Donations and a New Storage Server

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Postby Orwell » Tue Oct 07, 2008 8:02 pm

BasharOfTheAges wrote:As an aside, I'd like to try to get you to address a concern I have regarding a doomsday scenario. If we get taken down, I know you've said in the past you'd comply, but what about turning over donation information so we, the donators, can be prosecuted for "funding a criminal piracy organization" or however they'd trump up the charges? In other words... you stand before this court a <strike>Witch</strike> <strike>Communist</strike> <strike>Death Eater</strike> Pirate, are there any names you wish to offer to save yourself? I love this place and will freely donate (lots more) money, but only if I don't feel endangered. I'm sure others feel the same way.


x2.
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Re: Donations and a New Storage Server

Postby Scintilla » Tue Oct 07, 2008 8:27 pm

Corran wrote:@Scintilla: The local copies would still exist. Streaming videos would be more of a preview feature rather than a replacement.

I never meant to imply otherwise. Actually, wait -- are you saying you would have to make the video available for local download in order to make it available for streaming (couldn't have a stream without a local)? Because if so, then I guess those people I mentioned wouldn't be attracted after all.
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Postby Otohiko » Tue Oct 07, 2008 8:32 pm

Orwell wrote:
BasharOfTheAges wrote:As an aside, I'd like to try to get you to address a concern I have regarding a doomsday scenario. If we get taken down, I know you've said in the past you'd comply, but what about turning over donation information so we, the donators, can be prosecuted for "funding a criminal piracy organization" or however they'd trump up the charges? In other words... you stand before this court a <strike>Witch</strike> <strike>Communist</strike> <strike>Death Eater</strike> Pirate, are there any names you wish to offer to save yourself? I love this place and will freely donate (lots more) money, but only if I don't feel endangered. I'm sure others feel the same way.


x2.


While I understand the concern, I don't quite see what the .org can do about that. I mean, however you slice it, you're involved in the production and distribution of AMVs by virtue of being involved in this hobby and supporting it. While it's understandable that you wouldn't want to suffer any consequences, I don't think the .org is in a position to make any guarantees. The staff here are very much in the same boat as you - they're volunteers and they've only done slightly more "against the "law"" here than the average AMVer. I frankly think it's unfair to expect them to "take the bullet" for everyone if such a scenario occurs, let alone promise that they'll vow silence. What could they say anyway? "Scout's Honor"?

***

More to the topic - I thought bandwith was never an issue for the .org (I recall phade or derobert talking about it before), so streaming I would most welcome, though I'd still be mostly downloading things.

I really agree that some sort of merchandise should be tried on again. I think there may be a critical mass for it now that it may work. DriftRoot's idea ("if you donate a certain amount you get [something]") may be a good way to encourage people to donate more. For encouraging more people to donate, I think streaming may well be a nifty little trick.

For the HDs - how about letting people bid on the HDs and then deciding whether they want Option #2 or #3? I think some people may prefer one, while others might like the other.
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Postby NS » Tue Oct 07, 2008 8:35 pm

What constitutes the "best" videos? All the popular ones or just any that is generally deemed as decent?
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Postby NeoQuixotic » Tue Oct 07, 2008 9:57 pm

I like the auctioning off of hard drives. From what I've seen go down at conventions, hard drives full of AMVs from Phade go for top dollar. Out with the old and in with the new! :D
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Postby Orwell » Tue Oct 07, 2008 9:58 pm

NerdStrudel wrote:What constitutes the "best" videos? All the popular ones or just any that is generally deemed as decent?


Anything you didn't make, I think. :roll:


Oto: I don't expect much here, I'm just curious as to his response. I know there's a danger here incase of take down for contributing and using the site, nevermind the donations. It doesn't affect whether I'll donate again. What will, is figuring out whether while cleaning I threw my credit card in the trash.
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Postby NS » Tue Oct 07, 2008 10:04 pm

Orwell wrote:
NerdStrudel wrote:What constitutes the "best" videos? All the popular ones or just any that is generally deemed as decent?


Anything you didn't make, I think. :roll:


Oto: I don't expect much here, I'm just curious as to his response. I know there's a danger here incase of take down for contributing and using the site, nevermind the donations. It doesn't affect whether I'll donate again. What will, is figuring out whether while cleaning I threw my credit card in the trash.


That was uncalled for, I wasn't trying to be a smartass or bash anybody, I was just wondering :O.
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Re: Donations and a New Storage Server

Postby godix » Tue Oct 07, 2008 10:16 pm

Phade wrote:Traditionally, member donations have outpaced monthly costs allowing us to upgrade our servers whenever the need arose every year or so. However, this trend has not kept up over the last year. Donations have been coming in at a slightly slower pace than site monthly expenses, thus causing us to use our “server savings” to keep the site running. But, now we really need a new server.

So lets say this message does a good job of boosting donations for a short time to get the server then donations fall back to the level they've been for the last year. I know you mention ideas for increasing donations but what if none of those pan out? How much longer would things keep running at the level they have been for the last year? In other words, after we donate for a new server are we going be seeing another post a few months down the line asking for donations just to keep going?

Note: I'm not against another donation push if needed. It's just I've seen other sites ask for donations for reason A then a few months later have to turn around and ask for more because of reason B. A lot of the reason A donators seemed to get ticked off and thought their donations were wasted or something. In order to prevent future bitching I think we need to know around when we'll be hit up again if things keep going as they have been going.

Can we delete old videos? The goal of the site is to collect every video ever created. Deleting videos would go against that purpose.

Correct me if I'm wrong, and obvious you would know the sites original goal better than I, but I always thought the goal was to CATEGORIZE every video not COLLECT. Thus why VCA qualifications and so on are based on if you entered in all your videos rather than if you uploaded them.

The reason I mention this, apparently we're facing a problem by the end of the month. As a short term fix to extend the time till HD doomsday you might want to consider allowing creators to delete their local copies. Don't let them delete the video entry itself of course so it's still categorized. Perhaps add additional requirements like can't have more than a certain op average or more than x amounts of downloads a month or something to keep popular videos from disappearing. Maybe even require that any video deleted be direct hosted elsewhere or something. But still, I think letting people delete stuff might expand the time frame here a bit without any harm to the goal of organizing all videos.

With the extra storage space, we are looking into possibly allowing streaming videos in addition to the current downloads.


I vote no for two reasons. First off is the 'we aren't the tube and we don't want their legal issues' arguement. Second off if I go to a videos profile I don't really want to see a low quality crappy video load up automatically. I'm on unlimited (well, 250 gig a month) broadband so it doesn't do much more than annoy me but I know from talking to people that more than you'd think are on metered internet where a bunch of streamed crap that they're going to download full copies of anyway might actually hurt them. If the site does do streaming I hope that it's something that actively requires the user to initiate instead of something that automatically loads up when you visit the video profile.

Selling site merchandise (t-shirts, mugs, etc.) could also boost income.

I've seen several sites try and I have yet to see any really get a steady income from this. The results would probably be a decent start as the existing members order stuff then shortly after than it drops to one or two items a month from new users. For a one time special purpose need, such as a new server, that might work. For a constant month in month out income generator it probably isn't a good idea. The idea others mentioned of making it a donators benefit for high levels of donation, like PBS, may be better.

BasharOfTheAges wrote: If we get taken down, I know you've said in the past you'd comply, but what about turning over donation information so we, the donators, can be prosecuted for "funding a criminal piracy organization" or however they'd trump up the charges?

Anyone who promises you that this won't happen is either lying or instantly deleting the donators information. On the plus side, I have yet to hear of any case where lawyers took a viewpoint even remotely like this. The only time financing online 'piracy' seems to get you into trouble is if you actually buy partial ownership of the site and clearly org donations aren't that.
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Re: Donations and a New Storage Server

Postby ngsilver » Tue Oct 07, 2008 11:32 pm

godix wrote:
Can we delete old videos? The goal of the site is to collect every video ever created. Deleting videos would go against that purpose.

Correct me if I'm wrong, and obvious you would know the sites original goal better than I, but I always thought the goal was to CATEGORIZE every video not COLLECT. Thus why VCA qualifications and so on are based on if you entered in all your videos rather than if you uploaded them.

The reason I mention this, apparently we're facing a problem by the end of the month. As a short term fix to extend the time till HD doomsday you might want to consider allowing creators to delete their local copies. Don't let them delete the video entry itself of course so it's still categorized. Perhaps add additional requirements like can't have more than a certain op average or more than x amounts of downloads a month or something to keep popular videos from disappearing. Maybe even require that any video deleted be direct hosted elsewhere or something. But still, I think letting people delete stuff might expand the time frame here a bit without any harm to the goal of organizing all videos.
I myself would graciously remove a portion of the videos I have uploaded (the preview videos and joke vids) and host those on my own server if it meant allowing more space for newer (read better) videos. At the moment this is the best option for me, who has to choose between feeding himself and his car or donating to this site. It's an option for those of us who are having financial hardships of our own.
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Postby Vlad G Pohnert » Wed Oct 08, 2008 12:22 am

Qute honestly, new hardware is required and taking a few videos down wil give us very little breathign space... Fact is, space is almost all gone so the decision to get it must be made very soon...

Another more intresting think might be is a hard drive donation swap donation.. If you sponsor a Hard Drive for a set price (that would pay for the drive and portion of the rest of the Hardware), one of the old full drives of AMVs would be send to you! That might be one way of doing it...

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Postby Autraya » Wed Oct 08, 2008 12:29 am

although I'm not enarmoured of the idea of punishing non-donators with extra restrictions.... you could always limit the number of videos allowable for dload per month to 20 (or something) for non-donators.

hmm those are cheap drives $130 US for 1 TB server drive o.o even at the computer fair out here a SATA 1TB 7200rmp 32 mb cache seagate is $197 AUD not to mention they aren't server drives and for anything that's 10,000 rmp or higher it costs at least $200 more.... (not that i've seen any over 500gb running at that speed down here in burly land).
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Re: Donations and a New Storage Server

Postby Arigatomina » Wed Oct 08, 2008 5:55 am

godix wrote:As a short term fix to extend the time till HD doomsday you might want to consider allowing creators to delete their local copies.

Make this a donator option if you have to. I'd donate for the chance to control the distribution of my vids.

You might also consider going back to local as a donator-only option like in the early carrot days. With all the free file hosts on the net, and the tube, there's no need for the org to host every video listed here. Local came about when it was difficult to find hosting. The whole attraction of the org for me was the hosting opportunity. Today, it's easy to find free hosting.

As a long term fix, encouraging people to host their own vids should help a lot. The only reason to upload to local now is so you can get stars and QCs.

I'm also wondering what the point is of keeping copies of all vids uploaded to the org on harddrives. How many of those have had the local link removed? If the local link is gone, the video should be erased from the harddrive as well. An un-downloadable video serves no purpose sitting there taking up space. Especially those banned Evanescence vids.

I wouldn't mind donating to let non-donators view streamed previews of my vids. As long as I have control over which vids are available to stream. And, like Godix said, it isn't an automatic streaming the second you click the vid profile. That would be very tacky.

As far as the donation system setup goes, I like paypal. It's convenient. It would be nice if the org had a link that takes you to paypal with the org email already entered so all you have to do is put the amount you're donating (like ebay does).
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Re: Donations and a New Storage Server

Postby Scintilla » Wed Oct 08, 2008 5:58 am

godix wrote:
Can we delete old videos? The goal of the site is to collect every video ever created. Deleting videos would go against that purpose.

Correct me if I'm wrong, and obvious you would know the sites original goal better than I, but I always thought the goal was to CATEGORIZE every video not COLLECT.

I know I've pointed this out myself a few times in the past, and what I remember the admins telling me is that things have changed in the past five years. Apparently, though the cataloguing is still the primary goal of the site, having them all for download is now also a goal to be actively pursued.

ngsilver wrote:At the moment this is the best option for me, who has to choose between feeding himself and his car or donating to this site.

You feed your car?
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Postby Shui » Wed Oct 08, 2008 6:16 am

I'd be happy to donate as soon as I have a solid income.... means in like 3 years :?
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Re: Donations and a New Storage Server

Postby ngsilver » Wed Oct 08, 2008 6:23 am

Scintilla wrote:
ngsilver wrote:At the moment this is the best option for me, who has to choose between feeding himself and his car or donating to this site.
You feed your car?
Gas. Costs more then a gallon of milk.
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