"Obstacles to Digital DIY": some notes from Greece
Last February we of the DiDIY (Digital DIY) project had a fruitful "DiDIY mini-tour" in Thessaloniki. During those days, both online and in direct meetings, we collected several comments from Greek makers, students and others interested in DiDIY. Some of them are particularly useful as basis for our future work on DiDIY policy guidelines. Before that, we hope that notes like these serve as starting point for similar discussions, online or in presence, with makers, teachers and other DiDIY stakeholders in all EU countries: we need your comments and input to be sure that we are considering all sides of each issue when writing those guidelines!
This said, here is our synthesis of the most recurring comments/complaints we collected while asking "what are, in your opinion, the main obstacles to makers activities, and digital DIY in Greece" (*):
- certification: a prototype of an home automation device, whose components cost 30 Euros in total, could not be transformed into a commercial product because certification would have brought its cost to 200 Euros
- no middle ground between commercial and non-commercial: the above is the main, but not only, limitation to "semicommercial activities" like those that makerspace/fablab participants would like to engage in: but there is no concept of "semicommercial" in Greece, and registering as a company, getting insurance etc.. is very expensive
- insurance: also, it is not possible to get insurance besides fire and theft for "makerspaces" owned or rented by a private individual
Image source: collage from home page of Tech Ministry, Thessaloniki
(*) on the same topic: Obstacles to Digital DIY in Veneto