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Do Admin ever see site for Non - Premium Members?

Discussion in 'Site Feedback & Support' started by Dave Flower, Nov 4, 2013.

  1. I decided some time ago that i would not donate, (not in my own forum accountl/namel/ip adress at least), now replaced by Premium Membership. Its a personal choice brought about from life experience of seeing peoples true colours come out in the way they treat people they percieve to be less, mainly financially, viable than themselves. Think Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman on Rodeo Drive. Best personal example of true colous i can was a salesman years ago at Merlin, Chesterfield, I turned up in a car worth about four thousand, in reasonable, but none branded, worn clothing, not quite scruffy, but not looking particularly wealthy (never been wealthy, life means nowadays Im positively poor!, but thats another story. Suffice to say the salesman didnt get the sales, or the commmission, i got to scare him on a test drive though...
    My final reason for posting is that due to an advert overlaying im not able to log out of the site because it covers the optionsin my account. Thats was the final straw that drove me to post. I have been increasingly aware, however, that RD is possibly getting to a stage where ads are becoming intrusive in ones experience of the site.I fully understand the need to generate income on such a great site, but have asked myself, numerous times over these past weeks n- if there was this much intrusion by ads, back in 2008, when I joined, would I have got as far as joining, or would the ad riddled pages have swayed my judgementk? Its a balance between revenue and user friendliness n- maybe its just me, either way I usre admin to make a point of experiencing the site as a new joinernon premium member in order to see how new people coming to RD see the site. You could argue n- go premium, and ignore it, im not a stakeholder in the site so why should Ivbe botheredk? Its just me n my quirks, same as waering scruffy clothes instead of a three piece suit to go shopping for high value items n- i like to step back and see the biggervpicture..
     
  2. Paul Bennett

    Paul Bennett
    Premium Member

    Dave, I use Add-Blocker on chrome I've never seen the site with adds. It's a shame that not many sites would survive on the web without advertising, but unless you have subscription or eCommerce site there's no money on the web. I went Premium for a bit more flexibility with posts and the chance of a special offer on sim's ect
     
  3. Justin Swan

    Justin Swan
    RD-DVLC

    I pay a premium as a big thankyou for a great service these guys provide and in the hope that this small (too small imo) membership fee keeps RD going for the foreseeable future. I never found the ads intrusive and didn't have any bearing in my decision to become a premium member. There was one reason alone and that reason was because RD is worth supporting!!
     
  4. Tom

    Tom
    Staff Emeritus Staff

    Thing is, it costs a literal ****ton of money to run this beast. All the servers and traffic isn't exactly cheap, you don't need to be a rocket scientist to figure as much. We believe having an optional donation (with added benefits, so this is by no means tax-free for us!) is the best way to cover the gap in between ad revenue and what it does cost to run everything. That's why I'm asking everyone not to advice people to make use of adblocking addons, pretty please.

    @Dave Flower I'm sad to hear you're having such problems but this is often caused by either an ad that is outright broken (not a problem on our side, so not much we can do sadly) or your browser isn't displaying the page correctly. Try hitting CTRL + F5 in order to reload the site completely, that should often do the trick. I can see why donating isn't always an option but I hope you can understand us needing the ads to keep RD alive.

    Just so that you guys know: we are often checking the site with our test accounts, making sure that everything's still about right. Although there are financial needs the community is very, very important to us. :)

    We've also had a discussion about ads some time ago, so maybe you'll find something you're still curious about in here too. Please let us know if there's anything unclear.

    Tom
     
  5. Warren Dawes

    Warren Dawes
    Premium Member

    Gee Dave, I would hope that being a premium member didn't cause someone to "look down" on a non premium member as less financially viable" than themselves. The tiny donation for Premium I make each year hardly puts me into some higher wealth status. Like most here, I make my donation out of good faith and a thank you for the many hours of enjoyment I get, but if others choose not to, for whatever reason, that is understandable too. I would think that your Julia Roberts analogy is waaaaay off the mark at this site. ;)

    I have seen the impact of the Ads (when my Premium membership expired) and they are somewhat intrusive at times. However, I've also visited many other sites that rely on ads for financial support, and they are no better in that regard. I'd guess that it is an inconvenience that is a result of the number of donators being rather small, and the cost of the website (and servers) having to be paid somehow.
     
  6. Paul Bennett

    Paul Bennett
    Premium Member

    T

    Tom, I agree with you reply sorry to rock the boat with the Add-Blocker, I've used it a long time can't go back now. I'm no expert in the web business but I understand that running such a site
    has a "money burn rate", and I'm sure Bram started it just for his love of sim-racing like us all. But as time goes on the web has changed with a lot more options for sim-racers now,
    if RD is to stay as good as it is maybe a different model needs to be adapted.
     
  7. Tom

    Tom
    Staff Emeritus Staff

    I know it wasn't meant that way, no worries. I'm using an adblocker too but simply disable it on sites I frequent a lot without having donated, worked pretty well so far. :)
    I'm sure Bram keeps thinking about how to improve RD, we're often talking about things we can do to improve RD for everyone - sadly it's often easier said than done and we're thankful for all the support RD is getting, really and honestly thankful.

    Tom
     
    • Like Like x 3
  8. First - my analogy was not intended to say i have seen or experienced 'that' sort of attitude on RD, EVER. More to indicate where I come from with my 'quirks'.

    I am fully aware of the costs attached to running a great site like RD and totally appreciate just how good it is to be here 2008-2013 and still loving the site is testament to that. Sure theres been some ups and downs, but im still here, and would still always recommend RD to anyone n - and still do whenever the opportunity arises.

    My post is more to remind the site admin not to loose sight of how ads can affect repeat visits and potentially hinder time spent on the site, and ultimately sign ups. I want to see RD continue to thrive, no doubt there.

    Maybe the ability to anonmyously donate, and/or hide the Premium Membership button could be a consideration as the site developsk? I say this partly because Im a fan of helping silently, without seeking credit(another 'me' quirk), but equally because some may see a wall of Premium Members' as being akin to an old boys club situation and therefore not feel as comfortable signing up. I still am 100% behind RD and post not to agitate or inflame, but to, hopefully, get people thinking positively about how new visitors see the site.

    the site through new visitors eyes be done on different devices too. As i think mobile devvices are here to stay.. Keep up the great work. Respect and regards, Dave..
     
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Tom

    Tom
    Staff Emeritus Staff

    First of all: I have merged your post to make up for the slight hiccup.

    Donating anonymously would be difficult I think but not displaying the badge publicly is something we can look into. Not sure how easy this is to implement but it certainly can't hurt to have a look at it! I understand that suddenly everyone becoming a premium member would make it look a bit odd and agree with you, sometimes it's just better to remain silent about your good deeds, knowingly that you helped.

    Ad placement is always difficult, it often depends on the device etc. to make it work perfectly and although Xenforo is awesome for mobile devices it's like every other piece of software: not perfect but nearly there. :)

    We'll take your feedback into account, obviously, and are thankful for you bringing this up. We're blessed with people both giving us feedback and staying with us even if something goes wrong. So kudos back to you and thank you once again.

    Tom
     
    • Like Like x 1
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  10. Bram

    Bram
    Roaring Pipes Maniacs | #27 Staff Premium Member

    Which browser did you use when this happened Dave? I always test the site with the latest (vanilla) versions of IE, FF, Chrome and Opera and with none of these browsers I am able to reproduce what you describe.
     
    • Love Love x 1
  11. @Bram Hengeveld using android device, browser screem size larget than screen size ( which may or may not be relevant) Vauxhhall ad first one that caused me a problem. Had it this morning a few times, but not again.. Browser info as follows Chrome 11.0696.34 according to mybrowserinfo.com..
     
  12. Bram

    Bram
    Roaring Pipes Maniacs | #27 Staff Premium Member

    Running on android myself on the Bramsung Galaxy but can't reproduce it there either m8.

    Will disable the ads for logged in members for now and see what the results are.
     
  13. Bram - it's great that your listening and acting upon feedback.like this, thankyou for listening. No offemce intended, but I think it's wrong to disable ads for logged in members. Three reasons - first it means your not as likely to get feedback should ads become troublesome as its member's who deal with those ads that have a forum account and so can provide feedback. Second - less revenue for RD and Third - it undermines the motivation for members to go premium by taking away one of the benefits of going premium (no ads). I do hope I'm contributing usefully with these posts and not coming over as some moaning, unhappy at the world idiot - I'm first. to admit that's what I am a lot of the time! This thread, however, is not intended to be one of those times!
     
  14. Tom

    Tom
    Staff Emeritus Staff

    I too just checked it on my iPhone 4S (Safari) and Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 (Chrome) and all ads were working fine (I was logged out of course). Maybe it really was a hiccup with a few ads after all. I'll keep looking into it, can't hurt to make sure it doesn't happen again. :)

    Tom