Small Technology Foundation

Fund Us

If you’re happy we exist, please help us continue to exist.

We’re a tiny team of two funded by individuals like you. Your patronage goes towards keeping a roof over our heads as we build a better future for the Internet.

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If you’re having trouble donating, please contact us by email hello@ind.ie or on Twitter: @indie.

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Donations are in Euros

Current patronage

We currently have 19 patrons, supporting us with €105/month.

Where your donation goes

We’re a tiny team of two people. Our work at Small Technology Foundation pays our rent and buys dog food.

Our rent is currently €1,690/month. We figure we need about €5,000 between us a month to get by comfortably.

When we could afford to take salaries, we were paying ourselves €2,500 a month each. We are currently not drawing salaries from Small Technology Foundation and subsisting with the gift from Aral’s parents.

Our sustainability (not growth) plan

Our goal is not to scale Small Technology Foundation itself. We want to build an interoperable network of web hosts to host Site.js and (when ready) Tincan untrusted nodes. Our hope is that we can sustain the foundation by getting a small percentage of the fees that hosts charge their customers. Eventually, we hope that institutions like the EU will see that our work benefits the commons and fund us from the commons. But we’re not holding our breaths for that just yet.

That said, it would be wonderful if one day we could afford to get someone to handle the administrative work so both of us can focus all our time on research and development. And it would also be great to one day be able to work with other people from the DAT community and pay them for their time.

Finally, we speak at a large number of events to advocate small technology. These include platforms such as the Nobel Peace Center, The Royal Society of the Arts, British Parliament, and European Parliament as well as industry conferences and events. Our work also gets covered in the media. Your donations give us the freedom to carry out this advocacy work.

We don’t take venture capital and we don’t have the resources to undertake the lengthy application processes for government and EU funding so we need your individual support to subsidise our work until we can sustain ourselves.

Other ways to support us

Partner with us

Are you a VPS host or a domain registrar? Partner with us to host Site.js sites and give back a portion of the revenue to us.

Pay us to speak at your events

We get asked to speak at a large number of events. Sadly, many of these do not pay an honorarium. Paying us for these speaking engagements helps us to pay the rent. (Any honorariums we receive do not go to us personally but to the Small Technology Foundation.)

Buy Better Blocker

Buy Better for iOS or on the Mac App Store. Already using Better? You could always gift it to your friends and family.

Buy Laura’s book on accessibility

Laura invests royalties from her book Accessibility For Everyone in Small Technology Foundation.

Help us apply for funding

If you know of any funding opportunities and can help us apply for them (we don’t have the resources to undertake lengthy bureaucratic funding application processes), we’d be hugely grateful.

Invest in us

We are a not-for-profit based in Ireland that is limited by guarantee, so apart from equity investment (which we cannot accept, since we don’t have share capital), we are open to investment ideas that will maintain our independence and allow us to protect the integrity of our social mission (e.g., share of revenue). If you want to invest in the ongoing, sustainable success of Small Technology Foundation, instead of our sale in an exit (which cannot happen), please get in touch with us.

Tell your friends

Tell your friends about us. Help us spread the word.

Revenue to date

Over the past five years, we’ve received roughly €400,000 in total revenue from various sources, the largest being the Bank of Aral’s Mom & Dad. Our average burn rate over that period has been roughly €80,000/year (it was higher at the beginning when we had a larger team and is lower now).

Bank of Mom & Dad

(Ind.ie and now Small Technology Foundation)

Haluk Balkan and Mehlika Balkan are our main benefactors. Over the last five years, they have gifted us £157,900 personally to support our work. In mid-2019, given that we were on the verge of not being able to pay the rent, they pledged to support our work with a further €100,000. The money they’ve invested in our work comes from the sale of three apartments in Turkey. Haluk and Mehlika are Aral’s parents – they are a university professor and a librarian – and they would like it to be known that they don’t have any more homes left to sell.

Sales of Better Blocker

(Ind.ie and now Small Technology Foundation)

In 2016, we launched Better Blocker for iOS, followed by Better Blocker for macOS. In the three years since, we’ve received a total of $86,300 in revenue from sales of the app ($49.1K on iOS, $37.2K on macOS).

Our work with the City of Ghent

(Historic; Ind.ie)

In 2017-2018, with Ind.ie, we worked with the City of Ghent to carry out research and development on how Small Technology could be applied at the city level. For this we received €72,000.

Initial crowdfunding

(Historic; Ind.ie)

In 2014, with Ind.ie, we raised £60,000 via crowdfunding. $10,000 of that was donated by Rafael Laguna from Open-Xchange. At one point during 2014 / 15, we had a team of 5 people working at the same time at Ind.ie and we’ve always paid the people we work with.

Speaking fees

We both speak professionally at a number of events every year on our work. The honorariums we receive from these events go directly to Small Technology Foundation.

Royalties from Laura’s book (Accessibility for Everyone)

Laura has invested these in Ind.ie (and ongoing royalties are invested in Small Technology Foundation).

Eclips.is (hosting)

(Ind.ie and now Small Technology Foundation)

Finally, we receive free hosting for a number of our sites from Eclips.is and are in the process of moving as many of our sites over to them as possible to reduce our monthly hosting costs even further.

Your support has kept us going in the past five years and gotten us to where we are today. It hasn’t been an easy journey but we would not have been able to get to where we are today without being able to continuously iterate on the problem for those past five years.