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.
For a start it is a good idea to subscribe to the [ffii:listinfo:news 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 [ffii:listinfo:bxl bxl mailing list], which is our general purpose public discussion list (its name is an accident); its traffic amounts to several emails per day.
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 [ffii:listinfo:media-parl 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
#pragma heading Junior Jobs
Often small contributions of skilled heroic volunteers will make a difference. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested to pick one of the tasks below, or you are interested to contribute with your unique set of skills.
Many of our supporters are very skilled in administration and programming. We need help in the administration of our debian server vic.ffii.org and its services. Please contact email@example.com, our administration working group, if you are interested to provide assistance.
Our classic FFII Patented Webshop ought be fully translated into other European languages. The webshop demonstrates the effect of trivial software patent grants for business freedom in Europe. Website and posters are currently available in German and English, and partially translated into other languages.
We made good experiences with the wiki service wikidot.com which is more flexible than our current moinmoin system. Now that wikidot is open source FFII would like to get its own Wikidot farm for rapid campaign sites. Required skills: Debian administration, coding skills.
Set up an Italian chapter of the FFII
Create an Italian chapter of the FFII.
Skills: Leadership, Community
Set up a Stopsoftwarepatents-US-petition
Stopsoftwarepatents.eu is a nice European petition effort and we would like to see the same organised for the US. It should be possible to make use of synergies and reuse parts of the django components engine. Also stopsoftwarepatents.org includes the attempt of a competing team to create a "worldwide" petition.
Skills: US citizenship, mastering of language, administrative skills.
Mailing list moderation
Moderating our hundreds of mailing lists can be cumbersome when you have 20 different lists to administrate in your spare time. We are looking for volunteers who are interested to share the load and take over moderation of a mailing list. Skills: Email. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org