Sandi D <sandi.asgtechie@...>
I am in support of the proposal of GIO offering the option of a paid level of service to GIO account holders. GIO account holders who want to pay GIO a nominal sum should have a mechanism to do so. What those advantages are to paid GIO account holders should be explored. One might be the ability to have to be additional features or the ability to join groups with capped memberships. These and others would seem worthy of study.
For example, GIO paid account holders could be given the privilege of join future newly created groups that are be capped at a set number of members. Then GIO paid account holders would not count against the proposed Basic group owner's 100 slots or Premium group owners 400 slots.
In the current paid tier proposal, newly created Basic groups would never grow over 100 members unless the owner had the ability to pay. If a GIO paid account holder joined such a group, they would show up in the group with a badge reflective of their GIO paid account status. If the GIO paid account holder didn't then they would be given automatically removed from that group.
I can envision that when GIO paid account holder renewal fees were due, that person would receive an email from the GIO system showing which GIO groups they had joined as a paying GIO account holder and advising them that if they didn't renew they would be automatically removed from those groups.
They could of course chose to reapply to the group owner to join. If it were a Basic group and all 100 slots were filled then it's up to the Basic group owner to make a decision. The same decision they need to make under the current proposed tier. The group owner could say no, that the group is full, put them on a waiting list, remove an existing "deadwood" member to open a slot, or pay the GIO Premium rate.
Introducing a GIO paid account holder level would be tweak on the proposed paid tier system. It would take the burden off basic new group owners who cannot afford a paid tier.
I have stated before I would personally pay GIO annually for the privilege of having a GIO account. I created a group with only me in it just for that reason. So I am essentially already a GIO paid account holder but it's up to me to upgrade and downgrade. I could delete that group if GIO offered paid accounts to individuals.
However I don't know that paid individual accounts translates well to new GIO account holders. They do not have the same loyalty or past experience. Unlike legacy group owners, they do not realize the value of what they have and will have for perhaps a few more years. I think there may well be a reluctance for new GIO account holders to pay for an individual account. Giving them a 30 day trial make sense to me. They would then have time to explore and join a variety of groups.
As to the argument that the members in groups can't afford it, they don't have too. The owners of newly created groups can select a paid tier of service and direct add the number of members they desire up to the limits proposed in the new pricing structure. That's going to happen anyway.
A see a benefit to clubs, hobby enthusiasts and organizations. They essentially create a group, tell their members to join GIO for a 30 day trial, evaluate the service and then at the end of 30 days their members will know if there is value in continuing the group with each member paying GIO $5 a year to maintain their group. Something like that would bring in money. The alternate is no money and caps on membership.
I think paid individual GIO accounts are worth of more discussion.