Donations and a New Storage Server

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Postby WiseAnt » Sun Oct 12, 2008 2:55 am

I just got done pledging for the first time right before I read this. The check's in the mail, Tuesday(Mondays a federal holiday).

A few comments though.

1) It took me so long to donate because donating isn't explained until you actually click the pledge button. Anyone who's used Limewire knows how to look out for the shell game so I never clicked it by accident. Also, there was a fear of clicking the pledge button. What if I get sucked into pledging by accident and become a defaulted member? Plus, it might help to let everyone know just how little a donation can be(1 Large pizza or a movie w/popcorn). I was always concerned that I couldn't afford it. It really is easier than I made it out to be. A little more info up front before you click a button called "PLEDGE" may help increase the likelihood of first time donators.

2)Perks for donating should be greater and explained better. As others have said, other than the warm fuzzies and an avoidance of 10 seconds plus pledge screen flashes, I don't have a clue why a person would donate. Me, I do get the warm fuzzies for supporting the .org but that just isn't everyone(been feeling guilty since my first upload). Sure the pledge flashes every other screen are annoying, but when you want ice cream, you don't really complain when you have to use a bowl instead of eating straight from the carton. And 10 seconds is a joke. I've been known to pick my nose for longer. :lol: My vote is for 20 to 30. No different than many direct download sites. Some of the perks should be...

3) I like the shwag idea for certain higher donation levels(not that I'll reach them any time soon). If we could come up with a way to make it a no overhead prize that would rock, but I can't think of anything worth a big whoop. I'm sorry, "woot" for you youngsters. Also, I think streaming should be for donators only. You can search all you want but you have to be a member to download locally. You can download all you want but you have to donate to stream. Not really that much of a leap. Whiners will always be whiners, you can't really stop that Jaddzia. You could also post a list of "This weeks donators" or a newest donator. Just a little extra advertisement for your vids like the new vid on the block. With an option to decline for those shy or paranoid.

4) At first I wasn't too keen on this streaming idea. I come to the .org to watch high quality product. I've never seen a stream as crisp as a download. Plus, there is the paranoia of changing the game for rights holders who are currently turning a blind eye to downloads but may not condone streaming. After reading J-isis's post though, I'm starting to look forward to it. There are a lot of vids I would spend 30sec to preview but can't risk spending 10+ min downloading and I have dsl. Heck, my vids are definitely on that line(but I'm getting better :) ).

5) I don't think selling merchandise is a wise move right now. You would have to buy a product in order to sell it. Making any kind of profit requires you buy in bulk. That equals expensive up front costs plus storage issues. Then you have to think variety and diversification. Hats, mugs, shot glasses, pencils, pens, stickers, and multiple shirt designs, colors, sizes, and styles. I just don't think the market for merch is big enough, maybe 500 people. Once they buy something that's it. The amount of repeat business is sure to drop. I love my favorite band, but I only have one T-shirt and a couple stickers with their logo(besides CD's, but that equivalent would be the free downloads). In comparison the .org is my friendly lab partner.

6) I definitely think there should be an auction, on the .org or at a couple cons, to recycle the old server HDD's. In fact, to gain revenue I suggest we have an auction/raffle monthly or quarterly for an SD card(or DVD) full of vids. Something that can easily be mailed in a self addressed stamped envelope. I just discovered by going to AWA just how convenient it was to sit down and enjoy dozens of quality AMV's without spending hours looking them up and downloading. Heck, for that matter you could do the same at all the cons. Just offer a media device full of the winning videos with all of the proceeds going to the .org. I can't imagine a con that isn't indebted to the .org. A little more involved, but a suggestion none the less.

I think there was something else, but I can't remember right now. Anyhoo, my .02
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Postby guy07 » Mon Oct 13, 2008 6:22 pm

Done and done. 8-)

Though I'm not sure how much 14 bucks is going to help ... :uhoh:
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Postby Zarxrax » Tue Oct 14, 2008 2:03 pm

I would agree that the process of pledging/donating really ought to be completely redesigned so that it's a lot simpler. As it stands, the whole donation process is needlessly complex and difficult to understand. When someone clicks the donation button they are taken to a page that would take them a good 10 minutes to read through, for gosh sakes! I think the whole idea of "pledging" is really confusing to most people as well, as most people probably just want to make a 1 time donation. And the consequence of TAKING AWAY peoples downloading privileges if they screw up and don't really understand what they are doing has been something that I have never understood.
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Postby kinggreg10 » Tue Oct 14, 2008 3:25 pm

guy07 wrote:Done and done. 8-)

Though I'm not sure how much 14 bucks is going to help ... :uhoh:


thats another problem with pledging the fact that you may need to pledge more then the minimum to get the minimum in some countries and since im in canada too that is one barrier :| also what we should look at are if it is cheaper to buy from canada or other places and import into the USA... but as mentioned before we should know the price guess on how much it will cost... that is another reason why i am also not donating out of 3 the third is no money :( but what i fear most is if i donate the server is not kept or something goes wrong shortly after i donate and the site goes down and shut down i would lose my money which could of been used for something else or by some one else... so unless i also see some sort of guarantee that the site will be up for the period of my donation i will not donate (which to many is stupid yet money is money thoughts who worked for the money should know what i mean)

Now if the site needs to shut down due to a lawsuit then im fine with that reason but unless i have some sort of financial proof it will be up for 1 year (or during the donation period) i will not donate :?
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Postby godix » Tue Oct 14, 2008 3:33 pm

kinggreg10 wrote:unless i have some sort of financial proof it will be up for 1 year (or during the donation period) i will not donate :?

You're account has been around since 2004. If you won't donate for the next year how about donating for the last four years instead?
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Postby kinggreg10 » Tue Oct 14, 2008 4:01 pm

godix wrote:
kinggreg10 wrote:unless i have some sort of financial proof it will be up for 1 year (or during the donation period) i will not donate :?

You're account has been around since 2004. If you won't donate for the next year how about donating for the last four years instead?


No worries about the past as if or when i have money to burn with out a care i'll prob do it here as one of the top 3 unless proof is shown.

But since money is extremely tight for me right now and cant donate and when im done school and working it will be tight for a short time too... due to loans debts etc... and during that time i may donate but i would need some sort of financial proof during these times...

remember what is here today and yesterday may not be tomorrow :( and thats what i fear...

But also along with donating i would also like to see were the money is going... and unless you your self say you have access to this stuff i will say prove then were the money is going...

the reason why i said that above is because im donating for a service to be provided and what annoyed about one game service during a year membership was they were down and non credited me back the days that happened... also since that game is a international company out to make money registered to the government it most likely will not cheat, but one will never know. that is also why this site has not been registered to any government as far as i know and the fact that it is ran by one person seems a little risky even though it has been around for a long time who says he wont start? while if it was registered to someone (still can get a non profit thing and not give out tax receipts) and with proof i would be more then willing to donate ;)
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Postby Garridy » Tue Oct 14, 2008 4:02 pm

And the consequence of TAKING AWAY peoples downloading privileges if they screw up and don't really understand what they are doing has been something that I have never understood.

I never understood that either. I'm sure it "scares away" potential donators.
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Postby derobert » Tue Oct 14, 2008 7:58 pm

Kero: 12 x 250GB SATA
Nago: 8x, mix of 200GB and 250GB PATA

Some of the drives are actually dead, but we have cold spares sitting around at my place.

Occurs to me that we could just upgrade Kero, since it is 12-port SATA. 1.5TB SATAs are <$200; that's a shitload of disk space...
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Postby Coderjoe » Tue Oct 14, 2008 8:23 pm

derobert wrote:Kero: 12 x 250GB SATA
Nago: 8x, mix of 200GB and 250GB PATA

Some of the drives are actually dead, but we have cold spares sitting around at my place.

Occurs to me that we could just upgrade Kero, since it is 12-port SATA. 1.5TB SATAs are <$200; that's a shitload of disk space...


That's also a couple of months of rebuilding, at least if you do the one-at-a-time method.
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Postby derobert » Tue Oct 14, 2008 9:32 pm

Coderjoe wrote:That's also a couple of months of rebuilding, at least if you do the one-at-a-time method.


I figure it'd be saner to just take some downtime: Copy all the videos to a 2TB NAS (or two, just to be paranoid); then rebuild the server; then copy back. Can probably be done in a long day at the colo, worst case two, provided the NAS is gigabit. Ok, even better, once configured, could be done mostly remotely.
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Postby Prince_Majin_Trunks » Wed Oct 15, 2008 2:21 pm

One of the things I would suggest is adding a nice big "DONATE TO a-m-v.org" button on the main navigation of the site where its easy to see. This will be a constant reminder. Have it so when you click it it takes you directly to a pay-pal page where you enter the amount you want to donate. On that page PayPal already lets you know how to pay (either by Credit Card or PayPal Account.)

Under that button (on the main navigation for the site) have a text link centered that says (for more information click here) that takes you to a REVISED donate/pledge page with a tutorial for people who don't understand.

Also on the main page I would suggest a progress chart showing us the server goal and how much we've reached, and then after this showing us the goal for the month and how much we've reached. That way the users are always are of if were going to be around next month or not. Since donations need to be a constant thing not just a one time event.

Then I would also recommend various "Donator Only Options." Very simple stuff, and nothing involved the acutal use/viewing of AMV's. Things like:

- the ability to change your user name on your own

- adding a screenshot to your video page (not upload, but a "enter URL here" and maybe a link to photobucket for those who arn't aware of image hosting services.) Then it would be aligned on the page and resized to a pre-set size. Of course let people know what the pre-set size is.

- ability to edit posts on the forum.

- have the top donators in a "Hall of Fame" section on the site with links going to there profile and/or a video of there choice. (Coding to make it so the users in this user group can change the video link that will appear on the page would actually be pretty simple. Probably take half an hour to implement. An extra database table) Kinda like advertising. In fact you could have a "Featured Video" area on the main page that would rotate these videos that the "Hall of Fame" donators select. Advertising for there videos. With the screen shot feature implemented this would would visually make it more appealing as well. Mind you this would require you making SMALL changes to the design of the main page. But that would be as simple as adding a few new tables on top of the content area and wouldn't be at all difficult to pull off.

- things of that nature. People have posted other good ideas aswell.

Have the extra features be as simple as donating $1.00 a month to keep. With the exception of the hall of fame have the simple features expire every month. A $1.00 a month is nothing big for any one person to donate once a month, but a $1.00 from even half the users will be extremely helpful. Also since these are basically "extras" they wont effect the general user experience for those who don't donate.
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Postby Radical_Yue » Wed Oct 15, 2008 3:14 pm

/me is bit busy and doesn't really have time to read through the whole thread but.. >_>;;


Has anyone mentioned the option of a type of "gift donation"? Like donating on someone else's behalf. I mean, I know you can still do it, but you do have to poke a mod or two to get it done, so maybe making it a set feature? I know there are quite a few people I'd like to do it for.
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Postby SQ » Wed Oct 15, 2008 3:43 pm

Radical_Yue wrote:Has anyone mentioned the option of a type of "gift donation"? Like donating on someone else's behalf. I mean, I know you can still do it, but you do have to poke a mod or two to get it done, so maybe making it a set feature? I know there are quite a few people I'd like to do it for.

This this this this!!!

I've never clicked the pledge button because I'm afraid it'll lock me into something (probably why I complain about the falsely named "Donate page" so much) but if we do get a paypal page (Assuming we don't have one already) It'd be easy enough to say "Put username you want donation credited to in comments box" or something.

Right?
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Postby Coderjoe » Wed Oct 15, 2008 4:00 pm

SQ wrote:I've never clicked the pledge button because I'm afraid it'll lock me into something (probably why I complain about the falsely named "Donate page" so much) but if we do get a paypal page (Assuming we don't have one already) It'd be easy enough to say "Put username you want donation credited to in comments box" or something.

Right?

It already pretty much works this way. Go to paypal and log in. Then click Send Money, enter the donation email address (looks like amvorg@hotmail.com), enter the amount, pick "Services/Other", then click "continue". Change your payment method, if necessary, and enter the org username in the message box. If it were a donation for yourself, then you would put your own username there. if you wanted to gift it, put another username there. Then click "Send Money". Done
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Postby JaddziaDax » Wed Oct 15, 2008 4:49 pm

Radical_Yue wrote:/me is bit busy and doesn't really have time to read through the whole thread but.. >_>;;


Has anyone mentioned the option of a type of "gift donation"? Like donating on someone else's behalf. I mean, I know you can still do it, but you do have to poke a mod or two to get it done, so maybe making it a set feature? I know there are quite a few people I'd like to do it for.


you need to stop spending your money on other people :P
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