Framing of simplest patron vs $ based goal

Near the end of Patron based proposal for mechanism 1.1 (instead of $-based goals), there was some discussion of the framing, but not agreement. I think it will be easier to come to agreement if we start with the simplest apples-to-apples comparison. So, please limit the discussion in this thread to one specific scenario:

  • The project sets a goal of $10 000 per month / 1000 patrons
  • Patrons are restricted to pledging at a single rate

What is the best way to frame this pledge? Examples (there are more):

  • “I will give $10, at 1000 patrons”
  • “I will give $10 at $10 000”
  • Describing the rate rather than the total (how we were doing it before the goal-based discussion)
    • “I will give $1 per 1000 patrons, up to 10 000 patrons”
    • “I will give $1 per $1000 pledged, up to $10 000”

If we cannot agree on this, then it is a fundamental disagreement and we will have to decide how to proceed without alignment. If we can agree, then we can expand the discussion to talk about framing when the pledge value can vary (and whether that matters), etc.

edit: clarification: if you’d prefer to speak in general terms or use a higher goal, as opposed to these specific number values, that’s fine too. The point is that there is absolutely no difference in the matching or incentives at each step of the way, so the only difference that can be discussed is the framing, so we can get alignment on one thing at a time.

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This exact wording is no good because it reads like an all-or-nothing threshold.

Appropriate wording might be:

  • “I’m in, I’ll be one of the 1,000 patrons, and my pledge is $10”

But no matter how I tried it, this particular mixing seems problematic.

would be better as

  • “I pledge $10 of the $10,000 goal”

and that’s fine enough. This is my preference of the options. It doesn’t specify the matching but it doesn’t as strongly imply nothing-until-goal.

I think both rate statement are okay enough, but I dislike how they make it seem like the patron is setting a match cap instead of understanding that the project has a goal. Put another way: I don’t support the idea of patrons making two decisions of rate and match-cap. I support the project setting a goal and the patrons choosing what to contribute as part of that goal.

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“I pledge to support this project and am willing to give up to $10 if 999 others pledge their support as well!”

“I will give $10 to this project if other’s give $990!”

This is outside of the request for this thread, but I look forward to discussing it further if we can overcome the current hurdle.

I wasn’t opening that idea, I was suggesting the wording was bad because it could be misinterpreted as that.

I think it’s better to frame in terms of % to avoid ambiguity about whether there are step increments or all-or-none, e.g. “$1 per” is easily interpreted as maybe implying you either give $1, $2, $3, etc.

  • “Each month, whatever percentage of the funding goal the current crowd has pledged, I will donate that percentage of my pledge.”

Or for a crowd size goal:

  • “Each month, whatever percentage of the crowd size goal the current crowd represents, I will donate that percentage of my pledge.”
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When i think about if i want to contribute here, i ask myself: “Why 1000 patrons?”

The best answer i can come up with is: “it’s an arbitrary number”.

I can calculate that 1000 patrons x $10 = $10000, but that needs effort. It feels like the project wants to obfuscate what they actually get (like on patreon where they hide what they get) and is intransparent. I would rather not contribute to such projects.

$10 000 is a goal i can imagine, since i use money myself. I might earn $50 000 a year and have a feeling for how much it is. I understand that the goal represents the money the project needs to succeed at their mission.

I thought about it some minutes, but it’s still clear what i prefer.

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Thanks for that perspective, it seems valuable and hasn’t been as clearly voices afaik.

A way to make crowd-size less arbitrary would be to tie it to some known meaningful crowd. E.g. me saying that I know Task Coach gets X downloads each update, and I want either 100% of that as the crowd or an arbitrary portion like 50% of that.

If I’m in a room at a conference, I have some limit to the crowd, like I want to say I’ll match everyone else in the room.

But I think that the arbitrariness of the crowd size ends up best framed like this: “what $ would you be willing to pledge to help us reach a crowd size of X?” So, even though it’s arbitrary, it does show a clear milestone/goal/vision that I can sort of imagine what impact that crowd could have for the project and whether I’m “in” for joining that crowd.

If the project can sort of confidently express, “we’re aiming to get 2500 patrons!” and also express the goals they have for the project, what works for me is that I don’t have to think about setting the goal, just how I pledge toward it.

I see $12,000 goal as pretty arbitrary too, even though they could say what they do with the money. If they set the goal higher or lower, they’d just say what more or less they would do. As a goal point, it still seems arbitrary to me in most cases.

Effectively, the goal is the commitment/budget limit. It is tied to a success vision, but mostly it’s just a decision-point, a statement of “this is the pledge scope for now” so I don’t feel my pledge could just grow to infinity.

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yeah, that’s something @mray and i discussed, that the crowd-size is kind of limited by the current community

that’s actually an argument for a crowd-size goal

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That specific scenario could be worded like:

  • “I’m willing to donate up to $10 each month! – Depending on how successful the project meets its current goal.”

But that’s more describing than framing the mechanism, though. It is still up to us to highlight the act of joining a crowd or focus on amassing an amount. Framing goes beyond a simple way to express a single fact. It is the entire communication on every level being tinted with a certain angle that shapes the overall impact on the audience.

Not sure I get what the goal is here.

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