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How to get paid while helping other people

Christina is her real first name. The bulk of the solutions you'll find in the Shopify community forums are from her. She used to provide support more or less on a daily basis for many years. She doesn't hold a Computer Science degree, but boy is she a shrewd programmer nevertheless. Christina is brilliant, self-taught, wise and way too generous.

Shopify is not an open-source project. Yet, some clients who use the platform do help each other out in the support forums. Christina is a client who pays her Shopify bills like the rest of the 'community', yet she provided more help than everyone else combined ever did. She recently left the forums, after many years of participation. She left not because she got tired of providing support for free. She left because of a lack of reciprocity in her 'relationship' with the Shopify team, the company Jaded Pixel: most of her feature requests received no attention, were not even acknowledged with a 'we do not intend to implement this in the near or far future'. They were blatantly ignored. Christina had been appointed 'Shopify adviser' by the same people who own and run Shopify. The Shopify team had picked a few very active forums posters to become advisers after a pricing overhaul that pissed the entire Shopify 'community' off. Christina's requests were always reasonable, often trivial, and would enable hacked-in mucho importante features, like multi-language support.

Most people who visited the forums took her for granted. Even web developers who get paid to work with Shopify for client x and y provided no tangible reward, except for a 'Thank you so much, Christina, you rock'. I know... she was not helping to get something in return, but it just didn't seem right to me. Perhaps the Shopify team should have hosted her store for free (and they did not), but clearly that alone wouldn't have been sufficient, and let me remind you: Shopify is not an open-source community like Drupal, where everybody must scratch their own itch, and provide help if they want to get help (if they can). Christina was unofficially working for a company (Shopify), filling a gap (a void!), not getting paid for that diligent work, and all that for what? Because 'we' have to? Because we're women? Because we're wired that way? Because it's in our genes? Christina told me 'because it's fun too, solving these hard puzzles...' Ok, ok... I am being sexist. I am a sexist. Some men are like that too, that is, some men are very generous too, I know, but never to such extremes.

How to get paid while helping other people

It seems like TipJoy does 'work'. A little bit. Someone doesn't need to place a Tipjoy button on his site to get tipped. You can go to Tipjoy.com and tip someone, anyone, using his or her e-mail address — or the URL of the website page you want to 'reward' with 10 (or more) cents. I have accumulated 15 dollars so far with TipJoy, 5 dollars I can donate to charity or use to buy an Amazon gift certificate right now. I created and maintain the tipJoy module for Drupal so you can get tips for your own Drupal site too. The module has a release for both Drupal 5 and 6. The link I provided here is to the module's project page on Drupal.org.

You can go ahead now and tip Christina, if you have received help from her in the Shopify forums, or just read something useful she posted over there that made a difference for you, you can do so by providing the URL of her store at the top of the Tipjoy.com home page.

By the way I got paid 150 dollars to write the TipJoy Drupal module, by a client who needed it. So that you know, that clearly ain't enough money. It's better than nothing, but it clearly ain't enough.

A lot of people are allowed to contribute to Drupal — the project, the 'contributions', and its community — on their employer's time. Kuddos to the companies, like Lullabot and Sony, that permit this, even encourage it. For the freelancers out there though, it becomes a matter of finding a juste milieu, that will be comfortable for you and not make you feel bitter about open-source. So that you never feel like like saying these words from Christina: It seems I have let things become far more non-reciprocal than my comfort level tolerates. Crabbiness lurks.

Last edited by Caroline Schnapp about 4 years ago.

Comments

nice read.

very nicely written.

Most people who visited the

Most people who visited the forums took e-papierosy her for granted. Even web developers who get paid to work with Shopify for client x and y provided no tangible reward, except for e-papierosy a 'Thank you so much, Christina, you rock'. I know... she was not helping to get something in return, but it just didn't seem right to me. Perhaps the Shopify team should have hosted her store for free (and they did not), but clearly that alone wouldn't have been sufficient,

A lot of web based

A lot of web based businesses leverage users as MVPs/brand ambassadors, for free. Skype and Zoho are good examples. Don't know much about Shopify though, its interesting to note that Lullabot is using it ... http://drupal.org/node/276923#comment-906865.

Interesting Point

Well written, although it would be nice to hear if you have any other (larger/long term) solutions to this problem.

None at the moment

Thanks for your feedback.

how does tipjoy works

Nice way to get something for your precious help. Can you say how does tipjoy work. when i opened the website it just asked me to enter website and email-id.

good seo for casino game

I have found the gradient tool but the cross does not look the same as your doing.

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