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moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

Drew makes some really good points here. This comes the closest to changing my hard stance out of anything I’ve read so far. However, I’m not sure the members themselves would go for it or how much business/accounts groups.io would lose because of it.

On Jan 11, 2021, at 6:02 PM, Drew <pubx1@af2z.net> wrote:

The issue has been raised several times that if subscribers were charged directly by Groups.io they would demand extra customer support for their payment (however small that payment, I guess...).

But if group owners are the ones to collect the funds, and owners are dependent on subscribers to pay for the group, doesn't the expectation of extra "support" shift to the owners? And not necessarily technical support...

I wouldn't like to be in the position of an owner whose group receives "donations" from subscribers, knowing that some of them might well expect extra consideration in, say, posting an off-topic message or two, or otherwise bending the group's rules. That is going to happen as sure as human nature. Or, if a factional riff of some sort should develop and half of your group's donors decide to pull out or demand their money back...

That's why a small subscriber fee billed directly by Groups.io for a strictly defined benefit (i.e., access to "X" number of groups of the subscriber's own choosing; nothing more), such fee not tied to any particular group, seems like a better way to go: no subscriber could reasonably expect extra customer support from corporate for a $5 or $10 per year fee; and group owners would not have to go begging among their subscribers for dollars, which puts them in an inferior position with the donors as far as being able to manage group activity equitably.

Drew




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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

Drew
 

The issue has been raised several times that if subscribers were charged directly by Groups.io they would demand extra customer support for their payment (however small that payment, I guess...).

But if group owners are the ones to collect the funds, and owners are dependent on subscribers to pay for the group, doesn't the expectation of extra "support" shift to the owners? And not necessarily technical support...

I wouldn't like to be in the position of an owner whose group receives "donations" from subscribers, knowing that some of them might well expect extra consideration in, say, posting an off-topic message or two, or otherwise bending the group's rules. That is going to happen as sure as human nature. Or, if a factional riff of some sort should develop and half of your group's donors decide to pull out or demand their money back...

That's why a small subscriber fee billed directly by Groups.io for a strictly defined benefit (i.e., access to "X" number of groups of the subscriber's own choosing; nothing more), such fee not tied to any particular group, seems like a better way to go: no subscriber could reasonably expect extra customer support from corporate for a $5 or $10 per year fee; and group owners would not have to go begging among their subscribers for dollars, which puts them in an inferior position with the donors as far as being able to manage group activity equitably.

Drew


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

We all need something to take our minds off what is happening around us. That could be the explanation regarding Shal. 😀


On Jan 11, 2021, at 5:37 PM, monamouroui <monamouroui@...> wrote:


Shal, I cannot believe you are advocating for this. If anyone is going to feel the pain of navigating this cuckoo idea, it would be you and the mods at GMF.

Owners don't even know how to help their members log into their accounts, let alone advise them how to pick from a menu of tiered prices for the privilege of joining a group, and then what? You want to read archives? Pay this. You want to post, not just read what others post? Now pay this. You want access to the files? Pay more. What insanity to confront new members would this pay-for-play scheme of Samuel's invention include? Or limit?

And mind you, I don't think, or maybe I'm wrong, that you and your moderators will enjoy a financial benefit from members premium costs while being
bombarded with an avalanche of "How-to" requests.

Then again, if the member fee goes to owners and moderators -- maybe it makes sense. But if the point is to create a revenue stream for Mark, to offset the losses from the prolific number of basic groups (which I bet have exploded since the future pricing was announced), then my opinion is no thanks. 

I'd rather the grandfathered free groups have an end date and prices are scaled as others have recommended by the number of members. Otherwise I'm afraid the next step would be data mining our mailing lists.

TANSTAAFL

Sara

On Mon, Jan 11, 2021, 7:30 PM Shal Farley <shals2nd@...> wrote:
J,


My sole objection is to group members being charged by the platform itself. I feel strongly that groups.io should only charge owners.

Ok, got it. I think.

Earlier I misunderstood your objection as being a concern that Groups.io would require members to pay for their memberships. Hence my responses about it actually being either/or (group or member payment) under this topic's proposal.

I have a hard time wrapping my head around why you object to allowing a member to choose a paid account over being excluded from a full group, but that's ok. So long as I've correctly understood your objection I'm fine with that.

Shal


--
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

monamouroui
 

Shal, I cannot believe you are advocating for this. If anyone is going to feel the pain of navigating this cuckoo idea, it would be you and the mods at GMF.

Owners don't even know how to help their members log into their accounts, let alone advise them how to pick from a menu of tiered prices for the privilege of joining a group, and then what? You want to read archives? Pay this. You want to post, not just read what others post? Now pay this. You want access to the files? Pay more. What insanity to confront new members would this pay-for-play scheme of Samuel's invention include? Or limit?

And mind you, I don't think, or maybe I'm wrong, that you and your moderators will enjoy a financial benefit from members premium costs while being
bombarded with an avalanche of "How-to" requests.

Then again, if the member fee goes to owners and moderators -- maybe it makes sense. But if the point is to create a revenue stream for Mark, to offset the losses from the prolific number of basic groups (which I bet have exploded since the future pricing was announced), then my opinion is no thanks. 

I'd rather the grandfathered free groups have an end date and prices are scaled as others have recommended by the number of members. Otherwise I'm afraid the next step would be data mining our mailing lists.

TANSTAAFL

Sara

On Mon, Jan 11, 2021, 7:30 PM Shal Farley <shals2nd@...> wrote:
J,


My sole objection is to group members being charged by the platform itself. I feel strongly that groups.io should only charge owners.

Ok, got it. I think.

Earlier I misunderstood your objection as being a concern that Groups.io would require members to pay for their memberships. Hence my responses about it actually being either/or (group or member payment) under this topic's proposal.

I have a hard time wrapping my head around why you object to allowing a member to choose a paid account over being excluded from a full group, but that's ok. So long as I've correctly understood your objection I'm fine with that.

Shal


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

Also, I’m not sure this fits exactly, but imagine that state x doesn’t have enough vaccine to go around, but people willing to pay can magically get their vaccine. (Apologies, it’s hard not think about this.) I know we’re talking about a pittance but it’s the principle. And that’s just one aspect. 


On Jan 11, 2021, at 4:30 PM, Shal Farley <shals2nd@...> wrote:


J,


My sole objection is to group members being charged by the platform itself. I feel strongly that groups.io should only charge owners.

Ok, got it. I think.

Earlier I misunderstood your objection as being a concern that Groups.io would require members to pay for their memberships. Hence my responses about it actually being either/or (group or member payment) under this topic's proposal.

I have a hard time wrapping my head around why you object to allowing a member to choose a paid account over being excluded from a full group, but that's ok. So long as I've correctly understood your objection I'm fine with that.

Shal

--
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

 

Shal,

Because when members are offered paid accounts, in any scheme, to me that warps the space around *every* group and generally the whole system. 


On Jan 11, 2021, at 4:30 PM, Shal Farley <shals2nd@...> wrote:


J,


My sole objection is to group members being charged by the platform itself. I feel strongly that groups.io should only charge owners.

Ok, got it. I think.

Earlier I misunderstood your objection as being a concern that Groups.io would require members to pay for their memberships. Hence my responses about it actually being either/or (group or member payment) under this topic's proposal.

I have a hard time wrapping my head around why you object to allowing a member to choose a paid account over being excluded from a full group, but that's ok. So long as I've correctly understood your objection I'm fine with that.

Shal

--
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

 

Joanie,


I'm not sure how we would manage the free vs. paid members of our group so that we had sufficient free memberships for those that need it. We would need to be able to convert the free users, who progress to lower levels of privacy management, to paid users to maintain a sufficient pool of free user slots.

In the proposal of the OP I think your only tools would be to buy more free user slots and/or implore those totally or partially "out" to convert to paid accounts to make more free slots available.

In my suggested enhancement to this proposal you would also have a control (in the Members list and/or on a specific member's page) to "bump" a member out of a free slot without unsubscribing them. They'd be in what I called an "inactive" status until either they paid for their account or you added them back to a free slot.


I think we can overcome this from an admin side but we would need some tools to monitor the number of remaining free slots and we would need to send messages to free users so that we can encourage some to be converted to paid members when the pool gets low.

Agreed.

The OP proposal and my suggestion would both benefit from additional tools to sort/filter the members list by paid account versus free slot. That would facilitate using the Send Message Action in the message list to target specifically members using a free slot, or members not using one (a "thank you" perhaps).
Having our totally "out" members pay their existing organization membership fee and then a groups.io fee would "double tap" these people for money. I know it's a very little amount but it does create two things to occur. Maybe our organization would have a way to pay the groups.io fee for our paid members using the membership money we collect.

That's an interesting idea.

Simply using the money you collect from them to buy additional free slots would avoid the double tap, but it wouldn't give them access to other groups the way upgrading them to a paid account would. The latter would be more expensive for your group, assuming the same $2.50/yr for a paid account versus $0.55/yr for an additional slot (and assuming your group is Premium not Enterprise), but I don't see a reason why Groups.io couldn't implement a way for a group to do that.

Shal


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

J,


My sole objection is to group members being charged by the platform itself. I feel strongly that groups.io should only charge owners.

Ok, got it. I think.

Earlier I misunderstood your objection as being a concern that Groups.io would require members to pay for their memberships. Hence my responses about it actually being either/or (group or member payment) under this topic's proposal.

I have a hard time wrapping my head around why you object to allowing a member to choose a paid account over being excluded from a full group, but that's ok. So long as I've correctly understood your objection I'm fine with that.

Shal


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

There’s another potential problem with groups.io charging members directly (in any proposal, Samuels or otherwise) and that is pet (or even human) health groups where medical issues are discussed. Helen’s post mentioning that if members pay they might expect better service is actually what brought this to mind. I fear that these types of groups could be at legal risk for being accused of practicing medicine (veterinary or otherwise) without a license of members are charged. Voluntary donations requested by a group owner would seem to be in a different category but IANAL.

I think it’s this concern that underlies my strong, dealbreaker objection to charging my members for participation, especially since there are actually vets in my group. I absolutely will nog charge my members in any way, shape, or form, no matter what happens and would have to leave if mg grandfathered status went away. It is completely antithetical and unacceptable to me. 

I am grandfathered but there will surely be these kinds of groups joining in the future.


On Jan 11, 2021, at 3:54 PM, Joanie <joanie.m.nightingale@...> wrote:

We run a non-profit organization which provides socialization opportunities for people with a secret alternative lifestyle. You could think of this as a secret society for those who are not "out" yet to the world. Our members consist of both people who are totally "out", partially "out" and totally in the closet. We raise money through donations and memberships to fund the organization. Most of our members are in the totally "out" or partially "out" category. Some of our members cannot use credit card transactions for fear of being outed. For us, the paid levels of service for the entire group is almost a requirement so that people who need total privacy can join the group with only a secondary email address to protect their real identity. A number of our members start out totally in the closet and then over time progress towards being totally out. Some always stay where they started in the privacy ladder.  I understand that existing groups might be "grandfathered in", which is great, but that also provides a slippery slope for future changes as we loose people who were part of the decision making and made promises to user groups.

I'm not sure how we would manage the free vs. paid members of our group so that we had sufficient free memberships for those that need it. We would need to be able to convert the free users, who progress to lower levels of privacy management, to paid users to maintain a sufficient pool of free user slots. I think we can overcome this from an admin side but we would need some tools to monitor the number of remaining free slots and we would need to send messages to free users so that we can encourage some to be converted to paid members when the pool gets low. Having our totally "out" members pay their existing organization membership fee and then a groups.io fee would "double tap" these people for money. I know it's a very little amount but it does create two things to occur. Maybe our organization would have a way to pay the groups.io fee for our paid members using the membership money we collect.

Right now, our paid memberships and fundraisers generate enough revenue to cover the costs of the Premium membership level. I know that every group is different and accommodating all these various use cases is difficult. I'm just trying to provide some insight to this particular use case.

Regards,

Joanie

--
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

Joanie
 

We run a non-profit organization which provides socialization opportunities for people with a secret alternative lifestyle. You could think of this as a secret society for those who are not "out" yet to the world. Our members consist of both people who are totally "out", partially "out" and totally in the closet. We raise money through donations and memberships to fund the organization. Most of our members are in the totally "out" or partially "out" category. Some of our members cannot use credit card transactions for fear of being outed. For us, the paid levels of service for the entire group is almost a requirement so that people who need total privacy can join the group with only a secondary email address to protect their real identity. A number of our members start out totally in the closet and then over time progress towards being totally out. Some always stay where they started in the privacy ladder.  I understand that existing groups might be "grandfathered in", which is great, but that also provides a slippery slope for future changes as we loose people who were part of the decision making and made promises to user groups.

I'm not sure how we would manage the free vs. paid members of our group so that we had sufficient free memberships for those that need it. We would need to be able to convert the free users, who progress to lower levels of privacy management, to paid users to maintain a sufficient pool of free user slots. I think we can overcome this from an admin side but we would need some tools to monitor the number of remaining free slots and we would need to send messages to free users so that we can encourage some to be converted to paid members when the pool gets low. Having our totally "out" members pay their existing organization membership fee and then a groups.io fee would "double tap" these people for money. I know it's a very little amount but it does create two things to occur. Maybe our organization would have a way to pay the groups.io fee for our paid members using the membership money we collect.

Right now, our paid memberships and fundraisers generate enough revenue to cover the costs of the Premium membership level. I know that every group is different and accommodating all these various use cases is difficult. I'm just trying to provide some insight to this particular use case.

Regards,

Joanie


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

On Mon, Jan 11, 2021 at 03:25 PM, Duane wrote:
On Mon, Jan 11, 2021 at 05:10 PM, J_Catlady wrote:
in fact is already doing that by allowing for donations
But not on Basic groups. 
As I said, maybe it could be enhanced.
 
--
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

 

And I am fine with Mark’s original plan, which I said as the first responder in his thread and have reaffirmed ever since. I have been responding in THIS thread to Mark’s *explicit request* for any problems anyone sees with Samuel’s proposal. 


On Jan 11, 2021, at 3:25 PM, Duane <txpigeon@...> wrote:

On Mon, Jan 11, 2021 at 05:10 PM, J_Catlady wrote:
in fact is already doing that by allowing for donations
But not on Basic groups.  The method being discussed allows anyone to 'buy-in' to support GIO, owner or not, but IS NOT required.

I maybe wrong, and Mark should correct me if I am, but the new pricing plan goes into effect on the 18th - period.  Any additions/changes, such as this proposal, would come into being at a later date if/when the comments are 'digested' and the programming is done.

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

Duane
 

On Mon, Jan 11, 2021 at 05:10 PM, J_Catlady wrote:
in fact is already doing that by allowing for donations
But not on Basic groups.  The method being discussed allows anyone to 'buy-in' to support GIO, owner or not, but IS NOT required.

I maybe wrong, and Mark should correct me if I am, but the new pricing plan goes into effect on the 18th - period.  Any additions/changes, such as this proposal, would come into being at a later date if/when the comments are 'digested' and the programming is done.

Duane


moderated Re: Calendar Add/Edit Reminder issues #suggestion #bug

 

On Mon, Jan 11, 2021 at 2:32 PM Christos G. Psarras <christos@...> wrote:
Hi Mark,

Thanks for the quick response!

One question, just to clarify;

>>> This has been fixed. Setting a negative time results in the reminder being ignored. 

So a 0-minutes before reminder still is allowed and happens, right?

No. Anything less than 1 minute before the event is ignored.


Mark 


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

On Mon, Jan 11, 2021 at 01:18 PM, Shal Farley wrote:
context of this topic I think what you're saying is that you as a group member wouldn't use Samual's Paid User Proposal. That's ok, Samuel's proposal doesn't require it of you. Going back to Mark's original post in this topic, maybe some kind-hearted group owner will allocate you a subscription from the "free member slots" they've purchased (plan base fee plus add-on per-member fee).
Since people are contacting me offlist now, I've been forced out from under my rock again and am going to answer: I don't see Samuel's proposal in any way equivalent to the Meetup situation or any other situation where only group owners are charged by the system. Even in Meetup (not that I'm putting Meetup out there as anything to emulate, but just as something that allowed me to feel what it would have hypothetically been like to have been charged by the platform, which would have been unacceptable) - even in Meetup, group members are not charged *by the system*. The system merely facilitates the group owner asking them for payment or donation. In Samuel's proposal members are charged by the system unless they manage to be comp'd in by the owner.

My sole objection is to group members being charged by the platform itself. I feel strongly that groups.io should only charge owners. It would be fine for groups.io to make things easier for group owners who want to pass that cost along to willing members, and it in fact is already doing that by allowing for donations. Perhaps that could be enhanced somehow. But that is a far cry from groups.io directly charging non-owner members.
 
--
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

Jeremy H
 

If you have a 'number of members' based charging scheme, then members become a cost, that someone has to pay.

In Mark's original scheme, this would fall solely on group owners. Some will be happy with this, some will not.

The advantage of Samuel's proposal is that it permits group owners who are happy to pay to do so; and provides a means for those who are not to have groups in which the members pick up the cost.

As such - giving group owners the choice - it's the better option.

Jeremy


moderated Re: Calendar Add/Edit Reminder issues #suggestion #bug

Andy Wedge
 

On Mon, Jan 11, 2021 at 10:32 PM, Christos G. Psarras wrote:
So a 0-minutes before reminder still is allowed and happens, right?
Surely a '0 minutes before' #cal-reminder is actually a #cal-notice! :-)

Andy


moderated Re: Calendar Add/Edit Reminder issues #suggestion #bug

 

Hi Mark,

Thanks for the quick response!

One question, just to clarify;

>>> This has been fixed. Setting a negative time results in the reminder being ignored. 

So a 0-minutes before reminder still is allowed and happens, right?

Cheers,
Christos


moderated Re: Calendar Add/Edit Reminder issues #suggestion #bug

 

On Sun, Jan 10, 2021 at 5:56 PM Christos G. Psarras <christos@...> wrote:

This is a combination of two separate but related issues in the Reminders section of the Event Add/Edit screen.

Please refer to this topic: https://groups.io/g/Group_Help/topic/events_calendar_reminders/79560226

The bug part; the "minutes before" duration textbox and/or underlying code allows the user to add/edit and save a Reminder with zero or negative values as the "minutes before" duration, no check or validation is done.  Duane tested the actual notice-generation event part, and it results in notices sent out after the event has transpired; a 0-min reminder's notice came 5 minutes after the event (the 5 must be significant because that's the default textbox display value when one adds a new reminder).  These are non-desired results.

This has been fixed. Setting a negative time results in the reminder being ignored. 

The suggestion part; as you'll note in the above linked topic, the current Reminder frame's element layout can foster some ambiguity/fuzziness on adding/editing Reminders for Calendar-inexperienced folk (myself included at first look at it), coupled with thin/insufficient/unclear user-manual Calendar how-to info.  From a screen POV, my suggestion would be to rearrange the elements a bit or add some visible separator/delimiter, something to make absolutely clear the checkbox is not related whatsoever to the button above it or the AddReminder process, maybe something like in the attached.  Or alternatively maybe leave as is but change the checkbox to say "Send Reminder" instead of "Send Notice"?  Not sure which tweak(s) would work the best, but some tweak would help to make things crystal-clear. 

I've made the changes. Thanks for the clear, illustrated suggestion!

Mark 


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

I'm going to unfollow again now.
--
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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