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Old 01 April 2004, 12:34   #1
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Some changes to the forums

First of all, thank you to everyone for making the RIBnet forums such a great place. It is a constant source of wonder to me the way the group has grown, and it is geat to see more and more people getting together to make it more than just a virtual community.

In November we celebrated our 1000th registered member. Now just a few months later the numbers have increased by almost a third!

As the scale of the site increases, so do the costs. I also want to (at last!) rework the rest of the site, especially the directory section which is shamefully out of date, as well as upgrading the forum software to the latest version which has a load more features.

I don't want to have lots more advertising, but the site really needs to start to pay for itself now. So I am planning to bring in limited paid memberships to the forums.

Before there is a mutiny though(!), I'd like to make the following points clear:
  • This will not be compulsory, and will only affect the "Buy and sell" forums.
  • Everyone will be able to read these messages, but only paid members will be able to post.
  • There will be no other charge for using the "Buy and sell" forums.
  • Access to the rest of the forums will remain free.
The membership levels that I am provisionally suggesting are:

Silver member 30, valid for 6 months
Gold member 50, valid for 12 months
Platinum member 100, valid for 12 months
- for anyone who feels that they would like to contribute a bit more!
Trade member 100, valid for 12 months
- for anyone using the forums to benefit their business

Member titles will be displayed in profiles and on posts so everyone can see who's doing their bit!

Other possibilities (which I am less keen on) could include restricting the use of the PM system to paid members, and only displaying attachments (ie pictures) to paid members.

These are all open to discussion, and I would appreciate your thoughts (even if you hate the idea!)

Fire away!

John
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Old 01 April 2004, 12:57   #2
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For Christ's sake don't charge by the "post", or you'll bankrupt some members....*looking South*....
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Old 01 April 2004, 13:10   #3
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Seems a very good idea as the site is a great resource and it would be a shame to limit its potential because of funding. Only thing I would disagree on would be limiting attachments to members only as this will limit the picture content on the site. Also pictures are very handy for diagnosing problems, but this may not be possible for someone who only makes a few posts every now and then and doesn't wish to join up as a paid member.
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Old 01 April 2004, 13:11   #4
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KEEP IT FREE

please !please! please!- keep this site free for the occasional user like myself, i really enjoy surfing this site, and reading the threads, even on subjects that don't affect me. i have gleamed some very usefull info on subjects that i am interested in, and have passed on some of my limited knowledge to other users.
but the real attraction of this site is that it is informal and friendly, by all means charge a small fee for trade users, and/or the use of pics, but please keep "the guts " of the site free.

be carefull for what you wish for, as you may lose what you already have.
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Old 01 April 2004, 13:12   #5
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Perhaps you could have a sliding scale for "post charges" depending on their usefulness. MeMe and Manos would take a bit of a hit, but I'm sure we could all live with that!!!

You could also go for the double Whammy in Manos's case and charge for spelling mistakes!







Anyone know what the date is today?
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Old 01 April 2004, 13:16   #6
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Quote:
Only thing I would disagree on would be limiting attachments to members only as this will limit the picture content on the site.
These are the first free forums ive ever come across that allows you to attach pictures.
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Old 01 April 2004, 13:31   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dirk Diggler
Perhaps you could have a sliding scale for "post charges" depending on their usefulness. MeMe and Manos would take a bit of a hit, but I'm sure we could all live with that!!!
I'd have to widen the drive to fit the second Aston Martin in
Quote:
Anyone know what the date is today?
Damn! I've been too busy to think about that, but I reckon I could have got some serious mileage out of it! This isn't a wind up though . . .

John
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Old 01 April 2004, 13:32   #8
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Re: KEEP IT FREE

Quote:
Originally posted by seaskimmer
please !please! please!- keep this site free for the occasional user like myself
I hope I've made it clear that that is exactly what I am doing

John
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Old 01 April 2004, 14:33   #9
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I use another site like this frequently and it has just gone down the advertising route. The adverts don't ruin the site, they just take a bit of getting used to. I would like you to look into this way first...there are a number of busineses reccommended by RIBnet members and I dont see why they can't cough up some cash for you...many have year long subscriptions to various magazines and don't think anything of parting with a few quid as the payback is greater than the outlay. They could put special offers etc on site first for example, and some of the rib makers may see it worth their while along with marina/slip owners. So if you are out there benefitting from this forum, it would be good if you could approach JK to save him having to write to you. I think that pay sites soon become a cilque club that lose more than they gain in the long run.
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Old 01 April 2004, 14:51   #10
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charge to be a member

why don,t you make rib net a club and charge say 20 a year
membership. make it free to look at the site but you must be a registed member to post that way you can see whats on offer.
if you what to raise funds for rib net try mutual back scatching
a member say gets rib net car stickers/mugs/ printed for you at cost you sell them to us we all get a nice mugs to remind us of ribs

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