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Old 03-22-2017, 02:40 PM
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Re: WikiBeaks is go!

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Quote: Originally Posted by Kentuckienne View Post
Quote: Originally Posted by Oli View Post
I'll help however I can financially.



Edit: might be useful to mention that my job is commission based graphic design/art. I'd be more than willing to donate my time to logos/ any art needs you might have.


Consider yourself DRAFTED! Yes, we need a logo! I just put up a rudimentary blog on the website using a stock theme, but it would be great to have some parrot-related graphics. Anything you would like to do will be awesome and appreciated!


Alright! I'll come up with some drafts of logo ideas over the next few days, and you can just tell me what you like best and I'll render it digitally.
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  #12 (permalink)  
Old 03-22-2017, 02:41 PM
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Re: WikiBeaks is go!

Congratulations, and thank you for doing this. I'm impressed that you did the registering as a non-profit before setting up the website; most people who do stuff like this I think just set up websites and only worry about tax stuff if it gets big.

From the name, it sounds like the main part of the site is going to be a wiki on parrot care? Sounds like a good idea, especially if you establish standards for verifiability. There's a lot of websites out there on parrot care, but they mostly seem to fall into five categories, most of which are trying to sell something.
  1. Personal web pages of people who have parrots and are enthusiastic. They may have affiliate agreements in order to push certain products, but the biggest problem is just that individually, these people don't know all that much.
  2. For profit crowd-sourced content with one author, with much the same issues as the people in (1), only they're also trying to get page views which translate to revenue.
  3. People who write books about parrot behavior and want to sell them. They may also have affiliate agreements and push products.
  4. Non-profit educational organizations, such as the website on parrots run by Cornell. These tend to have broad information on a lot of parrots, but not much specific information on most species.
  5. Bird breeders and brokers. Theses tend to have the most detailed information, but often downplay the negatives. And of course most breeders are basically backyard hobbyists, who may know a bit more about birds than the average bird owner, but often less than they think.
If you do start a wiki, I'd be willing to help contribute some of my time (I'm afraid I cannot help financially at the moment); I was an early contributor to Wikipedia until I found that the increasingly bureaucratic culture made it difficult to deal with. (I joined as a teenager, and it's driven run by teenagers with a lot more time on their hands than non-retired adults tend to have.) I have a couple of suggestions for things other than a wiki you might want to consider, though you could also implement them on a wiki if you were interested. (MediaWiki is remarkably flexible and it would be easier to do the whole site on it from a technical standpoint, though not so much a design one.)
  1. A directory of useful articles on various topics, particularly those by people with experience in the field (avian vets on health and diet, breeders on diet and breeding).
  2. A directory of breeders, rescues, and sanctuaries with a proven track record.
  3. Classifieds for people looking to rehome or foster. (This last one seems like the least useful, since there's a lot of places to do that already, though we could potentially vet people who want to adopt, at least to some degree.)
I'm looking forward to seeing the actual site once you've figured out your hosting and possibly site design. (In your position, I would set up a private server, but that's expensive to set up, less reliable than cloud hosting, and requires you to live somewhere with decent internet speeds.) I don't know what you're thinking in those regards but unless you're technically skilled or know someone who is, my suggestion would be to just get an Amazon CloudFlare account throw up a MediaWiki site under Creative Commons 3.0. That would allow people take articles from Wikipedia and rewrite them to reflect the needs of caring for parrots as a starting point, and you could figure out what else you wanted to do in the context the wiki.
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  #13 (permalink)  
Old 03-22-2017, 02:41 PM
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Re: WikiBeaks is go!

Quote: Originally Posted by Kentuckienne View Post
The first look I had at the IRS website said that it costs $400 to file for tax-exempt status. Ouch! If we have to do it, I will pay it. Maybe there is another path that's not so expensive? $400 buys a lot of pellets for our local rescue, and if we aren't going to be raising money or spending money in the beginning maybe that can wait. This is about helping parrots, not about having an organization. Having an organization might be helpful for doing things involving money, but we can just start working on the website, coming up with ideas, without having that set up. Still going to do it, but we can still have fun in the meantime and get something done before it's all finalized legally.
You are 100% correct, the 501(c)(3) status has everything to do with 'Money,' which includes money donated and written against someone else's Tax Return! So, like organizations will want to see 501 document prior to providing 'stuff' or 'money' for the same reason.

At this point you can roll along as a DBA (Doing Business As) and target a State Business Shield first. Each State is different, in Michigan its $80.00. As with the IRS, it's about Money and Contracts, and other Legal Stuff!
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  #14 (permalink)  
Old 03-22-2017, 02:45 PM
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Re: WikiBeaks is go!

Good for you! I'll be happy to chip in too once you have the donation system set up.

About tax-deductible donations - not an expert but according to my understanding, for a lot of people looking for charities to donate to, the tax-deductible factor only really becomes important at the end of each calendar year. So formalizing the org status is probably okay to wait with.

https://www.irs.gov/uac/six-irs-tips...fts-to-charity
https://www.forbes.com/sites/kellyph.../#ff5967920602

Last edited by israel_gcc; 03-22-2017 at 02:49 PM.
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  #15 (permalink)  
Old 03-22-2017, 02:59 PM
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Re: WikiBeaks is go!

I have a tiny bit of experience setting up a non-profit corporation.
You can exist as a non-profit and collect donations without 501c3 status. Donors can still deduct their donations. Your secretary of state office should have the details.
Some donors may require you to be certified 501c3. That's where the $400 comes in. There is now a "short form" application for small organizations. In my experience, it is a fairly simple process. Since this is primarilly an online presence, I think the 501c3 designation is worth the cost. It will lend credibility to your organization, and many larger donors and services will likely require it. You can collect donations and go about your business until you have enough money to apply for 501c3.
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  #16 (permalink)  
Old 03-22-2017, 03:08 PM
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Re: WikiBeaks is go!

Oh, do you have hosting for the website yet? I pay for a yearly package with Dreamhost, and I don't come close to using the storage and bandwidth I'm entitled to. (I pay a certain amount every year, and I can host a number of domains with the plan. It would also work if you've already bought the domain name.)

Don't think it would be a problem to add your site to the package without any added cost to me. Let me know if you're interested and I'll sit down to try and figure out if that's the case, haha
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  #17 (permalink)  
Old 03-22-2017, 05:00 PM
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Re: WikiBeaks is go!

Quote: Originally Posted by gavagai View Post
Congratulations, and thank you for doing this. I'm impressed that you did the registering as a non-profit before setting up the website; most people who do stuff like this I think just set up websites and only worry about tax stuff if it gets big.

From the name, it sounds like the main part of the site is going to be a wiki on parrot care? Sounds like a good idea, especially if you establish standards for verifiability. There's a lot of websites out there on parrot care, but they mostly seem to fall into five categories, most of which are trying to sell something.
  1. Personal web pages of people who have parrots and are enthusiastic. They may have affiliate agreements in order to push certain products, but the biggest problem is just that individually, these people don't know all that much.
  2. For profit crowd-sourced content with one author, with much the same issues as the people in (1), only they're also trying to get page views which translate to revenue.
  3. People who write books about parrot behavior and want to sell them. They may also have affiliate agreements and push products.
  4. Non-profit educational organizations, such as the website on parrots run by Cornell. These tend to have broad information on a lot of parrots, but not much specific information on most species.
  5. Bird breeders and brokers. Theses tend to have the most detailed information, but often downplay the negatives. And of course most breeders are basically backyard hobbyists, who may know a bit more about birds than the average bird owner, but often less than they think.
If you do start a wiki, I'd be willing to help contribute some of my time (I'm afraid I cannot help financially at the moment); I was an early contributor to Wikipedia until I found that the increasingly bureaucratic culture made it difficult to deal with. (I joined as a teenager, and it's driven run by teenagers with a lot more time on their hands than non-retired adults tend to have.) I have a couple of suggestions for things other than a wiki you might want to consider, though you could also implement them on a wiki if you were interested. (MediaWiki is remarkably flexible and it would be easier to do the whole site on it from a technical standpoint, though not so much a design one.)
  1. A directory of useful articles on various topics, particularly those by people with experience in the field (avian vets on health and diet, breeders on diet and breeding).
  2. A directory of breeders, rescues, and sanctuaries with a proven track record.
  3. Classifieds for people looking to rehome or foster. (This last one seems like the least useful, since there's a lot of places to do that already, though we could potentially vet people who want to adopt, at least to some degree.)
I'm looking forward to seeing the actual site once you've figured out your hosting and possibly site design. (In your position, I would set up a private server, but that's expensive to set up, less reliable than cloud hosting, and requires you to live somewhere with decent internet speeds.) I don't know what you're thinking in those regards but unless you're technically skilled or know someone who is, my suggestion would be to just get an Amazon CloudFlare account throw up a MediaWiki site under Creative Commons 3.0. That would allow people take articles from Wikipedia and rewrite them to reflect the needs of caring for parrots as a starting point, and you could figure out what else you wanted to do in the context the wiki.
You have it right. I want something different than the usual offerings you mentioned. Don't have anything to sell, unless it will be parrot toys and tshirts for fundraising. Don't want to sell a book: all the information is free. Not pushing for pet parrots to be made illegal or to advertising breeding.

I have a personal vision, which is a nuanced take on the parrot-human relationship. It's a very colorful area without much black and white. I don't think all breeders are evil, but there are parrot mills and irresponsible/accidental breeders that result in death and suffering. I think parrots make great companions for the right people, and terrible pets for the wrong ones. I think if nobody owned parrots, many species would go extinct in the wild. On the other hand, the desire to own parrots - especially the status birds - contributes to their extinction in their native ranges, poaching, suffering and death. Some people already own parrots, and these parrots deserve good care. Some people think they want to own parrots, and these people need good information and warnings. There's no point in arguing about what's the ideal situation -- the ideal situation, I think, is parrots living in flocks in good habitats with others of their kind, protected and safe. But that's not reality. So how to make the best of the situation we do have?

My initial thought was to get some Google Ad-Words space, so that when people search for "buying a parrot" "best parrot" "best talking parrot" "sick parrot" instead of a link to a pet store or seller, they get a link to WikiBeaks. They find balanced, useful information. FAQs about parrot health, parrot ownership pros and cons, things to consider before getting a parrot, information about the ways parrots suffer from poor or ignorant treatment, info about adopting parrots and about parrot rescues, help with understanding a parrot's personality and needs, help with the basics of parrot health, finding a vet, what's an avian vet... really lots of what's already here, but arranged in an easy to search way with articles and references instead of links. Links to other sites, like Parrotforums or World Parrot Trust or Petfinder (just a few examples) with the idea that every link is curated and validated as having useful information. There are other organizations out there promoting parrot welfare, parrot conservation, and the like and we don't want to take from anybody else's customer base, fundraising base. The idea is to augment the information with a moderate, practical point of view.

From this point of view, I like the idea of having moderated content. Approved articles and links vs. anybody can edit. And really just a springboard, a place for people to land and then take off to get more detailed information and make connections with others. The things on your list are spot on. Links to respected, ethical breeders. Links to qualified rescue organizations. My personal vision isn't to sell anything or change the world - just to cut off the worst end of the parrot keeping spectrum.

That's my vision, and others here have equally beautiful visions. I don't envision being the WikiBeaks Czar! I can figure out how to get an organization set up, get tax-exempt status, coordinate the paperwork, but there are people here who know so much more than I do about actual parrots. Right now I have - I say I, because it's my name on the original docs, but I don't claim ownership - we have a domain name (wikibeaks.org) and accepted articles of incorporation in Indiana. The domain name points to a blog for now of the same name. There are two email addresses and I can create more. I agree, it's best to get a private server, I just wanted to get something up and running. I think I also have a hosting agreement that lets me set up multiple sites, but I don't like the provider on moral grounds and want to move to a different hosting platform. Suggestions welcome. Help with web design welcome, I would probably just pick a template to get something up. Suggestions for structure welcome. The WikiMedia suggestion is new to me and sounds great. Volunteers to take moderator roles for specific topics welcome. Not just welcome, needed. If it's just me, I'll buy or ask for free ad space and direct people here, and that was my original scope. I need a non-profit to apply for adwords grants. I can pay the registration fees or whatever it takes to be - what, certified? I'm not asking anyone here for money now or ever.

Sorry, long post, I want to be sure people know this is wide open. I figure I can help get the platform set up and push some of the cats in the same direction, and let the real experts deliver the expertise.
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  #18 (permalink)  
Old 03-22-2017, 05:42 PM
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Re: WikiBeaks is go!

When I googled Wikibeaks.org got nothing. Is there another name?
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Old 03-22-2017, 05:44 PM
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Re: WikiBeaks is go!

This is so exciting!
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  #20 (permalink)  
Old 03-22-2017, 05:58 PM
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Re: WikiBeaks is go!

Quote: Originally Posted by Lacewing View Post
When I googled Wikibeaks.org got nothing. Is there another name?


Gotta do www.wikibeaks.org in the address bar


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