how comradery works


Successful co-ops work in a variety of ways; some are more centralized and others like us are more focused on distributed democracy. Comradery’s structure is inspired by the democratic organization of rank-and-file led unions. Our goal is to be a resource and leadership opportunity to any creators, activists, and cooperative organizations who share our mission.

Comradery rejects the “hypergrowth” paradigm of the tech industry. Instead, we focus on sustainable growth that is guided by our community principles. Below are details on how our organization works. These details explore how you can be a part of Comradery as a creator, a voting member-owner, and as a volunteer moderator or committee member.


On This Page

The Supporter Experience
The Application Process
Setting Up Your Creator Account
Your Projects
What You Offer Supporters
Getting Paid
The Member-Owner Experience
The Moderation and Committee Experience
Founding Members

The Supporter Experience

Anyone can be a supporter to any project on comradery. It’s fast and easy to make an account and supporters can pledge monthly subscriptions of amounts more than $1. Supporters are an important part of Comradery, but supporters are not member-owners of the co-op and cannot vote until they apply to become Creator members.


The Application Process

Comradery has a basic application and approval process that also acts as your orientation. The goal is not to be exclusive or judge the credentials of applicants, it is to make sure your goals are right for the platform, and to make sure you get the resources you need to get started. It’s a little different than you might be used to, but it’s quick and useful.

There are three phases that each serve an important purpose and help you better understand the community and how you can contribute, and how the platform can work for you:

Step 1 - Create a Supporter account

Create a Supporter account and submit an application to become a Creator. This lets us know your basic info, what your goals for the platform are, and a few accessibility questions that help us connect you with another member for the next step. Volunteer Moderators will verify your contact information and confirm that your organization and goals fit with our platform rules.

Step 2 - The One-on-One

This is the best part! You as an applicant will have a 15-minute conversation called a ‘One-on-One’ with a trained Creator who already knows the ropes. This usually means a voice call over Discord, though other accessible options are available

The Creator can answer your questions, suggest ideas, and help guide you into the voting and community processes that will help you be a part of the community. The purpose of this is not to test you, but to introduce you into the community and guide you.

Step 3 - Become a Creator

After the One-on-One, a Moderator will finish verifying everything is cool and upgrade your account to Creator status, bring you into the Discord Creator chat server, and answer any final questions you have as you get your account set up for first-time use. Once that’s done, you’re good to go!


Setting Up Your Creator Account

Creators build their project pages, write posts, create tiers, and communicate directly with supporters all on Comradery. For payments, you will create an account through Stripe to securely connect your bank details and cash out your earnings.

Sign up for an invite

Your Projects

On Comradery, Supporters pledge money and see posts on creator-run pages we call ‘Projects’. Creators can work on many projects, and many Creators can work together on one project, and any combination of those.

At launch, Comradery will allow you to create a dedicated project page with a domain extension (ex: comradery.co/yourproject), which you can share with your followers and gain supporters.

One creator can run a project independently

One creator can join and manage multiple projects

Multiple creators can manage the same project


What You Offer Supporters

As a Creator, you can create paid tiers for supporters so they can only see certain content if they pledge at a specific level. Your Supporters are primarily here to support you and your work. If your work takes place outside of Comradery, great!

There is no obligation to offer rewards to supporters or make your page in any way transactional. If you want to offer perks and bonuses to your supporters to thank them for subscribing, that’s ok too! Our goal at Comradery is to support all accounts, whether they are large or small, or if they offer perks or are donation-based.


Getting Paid

Supporters complete payment on Comradery, and your payment details, bank information, and bank transfers are handled through Stripe.

You create a merchant account on Stripe’s website to handle your financial details and transfer funds to your bank. Supporters will have their accounts charged on the 1st of each month for all of their subscriptions. Minimum subscriptions are $1/month, and new supporters are offered pro-rated subscriptions where they will have a reduced rate for their second month if they didn’t subscribe on the first of the month.

Learn more about payments and Stripe

The Member-Owner Experience

As a Creator, you will be a voting member and co-owner of Comradery. This is the most important and exciting part of the platform! As a co-op, we are drafting an official charter that will outline all the specifics on how the co-op works. We will be working with Creators to democratically determine the details of the charter, but, for now, here are some broad strokes on what participation in the co-op looks like.

What you vote on

Members vote on proposals, amendments, and elections that affect everything from site roadmap to day-to-day operations. For example: Members may decide that Comradery should offer a new feature, like file hosting. The Tech and Design Committee might advise that this will require an increase in operation funds. Members could propose a motion to increase operation funds by changing the amount of dues or using surplus, and the general membership would decide if the feature is worth the change, discuss it, and vote on the proposal over a window of time.

Workers are the best people to decide what features and operations the site should perform, so Creators propose and vote on how Comradery will work. In the above example, the Tech and Design Committee would be responsible for implementing the feature change and would advise and help pass such a change, so expertise is always heavily considered along with popular demand.

Meetings

General and Committee meetings are open to all member-owners (meaning Creators) and are held over voice chat in the Comradery Discord server. Day-to-day votes are also held in Discord, major votes are held over Google Forms over a longer timespan to allow all members to participate. The meetings are structured using Rusty’s Rules of Order, a simplified parliamentary procedure with a focus on making sure every member’s ideas are heard and listened to. The Good and Welfare Committee is responsible for ensuring members adhere to good conduct during meetings and that they are held equitably.


The Moderation and Committee Experience

Committees are made up of volunteer members to help with specific areas of focus. Anyone can volunteer to be on a committee, and the committee chair is elected to help with facilitation and leadership of tasks. Committees can have as few as two Members, and joining one or more is highly encouraged. It is important to actively give everyone leadership practice so members can take on more leadership roles autonomously and proactively.

Committees

At launch, there are five committees at Comradery:

The Good and Welfare Committee - this committee is in charge of developing the code and conduct and to promote inclusion and a positive environment.

The Steering Committee - this committee helps develop a future vision for Comradery by planning the roadmap and making proposals for community goals.

The Outreach Committee - this committee handles press interaction, messaging for new members, and developing the wording, copy and documentation on Comradery

The Tech and Design Committee - this committee is responsible for developing, implementing and deploying all the technology for the site

The Treasury Committee - this committee handles finances, addresses any issues with site funding and longevity, and works with tax professionals for managing the taxes for the site

Moderators

Moderation is an important part of helping new users with the application process. Moderators will also help in fielding questions and complaints to be sure that all Creators and Supporters are following the code of conduct. Moderation is a volunteer position, but it’s one of our funding goals to finance a stipend for the work moderators do.


Founding Members

We’re a group of activists and workers spread out all over the USA. The founding member team’s goal is to lend our skills to jump-start Comradery as an organization and hand off duties to new members as we grow and improve.

Cade Underwood

Cade is an organizer and soon-to-be movement lawyer in Philadelphia. Cade researches housing policy, organizes with service workers in Philly, and is developing the legal and financial structures of Comradery.
Majed Elass

Majed is a UX/UI Designer & Developer in the Northern Virginia area and co-founder of Pixel Commerce LLC, a worker co-op that builds web applications. Majed is building the technology that Comradery runs on.
Ty Underwood

Ty is a labor organizer, designer, and professor of design in Seattle. They are working to develop the design and organization structure of Comradery.
John Dorsey

John is a writer, performer and activist currently located in Atlanta Georgia. They are also a co-owner of Pixel Commerce LLC, a digital design worker co-op. John is assisting in the language and copy of Comradery.