I (18 year old guy) am currently studying computer science in a combined study program (between the semesters I work at a company that in turn pays me salary and my college fees). I really like to help people out with writing programs for them especially if it helps me by offering a creative and "useful" way to get to know new frameworks like bootstrap or libraries etc (I am usually out of ideas for something one could program especially because I don't really use my own programs). So if I see someone mumbling about a program in a chat (twitch for example) I ask if I can help out.
Now it recently happened that the friend of a streamer I watch had to deal with an outdated version of a discord bot that will soon get deprecated for Windows while he is running a Windows Server so I offered help because I wanted to try a discord bot library out for a while. We came together and he explained to me what he would liked to have and I told him I would start working on it soon because it sounded like a neat thing to do (musicbot with webinterface and automatic announcement when a streamer goes live on twitch).
In a later conversation he asked what I wanted in return for the work I would do for him and I answered that I would leave that to him and I will gladly take what my work is worth to him in the expectation to get a fair return for the time I spend on his program.
While having another conversation about more features the bot should have he mentioned that I should give him my PayPal details because my work was worth 5€ for him definitely. Over the last few weeks I spent a good portion of my freetime working on this project and it is currently at the point where it meets his initial requirements and I would consider it done. However he wants more features (like an online control and permission system (including user-accounts)) that would take another 2-3 weeks to implement.
However after hearing what he thinks my work is worth to him I kind of lost motivation to continue working on it and spending my freetime on it because I could definitely do other things during it.
How do I communicate to him that what he thinks my work is worth and hence the "reward" for my work is not quite fair? I initially told him that it was his choice what he would reward me with but when saying that (naive as I am in my young years) I expected a fair reward that was more than 5€. I had two ideas:
- Telling him that I am done with the things he requested initially and would like to hand that project of to have more freetime to spend for myself. I would give him the working code (Node.js so it would be the source) so he could find someone else to extend it (I would document it so that it is easier to do so) and be out of the thing. (My thoughts: Kind of unfair to leave him hanging with a project that works but is missing features he wanted to have. On the other hand I already did a lot...)
- Confront him with the fact that I think the "reward" is rather unfair. If he consulted a company to write the bot for him he would have paid a big lot more than 5€... (My thought: I am bad at such things and I don't want to look like the "kid" that's out for money and breaks the previous statement that it would be his choice. On the other hand it is the most direct way of communicating that to him.
- We do not have a signed contract. The only thing is the discord chat history.
- The note that I would let him decide was after him asking for a permission/user-system and before him asking for web-controls. However neither of those was part of the initial program he asked for.
- After getting to the point where I was done implementing his initial program explanation I started to lose motivation which was amplified by him telling me what he thinks my work is worth to him so I would be happy with a solution that would end with me having not to deal with the code anymore.
- He always writes that he is super thankful (if that matters)