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582295b7Drew DeVault Update billing FAQ 13 days ago

#title: Billing FAQ

Sourcehut is a business, but it's also an open source project, made by people, and made for people. The maintainer is Drew DeVault, and you can reach him for any reason via sir@cmpwn.com. If you have any questions or concerns about billing on sourcehut, get in touch.

#Who has to pay for an account?

You do not have to have a paid account to contribute to a project hosted on sourcehut. You can participate in tickets and discussions, send patches, and so on, without paying for your account. You can also do many of these things without signing up for an account at all; many services provide links to participate via email throughout the logged-out interface.

Maintainers who wish to host their own projects on sourcehut are expected to pay for their account. To create repositories, mailing lists, trackers, or submit build jobs, you will need to pay for your account.

Notice: sourcehut is currently considered at an alpha stage of development, and the quality of the service may reflect that. However, the service is reliable, stable, secure, and mostly complete at this stage of development. To learn exactly what the alpha entails, consult this document. During the alpha, payment is encouraged, but optional, for most features.

#I'm not sure I can afford it.

SourceHut does not price any users out of the service.

If the minimum fees are too high for your financial needs, then you can simply send us an email explaining your situation, and you will be issued free service. sr.ht users from many walks of life have been granted free service: students, users with problems using their currency of choice, people between jobs, and so on.

Users can also earn free service credits by contributing to sr.ht. SourceHut is a free and open source project itself, and each non-trivial patch you land in sr.ht earns you one month of free service. Email us to redeem your free service credits.

Read more about contributing to sr.ht here.

#What are the differences between each plan?

There is no difference between any of the plans: they all have access to the same level of service, and the same service limits. You should choose whichever plan best represents your financial ability and your level of investment in sr.ht. It's an honor system: pay what you think the service is worth to you.

#Why should I pay when GitHub, GitLab, etc, are free?

Hosting these services is not free, or even cheap. The money has to come from somewhere.

Most other companies are financially supported by venture capital, in the form of large investments from a small number of people. If you use their services for free, or even if you pay the modest fees for their paid plans, they are not incentivized to serve your needs first. They are beholden to their investors, and at their behest, they may implement changes you don't like: invasive tracking, selling your data, and so on.

SourceHut has not accepted, and will never accept, any outside investments. Our sole source of revenue is from sr.ht users making their account payments. This incentivizes us to only consider your needs, and not to use you as a resource to be exploited. The financial relationship is much more responsible for both parties.

Unlike GitHub and GitLab, your sr.ht subscription fee stays in open-source. sr.ht is 100% free software, mostly licensed under the GNU Affero General Public license (aka AGPL 3.0). We incorporate changes from the community and work together to build the best service possible. Your payment provides for the cost of operations, keeping someone online to maintain the site, developing new features, and providing reliable service. We promise to only invest our profits in free software or free culture efforts, and in fact we already sponsor many such projects.

#Can I cancel or change my plan?

Yes, you can cancel or modify your plan at any time. Visit the billing page to make changes. You will not be charged until the service period you've already paid for expires.

#What will happen when I stop paying?

During the alpha, there are no consequences for non-payment.

After the alpha:

Your data will not disappear overnight.

The delinquency process is as follows:

  • An email reminder will be sent to inform you that your account is past due
  • After two weeks, your resources may become read only (e.g. you can git clone but not git push).
  • After eight weeks, your case will be manually reviewed. We may choose to provide you with a complete export of your data and close your account. Note that this data export can be re-imported into sr.ht again should you choose to register for another account, or can be taken to a third-party instance, with little to no information loss.

#Will pricing change after the alpha?

Yes. The exact numbers have not been decided upon. There will be a generous period of consultation with the community and advance warning before any pricing changes take effect.

#I represent an organization and want to pay as a group.

The software implementation for user groups or organizations is prioritized for the beta. In the meanwhile, utilize any workaround you wish: nominate one of your members to host your resources on their account, or set up a dedicated psuedo-account for the organization, or any other approach that suits your needs. We will help you migrate to user groups once the feature is available. Shoot us an email to let us know about your workaround and we'll make a note on your account.

Billing considerations for organizations will be available when the beta begins, but we don't know what they'll look like yet. The final discussion is deferred pending the final software design.

#Can I get an invoice?

You can download invoices from the billing page.

#Can I deploy sr.ht on my own infrastructure instead of paying for an account?

Yes. Here are the instructions.

#Do you offer paid support plans?

No, not at the moment.