[FFmpeg-devel] Sponsoring and generating money in general (IRC meeting follow-up)

Patrick Shirkey pshirkey at boosthardware.com
Tue Jan 21 02:24:09 CET 2014

On Tue, January 21, 2014 11:57 am, Fred Rothganger wrote:
> On 01/20/2014 04:27 PM, Andrey Utkin wrote:
>> Eelco, i've looked at your issue. My best wishes to you with it,
>> unfortunately personally i am not keen on Matroska internals and not
>> having enough time to investigate it in nearest time. Regarding
>> calculating reasonable bounty amount, i think it may be near to amount
>> of money (or cost of time) to solve the issue by yourself or by your
>> employees. This way you definitely mustn't be afraid to offend anybody
>> :)
> If there is a system where multiple people can offer a bounty on the
> same issue, then there would be no need to worry about how potential
> programmers might perceive it. Simply offer what it is worth to you, or
> what you can afford. If that is not enough, then maybe others will add
> to the bounty. Alternately, maybe you could go back and revise the bounty.
> If possible, social stigma should be removed as a barrier. IE: you
> should be free to offer what you are willing, as opposed to offering
> nothing at all. Maybe some message on the bounty system (whatever it is)
> could help set potential contributors at ease about this.

One thing missing from the Ardour system is a time estimate for bounties.

IMO it's reasonable for interested developers to provide an estimate on
the amount of time required to complete a task so that sponsors can decide
how much they want to chip in towards the goal. Otherwise we can end up
with bounties that are way out of proportion for the time/effort required
and may never be undertaken.

For example in the Ardour system there are several tasks that have been
sponsored but may never be done based on the amount being offered.

The estimate could include a minimum/maximum hours required because it may
be difficult for developers to think through every possible step in

For larger tasks there could also be an option for setting a minimum
amount required to be pledged before anyone will start work on a task or
taking an agile approach the tasks could be broken down into 4 - 8 hour
blocks with a standardised hourly rate applied so everyone can easily see
how much effort is required and the potential costs involved.

Patrick Shirkey
Boost Hardware Ltd

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