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Kiteman's opinions on pro features. Answered

(I have deleted huge chunks of the original version of this, which is why some comments may not seem completely relevant).

This is my take on what should be happening:

Whatever is decided, there is one core thing I believe;

  • Pro benefits should be features, not content.

My take, tweaked since first posted elsewhere:

Free membership:

  • Post projects in the current format.
  • When reading projects, have full access to images, no matter who or how they are published.
  • When reading projects, have access to basic PDFs
  • Access to non-pro forums.

Pro membership - all the above, plus:

  • Access to customisable PDF downloads.
  • Patches
  • Access to Pro forums
  • Private publication (projects only visible to those who are sent the URL)
  • Mass-mailing (eg, to all those members who subscribe to you, or to whom you subscribe)
  • Early notification of events and contests.

For an extra fee (I was going to call it "pro-plus", but I think that's a medication):

  • Post projects without advertising.
  • Power to moderate comments on a project.

Please add posts with constructive ideas to Lemonie's topic here.

34 Replies

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kelseymh (author)2009-08-27

I don't think that's what Kiteman meant, Sean. Comments, especially polite ones, should always be acceptable and accepted. Rather, his (and my, and many others) primary objection to the pay-only restrictions, when they were first deployed, was specifically the "secondary images" issue. That was taking away our own original content, rather than taking away "value added" formatting of the content. It took a lot of discussion between us and Eric, but we did get our point across. Because of that, I think some of us don't feel as strongly about the "pro" vs. "not pro" situation as when Kiteman first wrote this.

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Kiteman (author)kelseymh2009-08-27

Yeh, what Kelsey said. Apart from a tiny minority, I think people have generally taken the need for pro-ness on board. On the "extra features" front, pros now have the option of "bios" - they do seem to work, as the number of PMs I get from new members seems to have gone up.

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Kiteman (author)2009-08-27

Things have changed since then - for instance, secondary images are free again.

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killerjackalope (author)2009-06-19

You won't get a reply for a good few hours, they're in bed at this time, though I think this being up now is good, gives a whole day of discussion, as I said over there I think Tiers 1 and 2 are viewing options... One point I'd like to raise is the capacity to mix and match features, for example paying a small fee for only one feature like, say I would like to moderate comments on my 'ibles but not pay to have ads removed and such, I think having a list of add on options at small costs would be a much more reasonable system, though a fair few of these shouldn't be at cost to pro members or maybe pro members get a number of 'ibles per month they can use the features on. To be fair the pro forums have started to get interesting now, it's handy having a place that's kind of quiet and full of mostly known members...

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Kiteman (author)killerjackalope2009-06-19

For me, the pro forum idea is a bit meh - it's nice to have a more secluded place to chat, but it also seems elitist. We're supposed to be inclusive here.

I've tried to put on a happy face for the sake of the site, but I really do not like the way the current set of pro options denies access to so much of the useful content to those who cannot pay.

Pros should have extra features, not extra content.

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Ninzerbean (author)Kiteman2009-06-30

What I don't like is when you spend a whole lot of time answering someone's question in the questions thing and you do so even though they are only a guest, and well... I was thinking that if others are as into this site as I am then supporting it with some money was a good idea so if I was able to I could help someone with a question that really was into this site instead of a "guest".

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lemonie (author)Ninzerbean2009-06-30

You can ignore the Guests it's up to you what you answer, and you'll surely recognise the people who are really into the site? L

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Ninzerbean (author)lemonie2009-06-30

Oh yes I know and I already do - like I recognize you and quite a few others.

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lemonie (author)Ninzerbean2009-06-30

You notice that there's a few questions from India? They may be the next big group, or they may be obstructed by Pro-membership.... L

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Ninzerbean (author)lemonie2009-06-30

Maybe I don't understand something here - before I paid to be a "pro" I was already able to see all the steps on one page (it was my default setting I had set), I was able to print out stuff just fine, I never saw but two ads, I only paid because I love the site and figured it was worth every penny to help support it. Because I use a Mac do you think my ability to have almost everything "pro" offers already existed for me? I kept reading the benefits over and over and just didn't get why anyone would be so inclined to pay for stuff they already got. Like I said I just paid because I wanted to support the site. This members only forum is the ONLY difference there is isn't it? Am I missing something? How will this effect the Indians? Are the Indians not able to get everything I was getting - has something changed and the things that I got before are now no longer available to non "pro"s?

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Kiteman (author)Ninzerbean2009-07-01

The pro features are being left in place for members who had joined before the pro announcement, for a period of 3 months.

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lemonie (author)Ninzerbean2009-06-30

It's a little confusing all-round... L

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Kiteman (author)Ninzerbean2009-06-30

It would be nice if people came back and selected "best" answers more often, but that's a different topic.

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caitlinsdad (author)Kiteman2009-06-19

The way I interpret this is: The author pays to publish an ible that will be fully accessible to all. An additional fee is levied whether you are pro or not to publish an "unlocked" ible with ads. You would pay even more to have an "unlocked" ible without ads. So the target audience for this feature is product manufacturers who might do more of "spam-ibles". I guess you will now have "As Seen on Instructables" adverts.

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Goodhart (author)caitlinsdad2009-06-19

I am sorry, but I am missing something in that: if the published ible is accessible to all, then what does it mean to pay an additional fee to unlock them?

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caitlinsdad (author)Goodhart2009-06-19

I mean locked features from the free viewer's standpoint, they will not be able to see secondary images besides thumbnails, and ability to view/download PDFs if that's what is meant by rich media. You now essentially will pay Instructables to host your ible if you want any users, pro or not, to able to view an ible in its entirety. The author's stance must now change from Public TV/Radio to whether you are providing basic or premium services. The author can subsidize or "let then eat cake".

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Gorfram (author)caitlinsdad2009-06-19

(I've just now gone Pro just so that I could post this comment on this thread. Neither it nor I were Pro when the thread first appeared this morning, but that sort of confusion seems to fit right in.)
(For anyone who would like clarification, the following is a semi-humorous semi-rant.)

So I was going to work up a 3 x 3 matrix with the post-Pro-launch non-Pro registrant, the previous-to-Pro-launch non-Pro registrant, and the Pro-registrant prices & privileges on one axis; and the Tier One, Tier Two, and Tier Three prices & privileges on the other axis - but then I remembered that I flunked Vector Calculus and so I'd never be able to resolve the thing...

Then I figured I'd get myself twenty-seven eight-by-ten color glossy photographs with circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one explaining what each one was. But I'd probably have to do at least some of that as PDF files, and then I'd have be able to access the PDF files in order to figure out whether or not I could access the PDF files...

Now, I am not suggesting that Instructables members start walking into Instructables HQ, singing a bar of Alice's Restaurant, and walking right back out.

Really, I'm not.

Not yet, anyway.

For one thing, there's just no way to figure out where the Group W Bench would be.

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skunkbait (author)Kiteman2009-06-19

I agree. The content really should be the same for all. If I were a newby to Ibles, the lack of full access might be offputting, and rather than go Pro, I might just look elsewhere.

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killerjackalope (author)Kiteman2009-06-19

I don't particularly like the elitist element but I do like having a smaller area for discussion, considering most of the posters of the pro forum are originally forum hogs anyway... I do kind of wonder where my money went about the time that I find out I have to pay for other options and I think pros should be given at least one or two 'ibles a month that they can publish with tier 2 included in their price, I understand the point behind it but denying it to those who already paid seems like a bad move, I would gladly accepted to have a limited number or tier 2 publishings. However after thinking about it I like the idea of have a mix and match model, where you can add features as you wish but don't have to add ones you don't, I think people would get much more usage out of that and it would allow for more flexible pricing plans for users...

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Goodhart (author)Kiteman2009-06-20

Please add posts with constructive ideas to Lemonie's topic here.

You don't want constructive ideas here, anything but, right? :-)

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Gorfram (author)Goodhart2009-06-21

I sure hope not, because that would make my "Flunking vector calculus with Arlo Guthrie" rant/excursion-into-the-weird seem even more out of place. :)

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Goodhart (author)Gorfram2009-06-21

I went searching for that in this thread and couldn't find it. It is 5:30 am, I haven't been able to sleep, and so I am a bit dense at the moment a bit more than normal ;-)

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Gorfram (author)Goodhart2009-06-21

Last I saw it, it was the very last post in this thread (for reference, it's time-stamped "Jun 19, 2009. 11:37 AM"). Not sure if I should warn you against it in your current state of lack-o'-slumber, or whether it might prove to be just the thing. :)

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Goodhart (author)Gorfram2009-06-21

Odd, the only posts by you I found are the two above that I replied to....I am going to try and get sum sweep... ;-)

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Gorfram (author)Goodhart2009-06-21

Okay, that's officially odd. I'm not at all sure that the post merits repetition, but just for the record:

"Jun 19, 2009. 11:37 AM Gorfram says:
(I've just now gone Pro just so that I could post this comment on this thread. Neither it nor I were Pro when the thread first appeared this morning, but that sort of confusion seems to fit right in.)
(For anyone who would like clarification, the following is a semi-humorous semi-rant.)

So I was going to work up a 3 x 3 matrix with the post-Pro-launch non-Pro registrant, the previous-to-Pro-launch non-Pro registrant, and the Pro-registrant prices & privileges on one axis; and the Tier One, Tier Two, and Tier Three prices & privileges on the other axis - but then I remembered that I flunked Vector Calculus and so I'd never be able to resolve the thing...

Then I figured I'd get myself twenty-seven eight-by-ten color glossy photographs with circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one explaining what each one was. But I'd probably have to do at least some of that as PDF files, and then I'd have be able to access the PDF files in order to figure out whether or not I could access the PDF files...

Now, I am not suggesting that Instructables members start walking into Instructables HQ, singing a bar of Alice's Restaurant, and walking right back out.

Really, I'm not.

Not yet, anyway.

For one thing, there's just no way to figure out where the Group W Bench would be."

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Goodhart (author)Gorfram2009-06-23

Very odd, no, not your post, but the fact that I now see both this one I am answering, and the first one Maybe I am losing it....

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Gorfram (author)Goodhart2009-06-23

Oh, good - for a while there I was starting to think that maybe I was the only one who could see my more out-there postings, and imagining that I could hear strains of the theme to "The Twilight Zone." And I don't think you're losing it - it was probably just a matter of sleep deprivation. (It is a little odd that you don't think my post was odd, but then, oddity is in the id of the beholder :).

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Goodhart (author)Gorfram2009-06-23
I don't know how much it had to do with biological distress (maybe stress), but I was beholden things that were not there, so I guess I could have missed what really was there....

Twilight Zone !



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lemonie (author)2009-06-20

I think some of the implementation may have been a bit "cack-handed", but I don't fully understand this new thing so I'm reserving comment until I do. L

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I3uckwheat (author)2009-06-19

truthfully when came to instructables one day i say the pro and said "great, the next step will be advertising before instructables." and i almost cried i didnt want to have to pay to see all the things on my favorite sight.... :'( time to find a new sight.............................................................................................

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Kiteman (author)I3uckwheat2009-06-19

I'm not trying to give people reasons to leave.

The pro feature seems to be necessary, so I want it to be done right.

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Goodhart (author)Kiteman2009-06-20

Yes, and also for any instructions to be clear as to what will or will not be done

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