Ardour Financing Brainstorming

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Francois
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It was unsettling reading about the financial struggles of Ardour in previous posts.
Not only ardour but the guys that write excellent plugins like LinuxDSP also.

This is really a brainstorming post. Some more realistic and sensible or maybe even foolish.

1. Adopt the Reaper license model.
Make Ardour payware but keep the trial version uncrippled and unexpiring.
Thus the nagging screen on upstart and not only with export.
2. Add an Ardour Marketplace on the site and charge commission or advertising revenue.
This ought not to be difficult with a with all the ecommerce programs that support digital download purchases.
To make this easier for the Ardour team post a big disclaimer that support for these comes from the developer and Ardour.
3. Sell a yearly made with Ardour CD as a digital download.
4. Only support the major Linux distributions to save development time.
5. Give prospective hardware manufacturers advertising space or marketplace presence and gain advertising revenue or sales commission.
6. I might make an very misinformed statement here, but change the license agreement to that one where you are free to download and change the source code BUT you are required to submit these code for possible integration into Ardour after review.
7. Approach some online retailers that might give subscribers some special offers or benefits.

Please add

Francois
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Errata
To make this easier for the Ardour team post a big disclaimer that support for these comes from the developer and NOT Ardour.

audiodef
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All I can say is that when I've established that Ardour is "it" for me (I'm most of the way there), I plan to make donations when I can! :-)

paul
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1. Adopt the Reaper license model.
Make Ardour payware but keep the trial version uncrippled and unexpiring.
Thus the nagging screen on upstart and not only with export.

Reaper's model works only because of the size of the total Windows user base. Applying its model to OS X is tricky, and applying it to Linux is more or less impossible.

You are also missing that fact that the "trial version" of Ardour is not the only way to get Ardour for free, just the most convenient. I am also very opposed to startuup nagscreens. If revenues drop, then its an idea I could consider.

2. Add an Ardour Marketplace on the site and charge commission or advertising revenue.
This ought not to be difficult with a with all the ecommerce programs that support digital download purchases.
To make this easier for the Ardour team post a big disclaimer that support for these comes from the developer and Ardour.

I am not a fan of advertising-driven plans. Furthermore, there are actually NOT a lot of ecommerce programs that support digital download purchases in a way that integrates even remotely with our existing system. In fact, there are precisely none. There have no been precisely zero inquiries from companies during Ardour's existence about the possibility of joint marketing.

3. Sell a yearly made with Ardour CD as a digital download.

In case you hadn't noticed, CDs are over :) Have you seen any other DAW that offers such a thing? I really don't want to be put in a position of having to qualitatively judge what people do with Ardour - the truth is that most of it isn't going to end up on anything that is sold for any notable amount of money. Most - not all! But curating such a thing is a lot of work in and of itself, and I simply don't see the benefits as being worth the effort.

4. Only support the major Linux distributions to save development time.

Linux distributions cost us almost nothing in terms of development time. They do have a little impact on support "costs", and my increasing response to this is to simply say "We/I do not support the Ubuntu packages of Ardour". It doesn't help much to "support the major Linux distributions" when its the same major distributions that screw around with our software and break it.

5. Give prospective hardware manufacturers advertising space or marketplace presence and gain advertising revenue or sales commission.

ardour.org uses google adsense already. I do not want more intrusive advertising.

6. I might make an very misinformed statement here, but change the license agreement to that one where you are free to download and change the source code BUT you are required to submit these code for possible integration into Ardour after review.

This would be a violation of the GPL that we rely on to be able to utilize the contributions, ideas and work of the developers of various libraries that we use, as well inviting our own developers to participate in Ardour's development. I have no reason to believe that people re-distributing modified versions of Ardour's code is an issue in our revenue situation. Love to hear it if I'm wrong!

7. Approach some online retailers that might give subscribers some special offers or benefits. 

All online retailers want a percentage of the revenue. The size of the Linux user base is so small that I have absolutely no reason to believe that this is of any use for that platform. For OS X, its hard to say, but I have not come across any online retailers that I would be interested in partnering with.

There are other efforts underway to try to increase the revenue flow from Ardour, primarily by distributing our own universal "bundle" for Linux platforms. There are still some technical issues to overcome.

Thanks for your ideas. I remain committed to the belief that the best way to increase revenue from Ardour is to continue working on making it into such a totally awesome program that the user community grows dramatically. That is real work, but its based on adding real value to users (existing and potential) and not on marketing tricks and gimmicks.

It is important to realize that more or less all music/audio technology companies continue to struggle with revenue. This is a very small, very specialized and very, very competitive marketplace. Cockos (Reaper), Abelton and a few others have found a way to generate fairly respectable revenues, methods which may or may not last. Companies like Steinberg, who make some fine products, more or less went bankrupt before being bought out. I don't know if you're imagining that there is a huge world of potential customers out there waiting to pay for Ardour, but I'm fairly certain that at least until/if we provide a Windows version, this is a misconception of the niche that we're in.

simon1
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I remain committed to the belief that the best way to increase revenue from Ardour is to continue working on making it into such a totally awesome program that the user community grows dramatically. That is real work, but its based on adding real value to users (existing and potential) and not on marketing tricks and gimmicks.

I really respect that sort of attitude and it definitely shows in the quality of the software.

Also, if the users are making lots of quality music people will take note. I figure one of the best things we can do for Ardour is to put it to good use!

scg62
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Friends, its really a good idea not only to expect improvements and features from the Ardour people but to think about their financial situation. From that, thank you Francois for your post.

But I think Paul already installed the support channels that he needs. Its the donation thing, monthly or once.

It's now at YOU all to USE it. So please follow my example:

I cancelled a useless newspaper abonnement and simply put that money in a monthly "first world subscription". Thats easy and no additional effort for me, just a shifting.

And now at X-Mas time I will make a one-time extra donation, like -lets say- as an additional X-Mas incentive. (Hohoho)

Follow me, friends.

benekastah
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I'm at a halfway between paul and Francois. I understand that creating a great product is the most essential key to generating income of any sort from any model. However, the speed at which that can happen is mostly dependent on money. The ideals behind open-source software can be difficult to realize in a capitalistic society. Paul needs his bread and butter, both for his family needs and to further the development of the program. Relying mostly on donations is showing quite a bit of trust in us (hopefully that trust is not altogether misplaced).

But we know there are large companies offering great free products that area also making great money somehow or another. (Google comes to mind. It seems like Canonical isn't doing too bad either, along with several other "enterprise software" models). Now certainly not all of their marketing techniques can apply to such a niche market as this, but certainly something they are doing can be applied. I wouldn't be too quick to pass some of those tricks off as gimmicks. A lot of companies make a killing offering a great niche product.

That being said, I almost think that the best place to start (after, of course, donating what we can to the cause) is to get the word out as best we can. It seems like it would be cheap to start up a sort of street team for Ardour. Street teams can be really effective. Some simple flyers and word of mouth recommendations can go a long way when a lot of people are at it. The design for materials to distribute could be made by users. Perhaps sponsor a contest for the best fliers/posters to advertise Ardour and distribute the top few results to street team members. It may even be possible to tap some of the Windows market by providing easy materials (online or otherwise) that describe how to set up linux as a second partition on your computer. Some distros are making it extremely easy to dual-boot with Windows (Ubuntu, for example offers a specific Windows installer). I know I would be willing to participate.

John E
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This topic has been brought up many times but the fundamental problem is the GPL license (under which Ardour is governed). Whilst the GPL entitles developers to charge for their products - and also to make a charge for distributing source code - it offers no mechanism through which those entitlements can be enforced. You can suggest a fee for your product and some people may be happy to pay it - but there's nothing to prevent anyone else from obtaining the source code and undercutting you (or even giving your product away for free). In practical terms this makes it very difficult to make money from a product licensed under the GPL. Not impossible, but certainly difficult.

As far as I've been able to tell there are only three ways around this:-

1) Don't charge for the product but make a charge for supporting it.

2) Release the code under an alternative license. This option is available under the GPL to the copyright owner who (alone) may distribute their source code under multiple licenses. I've never been sure though, how feasible this would be in Ardour's case.

3) Don't charge for Ardour but charge for support modules (e.g. plugins, which can be released under a different license). Again, whilst this is possible, it's tricky because the GPL demands that such plugins must not "extend" any GPL licensed code. If the support modules / plugins or whatever DO extend any GPL licensed code, they too must be released under the same license; so effectively, you're back to square one.

Those are the only three ways around the GPL that I've ever been able to find. Can anyone suggest a fourth one..?

macinnisrr
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Paul: Since you sell the unlocked OSX version of ardour on this site, could you not have an Ardour marketplace that is hosted here, and sell products made by others for a commision. Some examples might be hardware, plugins, and even your own Ardour merch. like T-shirts, etc.? You could also sell albums (digital downloads or CDs for luddites) and singles made by others, as well as a compilation album as was mentioned above. In fact, the only real work needed to make such an album is song selection and basic mastering (level correction, a little limiting, etc.). I'm sure the Ardour community as a whole would love to make submissions, a few people to form a review panel would be easy to assemble, and one of us would happily master such a project.

I don't mean to pester you since you seem to have made up your mind regarding the direction of Ardour finances, but I'm sure you wouldn't turn down income from sources that would take very little time to implement for potentially unlimited returns (no need to support products and merchandise, no bug fixes to make on such things, and products like this can be sold forever).

There are two reasons I second these suggestions:
1. As a touring musician, merchandising accounts for just as much (if not more) income than album sales and performances. Of course, I prefer to make albums and play live, and could probably make a decent living from those alone, but it only takes an hour to make a t-shirt design that will bring in just as much money as an album, which takes days at an absolute minimum (usually more like months).

2. I can't speak for everyone else, but I personally prefer to donate my time and expertise to open source projects than money (I always have time and expertise ;-). I am sure at least enough Ardour users to put togther an album would happily donate one of their works to the project, not only because it would mean more exposure for our art, but also because it could be a way to donate potential earnings to a project we believe in, that we otherwise not be able to afford. As an exampe, if an album is $10 and has 10 songs, and sells 100 copies in a year (incredibly modest projection for ANY album I've been involved with, especially given the amount of traffic that comes through this site that could be advertised to), then effectively every contributor has donated $100 value, almost a first world subscription! Nevermind that last years album can be sold alongside this year's forever, and musicians living in the first world often make far less than average incomes.

Anyway, Ardour is a great project and I think everyone here is doing a great job just for trying to think of ways to keep it going.

Thanks Paul!

DickMacInnis.com

Chauncellor
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Paul:

With the advent of Canonical's/Ubuntu's Software Center, do you see any possible profit to be made with selling a version there? They're already starting to build up packages to be sold - And the process works just wonderfully.

Though there aren't terribly clear instructions on how to get your packages published yet - I believe you'd basically have to contact Canonical personally.

efflux
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"Thanks for your ideas. I remain committed to the belief that the best way to increase revenue from Ardour is to continue working on making it into such a totally awesome program that the user community grows dramatically. That is real work, but its based on adding real value to users (existing and potential) and not on marketing tricks and gimmicks."

I agree with this. Unfortunately it is the only way but I would add that we need decent music being created in Ardour as well.

The universal Bundle method could possibly increase Ardour base because then that bundle could be right up to date. Not always the case with various distribution packages. This is a problem with Linux as far as I'm concerned. New Linux users will want the latest versions of apps especially when those latest versions often have feature that are crucial in replacing a Windows app. This is not an issue with Blender, for example.

GMaq
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@efflux

I also agree and very much look forward to an "agnostic" universal binary, it has worked very well for Renoise which is a commercial product, and as you said it makes it easy for both the end user and distributor to keep up. A downside can be library conflicts which plagued Songbird to the point that it became too much trouble to maintain and the Linux port was dropped, not that this is a likely scenario with Ardour because it doesn't have a large Windows base like Songbird does.

Naysayers will say that there could be security issues with some of the bundled libs but truthfully Paul and the development team could probably get on top of that and resolve it in a more timely fashion than a distribution package maintainer could anyway making that argument a moot point. The truth is some very large distributions have made quite a hatchet job out of both JACK and Ardour in the past and I for one would be much more comfortable with the original developer encapsulating their app with a surefire set of self contained dependencies. It has been very successful as well (in operation perhaps not finance) for linuxDSP whose original JACK plugins worked OOTB on pretty much every distro out there.

I think if Ardour went this route and became gradually disentangled from the packaging mechanisms of distributions it would give Paul much more control over both the source and binary and perhaps that could grant a little more control over quality, distribution and payment options.

Just thinking out loud on that though... ;-)

deva
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Lack of funding happens primarily (as I see it) due to lack product exposure and thereby not making the full of the potential userbase.

To put it simply; if people don't know about Ardour they will not use it. If they don't use it, they don't pay for it.

There is not as much news of Ardour spreading around in the mainstream media as there should be.
I think the primary concern be gain new users attentions rather than to push existing users to pay up.

Since the target users of Ardour are the very serious users such as studio technicians in larger studios and not just the small-ville hobby studios around the world, the muscles of Ardour must be showed off in order to gain the serious users attentions.

The Blender foundation did this with their feature projects like "Elephants Dream" or their latest "Sintel" where they created professional large scale productions and showed the world that Blender could stand the distance.

I believe Ardour could do something similar; Get a bunch of volunteers (both musicians and studio engineers) and some sponsors for equipment (mics, cables, mixers, etc) and create something grand with Ardour that really shows off how great a tool it is.
During the entire project it should be intimately documented in every aspects using for example a blog with lots of screenshots, audio recordings and video diaries.

Perhaps a cross Blender/Ardour project could be considered where Ardour is used for tracking and producing of the score of the next Blender movie (if they make one that is).

seablade
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Perhaps a cross Blender/Ardour project could be considered where Ardour is used for tracking and producing of the score of the next Blender movie (if they make one that is).

Many people have suggested it, there are technical aspects that prevent this at the moment. I have been having conversations with Jan over the past year or two about this topic in fact. When Ardour gets to the same point as Blender has gotten to in its respective field, then we can look more strongly at this. We are getting there quickly, and A3 is a huge step in this direction, but we aren't completely there yet. A2 is suitable for particular workflows compared to other software, which is why I use it, but is not the best for every workflow out there, which is why it is not used for this purpose yet.

Exposure is one aspect, capability is another, and demand is the third. If the product is capable, but there is no demand for it, financing will still be a problem and that is probably the best way to describe the DAW market at the moment. There are LOTS of choices out there and there needs to be reasons enough to set Ardour apart from the others, something that is slowly happening, but hasn't gotten there yet for most people.

In as far as the original topic, I can tell you what Paul didn't say is that several of these ideas have been tried or discussed in the past. To my knowledge there is an Ardour T-Shirt etc. still for merchandising, it is just not as prominently displayed anymore on the website because sales from it were minimal at best. There are a few other things discussed in the back rooms of IRC, but I will say I agree with Paul in that making the single bundle for multiple distributions is probably the best bet at the moment to move forward with a sustainable model.

Seablade

Trying to avoid some of the religious war that comes up when this topic is discussed(Both financing and the Blender projects).

paul
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Here's another little data point to remember, something that was pointed out to me recently. Take a look at the world of digital image manipulation. From a commercial perspective there is only one program in the marketplace for this, and its called Photoshop. Yes, I'm a huge GIMP fan, but the current state of play is still that for commercial usage, Photoshop is basically the only game in town. For people who do this kind of work that is good and bad news. The good news is that its totally clear which program to buy and learn. The bad news: if it doesn't do what you want, or doesn't do it how you want to do it, there are no alternatives.

Now take a look at the world of recording software, DAWs, nonlinear-nondestructive editors: there are at least a half dozen really strong contenders for proprietary platforms, and at least that many more just a notch down from there, and the same number again that might have some appeal for some users and/or some workflows.

This is a hyper-competitive software niche, almost infinitely more so than digital image manipulation. The level of complexity of the two domains in terms of the internals of the software are comparable, and yet still nothing has really challenged Photoshop's absolute dominance of its domain. By contrast, Ardour has actually made a little bit of dent into the already competitive world of DAWs - not much, but a suprising number of people know that the software exists, and quite a large number have downloaded it at some point.

Against this background, the idea that a little open source software project that doesn't run on Windows is going to somehow take over the world is at best idealistic and at worse foolish. That's why I'm more content to focus on the rather small community of users that we do already have, and the small number of potential new users who arrive each day, and not get too caught up in dreams that we can be competitive in a market sense with ProTools, with Logic, with Live and probably even with Reaper. We can do the job better, provide better support, pay more attention to details and hopefully over time the audience will grow. It has been a priviledge to develop this software in a way that has been very organic, one might even say "slow", and although more income would be good for me and for the project, the fact that we've already outlived a number of other new ideas in audio technology, I'd rather take the slow & steady path than risk things blowing up through over-ambition. I thought the Mackie HDR was one of the best ideas I'd seen in a long time when it was first announced, and it was developed by a really skilled group of guys. Its long gone, along with quite a few other efforts in the digital recording world that didn't even make it as far as the HDR. Ardour is still here, still growing and increasingly is taken seriously by the people it needs to be taken seriously by.

mixit
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I think the easiest way to increase revenue is to expand the user base.
If a new user gets a good experience, he (or even she) is likely to stay and support the project.
New users are likely to be young musicians that want to record their music, they are not nescessarily Linux experts or even interested i Linux

It is important, that a new user is able to record and mix with a minimum of hazzle.
Here, the contributions of Gmaq (AVLinux) and macinnisrr (Dream Studio) are very important.

They allow a new user to download and install a fully functional DAW and start recording right away without knowing the slightest thing about Linux - at least that is my experience.

The only thing needed now is to make potential users aware of the great possibilities in this DAW.

In other words: Marketing

We can help by writing in relevant forums and mention Ardour in publishing sites like MySpace, Soundclick, IndabaMusic and the like.

Just my 5 cents,

mixit

GMaq
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@mixit

I agree, shout it from the rooftops!!

I also think you make a good point and of course I'm sure macinnisrr and I would agree it's nice to hear that along with the several other excellent 'Studio Ready' projects. I do think it is a two-edged sword in a way because small time distributors and large distros alike allow for an innumerable number of copies of Ardour to enter the marketplace unpaid for, if it was not Paul's idea to make a living from this then that wouldn't matter in fact the more the merrier....but Ardour has evolved into a commercial entity and negating all other factors the sheer volume of distributed copies alone certainly should generate some revenue if Ardour.org was the sole distribution point.

I ship my project with a customized Ardour built from source that I have paid for, however the users are not required to pay unless they choose to donate (to Ardour) on their own, which is not likely because donations for the whole complete working OS are already scarce! I have made various distribution licence agreements with the other non-free sequencers and demos I distribute and I for one would not have a problem if Paul wanted to do the same sort of thing for Ardour. This way might even be better because Ardour would still be available to demonstrate on a free basis contained in numerous Audio centric distro frameworks that facilitated it's use and otherwise potential users could come to Ardour.org and evaluate it as well especially if the universal binary comes into being.

I'm sure many distributions would like to shoot me for proposing this but if the GPL license would allow for a little more distribution control by the original developer (which it seemingly doesn't) I think it would push the volume in Paul's favour. In a commercial product those 3 free G-P-L letters can become quite expensive!

Please let me be clear that this is not an attack on FLOSS or the GPL, obviously it makes all of this and certainly my minor little part possible, I'm just expressing the observation that when you start with FLOSS and then change your marketing to a commercial model the GPL makes it difficult to get the toothpaste back into the tube so to speak.

John E
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if the GPL license would allow for a little more distribution control by the original developer (which it seemingly doesn't) I think it would push the volume in Paul's favour.

Actually, I think there's a solution which need not involve Paul having (nor needing) more control over distribution. The dilemma here is that whilst any recipient of the work may use it to generate an income, only the copyright owner is granted any entitlement to protect that income. For example, if Paul was the sole owner of Ardour's code, he could release binary versions under a different license and use those alternative licenses to generate an income. The current problem though is that any recipient of the code is free to use it in whatever way they see fit - and this includes using it to deprive the copyright owner of any income they receive under those alternative licensing arrangements. This is fundamentally wrong IMHO.

What the GPL needs is some mechanism whereby (without prejudice to any other rights granted by the GPL) the copyright owner may PROTECT their right to release their code under an alternative license. In practical terms, this means that whilst any recipient may use the code for any REASONABLE purpose, they may not use it to deprive the copyright owner of any special benefits they may enjoy elsewhere in the agreement. It should be implicit in the mere act of receiving the source code that the recipient recognises that the primary rights of the copyright holder are superior rights and that nothing in the agreement may be construed so as to deprive the copyright owner of those primary rights.

Or to put it simply.... you may use the source code for any purpose that does NOT deprive the copyright owner of their income!

paul
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Just so that I'm completely clear, I am totally comfortable with the GPL, and would not use an alternate license.

John E
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Fully acknowledged Paul but I feel it's important for people to understand why we keep going around in circles with this discussion. The basic problem is the failure of the GPL to protect the entitlements that it purports to grant. For example:-

(1) The copyright owner may exploit other licensing arrangements in addition to the GPL (e.g. to generate an income). But....
(2) The copyright owner may not restrict any entitlements granted to the recipient of his GPL licensed work. However....
(3) The recipient is entirely free to hinder the copyright owner's entitlement to exploit his rights in (1).

As long as the above disparity exists it will always be inherently difficult to make a living from GPL licensed software. To my mind, this is a needless weakness in the GPL but I appreciate that others may disagree.

paul
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No worthwhile thing was ever easy. Of course, there are a lot dificult, pointless things to do with one's life too, so that little aphorism doesn't help a whole lot :)

leadghost
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OT@Paul:

If you ran for public office I think I would vote for you :) . But PLEASE don't do that as it might distract Ardour development!!

rusk
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upcoming law changes in Russia will give you a lot of new users and contributors. Many small studios and private engeneers wil switch to opensource from cracked software...

gusta
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why not give ardor on a CD with some sound cards supported on linux?
Now with the release of stable version 3 will be fully mature for this launch, and it would be to free publicity ...
in more than a few pennies for each CD sold (do not pay the program but the cd) ...
I think the money with my g € 5 for each copy sold more or less (5 euro plus production costs)
sensilizzerebbe even those who use OSX in favor of Linux, and would give a jolt to the situation or at least would certainly talk, and this talk linux can benefit from them:)

fernesto
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after being shocked by Pauls honest and modest talk about Ardour vs. other DAWs... heh ... my respects on that Paul... i just want to add an idea and a thought..

the idea... would it be functional for Ardours Financing if the users compilate a series of songs "made in ardour" in a downloadable CD (referring to the 10-14 songs group format, not the fisical format) that would sell to (almost obviously... already users) public online directly donating that income to Ardour? (sorry my english is not to good, hope you get my idea about re-motivating users to donate more once a year)

the thought... i can't agree more with Paul about taking care more the already existing base of users, actually i think a not very complex stadistic would show that theres a percentage of donations in $ related to users, something like.... 20$ per user i dont know but... that give us the idea that a very good way to raise Ardours Financing is to simply (not simple... i know) increase the number of end users... that... i think would be a better point to listen to, that would not be against any actual Licensing, would not force anyone to pay, would not hurt anybody, it WOULD actually increase users based support and would increase support for ideas similar to the one i just added about a music compilation for sale to Ardours Donation...

now about increasing Ardours users base... its a lot more a task for us musicians, technicians and producers, and its not that hard, everytime a band records in my studio, i pretend to donate a small income per song for example, or for every band that records here i would give them a DVD with Ubuntu Studio and Ardour... making great music with ardour and "letting people know that we used an open source DAW" its Ardours best help i think...

anahata
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I like the idea of commercial users of Ardour sending contributions based on income raised by using it. Not so much an "contribution per song" perhaps, as a percentage of the actual income made.

I sort of promised myself I'd do this, as the approach makes more sense for me than a fixed monthly contribution, because running a studio is not my main job and income from it is very infrequent.

However , having recently recorded half a dozen demo tracks for a local band for which they paid me, I suppose that means it's time I sent in another donation...!
[reaches for Paypal button...]

dknation
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Right now, I'm using Cubase for my commercial work, but it's been a while since I upgraded and now I'm waiting for Ardour3 instead of getting the latest version of Cubase. I figured that if I signed up for a monthly subscription, I would help out just a little bit to make Ardour3 happen, and I really like the idea of a DAW where the users and the developers have such a close dialog about features, issues etc. That's partly the reason why I prefer to put my money into Ardour development, rather than to Steinberg.
The other reason is that Linux is so much more easy to customize to fit ones needs, in order to get better performance out of the machine.

I also plan to give a percentage of my income for my commercial work, besides the monthly subscription, but that will have to be when I'm actually using Ardour for the job.

What we can do is to spread Ardour, mouth-to-mouth.
I'm sure most users here are surrounded by other people who share the same interest in music and recording technology, both for hobby and for serious jobs. There has to be lots of new users out there, that we can reach by networking.

If we share our knowledge and show people what they actually are able to do with this software, the userbase will grow without having to be ported to lots of different platforms.
And I think it is also our duty to encourage these new users to donate to the project.
Many people take the "free as in beer" part of open source, and Linux in particular, as granted, and they tend to forget that someone has to put a lot of time and effort to make the programs good.
If one user tells another user to support the project, in a friendly manner, I think the message will be clearer than if the developers must move into a more aggressive approach of making the users pay.

Also, I think commercials and payed propaganda is a bad idea, since it would move the developers focus from making a good program into brain storming on how to be seen and make more money.
Commercial campagnes do cost a lot as well, and a product that's sold in a store tend to be over priced due to all the people who wants their share on the product's way from the creator to the user.

As I see it, it is OUR job, as promoting users, to find ways to make more people use, and pay for Ardour, without the developers having to spend time thinking about those matters, since we want the developers to do what they do best.

Hands up, everybody in here who is making their living producing audio for the advertising industry.
We know how to sell things, don't we?

David Slevin
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Joined: 2011-06-23
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Educational gigs...

If I may, the fact that the only way to pay for Ardour is through PayPal is a major issue.

Ardour seems like a perfect choice for educational establishments working with all levels of students.
Particularly since it's affordable and for more advanced students the source code is available.

I know for a fact that trying to set up a direct debit through paypal would be a no go for many colleges.

Finding a direct contact on the site to ask about this has also proved difficult.

allank
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Joined: 2006-12-07
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All I can say there is nicely put.. someone here also said put it on your social networking pages.. put it in your credits e.t.c... btw thanks Paul, drobilla and everyone for your continuuing efforts .. Ardour truly is a great environment to work in..

I won't say much else but people.. please put your money where your mouth is.. ... if you downloaded via a package on your linux distribution (as most of us probably do).. then cough up a little bit.. or better yet subscribe..

usander
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Joined: 2010-10-17
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Another idea: make it easier to subscribe. I just tried to and was not able because a credit card is needed. :-( I have a PayPal account and it is linked to my regular banking account but I do not own any credit card at all, which is still very common here in germany. But I would love to support the development of ardour, even as a paying mixbus customer.

usander
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Joined: 2010-10-17
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Update: I opted to donate which works w/o credit card. So I will return every month and do that instead of subscribing.