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Poppet

Avsim Subscription

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Just something I was thinking about,  So ill throw it out there and see what people think

 

I think the Avsim site is fantastic,  with all aviation siming Information, product reviews,  expert and whacko opinions, up coming products, updates and a general all round Plane/Helicopter siming  information experience, With everything at a click of a button.  You wouldn't have to be a genius to know a site like this takes a lot of maintenance and running money to keep everything going rite. 

 

So why not have a monthly Membership subscription fee?   Maybe a 3 month or 6 month subscription or even a year subscription for the price of 9 months? 

 

It would keep the site even shiner and take the headache away from the site management who i'm sure try tirelessly to keep everything a float.

 

Standard member for free and Premium member a subscription fee.  Standard member can only post a certain amount of messages per month and same for Messages?  And of course Premium has unlimited posting.    The Donating thing is great and either way i will continue to support the site. 

 

Oh and another thing,  it would be a great way of Verifying a member. Something i didn't think of recently when a member of this site's authenticity was brought into question,  as that person Donated,  the staff would have the proper details of that member. 

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Help AVSIM continue to serve you!
Please donate today!

I can see some advantages but it would be a shame that a financial commitment would price some people 'out of AVSIM'.  For example, I live on a miniscule disibility pension and, as great and valuable as AVSIM is as a FS resource, monthly net subscriptions however small, are out of my budget.

I will certainly donate in the near future when funds allow, but a more prescriptive subscription could be a problem for those living on low incomes.     Then again, perhaps it could be argued that an addon purchase could be sacrificed to pay for a monthly subscription.

In any event, personally I think it would be a shame to introduce a two tier system of 'standard' and 'premier' members.  A lot of life is divided up according to wealth and income, and it's nice that communities like this, usually aren't.

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I sense a disturbance in the Force...

 

I have a gnawing suspicion, Poppet, that there might be some kind of hidden agenda in your "helpful suggestion" and it has to do with cementing your own bona fides, not anyone elses', and not out of concern for the financial well-being of Avsim.

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In all things aviation, the price of admission is usually an interest in planes. The idea of not letting users contribute to the wealth of aviation knowledge would negatively affect this community. Avsim is currently run by donations and operates effectively as such, typically the slow downs only come when Tom accidentally pushes the wrong button!

If Avsim needs donations, those who can have and will donate to keep the community here.

Keep in mind that many developers use Avsim forums as their official support forum, by limiting posting abilities you are almost asking people to pay for support.

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Keep in mind that many developers use Avsim forums as their official support forum, by limiting posting abilities you are almost asking people to pay for support.

 

And paying to provide support. Suppose I'd reached my monthly limit and couldn't help someone with a problem.

 

To the OP - there is a donation system which has been used by quite a few.

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I live on a miniscule disibility pension and, as great and valuable as AVSIM is as a FS resource, monthly net subscriptions however small, are out of my budget.
Hello David,
Thank you for the reply.  I see what your saying,  I didn't think of it that way. 

 

 


I sense a disturbance in the Force...

Yes that's were i heard it........".luke i am your father"

 

 

 


I have a gnawing suspicion, Poppet, that there might be some kind of hidden agenda in your "helpful suggestion" and it has to do with cementing your own bona fides,

Great imagination, you should write science fiction. 


 

 


Keep in mind that many developers use Avsim forums as their official support forum, by limiting posting abilities you are almost asking people to pay for support.

Yes I see your point too, the odds are stacking up against me,  point taken though.


 

 


And paying to provide support. Suppose I'd reached my monthly limit and couldn't help someone with a problem.

I'm still back peddling here :)  when you look at it that way your spot on. 

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Elaine, I've read Tom's views on this subject over the past many, MANY years. If I recall correctly he once stated he'd pull the plug on AVSIM before allowing it to become subscription based, or words to that effect at least... :Whistle:

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Elaine, I've read Tom's views on this subject over the past many, MANY years. If I recall correctly he once stated he'd pull the plug on AVSIM before allowing it to become subscription based, or words to that effect at least...

Hello Fr Bill,   Thanks for the reply.

Oook then that just about wraps it up alright,   :blush:    "Walking briskly away" 

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First, let me put any speculation regarding Elaine's location to rest. She is connecting from Ireland, and judging from her PayPal account, she's the real deal. Now, let's move on from that.

 

Elaine,

 

I appreciate the suggestion and the sentiment behind it. However, as Bill has pointed out, from day 1 of AVSIM's existence I have said that we will not charge, period, by any definition for access. We have said that about tiered membership, etc. As Bill has pointed out, if the membership allows us to fade away, then we will fade away. As for donations, we are 14 days away from the end of the year. Here are the donations to date:


2014-12-17_19-08-49.png

 

The Support Goal is what it actually costs, approximately, a year, to keep AVSIM running and healthy. By healthy, I mean bandwidth, putting away money for new hardware to replace our now 5 year old servers, consultants, software upgrades, maintenance contracts, etc. The Engineering Services Goal was an attempt to pay off the actual amount that we spent earlier this year when we had a RAID system failure.

 

As is obvious, none of the goals has been met despite the very generous donations of many many good folk this year, including you. Advertising revenue has been far less than the Support Donations and in the scheme of things has hardly counted toward achieving our overall goal of $36,000 for this year.

 

I am not bewailing the amount donated, nor am I holding my hand out begging. I won't do either. My philosophy for the last 18 years has been very simple; when the time comes that we can't keep the doors open, it will be because we have a community that has moved on and found their needs fulfilled elsewhere. That's okay.

 

Now, before everyone runs off with their hair on fire and screaming around the net that AVSIM is about to disappear, that could not be farther from the truth. Over the years, we have squirreled away "rainy day" money that we have been able to add to our savings to keep the doors open. That holds true unless a major system failure occurs; i.e., one of our servers dies. If that happens, all bets are off. However, as of today, we are able to assure everyone that we'll be around for a long time to come. And, just to repeat myself and shut down the anti-AVSIM goonies out there, no one on AVSIM staff, draws a salary, including me.

 

Bottom line; if the donations dry up, and we run out of reserves, then the message will be loud and clear. AVSIM is no longer a viable entity and we will go the way of the dodo.

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So if I read correct, if at least 1/4 of the AVSIM community gives $1.00 you would be well on your way to your goal of $40,500.  Interestingly I thought there were more in donations than what you have presented here Tom.  

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So if I read correct, if at least 1/4 of the AVSIM community gives $1.00 you would be well on your way to your goal of $40,500.  Interestingly I thought there were more in donations than what you have presented here Tom.  

 

Just click on the Donate link at the top menu bar and as you know, I am sure, you will see a running total that is updated every time a donation is made. That system has been in place since just after the first of the year and all donations made this year have been accounted for.

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As Bill has pointed out, if the membership allows us to fade away, then we will fade away.

 

Thank you for your detailed response. I hear and understand what you are saying.

Would be nice to see folks appreciating the site more by the odd donation.

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Though I don't have much this thread has inspired me to give a lil something....Keep up the awesome work Tom.

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Wow - I found the low amount donated quite shocking. I've not clicked on the "Donate" button since my donation, and didn't realise it kept a running tally. Only 249 people have donated this year - albeit their average donation is quite generous $28, but with the drop box starting at $5, surely most (but not all) could afford something like that.

249 from the whole AVSIM community seems rather pitiful.

Isn't that so little tangible thanks is shown to Tom, the Mods and the rest of the hardworking folk that keep the forum going a tad embarrassing for the community as a whole?

Or am I being too harsh?

Eugene

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There are 2 regular posters who between them have posted over 13,000 times. Neither has made a contribution. Pretty shocking when you consider how little is required to get the badge.

 

It wouldn't be appropriate to name them but next time you spot a post from a familiar name have a look to see if they have donated.

 

The other thing is the visibility of the donation option. I had to scan round for a while until I spotted it. Maybe consideration could be given to making it more visible. Red flashing background would be a start.

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First, let me put any speculation regarding Elaine's location to rest. She is connecting from Ireland, and judging from her PayPal account, she's the real deal. Now, let's move on from that.

 

Elaine,

 

I appreciate the suggestion and the sentiment behind it. However, as Bill has pointed out, from day 1 of AVSIM's existence I have said that we will not charge, period, by any definition for access. We have said that about tiered membership, etc. As Bill has pointed out, if the membership allows us to fade away, then we will fade away. As for donations, we are 14 days away from the end of the year. Here are the donations to date:

attachicon.gif2014-12-17_19-08-49.png

 

The Support Goal is what it actually costs, approximately, a year, to keep AVSIM running and healthy. By healthy, I mean bandwidth, putting away money for new hardware to replace our now 5 year old servers, consultants, software upgrades, maintenance contracts, etc. The Engineering Services Goal was an attempt to pay off the actual amount that we spent earlier this year when we had a RAID system failure.

 

As is obvious, none of the goals has been met despite the very generous donations of many many good folk this year, including you. Advertising revenue has been far less than the Support Donations and in the scheme of things has hardly counted toward achieving our overall goal of $36,000 for this year.

 

I am not bewailing the amount donated, nor am I holding my hand out begging. I won't do either. My philosophy for the last 18 years has been very simple; when the time comes that we can't keep the doors open, it will be because we have a community that has moved on and found their needs fulfilled elsewhere. That's okay.

 

Now, before everyone runs off with their hair on fire and screaming around the net that AVSIM is about to disappear, that could not be farther from the truth. Over the years, we have squirreled away "rainy day" money that we have been able to add to our savings to keep the doors open. That holds true unless a major system failure occurs; i.e., one of our servers dies. If that happens, all bets are off. However, as of today, we are able to assure everyone that we'll be around for a long time to come. And, just to repeat myself and shut down the anti-AVSIM goonies out there, no one on AVSIM staff, draws a salary, including me.

 

Bottom line; if the donations dry up, and we run out of reserves, then the message will be loud and clear. AVSIM is no longer a viable entity and we will go the way of the dodo.

Tom:

 

I must say that I am shocked to read this thread. More to the point, I feel so bad that I am one of the thousands who have not donated. I understand and respect your position on funding for the site. When it comes to fund raising, my only comment is that with all due respect you are to easy on us. Maybe I am a bit slow and stupid, but until this thread came up today, it never occured to me that donations were this important. I suspect that I may not be the only one. I guess I have just always assumed that advertising was paying the freight for the site. Your take on not begging for money etc. are noble and rare but the other side of the coin is that we as members have an obligation to help support this effort. Yes, I know that you have the support button their but as I said before, "slow and stupid" here never looks at it when I am trying to find help with a problem.

 

I would like to suggest two things as a start. 1. Have a running total of goals and received that appear with the donate button.  2. Have someone there at AVSIM do fund raising. It can be done low key. Maybe even raffles run for nice flight sim gear. There are many things that could be done that would make a few bucks and be fun for the members.

 

So Tom and all the other members of AVSIM....I am off to the Donate button and will remember it in the future years. I am sorry for not doing my part in the past. Thanks to Elaine for starting the discussion and I hope others have learned from this experience also.

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There are 2 regular posters who between them have posted over 13,000 times. Neither has made a contribution. Pretty shocking when you consider how little is required to get the badge.

 

It wouldn't be appropriate to name them but next time you spot a post from a familiar name have a look to see if they have donated.

 

The other thing is the visibility of the donation option. I had to scan round for a while until I spotted it. Maybe consideration could be given to making it more visible. Red flashing background would be a start.

 

Don't be entirely sure that they haven't donated. There is the option of donating anonymously which I selected to see what would happen.

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Don't be entirely sure that they haven't donated. There is the option of donating anonymously which I selected to see what would happen.

 

I have to admit being baffled why anyone would not want people to know they have made a contribution. It's not as if the amount is visible.

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I've made a donation, yet nothing shows despite not choosing to be anonymous...

 

...so it's not really a valid assumption to conclude that the absence of 'Donor Wings' indicates that one hasn't donated.

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I've made a donation, yet nothing shows despite not choosing to be anonymous...

 

...so it's not really a valid assumption to conclude that the absence of 'Donor Wings' indicates that one hasn't donated.

Yes, that's because you are a moderator. If your donation was allowed to show, you would become a regular member without your "powers". :BigGrin:

 

Since we have introduced the new donation system at the beginning of the year, if you donate, there will be some form of donation acknowledgement in your profile to the left. That does not hold true for moderators and staff. These images will stay in your profile in accordance with the donation amount and detail on that can be found on the donation system. Click on the READ MORE at the end of the top message on the Donation Page to see that detail.

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I have to admit being baffled why anyone would not want people to know they have made a contribution. It's not as if the amount is visible.

 

Aside from safe curiosity, whats life without a little whim?

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Thank you, Tom. That actually was my assumption all along, since the "Donor Wings" essentially occupy the same space as the normal "Member" label, or in my case the "Moderator" label.

 

I assume the same would hold true for the "Commercial Member" label as well.

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I assume the same would hold true for the "Commercial Member" label as well.

 

That's correct.

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