Date   

moderated Re: Group Sponsorships #update

 

On Wed, Jan 13, 2021 at 12:07 PM Andy Wedge <andy_wedge@...> wrote:
On Wed, Jan 13, 2021 at 06:05 PM, Mark Fletcher wrote:
If a fee is paid solely by sponsorship reserves, you will not be sent a payment receipt, but you will still get an email notification.
Now might be a good time to reflect on and confirm what happens if insufficient sponsorship funds are 'in the bank' and there is no credit card on file so a group gets downgraded:

https://groups.io/helpcenter/ownersmanual/1/upgrading-or-downgrading-groups/downgrading-a-premium-or-enterprise-group


The same thing happens in that instance. An email goes out to mods saying that there's an overdue invoice and you get two weeks to pay the invoice (minus any remaining sponsorship fees) otherwise the group is automatically downgraded to basic/free. There is no mechanism right now to automatically pay the invoice if additional sponsorship monies come in to cover it. 

Mark


moderated Re: Group Sponsorships #update

 

On Wed, Jan 13, 2021 at 01:25 PM, Samuel Murrayy wrote:
both features can complement each other.
They could. But if only Mark's original plan plus this sponsorship plan are implemented, you end up with exactly what I thought was optimal, and what I'd suggested (although not the specifics), namely: Mark's original plan with an enhanced ability for owners to solicit donations/contributions to allay their high fees if they have high member counts. And you avoid all the issues I've brought up involving the paid memberships.
 
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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: Group Sponsorships #update

Samuel Murrayy
 

On Wed, Jan 13, 2021 at 07:14 PM, J_Catlady wrote:
Fantastic idea. ... It completely avoids all the objections I’ve expressed about member fees, competition, warped forces/space around groups, technical issues like refunds, member fees being disincentives to join groups.io, and a dozen others.
That may be, but my other proposal (about free-member slots) was meant to be separate from this suggestion and in fact both features can complement each other.

This sponsorship button makes it easier to group owners to gather funds without having to set up a financial system (I assume some group owners will active encourage members to click the button) which can be used to pay for premium services, but it does not the problem that the "free-member slots" suggestion was trying to solve, namely to make it possible to have free groups without membership number limits or to have premium groups where owners can limit their costs aggressively without having to turn away potential members who are willing to pay.


moderated Re: Group Sponsorships #update

Andy Wedge
 

On Wed, Jan 13, 2021 at 06:05 PM, Mark Fletcher wrote:
Group sponsorships are logged in the activity log
Yes, I can see that from my test $5.00 sponsorship

and a moderator notification is sent out as well.
I received a notification email but there is currently no option in the Moderator Notification panel to control these sponsorship notifications like there is for other types.

Regards
Andy


moderated Re: Group Sponsorships #update

Andy Wedge
 

On Wed, Jan 13, 2021 at 06:05 PM, Mark Fletcher wrote:
If a fee is paid solely by sponsorship reserves, you will not be sent a payment receipt, but you will still get an email notification.
Now might be a good time to reflect on and confirm what happens if insufficient sponsorship funds are 'in the bank' and there is no credit card on file so a group gets downgraded:

https://groups.io/helpcenter/ownersmanual/1/upgrading-or-downgrading-groups/downgrading-a-premium-or-enterprise-group

Andy


moderated Re: Group Sponsorships #update

 

Scott,


Correct me if I'm wrong, but it sound like Free/Basic groups are not able to Allow Sponsorships. But, rather Free/Basic groups must upgrade to a Premium group to Allow Sponsorships, and incur a Premium-priced debt before sponsorship funds can be collected to help pay on that new debt.

I'm not sure where you got that impression. Mark said: "Free/Basic groups can allow sponsorships."

He does go on to say that:"Converting from Free/Basic to a Premium group still requires a credit card to be on file when you do it, [emphasis mine] but you can delete the credit card after you've upgraded the group, relying only on sponsorship reserves to pay for premium." I think that applies at a later time, if and when the group owner decides to upgrade to a premium plan, which might not be until the group has accumulated enough in their sponsorship reserve to pay for the upgrade.
My hope was that there would also be a method to somehow allow funds to be collected from members to help support the Groups.io service without having to upgrade a Free/Basic group ...

I think that's what happens if the group owner never applies the funds to an upgrade. Groups.io has the desired support and the group owner didn't need to even temporarily provide card information.
Shal


moderated Re: Group Sponsorships #update

Scott Chase
 

RE: Free/Basic groups can allow sponsorships.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it sound like Free/Basic groups are not able to Allow Sponsorships. But, rather Free/Basic groups must upgrade to a Premium group to Allow Sponsorships, and incur a Premium-priced debt before sponsorship funds can be collected to help pay on that new debt.

My hope was that there would also be a method to somehow allow funds to be collected from members to help support the Groups.io service without having to upgrade a Free/Basic group to a Premium Group and incur a personal financial liability. I recommend that this continue to be looked at, so that members of existing Free/Basic groups
in the future can somehow also freely help fund the Groups.io service.

Thanks,
Scott


moderated Re: Group Sponsorships #update

 

Fantastic idea. Not sure how I missed it. (Must have been hiding under my rock at the time, aka had the thread muted.:) It completely avoids all the objections I’ve expressed about member fees, competition, warped forces/space around groups, technical issues like refunds, member fees being disincentives to join groups.io, and a dozen others.


On Jan 13, 2021, at 10:05 AM, Mark Fletcher <markf@corp.groups.io> wrote:



Hi All,

I have just pushed a new group sponsorship feature, based on Shal's and Samuel's proposals. Here are the details:

  • In Group Settings, there's a new Allow Sponsorships checkbox, with the help text Allow members to sponsor the Groups.io fees for the group.
  • If a group allows sponsorships, a new Sponsor This Group button appears on the group home page.
  • Clicking that button brings you to a page to enter an amount (of at least $5.00USD) and a credit card, if we don't have one on file for you. The text is By sponsoring this group, you are helping pay the Groups.io hosting fees. Any amount you sponsor will be held by Groups.io and used to pay hosting fees as needed. Sponsorships are non-refundable.
  • You do not need to be a member to sponsor a group but you do need to have a Groups.io account.
  • Free/Basic groups can allow sponsorships. Converting from Free/Basic to a Premium group still requires a credit card to be on file when you do it, but you can delete the credit card after you've upgraded the group, relying only on sponsorship reserves to pay for premium.
  • To see how much money is in a group's sponsorship reserve, go to the Billing/Upgrade tab under Admin. It will appear as a line like There is $23.00 in reserve to pay hosting fees.
  • Group sponsorships are logged in the activity log and a moderator notification is sent out as well.
  • Any group sponsorships that you have paid are listed in your Account on the Billing page.
  • If a fee is paid solely by sponsorship reserves, you will not be sent a payment receipt, but you will still get an email notification.

Please let me know if you have any questions or suggestions. Thanks to Shal and Samuel for the idea.

Thanks,
Mark


--
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: #bug event times in /feed are all 8 hours out #bug

Malcolm Austen
 

Shal,

Can I trouble you to confirm whether (or not) you are still seeing this effect? I certainly am still seeing it.

I wonder whether there is anyone (outside PST) who is seeing the correct times in /feed ? If there is, then it would be useful to know it!

It may be on Mark's hit list of course and just waiting its turn .. ?

Keep safe, Malcolm.


moderated Group Sponsorships #update

 

Hi All,

I have just pushed a new group sponsorship feature, based on Shal's and Samuel's proposals. Here are the details:

  • In Group Settings, there's a new Allow Sponsorships checkbox, with the help text Allow members to sponsor the Groups.io fees for the group.
  • If a group allows sponsorships, a new Sponsor This Group button appears on the group home page.
  • Clicking that button brings you to a page to enter an amount (of at least $5.00USD) and a credit card, if we don't have one on file for you. The text is By sponsoring this group, you are helping pay the Groups.io hosting fees. Any amount you sponsor will be held by Groups.io and used to pay hosting fees as needed. Sponsorships are non-refundable.
  • You do not need to be a member to sponsor a group but you do need to have a Groups.io account.
  • Free/Basic groups can allow sponsorships. Converting from Free/Basic to a Premium group still requires a credit card to be on file when you do it, but you can delete the credit card after you've upgraded the group, relying only on sponsorship reserves to pay for premium.
  • To see how much money is in a group's sponsorship reserve, go to the Billing/Upgrade tab under Admin. It will appear as a line like There is $23.00 in reserve to pay hosting fees.
  • Group sponsorships are logged in the activity log and a moderator notification is sent out as well.
  • Any group sponsorships that you have paid are listed in your Account on the Billing page.
  • If a fee is paid solely by sponsorship reserves, you will not be sent a payment receipt, but you will still get an email notification.

Please let me know if you have any questions or suggestions. Thanks to Shal and Samuel for the idea.

Thanks,
Mark


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

On Wed, Jan 13, 2021 at 04:49 AM, Samuel Murrayy wrote:
Yes, but the purpose of this thread is not to discuss what the potential downsides of grandfathering is.  Your objection would apply even if my proposal isn't implemented.
Exactly right. Grandfathered groups are actually not even worthy of discussion in what happens going forward because they will start to be a smaller and smaller fraction of the total groups. And in any case, I don't think people would go around looking for free groups. The fee is a pittance and people join groups based on their interests. My objections to allowing people to pay to get into "full" groups is based on assuming that (eventually) the vast majority of groups will be under the new structure. My problems with the payment proposal have nothing to do with grandfathered vs non-grandfathered groups.
 
--
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 Wed, Jan 13, 2021 at 01:14 PM, monamouroui wrote:
Shal, if you exclude grandfathered groups then the new groups that had to and will continue to have to pay, will be at a disadvantage. So unless Mark is trying to constrain the formation of new groups this is a bad idea. Why would someone join a newly formed group where they would have to pay $2.50/annually when they can search for older groups that would be free to the user?
Yes, but the purpose of this thread is not to discuss what the potential downsides of grandfathering is.  Your objection would apply even if my proposal isn't implemented.

If a user applies for membership a non-grandfathered group that is "full" (i.e. already has as many members as the owner is willing to pay for), here's what happens:
  • If premium groups can be capped: either the user gets a system message telling him that the group is full, or the moderator replies to user, "sorry, we have no more room in our group, and there is nothing either of us can do about it"
  • If premium groups can't be capped: moderator replies to user, "sorry, I can't afford another member; however, if you're willing to pay me $1.00 per year via PayPal, then you can join our group"
  • With my proposal: moderator replies to user, "sorry, our free-member slots are full; however, if you become a paid member of Groups.io for $2.50 per year, then you can join our group"

Grandfathering isn't going to go away, so yes, if a user is not picky and would join any existing grandfathered group, then that option would be open to him.  However, my experience with the groups that I'm in is that people who become members of those groups specifically want to become members of **those** groups.  If there are a dozen cat group and all the user wants is to share cat photos, then "any group will do", but a lot of groups are quite specialised and people don't really have alternatives to join.

(The ability to cap premium groups has been suggested but has not been confirmed or commented on by Mark.)


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

monamouroui
 

Shal, if you exclude grandfathered groups then the new groups that had to and will continue to have to pay, will be at a disadvantage. So unless Mark is trying to constrain the formation of new groups this is a bad idea. Why would someone join a newly formed group where they would have to pay $2.50/annually when they can search for older groups that would be free to the user?

Sara

On Wed, Jan 13, 2021 at 1:42 AM Shal Farley <shals2nd@...> wrote:
Scott,

 > If only my current members are grandfathered, a $2.50 user paywall
 > would stop any new members from joining my group. It would die.

Because your group is grandfathered it has an unlimited number of "free
slots". Meaning that no one joining it would face a paywall were the OP
of this topic implemented.

I don't think Mark would implement something like Drew's proposal (full
stop). And certainly not without excluding existing groups from the
requirement that new members face a paywall.

Shal






moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

We are going even beyond speculation to even discuss but i would assume that included your future members as well.


On Jan 12, 2021, at 10:19 PM, Scott Chase <Scott.A.Chase@...> wrote:

If only my current members are grandfathered, a $2.50 user paywall would stop any new members from joining my group. It would die. This is why any group member charge (vs system user paywall subscription) needs to be tied to a specific group, as a possible option to help an owner pay for the additional cost of a premium tier.

I sincerely don't want our "grandfathered" group to be a freeloader and would encourage members of our "grandfathered" group to use something like a "Donate to Mark" button.

Scott

--
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

 

Pete,

I thought that was very clear as well. However, there are some
comments here that seem to imply otherwise. Here's one:
https://beta.groups.io/g/main/message/27536
I cited my reason for thinking so at the time: Mark's request that we keep the feedback coming.

A week later and Mark created this topic. That confirms that he's listening and considering. However, it is likely noteworthy that this Proposal incorporates the Pricing Changes as the base, with additional features layered on.

I think that as the implementation date for the Pricing Changes approaches it becomes increasingly reasonable to assume that there won't be any fundamental changes in direction.

Shal


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

Scott,

If only my current members are grandfathered, a $2.50 user paywall
would stop any new members from joining my group. It would die.
Because your group is grandfathered it has an unlimited number of "free slots". Meaning that no one joining it would face a paywall were the OP of this topic implemented.

I don't think Mark would implement something like Drew's proposal (full stop). And certainly not without excluding existing groups from the requirement that new members face a paywall.

Shal


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

Scott Chase
 

If only my current members are grandfathered, a $2.50 user paywall would stop any new members from joining my group. It would die. This is why any group member charge (vs system user paywall subscription) needs to be tied to a specific group, as a possible option to help an owner pay for the additional cost of a premium tier.

I sincerely don't want our "grandfathered" group to be a freeloader and would encourage members of our "grandfathered" group to use something like a "Donate to Mark" button.

Scott


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

It’s not clear that the idea is even under consideration by Mark. It’s just something that someone threw out there in this thread. But my assumption would be that whatever the new plan turns out to be, whether Mark’s original plan or Mark’s plan plus Samuel’s or some variation or modification proposed in this thread, all current groups are grandfathered, and that would include their members. 


On Jan 12, 2021, at 9:41 PM, Scott Chase <Scott.A.Chase@...> wrote:

RE: "Second, you're already grandfathered in, as I understand it."
Again, being "already grandfathered" would be inconsequential, if a $2.50 paywall was added in front of us.

--
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

Scott Chase
 

RE: "Second, you're already grandfathered in, as I understand it."
Again, being "already grandfathered" would be inconsequential, if a $2.50 paywall was added in front of us.


moderated Re: Samuel's Paid User Proposal #suggestion

 

On Tue, Jan 12, 2021 at 09:00 PM, Shal Farley wrote:
I was going to suggest that perhaps there should be a plan that includes no free slots, for group owners of your persuasion.
I thought of that and immediately blew it off. This whole idea pits groups against each other. "This one is free," "that one charges," etc.
 
--
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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