New OLists… Maybe

 Posted by on 19 January 2011 at 8:00 am  Announcements, OList, Pledge Project
Jan 192011

Over the past few months, I’ve had lots of requests for two new e-mail lists: OGeeks and OCrafters.

OGeeks would be an informal private discussion list for Objectivists interested in geeky topics like science, computing, engineering, mathematics, and technology. Its purpose would be to facilitate discussion and sharing about all things geeky, such as best practices in programming, software reviews, scientific discoveries, educational resources, logic puzzles, technology trends, and geek comics. Posters would be limited to Objectivist geeks, but non-Objectivist geeks and non-geeky Objectivists would be welcome to lurk.

OCrafters would be an informal private discussion list for Objectivists who engage in the production of crafts, such as knitting, furniture-building, weaving, metalworking, paper-making, sewing, flower-arranging, jewelry-making, and so on. Its purpose would be to provide a forum for crafters to ask each other questions, share useful advice and resources, and to brag about work in progress or completed. Posters would be limited to Objectivist crafters, but non-Objectivist crafters and non-crafty Objectivists would be welcome to lurk.

In addition, given the creation and expansion of so many Objectivist groups in 2010, then the minicons popping up in 2011, I think it’s high time to create OLeaders. OLeaders would be an informal private discussion list for Objectivists who manage or assist with Objectivist organizations, particularly community groups and campus clubs. Its purpose would be to exchange ideas about the effective creation, management, and expansion of Objectivist organizations and their events. The list would serve as a conduit for announcements of likely interest to other group leaders and their members too. Posters to OLeaders would be limited to Objectivists actively involved in the management of an Objectivist organization (or seriously considering creating such), but any Objectivist would be welcome to lurk.

I’ve been a bit reluctant to create these lists, even though I have reliable people eager to manage them, because the process of launching a new OList consumes a good bit of my time and effort. It’s also a bunch of work for the manager at the outset. Plus, I just don’t know how many people are really interested in those lists, particularly OGeeks and OCrafters.

Happily, I realized a few weeks ago that I could use the pledge system to solve those problems. By asking people to pledge for the creation of the list, I could determine whether enough people were sufficiently interested in it to justify its creation, as well as compensate the manager and me for the work involved in launching it.

So… here’s the deal that I’m offering for OGeeks and OCrafters. I’ll create these lists provided that I can raise $200 in pledges for each list. As soon as the total money pledged reaches $200, I’ll close the pledge form and create the list. That $200 will be divided evenly between myself and the list’s manager. If I don’t get enough pledges by March 20th, I’ll conclude that interest is too weak, so I’ll close the pledge form, void the pledges made, and ignore all future requests for the creation of such a list. (Yup, I’m just that mean!)

As for OLeaders, I’m sufficiently committed to that as an activist project that I will personally fund that list, if needed. That way, I can launch the list next week, whether anyone pledges for it or not. However, I’d definitely appreciate any contributions for that list, particularly because I’ll need to do some extra work for its launch. And you can contribute to it by pledging for it, as with the OCrafters and OGeeks.

Update: OGeeks and OLeaders have been fully funded by pledges! Thank you! OCrafters still needs pledges, and you can pledge for it using the form below (or here):

This attempt to fund the creation of OCrafters and OGeeks via pledges is definitely an experiment. If it works, then I’ll be willing to create more OLists using this same method. So… I really really really hope that this works!

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