|The Supporter's Forum: Am I Ready For It?|
Not sure if I have the ability to contribute anything useful
As anyone who's read my posts here before knows, my ability is currently limited to a solid understanding of HTML, and what you might call an above-average understanding of CSS. I know very little when it comes to server-side or client-side scripting, and nothing about server administration. I don't know much about SEO, .htaccess, good or bad bots, mime-types, etc.
In short, the scope of issues on which I can contribute meaningfully is rather small at the moment.
I've been thinking of subscribing to the Supporter's forum, but frankly, I'm not sure I have a right to do so yet. I mean, I know I would get my money's worth out of the other posts in there, but everyone says the Supporter's forum is much more valuable and accurate information. Seeing as how I have so little to contribute, do I have any business in the Supporter's forum?
Looking forward to honest replies from those who are already members over there.
I felt much the same as you, Matthew. My less than stellar contributions are still primarily made in the public forums. But I feel like there are still several reasons to subscribe.
One is simply to give back to Brett et al. for the benefits I've received from all of the forums. Another is that some of the "big hitters" are more likely to post on the private side. Yet another is that a lot of posters there are a little more open about their views and practices; that helps you to better evaluate their public postings.
Finally, I second bakedjake--I think the quality of your posts are above the norm, so any feelings of inadequacy in that regard are unfounded IMHO. :)
I'm at a lower understanding of css, xhtml then I am sure you are at and I have joined the supporters forum.
See, its called the supporters forum, not the how much do you know forum. ;) If that were the case, then I would understand your hesitation.
I suggest that you go for it.
If you have ever had any benefit from this forum you should join if only to lessen the financial burden on Mr. Tabke who appears to shoulder most of the financial burden.
>> do I have any business in the Supporter's forum
There is very little (infact its discouraged) code related posting in the supporters forum.
Don't worry about not being in the know. If nothing, people like me and you provide the others some entertainment... and learn a little bit along the way. ;)
I'm in there for 2 reasons:
1) to give a little back (financially and the occasional post - no matter embarrassing my lack of knowledge may be!)
2) to get just a little more info (and the actually quality is not necessarily any greater).
It gets stated on a few occasions "in there" that the best place to post most stuff is "out here" (which it most often is).
I was also told (before I paid) that you get a little better response from some of the gurus when they know you are a financial supporter (but I have no way of quantifying this).
Ask yourself "How much value have I got from this forum" and I think you'll agree it's worth the admission price.
Just remain visible by contributing in the Supporters Forum and sooner or later you will read that one post that will pay for membership several times over. Remember, your post may well be "the post" for someone else. The more we share, the more it encourages others to share, but don't forget these external forums which are still the place to discuss specific topics.
I see fewer killer threads there these days than I did a year ago but I no longer need to look for an ROI - I like being part of the community.
|Just remain visible by contributing in the Supporters Forum and sooner or later you will read that one post that will pay for membership several times over |
Often this happens in the first week.
Man, it's nice to read things by people who are concerned about giving, not just gimme-gimme, take-take!
>>Seeing as how I have so little to contribute
IMHO what's ideal is to take what you need wherever you find it, and give back wherever you can be of most help in giving to others. Regardless of where it is, it's still all one.
>>Looking forward to honest replies
The honest reply from my viewpoint is that based on what you've posted you can probably contribute the most value to others by helping out with what you have solid knowledge of on "the outside" which IMHO is also the best place for getting into the rock-bottom basics in other areas - as you mentioned, SEO. Things like coding, HTML, CSS - there are specialized forums out here with a lot of enthusiastic, helpful and capable members. But look at the other side of the coin - contributing to others can take many forms.
>>do I have any business in the Supporter's forum?
Things like how many times a keyword should be repeated in a page title some people have infinite patience for, but things like that are <yawn> for most people who have been around for a while. Good discussion on that right now in the Google forum. BUT - reading, absorbing and asking well thought out, thought-provoking questions - always interesting for people, anyplace at all and everyone can learn from those and enjoy them no matter how long they've been around. Also - people have insights and wisdom in other areas by reason of life experience and can always contribute their thoughts to the collective wisdom.
There's no such thing as a magic wand or the world handed over on a platter anyplace for anything, but for anyone who has plans or the desire to be serious about business and make money, IMHO it's a solid experience.
There can be a noob who couldn't get a listing on his refrigerator if he had a magnet, much less Google or Yahoo, but six months down the road if he sticks around he will be able to. And by then he'll need the business sense to monetize it. It's a matter of people properly monetizing their time - and being in an environment surrounded by those with the capacity, there's a certain amount that's picked up by simple absorption.
Others with no such interest may be happier in FOO. ;)
Thanks for the encouragement guys. I want to join, and actually expected to be able to do so. Unfortunately, I expect my membership fee just went to replace a co-worker's monitor that went kaput last week! <wry grin>
Basically, my concern was that I would "water down" the overall quality of the Supporter's Forum. I didn't want to be responsible for causing other people to get a worse perceived value, particularly when I've seen remarks like "less newbie questions in there." But you've all helped me to the point that I now believe I could belong over there - just as soon as I can get the membership fee! ;)
Thanks again everyone.
>> I would "water down" the overall quality
Bah. Sign up and see the good stuff we don't post out here. You're not likely to get the silver bullets to your problems but you'll get a fancy two gun rig, with pearl handles and leather holsters plus a few lessons on how to shoot.
I think the supporters tend to be a little more generous with each other than they would be outside, because we're all trying to keep this wonderful resource going. Judging from the quality of your posts, I think you'd be an excellent addition to the membership. Hoping you can swing the fee soon. Looking forward to seeing you there.
IMHO, this site is the most important resource for the serious webmaster. The webmaster world would be worse off if this site did not exist.
The calibre of this site's users is, on average, unimaginably high. The issues raised and discussed here are cutting edge. The depth of collective experience is unparalleled and unique. Opinions and advice are given freely, and with enthusiasm, expecting nothing in return.
During the evolution of the site, a code of conduct and MO have emerged which, in effect, make this site the gold standard for how a forum site should be run.
All this is free of charge.
The reason I subscribe is that I want to help make sure the site is still online tomorrow, and that the moderators have the required resource to keep it going.
I am just an average Joe webmaster. My range of experience is not extraordinary. But when I come across an issue that I can contribute to, I like to take the time to do so - even if it simply means that a more knowledgeable person is freed to think about & answer something more complicated.
Also, if you are paying for something, you are more likely to come back and use it, and seek to get the most value out of it. This means you will keep coming back to use and contribute to the site, which is in everyone's interest.