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how do we get more backing of the brk?

 
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I just now read clayton's post about getting more coin into the BRK.  For those that don't know, the BRK in question is something that makes things smoother for the boots to work on our experiments and improve our overall velocity.  Basically, people (like you) say "if you post a bunch of pictures, every day, for 100 days, I'll give you ten bucks (or some people offer a care package, or other things)."   All people need to do is reply to the thread and say how much they are in for. And then every few months, a boot rings that bell and folks pony up.  It has turned into a powerful motivator.  Click here to see the details.


The question is:  how do we get more people to reply to the thread and offer up a few bucks?


Any suggestions?



 
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I really love going through the Boot's threads! I love how different they are from each other and tell the story of Wheaton Labs.

Jen’s Boot Camp and Allerton Abbey Experience

Jen's
click to enlarge


Jennifer Richardson's bootcamp thread is FULL of all sorts of beautiful pictures of Wheaton Labs. If you want to see what's blooming or buzzing or popping up from the ground, Jen's is a perfect place to look. She also has pictures of community activies, food preservation, life at Allerton Abbey, temperature readings from in Allerton Abbey, and a lot more! I've really enjoyed following her blog for the last year. And, I do mean year! She started this blog in August of last year, so you can see all four seasons of activity and all that's changed in that year at Wheaton Labs.




Josiah's Bootcamp Log

Josiah's
click to enlarge


Josiah Kobernik's bootcamp thread is the place to go to find sweet aerial shots of Wheaton Labs, as well as lots of videos of life at Wheaton Labs. You'll get to see a lot of nice pictures of hugels, what they're growing and building. If you're wanting to see other Boots in action, his thread is a great place to look. Like Jen, he's been at Wheaton Labs for over a year. He first started posting with his Solar Glass Recycler thread, and then moved over to his current Bootcamp Log. It's awesome to see all he's worked on and how much everything has changed since he joined Bootcamp!




Clayton's Bootcamp Experience

Clayton's
click to enlarge


Clayton High's bootcamp thread is a great one for seeing how much skill he's gained in the months he's been at Wheaton Labs. There's drystacking, patio making, junkpole fence raising, hugelkultur gardening, and a lot more. You even get a sneak peak into what he's doing on his own little slice of paradise up in the Ant Village. But, you really gotta keep a close eye out for his little sneaks...and the best way to know what's going on is to donate to his projects--then he gives you weeklyish updates! See that cute chestnut in the top right corner of the collage? He planted that for my kids! You can sponsor a chestnut tree at his plot, too, or help him out in all sorts of other ways. Clayton is 86/100 days to achieving the BRK, and he's really worked his tail off to earn it!




There's lots of ways to support the Boot, such as sending them cool stuff from their Boot Love lists, to paying them for doing things you've always dreamed of seeing at Wheaton Labs through the original Biological Reverse Kickstater

But, really, the best and simplest way is to support them through the Special Biological Reverse Kickstarter just for Bootcamp!

 
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A few thoughts:

- I couldn't tell what BRK was from its name. It seemed a bit long. I had to read your explanation and dig into the thread. Once I took the time to read, and check out the page some more, I figured it out. Still, I think re-branding it would be helpful. Something more immediate and direct like "Boots' Research and Rewards fund", or "Boots Do Cool Stuff Fund"; or give it that tagline under the long technical name.
- I would like to see more information on the BRK for Boots page, and have it organized such that I can see
A) With their consent, listing who are the active boots, with hyperlinks to their journal/blog; use fun codenames otherwise
B) how much have each made from this BRK, over some time scale,
C) who from the forums have donated for what projects, and how much; or anonymize the data to show number of donors and total amt donated per project,
D) what rewards have not been completed, and if they're in progress, hyperlinked to the thread,
E) What things have been completed, hyperlinked to the relevant thread

For visibility into all that, maybe a table, or a spreadsheet that folks can download, or a light web application that renders all these results from said spreadsheet.

I'm not saying "do all of the above or else I/someone else won't participate". I think doing some of the above items would help lower the mental barrier to entry and increase engagement. The staff look to be engaged in the replies and suggestions, which is great.
 
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I don't log in or post all that often, but I've been a member here for years and pop in to read a bit a few times a week. I only recently figured out what brk meant, and it was by accident.  

I find there's a lot of jargon-like stuff here and no easy way to figure out what it is. I end up ignoring most of it cause when I've got 10 minutes to read while I eat breakfast I'm not going to spend it trying to figure out what yet another acronym means instead of reading about something obviously cool like fixing up an old root cellar or experimenting with mushroom substrates.
 
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All of Mac's ideas were great. This forum isn't the easiest to navigate at times, and having to dig through information to figure out what's going on takes a lot of time. First post should have all vital info of who's doing what where and maybe a link to a Google Doc/Spreadsheet that has separate tabs for the different Boots and what they need for their projects. Occasionally posting in the emails '[Boots] is doing this project and needs a [tool]. Can you spare [$$] for them?' or something to that effect.

Otherwise, you could always set up a Patreon/subscription-based account for your Boots as a whole and get patrons/subscribers to keep the money coming in from month to month without having to explicitly ask for it. The Boots or whomever would just need to keep their subscribers updated on what they're doing so they can see the progress they're 'paying' for.
 
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Is there any way to get one of those nifty automatic underline things when the forum sees 'BRK' so the tooltip spells it out and links to the relevant thread? I've been out of the loop and never connected BRK with 'Biological Reverse Kickstarter' and also seem to have a hard time associating that with the benefits for boots taking pictures of stuff, even though I've listened to most of the podcasts. Some of that may just be health issues and brain overload on my end, but apparently I'm not alone in the misunderstanding.
 
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I also haven't known much about this whole arena and had no real idea before today that you needed money for it and still don't really know how to support this financially. To your credit their is so much info on so many topics it's easy to wander around happily learning a bit of this and a bit of that without tying it together very firmly. Sometimes I just feel a bit like a kitten who is playing with several balls of yarn. Also the jargon and abbreviations have been quite a bit of work to understand and I too, at times, just don't take the time to decipher them. The pep ebook explained a lot and I got that recently. Communication always is soo much work isn't it?
 
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You might add more about the thread and how it helps the boots in the Dailyish?

Though right now, it is a stretch to pay their own bills so maybe not as many people can help as they would like. I know I would like to but I have my own community I am funding and it was hard for me to even support the last kickstarter. Not that I do not want to do more, I feel really bad that I cannot sorry. But maybe if more people understood how important it was they would find a way to be able to help. And I think that even when I am short on time, I sure try to read through the emails.
 
paul wheaton
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Boots Booty?
 
paul wheaton
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A) With their consent, listing who are the active boots, with hyperlinks to their journal/blog; use fun codenames otherwise



Good call!   Kinda like what Nicole has above?

 
paul wheaton
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Something more immediate and direct like "Boots' Research and Rewards fund", or "Boots Do Cool Stuff Fund"; or give it that tagline under the long technical name.



Boots Media Motivation Fund

Boot Jetpack Fund

Carrots for Boots

Maybe it should be expanded to anybody at wheaton labs:

Lab Carrots

??
 
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Maybe "Pledge fund for bootcamp documentation"?
 
Nicole Alderman
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Would an image like this help? I'm not sure of the wording, but that's really easy to change.
Biological-reverse-kickstarter-Bootcamp.png
BRK graphic
BRK graphic
 
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Mac Kugler wrote:A few thoughts:

- I couldn't tell what BRK was from its name. It seemed a bit long. I had to read your explanation and dig into the thread. Once I took the time to read, and check out the page some more, I figured it out. Still, I think re-branding it would be helpful. Something more immediate and direct like "Boots' Research and Rewards fund", or "Boots Do Cool Stuff Fund"; or give it that tagline under the long technical name.
- I would like to see more information on the BRK for Boots page, and have it organized such that I can see
A) With their consent, listing who are the active boots, with hyperlinks to their journal/blog; use fun codenames otherwise
B) how much have each made from this BRK, over some time scale,
C) who from the forums have donated for what projects, and how much; or anonymize the data to show number of donors and total amt donated per project,
D) what rewards have not been completed, and if they're in progress, hyperlinked to the thread,
E) What things have been completed, hyperlinked to the relevant thread

For visibility into all that, maybe a table, or a spreadsheet that folks can download, or a light web application that renders all these results from said spreadsheet.

I'm not saying "do all of the above or else I/someone else won't participate". I think doing some of the above items would help lower the mental barrier to entry and increase engagement. The staff look to be engaged in the replies and suggestions, which is great.



I like a lot of these ideas. Regarding D & E:
It would be nice to see a TOTAL $$ offered (where there are multiple pledges for a thing like the 100 days of photos), possibly a total $$ paid.
It would also be nice to see a tally of what's been claimed (maybe for how much?), and by whom. This would show at a glance just how effective the BRK is.
An idea might be to create the tally by placing links to threads with "the evidence" ie: the beginning of a boot's 100 days of pictures, or a post about building a bench... which might read as links to: Josiah's first 100 pics ($800), Jen's first 100 pics ($750), Jen's second 100 pics ($650), or Fred's benches ($175), etc... This might make it easier to see how support for pictures is doing over time, maybe an incentive to pledge to keep it up at a high level?
I'd like to see this all aggregated at the top of page one, rather than buried in the thread.

Maybe relevant threads/posts have some sort of indication that they have been made possible by the BRK? maybe a GREEN BORDER for BRK threads? (like the blue/periwinkle? border for private forums)
And a special BRK tiny ad in every post? "If you like this sort of thing, head on over to the forums for BRK pledges..." or "It says reverse , but the BRK makes us go forwards! Put your foot on the gas here"
 
paul wheaton
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Fred Tyler wrote:Maybe "Pledge fund for bootcamp documentation"?



Bootcamp media pledges?
 
paul wheaton
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Nicole Alderman wrote:Would an image like this help? I'm not sure of the wording, but that's really easy to change.



Sure!  Let's use it for now and see if we get more pledges.  
 
Aimee Hall
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I think that image is good and what if you added digital rewards for donators who made certain tiers of donations or perhaps the top X number of donators?

You guys have been epic at coming up with digital content for the kickstarters, and I imagine something similar may get people motivated to donate. It does not necessarily have to be boots related digital content though it could be related to the program. I am sure people would be interested in lots of things like the boots favourite recipes (especially foods made/grown on a permaculture site), or maybe a behind the scenes interview before and after the experience on video, or more pictures, etc.
 
paul wheaton
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paul wheaton wrote:

Fred Tyler wrote:Maybe "Pledge fund for bootcamp documentation"?



Bootcamp media pledges?



Bootcamp encouragement fund?

 
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Yes, I like "encouragement" better than "media".  Something that says you're helping/supporting/encouraging/funding/pledging/sponsoring/enabling/etc the boots sounds better to me.  
 
paul wheaton
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If we are going to re-name this thing, I'm currently liking "Bootcamp encouragement fund" best.   Now that we have had a round of brainstorming, what might be two or three other contenders?

 
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paul wheaton wrote:


The question is:  how do we get more people to reply to the thread and offer up a few bucks?


Any suggestions?






Tithed badges?   " I didn't do a sand badge but I helped 20 people get theirs. " sorta thing? Not  necessarily monetarily.

Pay it forward sort of things?  I'd start it going by donating a hammer, if the user of that hammer would donate back two when the work up to it.   I'm not sure how to word smith that together right.   Maybe plant a seed so that all may enjoy the fruits of our labors.

... hummm...

 
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Jan White wrote:I don't log in or post all that often, but I've been a member here for years and pop in to read a bit a few times a week. I only recently figured out what brk meant, and it was by accident.  

I find there's a lot of jargon-like stuff here and no easy way to figure out what it is. I end up ignoring most of it cause when I've got 10 minutes to read while I eat breakfast I'm not going to spend it trying to figure out what yet another acronym means instead of reading about something obviously cool like fixing up an old root cellar or experimenting with mushroom substrates.



Everything Jan said.  It took me months before I did a BB because PEP, BB, sand, straw, all just flew over my head.  Same with BRK.  I have literally no idea what BRK means.  After seeing the title Biological Reverse Kickstarter I still don't know what it means, except that the term kickstarter tells me I'm paying money and backing something.

Now the idea that you have real people who are sacrificing things to travel all the way across the country to do permaculture? And they need support while they're freezing their butts off to bring us the Bench Warmer?  That is compelling. That makes me want to help.

Quick brainstorm about titles that might get that across:

The Permaculture Dreamers Fund

The Permaculture Gut-Check Fund

Take action and support our Action Takers

Boot Shine



 
Mac Kugler
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paul wheaton wrote:

A) With their consent, listing who are the active boots, with hyperlinks to their journal/blog; use fun codenames otherwise



Good call!   Kinda like what Nicole has above?



Yes! It's a great combo of eye candy, summary, and visibility.

And thank you Nicole!
 
Tom Rutledge
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paul wheaton wrote:

paul wheaton wrote:

Fred Tyler wrote:Maybe "Pledge fund for bootcamp documentation"?



Bootcamp media pledges?



Bootcamp encouragement fund?



Boot lace fund?
 
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