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As the platform evolves, and unlike the local nodes (which aggregate projects in terms of groups of people and initiatives in a specific geographical area), in Goteo the themes and fields shared among different projects can be aggregated around small specialised virtual communities.

That is, experts in, and individuals enthusiastic about a specific subject that operate from any geographical location as influencers, counselling or promoting projects in the process of funding related to a specific field such as, for example, art, technology, education, etc.

The process consists of four differentiated phases, which every project must go through:

  1. Sign-up and detailed description
  2. Selection and, in the case of being accepted, revision
  3. Publication and two rounds of co-financing (40+40 days)
  4. Communication of results and rewards
As well as contributing to launching a project that interests you, with your contribution you can obtain two types of return, collective and individual, which are specified in each project:

You'll be a participant in the collective returns created by the project which are are really the main point of Goteo which pursues the social profitability of the investments made via the platform - commons, which permit the reuse, remixing, new uses and values from what has been created

At the same time as seeking the viability of the projects for the promotors, Goteo also looks for the best possible benefit for the community with the objective of creating social capital and that other people can create opportunities, products and and economically sustainable services derived from the projects.

The collective returns can be: sharing knowledge and free access to source code; derivative resources or services; training through didactic manuals, workshops and/or via Internet; rough materials, files and digitizable content (e.g. a template/pattern, a design, methodology or programme) that can be replicated, reused, remixed etc.

You can also receive an individual reward which varies depending on the quantity you contribute. These rewards are exclusive and different and can be tangible (an object related to the project, a publication, a t-shirt etc.) or intangible (appearing in project credits or other high visibility spaces in the project, "premium" or advance access to contents, specially adapted services, participation in the production, private passes, invitations to parties and presentations, a share in the ownership of the project and possible benefits etc.)

If there isn't one, someone should found it! :) But, presently, we are just starting out, and therefore there is much work that remains to be done in this area. For the time being, we have a local node in Bilbao, and Andalusia, obviously, our main node which operates from Barcelona.

To make sure that the proposed ideas contribute to strengthening the commons, open code and/or free knowledge, the projects which want to be financed and developed with the help of Goteo need to be focussed, produced or distributed under one of the numerous existing free and/or open licences. These licences favour the "digital footprint" of the projects with different specifications or restrictions - permitting the explicit copying, public communication, distribution, modification and/or commercial use of all or part of every creation.

Free and/or open licences not only permit the preservation of the authorship and control over uses derived from the creations, but is a real mechanism of replication and distribution through followers, prosumers and disseminators. It is an ever more rich and diverse source of common content where many people look to find all types of inspiration, talent and resources (educational, artistic, documentaries etc).

For all these these reasons, and always taking into account that Goteo guarantees precisely renumeration for the ideation and creation of projects (which at the same time can have their own parallel mechanisms for economic sustainability), we share the increasingly widespread opinion that free and/or open licences do not harm, but can only benefit projects and the people behind them and society in general.

Goteo suggests, and offers advice about, a series of licences such as Creative Commons (CC), General Public Licence (GPL), GNU Affero General Public Licence (AGPLv3), Open Database (ODBC), Licencia Red Abierta Libre Neutral (XOLN) and Open Hardware Licence (OHL). You can see the details of these and other licences at Creative Commons, Free Software Foundation or Safe Creative.

Firstly you have to register your project, filling in the form you will access from the "Create Project" section. This is a detailed description of the project and aims, of yourself or the project promotors, the minimum and optimum sums of money required, as well as collaborations needed. Also you need to include work phases, tasks and time-frame, taking into account work related to the specific management and production of the collective returns and individual rewards you propose.

To help you in this phase, Goteo has an assistant to guide you through the whole process, explaining the importance of the decisions you need to take at each step and the type of information to provide.

Once you have chosen a project under campaign in Goteo, you have to decide on how much to contribute, according to your possibilities, interests, the kind of reward you would like to obtain, etc. The minimum contribution is 5 €.

While the other crowdfunding platforms only contemplate a single fund-raising campaign per project, in Goteo we have established two rounds of crowdfunding, of 40 days each (40+40). Thus, the contributions that fund a project can take place in any of the two rounds, throughout a sum total of 80 days.

  • First round: This is the critical crowdfunding round, when we raise funds on an "all or nothing" basis. Thus, it is crucial to achieve the budget defined as minimum by the project leaders in order to set the project in motion.. Is this minimum is not reached, the project won't obtain any of the committed funds. So, in this round, the money you commit will only be paid out from your bank account if the sum total obtained through all the contributions reaches the minimum budget by the end of the 40-day campaign.
  • 2nd round: If the minimum budget has been achieved throughout the first crowdfunding round, then the second round is launched, with the same duration - 40 days - linked to the optimum budget - which can allow the rest of project production and other tasks, related to sophistication or improvement. In this round, projects present their progress in real time, and all contributions by a co-financier are made effective, regardless of whether the optimum budget is completed or not.
Goteo was founded by Platoniq and is governed by the transparent and responsible fulfilment of its mission through the Goteo Foundation, a non-profit organisation which unites all the agents committed to the development of the project, and which is in charge of managing a public-private social investment fund of "feeder capital".

If the quantity of money raised in the first round does not reach the minimum established by the project promotor and you used credit card or PayPal as payment system, as the charge was made at the moment you commit funds to the project, your donation will be returned to your bank or PayPal account at no additional cost.

In case you marked the option "Keep my donation into my Virtual Purse", or used your Virtual Purse as payment system, your money will be kept in the platform at your disposal any time you want to support any other crowdfunding campaign through Goteo, with no need to introduce your credit card or PayPal data again.

The project itself will be archived, freeing up space and visibility for other projects on the platform.

Goteo has an important network of support, composed by diverse agents and geographically distributed, which has accompanied us since the very first steps of the project. Agents related to the commons, free software, cultural innovation or digital activism. But there's never enough of them! So, if you want to join us, get in touch with us.

The world of free knowledge is full of possibilities, but they're not always easy to find and deploy is one isn't used to working within the parameters of openness. Bearing this in mind, Goteo has an assistant who guides the full process of signing up of a project, which explains the importance of the decisions the project leader needs to take at each step, and what kind of information s/he needs to provide.

If this is not enough for you, let's talk. The mission of the Goteo Foundation is the diffusing, promotion and applied research around the commons, open source and free knowledge, in different social, cultural and economical realms. This is why we offer specialised guidance and advice to project leaders on how to configure or adapt their projects: kinds of licences, collective rewards, new products and derived services, etc. This guidance is produced by the Foundation and a community of experts and enthusiasts in specific subject areas.

You must provide a budget that is as detailed as possible. The more transparency, the more trust you will inspire in your potential co-financiers.

When elaborating the budget, we have the following recommendations:

  • Break-down diligently the fees (yours, and those of your collaborators), material costs, sub-contracts, etc. Be careful with budget planning, since the amount of money you ask for cannot be modified once you have started the crowdfunding campaign.
  • Take into account the costs derived from management and production of the collective and individual rewards (many crowdfunding projects get in trouble for not having foreseen this issue well enough).
  • Don't forget to consider the current commissions: 4% in terms of services provided by Goteo, and an average of 2% in terms of service charges, be that through bank transfer or Paypal.