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Forum Donations - Gauging Opinions (Poll)

Would you pay a small, regular donation to UKAPS?


  • Total voters
    48

Steve Smith

Member
Joined
19 Jul 2007
Messages
4,413
Location
Wellesbourne, UK.
Hi folks. The mods/founders have been discussing forum donations lately, and after some thought we would like to put forward an idea and gauge opinion.

We are thinking about creating a subscription based donation. UKAPS members would be able to opt to donate to UKAPS on a regular basis via a Paypal subscription. We thought that perhaps people would like to contribute a small amount on a regular basis.

Initial thinking is that there would be 3 subscriptions. £1 a month, £3 a month and £5. Fairly small amounts. Once subscribed, a subscription would roll along until you chose to cancel it, or after a period of time (perhaps 6 or 12 months) you would receive an email to remind you that you're subscribed. The subscription could be cancelled at any time, with no obligation or minimum time period.

Why would you subscribe? Well, put simply, UKAPS costs money to run and maintain. Much like a high light, high CO2 setup there are running costs involved. Sponsorship does contribute greatly to covering these costs but as a society it would be great to be able to cover more of the costs using contributions by members which, sadly, is not the case at the moment.

Let's also not forget that in order to get UKAPS into the various shows that we have been to in the past there are large costs involved in the logistics of getting mature aquascapes and people/equipment to these venues, let alone printing costs for leaflets and stall back drops etc.

A subscriber would get a badge of honor on their forum username which would be displayed on their posts. This would be a small token of appreciation, and a statement that you are a subscriber and willing to donate to the society. Something like this, with a coloured leaf representing your subscription:

ukaps_post.png


This is still very much an idea and we would like to know what you think. Would you consider a minimal monthly subscription? What are your thoughts?
 

sa80mark

Member
Joined
2 Oct 2007
Messages
859
Location
Leicester
I would be more than happy to donate on a monthly basis, the amount of information and help on the forum alone is worth the small amount of money, without this forum I would not have even considered a planted tank.

Maybe one thing to consider would be to have a subscribed members section or limit the sales section to subscribed members this i think would encourage more people to subscribe.

Mark
 

Ady34

Global Moderator
UKAPS Team
Joined
27 Jul 2011
Messages
4,888
Location
Co. Durham
I would be more than happy to donate on a monthly basis, the amount of information and help on the forum alone is worth the small amount of money, without this forum I would not have even considered a planted tank.

Maybe one thing to consider would be to have a subscribed members section or limit the sales section to subscribed members this i think would encourage more people to subscribe.

Mark
Hi Mark, and thanks for the feedback.
UKAPS has for me, like yourself, provided a wealth of information which has enabled me to have relative success from continual failures :)
Thank you also for the suggestion of a subscribed members section, this is the kind of feedback were looking for and all suggestions will be taken in board :)
The sales forum will remain available to all members with 25 posts or more as we feel this is a great asset to members, creating a community and helping one another out. Everything currently available to members would stay unchanged.

I would like to stress that in no way are we suggesting a paid subscription, UKAPS has and will always be hobbyist driven and the information will be free and available to further enhance and promote the hobby as it has done from the start.
We are simply gauging response to a the possibility of regular subscription type donation, to make it easy to regularly contribute to the ongoing cost and improvement of the forum and society. It's easy to forget about general running costs, I know myself I havnt donated nearly as regularly as I would like, but a subscription donation would be easy :)

Cheerio,
Ady
 

gramski

Member
Joined
6 Oct 2010
Messages
32
Location
Edinburgh
Hi Mark, and thanks for the feedback.
UKAPS has for me, like yourself, provided a wealth of information which has enabled me to have relative success from continual failures :)
Thank you also for the suggestion of a subscribed members section, this is the kind of feedback were looking for and all suggestions will be taken in board :)
The sales forum will remain available to all members with 25 posts or more as we feel this is a great asset to members, creating a community and helping one another out. Everything currently available to members would stay unchanged.

I would like to stress that in no way are we suggesting a paid subscription, UKAPS has and will always be hobbyist driven and the information will be free and available to further enhance and promote the hobby as it has done from the start.
We are simply gauging response to a the possibility of regular subscription type donation, to make it easy to regularly contribute to the ongoing cost and improvement of the forum and society. It's easy to forget about general running costs, I know myself I havnt donated nearly as regularly as I would like, but a subscription donation would be easy :)

Cheerio,
Ady
Where is the sales forum by the way?
 

Aron_Dip

Member
Joined
20 Sep 2012
Messages
431
Location
Walsall, West Midlands
I too have run forum boards over the years and I too understand how much things cost behind the scene, one thing I would say is have just the one badge then all that donate no matter how much are equal.

Also why not have it setup for the user too control how much each month? At a £1 starting rate and £5 max rate or higher if you like.

Cheers ears!
 

John S

Member
Joined
13 Dec 2008
Messages
849
Location
Welwyn Garden City
It's a shame that not more donations are made from the wanted / sales section. It's always busy there, especially the 'wanted' part. I'm not having a pop at anybody, I'm as guilty as anybody:sorry:

To put what you asking into perspective (I know the contributions asked for are minimal) can you say how much it costs to run the site each year and how many members there are?
 

Ady34

Global Moderator
UKAPS Team
Joined
27 Jul 2011
Messages
4,888
Location
Co. Durham
Where is the sales forum by the way?
it is in the General forums section. You only require 25 posts to see it so if you cannot i will ask Paulo to have a look at your permissions. Im guessing you have been on the forum since the upgrade, but if not it could take an hour or so for the permissions to correct.

Cheerio,
Ady.
 

Lindy

Member
Joined
29 Jun 2012
Messages
2,823
Location
Ayrshire, Scotland
Hi, I wouldn't mind paying a one off subscription but you mention the cost of having stalls at aquatic shows. Why should I pay so you guys can do shows? Just asking!
 

LondonDragon

Administrator
UKAPS Team
Joined
21 Feb 2008
Messages
11,486
Location
London
Hey guys, just ensure the message is not lost, this is just to enable people that are willing to contribute towards the running costs of the forum if they so wish to, and this just makes it easier, by no means will UKAPS become a membership subscription forum, the forum will always be free, access to the information is free and open to the public, the sales section will remain free to use as always.

The bigger the forum gets the more it will cost to run, over the last few years we have moved hosts once and we have moved to 3 different servers now to cope with the load, since the upgrade we had to double what we are paying in hosting fees due to an increase of 120% on page views, you can imagine the extra load that puts on the server and the need for the server upgrade in December to tie in with the forum upgrade I performed. As most of you will know from August to December 2012 we had the forum down a few times as the server just fell over.
We are considering for those that subscribe to give something extra, maybe like the ability to upload images directly to the forum as the subscription would cover the running costs for example.

Just to touch on Lindy's point, UKAPS members attend shows to promote the hobby and make people aware that the UKAPS community is here for everyone to make your planted tanks a success. Members already contribute out of their own pockets to attend the show (there like myself at Aquatics Live for 3 days), its not just money its also time. I even took two days off work has holiday when I performed the forum upgrade which took over 20 straight hours to ensure it was down for a little as possible.

At the end of the day its the members that make the community and we are just here to make sure it happens by ensuring the forum is always available and that things run smoothly :)
 

kirk

Member
Joined
24 Dec 2012
Messages
1,686
Location
tewkesbury
Rather than having to get a certain number of post to be able to read or place adds why don't you have a fee to view these? Or a small fee for placing an ad? Say for example 25p A forum I subscribe to charges £10 to access all areas ie forsales and it can take days before your add appears unlike here . Back to the fees you talk of (donations) you are only asking for the price of an average plant at our fish store. You are in no way unrealistic.:)
 

tim

Member
Joined
22 Aug 2011
Messages
3,816
Location
Middlesex.
I think this is a great idea for those who wish to donate, personally I always think I should donate and never get round to it a monthly donation would be easier to remember. The wealth of knowledge contained in the pages of this forum would be worth the donation alone IMO :) thanks to all ukaps founders and staff for the hardwork.
 

Tony Swinney

Member
Joined
14 Dec 2008
Messages
1,185
Location
Cobham, Surrey
I think it would be a very good option to have available to members, though I'd question using the term "subscription" which implies you are subscribing to something, rather than simply making a regular donation.

I'd agree that leaving the amount open to each members choice, with a minimum of £1 for simplicity would be best. Each member could then decide whether or not they wish to donate regularly, and choose the amount based on their circumstances, and how much they feel they've gained from ukaps.

Tony
 
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