Hi! I have been an avid Mint user. Been using it for ages and am good friends with some of the influential community members :-)
Recently, I had to downgrade to a lesser laptop and I started noticing the freezes, the lag and general lack of responsiveness in Mint 17. I was dis-heartened. I started looking for an alternate. And I found you guys!! Elementary OS is awesome! It does look and feel special :-) Thanks for a wonderful OS.
I have a couple of observations though:
1. It was love at first site once I saw your Website and OS screenshots. The very first thing after downloading and installing, that I did was trying to find a way to join the community. Alas! It is dispersed :( I would really like an official web-based community moderated community. (Yes, I have gone through your reasons and also you reddit discussions).
2. I would really like a login feature for your website using OpenID. Now, the reason I need this is because of what happened to me.
I went to your site and downloaded your ISO. But, I contributed a meager amount, let's say X. When I checked in my bank, it was showing that 2X was deducted. Not that I have any complaints, but then if X would have been bigger, it would have hurt.
The other problem was that after I downloaded the ISO, someone deleted it by mistake and I had to re-download it. Now, the site didn't recognize that I had paid before. So, I had to pay $0 to download it and this made me feel like I am a miser :( I'm not.
The end note is the fact that I do like your OS and I DO AGREE to your views on FUNDING. KUDOS guys!