What does it mean to be a "member" of Infinite Love?

I write in various contexts about this idea of being a “member” of Infinite Love, but what exactly does that mean? To clarify things a bit, I want to shed some light on how in my mind I view the different types of contributors. To be clear, this isn’t about trying to establish any kind of hierarchy, but rather it’s about defining the different types of ways one can be involved with Infinite Love, and giving people a way to differentiate between each other as more and more people become involved. Anyone can come on here and read enough posts and earn Trust Level 2 and use the “Member” title, but that doesn’t mean they speak with any authority about Infinite Love, whereas you can reasonably assume someone speaks with authority regarding Infinite Love if they are a Staff member. So, here’s how I’m envisioning things for now:

Some people may believe in the mission of Infinite Love, but lack the time or resources to contribute significantly for whatever reason. To me, anyone who believes in our ideas is part of Infinite Love, and we can call people who fall into this category “Members”. Note that the Member title is available to anyone on this forum who reaches Trust Level 2 (which you get having visited for more than 15 days and having read some reasonable amount of posts), but that’s just a Discourse thing; I personally consider anyone a member regardless of whether they have the title (the title just shows a bit more dedication/involvement). The Core Member title is awarded to people who reach Trust Level 3, and in general if you see anyone with this title you can be more reasonably assured as a newcomer that they are dedicated to the mission of Infinite Love and can be trusted in what they tell you.

There are people who are not only members and believe in the mission of Infinite Love, but also contribute a significant amount of their time towards helping with our goals, whether that’s in R&D, writing, outreach, or any of a number of ways one can help the organization. There doesn’t have to be an exact line drawn here, but in passing I’d say anyone who contributes more than approximately 7 hours a week (on average) of their time is a volunteer. Volunteers are like Moderators when it comes to this board and we’ll assign this title/role to board members on a case by case basis to those who are interested (just let an existing staff member know).

These are members who are unable to devote much of their time to the organization, but instead contribute via assets or property (usually money). Once our donations page is setup, we’ll have a way to track donations on a per-user basis. We may add different supporter ‘tiers’ at some point, because someone who donates $10,000 should probably be recognized a bit more than someone who donates $1, but that’ll be figured out later as we get closer to setting it all up.

Staff members are members who are formally a part of the Infinite Love organization, and indeed I would hope that most people who contribute in some way ultimately desire to become staff members. In a way it is the ultimate level of dedication to the organization, and a willingness to be 100% open and honest with us as a contributor because while everyone else involved here can be anonymous if they desire (we have no real way of knowing in most cases who people are), in applying as a staff member you share your real identity which we will verify, and we can really get to know you as a person through a series of interviews. These are people who consider Infinite Love effectively a full-time job and put in many hours each week to support our goals. To become a staff member, you must already be someone who is at least a Volunteer-level member and then you formally apply to the organization.

For now, on these forums any staff member will have the Staff title, though we will likely add separate staff titles in time indicating what kind of staff members people are to make it clear to other users what their specific job title is.