The LETSystem Design Manual
1.4 Definition of a LETSystem
A LETSystem, Local Exchange Trading System, is a self-regulating network which allows its users to issue and manage their own money supply within the boundaries of the network.
The LETSystem accounting service maintains a system of accounts for its users.
A LETSystem has the following essential characteristics:
1. A service in the community.
Administrative costs are recovered, in the internal currency, from each account according to the cost of the service. The system operates on a not- for-profit basis.
2. Consent is required at all times
There is never any obligation to trade.
It is the account-holders who have control over the movement of money out of their accounts. The administration can only act on the instructions of the account-holder who is making payment.
All accounts start at zero, no money is deposited or issued.
3. Key information is available to all account-holders.
Any account-holder may know the balance (the degree of commitment) and trading volume (the level of participation) of any other account on the system.
4. A convenient measure
The unit of account is a measure equivalent to the pound sterling.
5. Your money belongs to you
Your money is personal, in every way your own money. No interest is charged or paid on balances.
A personal money network that adopts all the above criteria and agreements is a LETSystem.
1) A LETSystem is based on the free association of individuals (the users) who take out accounts on the system. The LETSystem Registry provides a service which allows account-holders to exchange information to support trading, and maintains such accounts of that trading as users request.
The account-holders delegate the maintenance of these accounts to the Recording Co-ordinators. The account-holders also delegate responsibilities to Stewards as stated in this agreement.
2) Account-holders shall be willing to consider using their accounts in .......... (name of LETSystem) to trade with each other.
3) The Recording Co-ordinators will transfer money from one user's account to that of another only on the authority of the account-holder making payment.
4) The LETSystem Stewards may instruct the Recording Co-ordinators to decline to record an acknowledgement considered inappropriate.
5) The unit of exchange is a measure equivalent to the pound sterling.
6) An account-holder may know the balance and trading volume of any other account-holder.
7)a) Accountability for taxes incurred by users is the obligation of those involved in an exchange; the LETSystem Registry and its agents, including the Recording co-ordinators and Stewards, have no authority, nor liability, nor obligation to report to taxation authorities or to collect taxes on their behalf.
b) No warranty or undertaking as to value, condition, or quality of the items exchanged is expressed or implied by virtue of the introduction of users to each other.
c) Account-holders agree to the recording of any information that they supply and to the holding of all such information on computer. While all information, excepting balance and turnover of accounts, is considered confidential, neither the LETSystem Registry nor its agents can guarantee that confidentiality, or necessarily be held liable for any breach of it, once it has been legitimately disclosed.
8) Recording Co-ordinator(s) are authorised to levy charges on users' accounts in .............. (name of internal currency) at rates assessed by the Registry Steward(s) in liaison with the Recording Co-ordinator(s).
Written by Michael Linton of Landsman Community Services Ltd. and Angus Soutar of Robert Soutar Ltd.
Compiled 10-01-95 by Andy Blunt and Adrian Steele of LETSgo Manchester
- http://www.gmlets.u-net.com/design/ broken at present (nov. 2016), but history can be browsed at the Web Archive Project.
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