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19 February 2023

The few odd things found on Hacktoberfest 2022's presents.

Reinhart Previano Koentjoro's profile picture

Reinhart Previano Koentjoro (@reinhart)

Published on Logs of the SYSTEM #hacktoberfest #hacktoberfest-2022

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Alright, so, the Hacktoberfest 2022's presents are finally here!

The first thing I'm looking here is, well, for DigitalOcean's shark stickers. And it seems this is the first Hacktoberfest, over those consecutive years, who doesn't offer them. Quite disappointing.

I think it's also to note that some Indonesian devs here are complaining for higher import taxes. No, all of this increase isn't just because of the VAT rate rise from 10 to 11 percent. This "free" presents are apparently now worth Rp 122.650 (about US$8) of import taxes compared to Rp67.500 (about US$4.50 using 2022's average rate) for Hacktoberfest 2021.

Another devs on remote places in Indonesia (but still somewhere over the Java island) are reporting even higher import taxes, weighing almost three times over the last year for a whopping Rp 414.650 ($27.30) in import taxes. The dev in question decided to send an objection letter to the Indonesian Post Office and kindly ask them to return them back to Kotis Design way back to the U.S.

Of course, not everyone could understand the significance of these taxes. The minimum legal monthly salary in Jakarta itself is Rp 4.500.000 or just less than 30 dollars, while others get a lower wage rate down to just Rp 1.500.000, aka. less than 10 dollars. That $27.30 tax is roughly equal to a tenth of an average Jakarta tech worker's minimum salary, and that really mean much to us who are still struggling to find a place to stay while working there, and all those living costs.


This, of course, have sparked a new concern on whether we, on behalf of the @reinhart1010 team and many Indonesian tech communities, should still encourage Indonesian developers to contribute to Hacktoberfest 2023 and beyond. Yep, they got these "free" t-shirt and all those stickers, but the uncertainty of the import tax could discourage them to do so.

Or even better, fork the entire Hacktoberfest system and make it our own with free local-made t-shirts (which are commonly priced about Rp75.000 or about $5) and more bunch of stickers, which we can produce locally at a cheaper price.

Or even better, convince both DigitalOcean and Kotis Design to partner with some stickers and t-shirt factories here in Indonesia, which could also help them tackle the rising number of aspiring Hacktoberfest participants!

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