As for the modest annual fee, I dunno about that. I understand Aaron's resistance to fee-paying of any kind. However, it may be a necessary evil. However, I don't really care for the annual fee, though. I could deal with a cheap, one-time fee fairly well. Something like this:
LHM wrote:This should work.
All accounts established prior to July 25, 2010 will expire in 30 days.
To maintain your existing a account a one time membership fee of $35.00 is required prior to the expiration date.
Those who made donations prior to 25 July 2010 will be credited the appropriate amount towards their membership fee.
However, I probably wouldn't go with a fee as steep as $35. Even something like $5 would get a total of $15,000 for the SS project, which would be payable by most people with ease. The reason is that people who have nosy parents, siblings, roommates, etc. and use this service in conjunction with Google Voice may not have $35+ sitting in a PayPal account.
As for the sponsorship service, perhaps tap the shoulders of various VSPs, Google Voice-like services, etc., and see if they'd be interested in sponsoring SS.