How to help

The FFII is a volunteer network, and as such we don't have any hierarchy or any strict formal assignment of tasks to people. Thus, the short answer to "how you can help" is "anyway you like". But we do need your help, and here are some ideas to get you started.

First, it is a good idea to subscribe to the news mailing list, which is low traffic (one message per week on the average) and will keep you updated on important news. If you want something more and are lost in our mailing lists description, the best starting point is the bxl mailing list, which is our general purpose public discussion list (its name is an accident); its traffic amounts to several emails per day.

Second, while it is nice to keep up with the work done centrally, a large amount of work is needed at the local level. Therefore, if you are from an EU country, you might want to see if you would like to join a mailing list that is specific to your country. If your country code is XX, the list you are interested in is at http://lists.ffii.org/mailman/listinfo/XX-parl; for example, the German one is at http://lists.ffii.org/mailman/listinfo/de-parl. However, several local communities don't use these lists provided at ffii.org and instead use other lists hosted elsewhere. You can try the XX-parl list, and if there is no traffic and people don't redirect you elsewhere, ask info at ffii dot org for more information.

One of the areas in which we need improvement and in which you could greatly help is our press relations. Many newspapers and other sources don't know our existence. One problem is that our press releases are written in English only, or in English and a couple more languages. Journalists frequently copy and paste material from the press releases into their articles; thus, non-English journalists, even if they can understand English, must be provided with a press release in their language. Unfortunately, translating a press release can be several hours of work; and in order to succeed, it must be done every time. If you give a journalist a press release today and fail to give them the next one because of not having enough time, it can have a large impact on the amount of attention you get from them. Another problem is that of finding more press channels. If you are interested in helping in all this, either locally or centrally, you probably want to subscribe to the media-parl mailing list to discuss. Bear in mind that we are also only beginning to focus on these problems, so you might not receive concrete answers to your questions. In fact, the more initiative you take, the better it will be.

If you are involved in software development or you are otherwise thankful for the Parliament's decision of 6 July, send thank-you postcards to one or two, or as many as you like, Members of the European Parliament (MEPs). Explain to them why you are grateful and what this decision means to you. You can send to the MEPs you voted, for example, or to MEPs from your area, or to MEPs you happen to know, or even pick up at random. You can find their postal addresses at the European Parliament's web site.

If you have any other suggestion or question, tells us.


Category: Help

How to help (last edited 2010-02-08 15:57:20 by aptiko)

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