Charter membership?

Started by Tom, August 02, 2003, 08:59:37 PM

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QuoteUsers of SMF can optionally become a "Charter Member". Charter Members have access to a member's only area of the support forums, optional installation service, upgrade services, advanced betas before anyone else gets them, and other support services. A Charter Membership costs only $49.95 per year and includes the following:


I don't like the sound of this. Sure it starts out as just pay that and you get a few things, but soon they start moving features from the normal users and giving the to the "charter" members. Before you know it they are charging us to use the forums.   :o

I've seen things like this happen before. I don't like it one bit.

Why not just ask kindly for a donation? I'm sure people will be more than willing to donate.


People really don't donate, there has been a page on the old site since the beginning.  The idea of charter members is just to offer stuff we normally would offer to no one to them.
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I'm sure it will always be free, in fact I know it will always be free.

People just dont bother to donate and unfortunatly banner ads these days tend to bring in little revenue and will nowhere near cover the cost of the server.

Ultimatly it's a users choice, the charter system will more than likely be a godsend to many people who want to run a "proper" forum, but dont have the technical capabilites to set it up propley for themselves, and if it helps to cover the costs of the server then :). The only thing release wise that I can see charter members getting that none charter members wont get is early betas.

Will leave it to the project leaders to go into more detail, but rest assured that it will remain free :).
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if you read our chat session log here:
you'll see that Jeff stresses a few times that the forum will be FREE and will remain FREE

btw, how many people actually donates?


Jeff Lewis

Quote from: Spaceman-Spiff on August 02, 2003, 09:06:20 PM
btw, how many people actually donates?

Maybe 10 people all of he last year, it just doesn't work. And same with banner ads, we were getting like XX-XX clicks on our Google ads with YY-YY impressions a day.

We're expected to release some impressive software, now we can actually pay the bills and award those who deserve it.

It will always be free. Some people will just enjoy supporting the project and getting advanced betas.
Co-Founder of SMF


Not just advanced betas, but also specialized help, one on one work, private forum access for quicker response times (The Support Specialists Team will still answer questions in the main support forums, however, we'll also focus more on a one on one situation for tech issues for charter members (I believe)).
Doug Hazard
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From my standpoint, my decision to become a charter member was much like donating. Yes, I will love getting the beta's and playing with them, but I really don't need them. Same for the support. I do have questions, but generally I can figure out answers myself or there have always been people willing to help me out. I never donated to YaBBSE, though I should have. This is my small thank you to a group of people that have released a piece of software that rivals (and in my opinion, surpasses) any pay forum software (that usually costs more than a charter membership)

I guess this is all a personal preference thing. Some people will absolutely LOVE the one on one support (which I'll probably find nice for a question or two, I'm sure) or the installation, ect. And then there are some people who will love having the beta's. And some people who want to say thank you by supporting the server/efforts. I'm a mix of all three. As individuals, anyone can choose whether or not they value these things. If not, don't charter. You still get the opprotunity to use this great software, with all of its features and you still get support. No one is going to think less of you if you choose not to donate, so what's the problem?

By the way, I'm not sure why this has become such an issue with people. It's still free software, and the devs have said it will always be free. It's still fully featured without paying. The only thing you have to pay for is advanced betas (something the previous software never gave out) and very personal, focused, and quick support (which, judging by the yabbse community, you'll likely get anyhow from the users).

Bottom line: personal choice. I want the beta's and I want to say thanks by lessening the server bill, and god willing, buying [Unknown] a cheeseburger.  * Other people will have different reasons for it and others will have reasons for not doing it.

*Substitute cheeseburger for favorite food. :D

Joshua "Methonis" Frazer
Support Specialist
The Simple Machines Team


Ok, I completly understand now.

I tend to get worked up about things sometimes.  ;)

My apologies.

Thanks agian.  ;D


Well, I for one am all for the membership.  Hell, when I think of how many installs and how much support I've had from members it's amazing.  In the past I've "donated" to wish lists and things on an individual basis when I've sought help, and this just goes to support all of us now and not just one person.  I will continue to use wish lists when individuals go above and beyond to help me solve something if needed, but to pay only 50/yr (or whatever is was) to get everything I do from this software is absolutely amazing.  

btw, i just signed up myself :)



I personally think its a great idea, mainly becuase there is now the availiblity of "proper" paid support to those who really need it and are willing to pay for it.


There will also be one time priority support if you do not wish to purchase a full charter membership.
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Alexandre P.

I'm totally for the Charter membership.  Like David mentionned, people don't donate.  Why? I suppose it is because the doner receive anything (witch is false: he gets a cool forum :) ).  Paying for getting faster help, betas, etc., is interesting: not only it helps SMF community, but also the charter member gets special things.

I am not a charter member: since I'm still a minor, I don't have a job, I don't have a credit card or checks, and for me 50$ (by the way, is it $USD or $CAD ?) is big...  But I agree with the principle of a Charter membership ;D
Aucun support par M.P., courriel ou messagerie instantanée / No support by P.M., email or I.M.

Joshua Dickerson

USD.. everything is USD ;D (just said that to tick off the CA/EUR people)
Come work with me at Promenade Group

Need help? See the wiki. Want to help SMF? See the wiki!

Did you know you can help develop SMF? See us on Github.

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Quote from: groundup on August 04, 2003, 03:53:46 AM(just said that to tick off the CA/EUR people)

Why would you want to do that? Isn't Unknown from California?

(Yes, I know you meant Canada. ;))


Well.. I'm all for the Californian Dollars movement, but no one seems to think of it as a currency... *looks at his self-printed money...*  Oh well, guess I'll never be rich.


Joshua Dickerson

LOL, Unknown, you spend too much time with your computer. Your printer cannot print on denim (what USD is printed on) :P
Come work with me at Promenade Group

Need help? See the wiki. Want to help SMF? See the wiki!

Did you know you can help develop SMF? See us on Github.

How have you bettered the world today?


Quote from: groundup on August 04, 2003, 05:29:43 AM
LOL, Unknown, you spend too much time with your computer. Your printer cannot print on denim (what USD is printed on) :P

Waht are you talking about, I thought it was like vinyl or something.  I'm almost dead certain it's not jeans :P :P.



best way forward IMHO

happy to say thanks for all the support before in SE and all that I hope (not to have to ask for) to come



Quote from: groundup on August 04, 2003, 03:53:46 AM
USD.. everything is USD ;D (just said that to tick off the CA/EUR people)
With that said, PayPal will do currency conversion for you so you can send your local type or money.
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