Frequently Asked Questions

My account is empty. Where's the money?

We use our own time-credit called PIF, which stands for Pay-It-Forward. PIF is an hour-for-hour trading system. After your service is reviewed, PIFs are added to your account. To see details, visit our information pages about the PIF and about Credit for Joining.

Is this supposed to replace money?

No. Our Global Timebank does not use money, we only trade time, but we only provide services, so if you need money for things like food then you will need more than this! It's possible to have local PIF marketplaces that trade goods and services and thus possible for members of those systems to replace money using this same strategy of value-tracking. Timebank members can earn credit supporting the launch and management of local PIF marketplaces. However, all our pay-forward marketplaces are designed to work alongside existing marketplaces, so it is possible but not necessary for members to replace money in their local PIF systems.

How can I list my services or find services I need?

When you feel ready to have your service(s) screened, send an email to administration to request a peer-review, which is another member screening what you offer to be sure it is legitimate. When the review is complete, then you become a Reviewed Member and are awarded time-credit. A space then appears in your profile for listing and describing what you offer, and the feature permitting you to list and ask for services in your marketplace becomes visible.

What if I don't have a service to offer?

Reviewed members also have the option of listing "community service" on their profile, which is the default setting if no other service is entered. Community service includes recruiting and helping new members, reviewing services and participating in community projects. Peer-review for offering community service is simpler than screening specialty services, but the initial time-credit is smaller.

What if I want to offer a service or ask for one that doesn't fit the categories?

No problem. We'll add a new category or sub category to the index.

Must I provide service on demand?

No one is required to provide a service when requested. It's your decision.

How do I know that the services listed are legitimate?

No one can list any service until it has been peer-reviewed to ensure the service is legitimate.

Aren't some skills more valuable than others? How can we trade hours equally?

This is something about which many persons have different opinions. In practice, a member chooses to provide a skill voluntarily - paying it forward - and receives credit for their time only. The recipient then pays the debt forward as their time, etc. Members also have the option of donating their PIF credit to the community account, and this prevents the debt from ever circling around to be paid back, and thus it's paid-forward forever.

Please email your questions to the administration.