Good news. We’ve now hit the target of $30k. It’s an amazing job in under a week. I think above all it shows how important this is to a lot of people.
We have: £22,598,56 in card takings, and £768.45 paid to me on Paypal.
£23,3367.01 in total.
Sekido’s invoice has arrived, and there’s no mention of tax on it so the extra 8% is not a worry.
I will send the first $10k payment to him tomorrow as soon as the funds transfer into my account from stripe.
I think it’s a bad idea to close down continued membership of the group. In a posting on his website, Kolin Burgess (www.mtgoxprotest.com) has said he only partially supports what we are doing because of the exclusivity around it. It think that’s a fair comment and in an ideal world now that we have enough to pay the lawyer, my aim would be to make this free to others, with perhaps a nominal admin fee to cover costs.
There’s a few problems with that. 1/ This might seem unfair to those that have already paid, and wasn’t the terms they agreed to contribute to. Secondly it would be foolish for me to leave this without a reserve of fund to help with expenses on the horizon as things develop, (US law suit for BTCe, Lobbying in japan, but moreover, some admin to establish the creditors committee) so I would like us to build up a small reserve of funds, to cover future expenses.
Then there’s also the question of covering my time. Thanks for your responses on that question. I think there’s an overwhelming support for me to be paid, with a few caveats, so let me address my thoughts on those caveats now:
There’s a sense that this shouldn’t be a recurring payment. OK, I’m fine with that, but it will need to recur as long as I’m working on it. There’s also a question about the size of it. That’s my rate for my time and I have no problems getting other work so it’s not negotiable. If this was an initiative to help the hungry and homeless, then I would consider lowering my living standards to help, but it’s a long way from that.
Others have suggested a fee to cover my time should be raised seperately. I’m fine with that, but I’m not investing time into doing that, so if someone wants to take the reins, whatever they raise can come off the what I’m paid from the fund.
The website says, that any sums collected over the necessary, would be refunded pro-rata or put to an agreed use to help the furtherance of our objectives, and I think paying me for time fits within that. It feels uncomfortable for me as this started as a project I thought I’d sink my teeth into to get it rolling for a few days. If anyone has any strong reservations then contact me and we’ll think of a way to refund your investments. I will update the website now to make it clearly explicit for newcomers.
Finally there’s the issue of the management fee for the IT team. It wasn’t my suggestion and those that want to can make the case for it, however I think it’s disappointing that if this initiative brings people an extra £1000, they wouldn’t feel it fair to thank the people who started it with £1!
The website says, that any sums collected over the necessary, would be refunded pro-rata or put to an agreed use to help the furtherance of our objectives, and I think paying me for time fits within that. It feels uncomfortable for me that this has turned into a financial arrangement, as this started as a project I thought I’d sink my teeth into to get it rolling for a few days and didn’t expect more from it – Originally I was going to bankroll the lawyer and invite contributions. If anyone has any strong reservations how it’s turned out then contact me and we’ll think of a way to refund your investments.
So for those reasons I think we should leave the door open, and maintain the contributor fee for now, until we have Sekido’s advice back and review the situation based on that. (E.g. If we need sizeable membership to prove authority to the court.)
I think it’s time that we had a proper governance board. So far it has been Ben, Samson and Hideki who I have referred to who have acted as councillors, as well as IT team. I think it’s time we did this in a more transparent way. So my suggestion is that once we are able to log into the secure forum, then I’d like 2-3 volunteers to put themselves forward and make their true identities known to that group, in a way like I’ve done, and they can then act as governance board that I report to and who audit my actions and accounts. This will also create a structure in which I can be replaced if I can’t go on, or it’s decided I’m doing it badly.
I know people in the close team have some alternative suggestions too. I’ll let them raise them if they feel it’s necessary.
This is a top priority in my view. I’m now confident we will be able to use a really well suited email list, and I think Sekido’s first job is to ascertain from the court a procedure that they deem acceptable so we can contact as many creditors as possible and get them to give consent to the court in an easy way.
Kolin Burgess and others are also already working on this, and I spoke to them about how we can bring our group’s strengths to support the plan. I think our strengths are this email list, and the potential energy of this lawyer to sniff out a way to get the court to approve a methodology. I’m speaking to a few people about who could be on the creditors committee. We can discuss this in the forum and here. Kolin has another great suggestion: that the committee should devise a manifesto which lays out the philosophy of the outcome we’re aiming for. Sounds simple, but there’s actually a lot of thought needs to go into ti. More about that in another email. I want to get this email out to you all for now to say congratulations on hitting the 30k. We have a lawyer.