[mythtv-users] Supporting schedulesdirect.org (Tom Greer)

Daniel Kristjansson danielk at cuymedia.net
Wed Aug 8 21:20:13 UTC 2007

On Tue, 2007-08-07 at 15:43 -0600, Brian Wood wrote:
> On Tuesday 07 August 2007 15:09, Braindead wrote:
> > A non-profit organization doesn't mean people aren't going to profit, even
> > though technically they are receiving compensation for services.  Many
> > people who run non-profit organizations make huge salaries, they aren't
> > profits technically.
> >
> > I'm not suggesting that's the case here (I certainly hope it's not).  But
> > just because an organization is "non profit" doesn't really mean much at
> > all.
> "Non-profit" can mean a lot of things. Most people confuse "non-profit" with 
> 403C (I think) which means that contributions to that entity are 
> tax-deductible. You can also have a "non-profit" that does not meet those 
> requirements.
> You also have to deal with various legal matters, like what happens to the 
> corporations assets if it disolves, I believe there is some requirement that 
> contributed funds go someplace in keeping with the intent of the 
> contributors. All these things have to be worked out, and I suspect the Myth 
> developers are getting an education in matters they never had to deal with 
> previously, ultimately to the benefit of us all.

Yup, we had to name some non-profits to get any remnants upon
dissolution. I think it was the EFF and the FSF, but don't quote
me on that, I would want to check our records. And we are not a
501(c)(3), there is a many month application process for this.
Though we will almost certainly apply for some type of favorable
IRS status within the 18 month retroactive period. As Chris noted
the board members are unpaid and have spent considerable time and
more money than Chris mentioned on various aspects of getting this
operation going.

There should be an official announcement on schedulesdirect.org
very soon.

*** I'll try to explain some of this here, just don't take it  ***
*** as the official word on things, as this e-mail hasn't been ***
*** run by the other board members or our lawyers.             ***

We're still working out the actual fee and payment methods, but
we have tested paypal integration and have looked at other payment
methods. Because of the time constraints we will start with only
a limited selection of automated donation methods where the listings
data will be a member benefit. We will, of course, accept larger
donations and contacting us will get you in touch with the right
person for that. Because we don't know how many people will sign up,
we will start with a relatively high quarterly membership fee which
can just barely support the service if 10% of PVR users sign up.
But we assume many more will sign up and allow us to have a much
lower membership fee; we will have a better idea in about three
months. The initial fee will be somewhere in the neighborhood of
$15 for three months, and the low target we hope to achieve within
the first year is somewhere around $20 for twelve months.

We've negotiated access to the TMS data for both Canada and the USA,
and for at least the first three months the data will be provided
by through us but via TMS's Data Direct servers. We will handle all
user support and billing problems. After the first three months we
hope to switch to our own servers which will lower our per user cost
and allow us to offer more flexible service levels for different 
membership levels. We may even have a no-cost option in exchange
for some volunteer labor. Once we know our operating costs and have
some estimates of our projected membership counts going forward
we will offer more membership levels and listings service levels.

As far as the listings data is concerned it will initially be very
much like the labs service. Schedules Direct will be able to get
corrections made and there may some limited additional data over
the labs service, and Chris Petersen is working on flexibility in
creating lineups, but otherwise it is the same data. We will
continually work on improving the quality and the flexibility
in using the data in non-commercial Open Source and "freeware"
applications by our members.

-- Daniel

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