities" here
All the rest just leave the rest blank as it is
Now lean back and wait for your answer. Be aware, that it is unlikely to receive an answer over the weekend. If you did not receive an answer after one week, please contact us.
If your request gets approved, you will receive an email about this, including the Expense request number. After spending the money, you need this number for your reimbursement. To get reimbursement, please get in touch with our financial team using firstname.lastname@example.org and they will guide you in the process.
Can I sell FSFE merchandise at an event?
In general: Yes. But it helps if you've been part of another team doing this before. And be aware, that it is a lot of administration to sell merchandise. If you are still interested in selling merchandise please contact us.
How do I use this wiki?
See the Wiki user guide