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moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

billsf9c
 

While I do appreciate the grandfathering that is in place, at some point I expect it to end. 

Grandfathering, once in place, cannot end without the Grandad itself - IO proper, ending - dying - being scuttled in-totality... Furture Grandfathering can be removed for the future potential recipients - but never going backwards. Otherwise, it was never Grandfathering in the first place.

That said, some sort of honorarium can be calculated for those that wish to pay or partially pay or ignore.

At some point, Mark could entreaty "us" to pay that and be gifted some small perk.

BillSF9c


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

Jeremy H
 

Some of the recent posts seem to be trying to avoid the fundamentals: Groups.io has to be paid (or it will go the way of Yahoo groups); that payment has to be, in some combination, by groups owners and members; payment of individual group memberships (55cents a time on Mark's proposal) cannot be economically made; and that, as Mark has decided (thanks!) that existing groups have their current charges 'grandfathered' without increase, new groups will have to pay more than might be regarded as their fair share (and I would also suggest that existing, long standing, groups cause more than their fair share of costs).

I struggle to think that there is a better (read: less bad) way forward than - essentially - Samuel's proposal:
  • a group owner can create and have a free group with minimal features, and a limited number of members
  • group owners can pay for more features; and more members. Based on what they want and can afford.
  • members can have free membership of groups, as provided (free or paid for by owners) above. If they want more, they have to pay for a (groups.io) membership, providing for more group memberships.
The rest is details... No one wants to pay; someone has to; anybody got a better idea?

(The eagle eyed might spot what I have (implicitly) added to Samuel's idea: the concept of larger basic groups, where owners pay for more members, but not more features. But this is an extra option,which would reduce simplicity, and might not be worth it)

Jeremy


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

Scott Chase
 

ro-esp,
You over-snipped two different concerns that I had. I would prefer not ANY members be forced a charge, but rather enable members an easy way to contribute/donate directly. But, if Groups.io does ultimately FORCE a member charge, I don't want some members charged and others not charged.
 
Here's what I said...
 
RE: Once the free member slots are filled up, someone wishing to be a new member of the group would have to pay a yearly fee to Groups.io.
 
  1. Having any mix of free slots versus paid slots will create a Group culture of have/havenot members, and a perception of some being freeloaders while others are forced to pay to remain a member of a group. Free members will sit on the free slots and not release them, preventing the most valuable members to the Group from being free. Resentment, etc.

  2. We create these groups to bring people together to discuss and support each other. The threat of forcing payment to simply join, or shortly thereafter, will kill the vast majority of the not-for-profit and hobby groups on Groups.io. No one will join any group if Groups.io develops a reputation of forcing a fee for membership! Even Free Grandfathered Groups will be dodged by the masses, because people will think they have to pay to use Groups.io in general. "Groups.io isn't free!" Impressions are everything!
If something must be done for Groups.io to survive, I'd prefer...

  1. A uniform price for ALL members of Groups.io;

  2. And the first YEAR is free, so members become very well established in a Group, and for them to develop a sense of value and belonging, before a time-is-up, pay-up or be forced-out scenario occurs.
As it is now, only owners are able to give Mark money. I still think a Wikipedia-style 'Groups.io depends on donations' button needs to be added to help support the funding of individual groups and Groups.io as a whole. If donations alone don't generate enough income, Mark could figure out an accounting method to credit group owners for member donations, where the owner then would only be charge the remaining balance for a Group at the end of the billing cycle.

Scott


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

ro-esp
 

On Fri, Jan 8, 2021 at 06:26 PM, Scott Chase wrote:
No one will join any group if Groups.io develops a reputation of
forcing a fee for membership!
[snip]
If something must be done for Groups.io to survive, I'd prefer...

* A uniform price for ALL members of Groups.io
sounds like a contradiction

If payment is necessary, it needs to be per group and/or per group-administrator, so you don't chase people to googlegroups, groupworks, cubits.org or riseup.net, and you don't have to keep track of a million payments per year

As it is now, only owners are able to give Mark money. I still think a
Wikipedia-style ' *Groups.io depends on donations* ' button needs to be added
Definitely! Linked to a normal bankaccount for those who don't have a creditcard

[sorry if what I say was already said/adressed]
groetjes/ĝis, Ronaldo


moderated Fw: Re: [beta] Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

Leeni
 

I have been sitting on my hands for weeks now. I have wanted to write but since I don't have a premium group at this point I started emails and then never sent them thinking that my opinion wouldn't matter.
 
My groups are grandfathered in but I would be willing to let's say pay $10 a year to host them all - not each one as I could not afford it. I am a senior citizen, living on social security. I host groups which I have been doing for years as a way to fulfill my hobby and bring some joy to others.  
 
I can get each group I own down to 100 members or less. The biggest group I have has been around for over 12 years and has a little over 400 members but I know many of them aren't even around anymore. It is a signature tag group. There is no way except if I do a roll call, which I may do to determine who is active and who isn't. That is because only the taggers (graphic artists) are allowed to post to the group. The members request tags and it goes to the sender. One member may request tags from tagger A and not from Tagger B and visa versa. In my sharing groups, I can also make it mandatory for members to share at least once a week and remove those who do not share to get from 167 members to less than 100. Or even split the group up into two groups if I have to.
 
I will say though all of my groups are EMAIL BASED GROUPS as well as all of the groups that I belong to are as well. I try to delete the message archives every other day. 
 
But I agree with  what Catlady  wrote below. Making members pay would be a deal breaker for me too. I know the circle of groups that I am in are all HOBBY type groups. They just don't have to be. They are made up of the elderly, handicapped, housebound population who are living hand to mouth on their social security checks. Many whose computers break down can't afford to get a new one for many months. I know for a fact, many would just leave group IO groups and either go to forums or Google groups to get their fix of signature tags or graphic shares. They couldn't pay to be in a groups IO group or in their cases maybe 50 or more group IO groups. I belong to 48 group IO groups - 2 which are this Beta group and GMF.  
 
Legally, with graphic type share groups that I own - part of the artist's terms of use prevent anyone making any money off of their artwork. So wouldn't that violate the terms if members had to pay for such groups -whether I make money off of them or Groups IO themselves.
 
There is a lot to think about. But one thing I know for sure if the grandfathered hobby type  groups are made to pay to host their groups many groups would move elsewhere. Maybe that is the solution to get Groups IO to have less groups. But in the scheme of things, these hobby type groups are only a drop in the bucket to the groups that are on IO that have thousands of members. Our groups don't even have 1/3 of that amount.
 
Thanks for listening to me.
Maybe some of my points are valid and maybe they aren't.
Many elderly,handicap, homebound (even before Covid) but now with Covid there are more would be very sad to give up part of their day from something that gives them enjoyment and makes them smile. That is what my groups do.
 
Thanks, Leeni
 
 
 
 

-------Original Message-------
 
From: J_Catlady
Date: 01/09/21 11:20:33
Subject: Re: [beta] Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion
 
Making members pay is a dealbreaker for me. I know some feel the opposite. My feeling is that I am hosting. I’m not running a paid business here.

And the refund issue is orders of magnitude more complicated when members pay. There are synchronization issue between confirmation, pending questionnaires for restricted groups, multiple vs single groups, etc.

For me its a dealbreaker. It radically changed the entire model and what we’re all doing here. But that’s just me.


On Jan 9, 2021, at 9:07 AM, Sandi D <sandi.asgtechie@...> wrote:

On Sat, Jan 9, 2021 at 10:21 AM, J_Catlady wrote:
I think it would be clearly unethical for a member to pay for a year's worth of a group, get kicked out, and not get their money back.
What happens to groups who have paid and get closed down for not following the rules?

If a member of a group has paid $3-5 a year for an individual GIO account, they can join a different group. Maybe they have learned their lesson after the banned behavior. I have paid many a $69 a year no refund fee for a service I was not satisfied with. I don't think a non refundable $5 a year for an individual account is going to break anyone. They aren't banned from GIO. They have all their GIO benefits including joining another group. 

The optional model of allowing individuals to become paid supporters of GIO is in addition to the optional model of allowing group owner to become paid supporters of GIO. 

If the groups I helped create are forced to pay at any point they will leave GIO. If the members in those groups are given the option to pay at any point, many will continue on as members and the created groups they are in will remain as groups and attract more paying and non paying members. 

Someone has to pay. Allowing both group owners and GIO account holders the option to pay seems like it should be reasonably to considered. 
 
--
Sandi Dickenson

--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.
My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together. - Desmond Tutu

 


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

Dave Sergeant
 

Mark obviously has the actual figures, but of the 21 groups I am
subscribed to only 2 are below 100 members, 11 below the 500 Premium
level and the biggest has 5000 members. Virtually all volunteer groups
whose owners could not afford the cost of Premium and most members
would just leave if they had to pay. Incidentally one of my groups now
does most of its communication via Wattsapp (but not me, I don't have a
smartphone).

Dave

On 9 Jan 2021 at 9:09, Duane wrote:

Based on Mark's comments and some research on my part, large groups are
the exception rather than the rule.

http://davesergeant.com


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

Glenn Glazer
 

On 01/09/2021 04:27, David M wrote:
In reading this proposal and the comments, one thing that seems not to be addressed is the situation where groups.io is used as a mailing list handler only. The members of the group do not actually ever login to the system. They are just subscribed and send/receive e-mail.

More to the point, these people are not groupies. They just want e-mails and the idea of making them have an account and login to pay is not going to work. Simplicity for the members is the goal.

I have no idea what would work best, but wanted the perspective of e-mail-only users considered.

David

Absolutely. All of my groups are like this. None of them would see any value in membership except the occasional file retrieval.

Best,

Glenn

--
PG&E Delenda Est


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

The various proposed models are now do varied that I have no idea any more which one we’re discussing at this point. Yes, yes, I know, Samuels idea, but which variation of it as mentioned in this thread? So I will not comment further. I’ll just have to wai and see what comes out of this in the end.


On Jan 9, 2021, at 9:27 AM, Sandi D <sandi.asgtechie@...> wrote:

It would seem to me this is very simple. 

If a group owner wanted a premium group and wanted to pay the cost of additional members over the tier's limits that group owner could do so and no members would be paying. Ditto for basic groups. They could updgrade to Premium and no members would have to pay. 

If on the other hand a group owner chose not to pay for additional members over the allowed limit, then they could continue to attract members who have opted to have paid individual GIO accounts.

A group owner would not have to leave GIO because they could not afford to pay for the group and did not want to collect money and manage a mechanism to pay GIO for their group. 

I also think a 30 day free individual membership should be considered. If the person did get banned or finds they don't like the groups they joined, no money is lost. After 30 days, if they choose to pay $5, they have had plenty of time to know what they are "signing up for" and had plenty of value for the past 30 days that were free. I can't think of any other service less than $3-5 a month. $3-5 a year is an extraordinary value and would bring in significant untapped revenue. 

I also would like to see a donation button for those wanting to give more than $5 a year so we don't have to create a group just to donate. 

--
Sandi Dickenson

--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.
My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together. - Desmond Tutu


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

Glenn Glazer
 

On 01/09/2021 09:08, Samuel Murrayy wrote:
But you make a good point: I believe there are certain types of groups where people typically join only for a month or two (or for 6 or 9 months), before leaving again, so this possibility needs to be taken into account.

Samuel

When we were in Canada once for a conference, word got out that a local cell phone shop was offering free phones and a large number of minutes for free with a no-questions money back guarantee. Since all of us were only going to be there for a week, you can imagine what happened.

Best,

Glenn

--
PG&E Delenda Est


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

Sandi D <sandi.asgtechie@...>
 

It would seem to me this is very simple. 

If a group owner wanted a premium group and wanted to pay the cost of additional members over the tier's limits that group owner could do so and no members would be paying. Ditto for basic groups. They could updgrade to Premium and no members would have to pay. 

If on the other hand a group owner chose not to pay for additional members over the allowed limit, then they could continue to attract members who have opted to have paid individual GIO accounts.

A group owner would not have to leave GIO because they could not afford to pay for the group and did not want to collect money and manage a mechanism to pay GIO for their group. 

I also think a 30 day free individual membership should be considered. If the person did get banned or finds they don't like the groups they joined, no money is lost. After 30 days, if they choose to pay $5, they have had plenty of time to know what they are "signing up for" and had plenty of value for the past 30 days that were free. I can't think of any other service less than $3-5 a month. $3-5 a year is an extraordinary value and would bring in significant untapped revenue. 

I also would like to see a donation button for those wanting to give more than $5 a year so we don't have to create a group just to donate. 

--
Sandi Dickenson


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

Duane,
Thanks for the (attempted) clarification. I’ll have reread this. It seems like a member-pay model affects every member, and therefore, affects all groups, even if indirectly.


On Jan 9, 2021, at 9:10 AM, Duane <txpigeon@...> wrote:

On Sat, Jan 9, 2021 at 10:34 AM, J_Catlady wrote:
So I can juwt tell anyone I don't think should be forced to pay
No one would be forced to pay as I read it.  There would be 'free slots' for each pricing tier that could be used or the group owner could upgrade to a higher tier with more free slots, as well as having the option of paying the incremental fee for additional members.   Unless/until the 'site membership' (assuming that's the plan) is implemented, there's no way to know how many people would get one.  Even though I have several grandfathered groups, including a Premium group, I'd still be willing to pay up to $10 per year to GIO for a membership.  I'm guessing/hoping that there would be quite a few people that feel the same, but we can't know unless it happens.

Based on Mark's comments and some research on my part, large groups are the exception rather than the rule.  Yes, it would be of some concern for those groups that attract a large number of members, but a site membership option might minimize the need to upgrade a group while still bringing in $$$ for GIO.

While I do appreciate the grandfathering that is in place, at some point I expect it to end.  Maybe not while Mark is in charge (hopefully for a long time ;>), but someday.

Duane

--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.
My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together. - Desmond Tutu


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

Even worse.


On Jan 9, 2021, at 9:08 AM, Samuel Murrayy <samuelmurray@...> wrote:

On Sat, Jan 9, 2021 at 05:34 PM, J_Catlady wrote:
On Sat, Jan 9, 2021 at 08:15 AM, Samuel Murrayy wrote:
a very generous no-questions money-back policy
Great. So I can just tell anyone I don't think should be forced to pay, "Don't worry, you can just request a refund"?
I'm serious.
When word gets out that the refund policy may be more generous than the web site officially lets believe, no doubt some group owners might go ahead and tell their members that they should claim refunds willy-nilly.  But remember: if a member gets a refund, then their account reverts to free-member status. So, if your group has insufficient free-member slots available, they won't be able to rejoin your group (and they will also be removed from all their other groups where there are no free-member slots available or where the group owners decide not to award a free-member slot to them).

But you make a good point: I believe there are certain types of groups where people typically join only for a month or two (or for 6 or 9 months), before leaving again, so this possibility needs to be taken into account.

Samuel

--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.
My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together. - Desmond Tutu


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

Making members pay is a dealbreaker for me. I know some feel the opposite. My feeling is that I am hosting. I’m not running a paid business here.

And the refund issue is orders of magnitude more complicated when members pay. There are synchronization issue between confirmation, pending questionnaires for restricted groups, multiple vs single groups, etc.

For me its a dealbreaker. It radically changed the entire model and what we’re all doing here. But that’s just me.


On Jan 9, 2021, at 9:07 AM, Sandi D <sandi.asgtechie@...> wrote:

On Sat, Jan 9, 2021 at 10:21 AM, J_Catlady wrote:
I think it would be clearly unethical for a member to pay for a year's worth of a group, get kicked out, and not get their money back.
What happens to groups who have paid and get closed down for not following the rules?

If a member of a group has paid $3-5 a year for an individual GIO account, they can join a different group. Maybe they have learned their lesson after the banned behavior. I have paid many a $69 a year no refund fee for a service I was not satisfied with. I don't think a non refundable $5 a year for an individual account is going to break anyone. They aren't banned from GIO. They have all their GIO benefits including joining another group. 

The optional model of allowing individuals to become paid supporters of GIO is in addition to the optional model of allowing group owner to become paid supporters of GIO. 

If the groups I helped create are forced to pay at any point they will leave GIO. If the members in those groups are given the option to pay at any point, many will continue on as members and the created groups they are in will remain as groups and attract more paying and non paying members. 

Someone has to pay. Allowing both group owners and GIO account holders the option to pay seems like it should be reasonably to considered. 
 
--
Sandi Dickenson

--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.
My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together. - Desmond Tutu


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

Duane
 

On Sat, Jan 9, 2021 at 10:34 AM, J_Catlady wrote:
So I can juwt tell anyone I don't think should be forced to pay
No one would be forced to pay as I read it.  There would be 'free slots' for each pricing tier that could be used or the group owner could upgrade to a higher tier with more free slots, as well as having the option of paying the incremental fee for additional members.   Unless/until the 'site membership' (assuming that's the plan) is implemented, there's no way to know how many people would get one.  Even though I have several grandfathered groups, including a Premium group, I'd still be willing to pay up to $10 per year to GIO for a membership.  I'm guessing/hoping that there would be quite a few people that feel the same, but we can't know unless it happens.

Based on Mark's comments and some research on my part, large groups are the exception rather than the rule.  Yes, it would be of some concern for those groups that attract a large number of members, but a site membership option might minimize the need to upgrade a group while still bringing in $$$ for GIO.

While I do appreciate the grandfathering that is in place, at some point I expect it to end.  Maybe not while Mark is in charge (hopefully for a long time ;>), but someday.

Duane


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

Samuel Murrayy
 

On Sat, Jan 9, 2021 at 05:34 PM, J_Catlady wrote:
On Sat, Jan 9, 2021 at 08:15 AM, Samuel Murrayy wrote:
a very generous no-questions money-back policy
Great. So I can just tell anyone I don't think should be forced to pay, "Don't worry, you can just request a refund"?
I'm serious.
When word gets out that the refund policy may be more generous than the web site officially lets believe, no doubt some group owners might go ahead and tell their members that they should claim refunds willy-nilly.  But remember: if a member gets a refund, then their account reverts to free-member status. So, if your group has insufficient free-member slots available, they won't be able to rejoin your group (and they will also be removed from all their other groups where there are no free-member slots available or where the group owners decide not to award a free-member slot to them).

But you make a good point: I believe there are certain types of groups where people typically join only for a month or two (or for 6 or 9 months), before leaving again, so this possibility needs to be taken into account.

Samuel


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

Sandi D <sandi.asgtechie@...>
 

On Sat, Jan 9, 2021 at 10:21 AM, J_Catlady wrote:
I think it would be clearly unethical for a member to pay for a year's worth of a group, get kicked out, and not get their money back.
What happens to groups who have paid and get closed down for not following the rules?

If a member of a group has paid $3-5 a year for an individual GIO account, they can join a different group. Maybe they have learned their lesson after the banned behavior. I have paid many a $69 a year no refund fee for a service I was not satisfied with. I don't think a non refundable $5 a year for an individual account is going to break anyone. They aren't banned from GIO. They have all their GIO benefits including joining another group. 

The optional model of allowing individuals to become paid supporters of GIO is in addition to the optional model of allowing group owner to become paid supporters of GIO. 

If the groups I helped create are forced to pay at any point they will leave GIO. If the members in those groups are given the option to pay at any point, many will continue on as members and the created groups they are in will remain as groups and attract more paying and non paying members. 

Someone has to pay. Allowing both group owners and GIO account holders the option to pay seems like it should be reasonably to considered. 
 
--
Sandi Dickenson


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

On Sat, Jan 9, 2021 at 08:15 AM, Samuel Murrayy wrote:
a very generous no-questions money-back policy
Great. So I can juwt tell anyone I don't think should be forced to pay, "Don't worry, you can just request a refund"?
I'm serious.
 
--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.
My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together. - Desmond Tutu


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

Samuel Murrayy
 

On Sat, Jan 9, 2021 at 04:16 PM, J_Catlady wrote:
Here's another problem if members rather than owners are the ones who pay: what happens to the member's payment if and when a member is removed and/or banned from a group? What happens if that was their only group... ? What if they have only been in the group for a very small part of the year vs. the whole year?
This is a good point -- one of those points that are not really problematic to solve but which needs to be considered.  I would personally try to find a solution that is likely to lead to the fewest support requests (because support requests eat into profits).

So, off the cuff, my solution to this problem would be for Groups.io to have a very generous no-questions money-back policy for user memberships (note: user memberships, not group owner payments), since it's only $2.50, and it's not a huge loss to pay back that amount, and it's too little money to spend support time on.  I recall having read various views and experiences about internet-based no-questions refunding, and the impression that I got was that it is not abused nearly as often as one might have expected.  With this solution, a user would automatically get a refund if he requests it, regardless of his reasons.

Refunds for group owners are a different matter, but since the amounts are higher, it's also less problematic to spend support time on such requests.


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

In my business, if someone has already paid me for something and then I am the one to fire them, I think it's only ethical to give them a refund. I think it would be clearly unethical for a member to pay for a year's worth of a group, get kicked out, and not get their money back.

The more I think about it, the more I think that I would not stay in groups.io if members were forced to pay. If I understand the proposal correctly, this would affect all members of all groups, and the grandfathering would be toast. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

On Sat, Jan 9, 2021 at 7:16 AM J_Catlady via groups.io <j.olivia.catlady=gmail.com@groups.io> wrote:
Here's another problem if members rather than owners are the ones who pay: what happens to the member's payment if and when a member is removed and/or banned from a group? What happens if that was their only group vs. if they are in more than one group? What if they have only been in the group for a very small part of the year vs. the whole year? How is the communication handled between the group owner and groups.io in case there has to be a refund?
--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.
My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together. - Desmond Tutu


--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.
My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together. - Desmond Tutu


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

Here's another problem if members rather than owners are the ones who pay: what happens to the member's payment if and when a member is removed and/or banned from a group? What happens if that was their only group vs. if they are in more than one group? What if they have only been in the group for a very small part of the year vs. the whole year? How is the communication handled between the group owner and groups.io in case there has to be a refund?
--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.
My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together. - Desmond Tutu

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