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Poll
Question: Should the LBF move to a subscription based model?  (Voting closed: November 07, 2012, 10:48:14 AM)
Yes - 33 (78.6%)
No - 6 (14.3%)
Undecided - 3 (7.1%)
Total Voters: 39

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Author Topic: The Future of the Beta Forum  (Read 4738 times)
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Admin
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« on: October 08, 2012, 10:48:14 AM »

After the recent discussion around the forums funding to cover annual ISP charges, Domain registration etc This prompted Tony and I to have a chat yesterday afternoon to look at how we can better cover the cost of running this forum.

Nothing will change overnight!!, and there will be another poll after this one closes (in 30 days) to separately to cover the subject of "What is an acceptable/appropriate subscription fee?" and for what duration that fee would cover, only if the first poll shows that subscription is the agreed way forward.

Tony and I are in agreement that if the forum did go subscription based then then it would be split into two sections, with the non subscribed/ Guests being limited to what they can see/access.  (The list is by no means set in stone yet, we are just agreed on the overall principal.

Non-Members/Guests would be able to view boards like General Chat and Members Cars/Blogs, Lancia Friendly Garages and things of that sort - that way visitors can see that this is an active forum with plenty going on.  Only subscribed Members would be able to access Technical Sections, Downloads, For Sale/Wanted and so on.

This would mean that we can relax the rules on selling as subscribed members would have made a contribution to the forum running costs.  We are not trying to exclude non-members, rather we want to provide the benefits of full membership to those who contribute, rather than those of us who volunteer to run the forum spending our time providing data and assistance to everyone who asks when often there is no contribution, no thanks and no acknowledgement in return, this we feel is a little one-sided.

Tony and myself are currently working on creating a new dedicated LBF Admin Email account, a dedicated LBF Paypal account and the availability / installation of an appropriate Subscription Package to the forum.  An annual summary of accounts will be provided online to subscribed members for transparency purposes (and prove that the Admins are not partying hard in Rio!!)

This is a little bit of a step into the unknown, so if it does not work then rest assured, we have already discussed that we would revert to the current setup.

Thank you all for your support, your comments and input, we do appreciate it and we look forward to the continuing success of this forum.

The Admin Team
« Last Edit: October 08, 2012, 02:12:56 PM by Admin » Logged
droptop
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« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2012, 04:42:33 PM »

Personally I agree 100% with the ideals set out above.
I've seen posts on this and other forums where someone seeks information and/or parts and after members spend time researching and replying, nothing is ever heard from the OP again which is a bit unfair to all the genuine contributors who try very hard to give helpful accurate information to all queries and as I've said numerous times, my car would be a confusing pile of scrap without Betaboyz members ongoing help.
An annual subscription is the way forward so I sincerely hope you can compose a formula that will be acceptable and I suspect all fair-minded individuals will be happy to contribute financially thereby ensuing the continuation of this site for many years to come.
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mangocrazy
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« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2012, 09:57:59 PM »

Another one in agreement here. It's very unfair for the good folks who administer the forum (that we gain so much benefit from) to have to pay server costs, ISP fees, hosting charges etc. etc. That cost should be shared around and I'd be very happy to contribute. A rough idea of the anticipated annual subscription would be nice, though.
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1980 Lancia Beta Spider 2000 (S2FL)
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f1fascination
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« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2012, 11:49:14 AM »

I agree too guys, this forum has provided me will loads of valuable info and my little project wouldn't have progressed without it.
I also really enjoy conversing with those with a similar interest, and look forward to reading posts each time I log on.
Keep up the great work!
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MattNoVAT
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« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2012, 02:02:48 PM »

Just over a week to go before the voting ends on this poll, if you have not cast your vote, please do so.

Thanks  Smiley
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1976 1600 Coupe S1
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75coupe
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« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2012, 09:27:31 PM »

I will happily pay an annual subscription fee to keep and improve this valuable forum.

Regards Ian
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MattNoVAT
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« Reply #6 on: November 06, 2012, 10:52:12 PM »

This poll will be closing tomorrow, so if you have not cast your vote please do so.

There will likely be a follow up poll.

Thanks go to everyone who has participated.
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1981 2000 Coupe S2/FL
1976 1600 Coupe S1
2007 Ypsilon 1.3 Bi-Colori
MattNoVAT
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« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2012, 10:38:16 AM »

I will discuss the results with Tony while we are at the NEC Classic Car show.

But it looks like the overwhelming majority voted that subscription is the way forward.

 
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1981 2000 Coupe S2/FL
1976 1600 Coupe S1
2007 Ypsilon 1.3 Bi-Colori
rodney3010
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« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2012, 11:10:04 AM »

Firstly, I agree with all the above comments
Secondly, I was bit suprised that only 42 people bothered to vote. Maybe just my perception but didn't see a lot bearing in mind what a busy forum this is. Is 42 an accurate reflection of those registered? If it isn't then I would urge all those who didn't vote but who use this to make sure they pay their subscriptions when/if it comes into force. Even at 10 I think its an absolute bargain, technical & practical advice plus access to like minded individuals when buying and selling!
Rodders
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MattNoVAT
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« Reply #9 on: November 12, 2012, 01:29:36 PM »

Why did so few vote?  Beats me, apethy? We cannot force folk to vote only offer them the chance to do so and clearly explain why.
 

So, for those interested here are some stats for registered members:

Total registered members:  1,653

Of that 1,653 there are 522 profiles banned because they are spammers. (Constantly growing)

Of the remaining 1,131 active profiles, only 299 have posted something.

There is a core of approximately 140-150 regular / active forum members.

The constant battle against spammers keeps us busy, 17 spammers attempted registration today alone - 35-40 mins of double checking.  I cleared out a load of old profiles about 12 months ago that registered before we had the StopForumSpam add-on installed.
 
I'm not moaning but it does feel like herding cats some days, keeping this forum spam free.  I think we have had two spammers set through and post spam on here in the past 12 months. (I could be mistaken so please correct me if I am wrong)

I joined another UK car related forum last week and believe me, those guys take no prisoners by comparison to this forum.  People who don't contribute or just try to sell their old spares are mercilessly and brutally flamed.... I am as thick skinned as they come but these guys even managed to surprise me at just how blunt they are, I would post a link but the language they use is...shall we say.... extremely colourful.  Wink
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1981 2000 Coupe S2/FL
1976 1600 Coupe S1
2007 Ypsilon 1.3 Bi-Colori
peteracs
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Peter Stokes


« Reply #10 on: November 12, 2012, 03:07:13 PM »

I guess it depends on your view of Spamming/non contribution I guess. Sometimes it is useful to have spares listed, even if just a guy trying to sell his garage clearout of related bits. I would agree that traders should either pay for the privilege or be barred, but a one off (few off) listings can benefit the members. Suspect for us not too many traders would be interested anyway.

Peter
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MattNoVAT
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« Reply #11 on: November 12, 2012, 03:59:03 PM »

We have had a few Traders register, then when they are advised that there is a small fee for Traders which go towards the running of the site, they are never heard of again.
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1981 2000 Coupe S2/FL
1976 1600 Coupe S1
2007 Ypsilon 1.3 Bi-Colori
Duncan23
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« Reply #12 on: November 12, 2012, 07:09:33 PM »

I've not voted 'cos I only read the forum on my phone via tapatalk, and I can't see any poll! I'd be happy to pay a small subscription, as this place I'd fun and very useful. Cool

Sent from my GT-I9100 using Tapatalk 2
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