Help build the Jack Of All Trades Universe

We featured a introduction video to JoatU a few months back and we’re happy to see that they’re doing their best to scale up this great project. Please watch the video, read through the materials below and support them in their current crowdfunding campaign.

Jack of All Trades Universe (a.k.a. JoatU) is a revolutionary, community-based, online economic system! Find out about classes, goods and services you can trade for, and organizations to lend a hand at – all in your neighborhood.

Never feel bored or poor again. JoatU transforms economic competition into cooperation. With JoatU, you can cash-in on your trades and talents with an alternative form of humanitarian currency.

Together, we have it all.


We want to change the world. Nothing else, nothing less. People have been isolated and individualized for far too long. The drive for community life is pulsing through our veins. Without it, we will never have self-esteem. Without it, we will never realize our full power and purpose.

Enter JoatU!

It’s time for an EASY WAY to meet all the people who want to live with autonomy and interdependence. It’s time to exchange our infinite amount of talent and resources to build and create a more vibrant, productive, and uplifting society on the local level. It’s time to personalize our transactions. JoatU is the opposite of faceless online shopping. It facilitates interaction-filled exchange with thousands of people following their passions! Anyone – with any income level – can participate.


JoatU’s was born on October 5th, 2012 when founder Jamie Klinger woke up completely filled with inspiration.  He logged onto Facebook and messaged about 100 friends asking one simple question:

What skills would you offer out to someone if you could put that time into a bank and use it to buy other services?

The variety of skills and offerings his friends were willing to exchange blew Jamie away.  There was a market!  He had too many friends with too many incredible skills and not enough full-time employment to go around.

From that day forward, he started building a platform to make these exchanges as natural and simple as possible. That platform is JoatU.

Front Page preview

JoatU front page

Your Support Matters!

JoatU believes strongly in a global open-source movement.  Working with communities across the world is how we’re going to build a collective global commons.  We want you to be involved in every step along the way!  JoatU began with out-of-pocket funding and gracious volunteer work. We’re confident that we can take it to the next level with your support.

We pride ourselves on complete financial transparency. We have done our best to build this program through volunteer work and barter alone. Unfortunately, doing so has made our progress too slow to take over the world. Know every dollar donated will be accounted for and we will spend our money as efficiently as possible.

Big Update!

Since launching this campaign, we have attracted a talented programmer, Alex Willemsma who began developing JoatU in Ruby for free as soon as we began sharing ideas.  He has over five years of experience and was one of the early developers of the website.  Our ideals are aligned. So much so that he has graciously offered to take on a more full-time position to help develop a first iteration of JoatU for close to minimum wage; much less than any other offer.

Thank you Alex!

Financial Breakdown

Stage 1: Very basic JoatU app.
* Login / Logout / Registration
* Profile pages that also list skills / offers
* The ability to edit profile pages
* The ability to edit skills / offers, add new offers, removing existing offers
* The ability to view a list of other users in my community
* The ability to view a list of offers in my community
* The ability to search for a specific offer in my community
* Automated test coverage of the above features, and automated systems to ensure that tests pass and code meets standards are in place.
Estimated time to complete: 1 month
Estimated cost to complete: $1,000


Stage 2: Hosting and Deployment
* A hosting service account has been acquired to host JoatU (most likely Amazon AWS).
* Scripts to manage web hosting instances have been written and tested.
* Scripts to deploy the latest JoatU code at any time have been written and tested.
* The “very basic JoatU app” has been deployed to a production environment as an “alpha” release, and is available to the wider world for the first time.
* The JoatU registration system contains features to limit initial registrations to specific users (either by “registration code” or another mechanism), creating a “closed alpha”.
Estimated time to complete: 1 month
Estimated cost to complete: $1,000 + hosting costs


Stage 3: Messaging and Contracts
* JoatU users can send each other messages within the app.
* All messages can be forwarded to users email address (configurable in preferences)
* Special “contract” messages may be created, which facilitate a trade of goods / services / skills between two users.
* Offers gain rating & reference features, where users who have transacted for an offer can rate it and / or leave a reference about it.
* Users gain reference features, where users who have transacted can leave personal references for each other.
Estimated time to complete: 2 months
Estimated cost to complete: $1,500


Stage 4: Community Offers
* JoatU users can propose community offers.
* Other JoatU users can approve / disapprove of proposed community offers.
* Algorithm to calculate Joat Unit value of community offer is written and implemented.
* Community offer rating, references, and confirmation flow is in place.
* Joat Unit transactions and balances are coded and in place (both to create / award Joat Units for community offers, and to facilitate their use in user to user transactions).
Estimated time to complete: 2 months +
Estimated cost to complete: $1,500 +

Stretch Goals

Any amount over top of the initial $5000 will go towards covering our initial costs, hiring more developers, designers, and help with project management and business development.  Those who have donated will be invited into a Loomio group to help decide how to best spend the money beyond $5000.

Possible developments we could implement include:

*Group offers: A group of individuals make a community offer.

*Decision-making for communities with the integration of Loomio

*Crowdfunding application for communities built right into the site so you and your neighborhood can start raising all the funds needed for your local neighborhood projects.

We will also make our way out into your communities and get as many local businesses involved in accepting JoatU as possible, taking the value of our community-created JoatU Unit to the next level, allowing you to buy more of your necessities through locally-owned businesses.

Once JoatU is properly built, we hope to be able to funraise internally using JoatU Units as payment for certain aspects of development.

JoatU profile page

International Crowdfunding Tour

In one of the very first informal JoatU exchanges, Jamie Klinger offered to help Johnny Coull crowdfund $5000 to launch his album which he successfully did.  Now, Johnny Coull is taking Jamie across Canada and the US to a) Promote his new album (available on Bandcamp) and b) Promote JoatU’s crowdfunding campaign!

From April 24th to June 24th, Jamie travelled across Canada and the US spreading the idea of JoatU and gethering market research on how different people perceived the idea.

Cities traveled to: Toronto, Guelph, Minneapolis, WInnipeg, Brandon, Regina, Calgary, Edmonton, Kamloops, Kelowna, Vancouver, Victoria, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose, Santa Cruz, Houston, New Orleans and Northampton before settling back in Montreal.

JoatU search results

How will the project sustain itself after the campaign?

JoatU is in the process of developing win-win economic partnerships with local co-operatives, maker-spaces, for-profit businesses, and organizations. JoatU will also generate income by supporting local advertisements (if our communities allow it), as well as generate a low-cost freemium model for supporting members (like you!). We will also seek grants and donations similar to non-profits.

 JoatU would like to give thanks to a major inspiration, the folks at Loomio who have helped inspire us tremendously!  Please support them too!

For more information, check out all the info on

Thank you. Don’t wait!  Donate today!

Please support JoatU’s campaign here


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