> How can you ask for discounts on such things :)
- because I don't have 150$ a year, to spend on a website;
- because I'm using, daily, dozens of websites, which are no less useful than WW, and I don't think many people would have enough money to give a similar amount, to each website;
- because informational/support websites are not the only thing I might want (or am "required") to pay for, related to my work and my leisures... there is also content websites, videos, movies, music, hardware, software, games, books... again, there should not be many people who might spend a similar amount of money, for each providers;
- because by posting, I am already supporting WW -well, I'm still new, here, but it should apply far much to a great number of people on this forum- (there should not be any private section);
- because I might just want to read a few articles in the "private" forums, and paying 150$ for a few articles is far too much;
- because subscription is time based, if you happen to not have enough money anymore, you'll loose your "supporter" status, though you might have already supported the forum far more than people still paying for it;
- because if everyone could pay whatever he wants, the global sum might not be less than what it is now... it might actually increase... (though there is certainly a fair percentage of people forcing themselves, to pay 150$ a year for this website, and people might also think more about giving less, to more websites and content providers);
- because by having private forums for paying members, you are using temptation and force, to get your member's money (though, if you cannot find sponsors and enough donations, and you don't want ads, it might be the only solution, in today society -which is really sad, but not a "fate").
> with all due respect, quality is never sold cheap...
GNU/Linux, xBSD, Apache, MySQL, PHP, most other free sofware programs. Internet and Web standards. Firefox, Konqueror/Safari, and, recently, Opera.
Most websites on the Internet.
I won't discuss the absolute value of these projects, but most of them have a pretty similar level of quality than their commercial (and seldom cheap -generally, independently from the quality, but I won't give names) equivalents. Some free projects easily surpass commercial ones.
Of course, most of these projects accept donations, and quite a lot are using advertising (which is indeed highly debatable, as mentionned on the WW subscribing page), as their revenue.
> You'll never succeed in business if you upset your most loyal
> customers by offering a half price service to those who have
> made no commitment ;)
No commitment? You mean not giving money, but, possibly, participating actively, replying topics, and creating new ones, far, far more, than anyone paying, and certainly improving the value of WW, far more than 150$ a year? (this is a general statement, it obviously does not apply to me).
And anyway, we are not talking about buying something (though the private section of the forum might indeed lead some people to think this -because some people are probably paying 150$ a year, to access this section -well, I don't have a precise idea of what is there-, and not simply to support WW), we are talking about direct financial support... if people are upset, the cause is the original high price, leading some people to force themselves to pay it... not the new lower price.
> January Sales of physical goods are different - anyone can buy
> them, and no one customer (or section of customers) is favored
> over another.
January sales are special offers on items previously sold at full price. This is exactly the same, and some people might stumble upon an item they previously brought at a 20-60% higher price... (which does not prevent them from doing the exact same thing, the next year, and which does not prevent them from thinking this is fairly normal).
> I pay more for my newspaper subscription, which I read less,
> but like WW, I can't get through the day w/o it.
What about paying all the people helping you on this forum (including in the private forums), instead of just the WW staff for the servers? (you know, like paying artists more, instead of music labels, and similar companies -I'm sure not comparing the WW staff, to labels, on anything beside the technical situation of WW and labels, as distributors, and the amount of money done compared to actual constributors (and I have no idea about WW financial situation -though, just as labels, we might mostly bypass them, by distributing the distribution efforts, instead of centralizing it, though Usenet and mailing lists, in their current state, sure is not a better alternative)).
I just stumbled upon this topic, I'm not that interested (as I'm using quite a lot of other websites related to webmastering, and don't have the time to participate more), and probably won't reply anymore. I'm just giving my view on the subject.