New feature and stretch goal
I've got some news to share. Since I launched 2 weeks ago and quickly surpassed my funding goal, many people have asked if I would add stretch goals and new rewards to keep the campaign growing.
I knew I didn't want to do this carelessly. I could add mugs and t-shirts and try to double my funding, but that would just be a distraction from the most important aspects of this project.
To me, a stretch goal should be about enabling something new that wasn't possible before. I've been thinking a lot about this and I'm ready to announce a stretch goal for the last half of the campaign.
I'm working on a new feature for Micro.blog. I alluded to it at the end of the Kickstarter video: that we should draw a line between the social network and the content at your own site. Your web site is your own, where you have the freedom to write about whatever you want, but a service like Micro.blog has a responsibility to build a safe community for its users.
The line is crossed when someone you don't follow starts @-replying you. We've all seen the effects of crossing this line on Twitter. It can make for new friendships, but it can also bring out the worst in people and even lead to harassment.
This line will be my focus for a new feature to preemptively combat abuse. I call this feature Safe Replies.
The core of the Safe Replies feature will be automated in code, but that approach will only get me so far. To do this correctly I will need help from someone with a different kind of experience than just writing code. That brings me to the stretch goal.
If the Kickstarter reaches $80,000, I will use some of the money to make my very first part-time hire for Micro.blog: a community manager. The community manager will help set the tone for the service, work on documentation and best practices, and be responsible for curation when Safe Replies fails to automatically catch emerging problems.
I know that Micro.blog is ambitious. I know that I'm just one person. But I'm committed to this, to helping other people write more on the open web, and I'm very thankful for your support and the opportunity to build something special.
I've also added a new reward tier: $500, which includes the printed book and a lifetime paid account on Micro.blog. I realize this is outside most people's budget. But for those of you who can afford to give more to the project, or know those who can, it might make the difference on whether the stretch goal can be reached.
Share a link with your friends. If you have any feedback or questions, please let me know.