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#1 gav240z

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 06:03 AM

As an off-shoot to the Lancefield collection thread I would like to say as webmaster of Auszcar.com that I have no plans to create such a section.

I also do not feel that a joining fee for Auszcar.com is necessary, the web is a medium in which information is free and accessible to everyone and I think that creating a fee based structure or private forum section would hold little benefit to members of the community. I think trying to implement any such system would kill our community and website.

I would however like to open the discussion to members of the community and get your feedback since you opinion is what counts most.

#2 brently

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 12:21 PM


Gav,

As an aspiring Zed owner I really appreciate such a brill site being free access.  It is a little difficult to justify becoming a donating member until such time as I remove the "aspiring" tag; however, I have obtained some valuable advice (direct and indirect) and almost pursued a Zed advertised through the AusZCar forums.  Consequently, I can't say I'm not getting anything out of the site - if it's user pays then I should definitely have paid by now.  It's a tricky one but keep up the good work whichever way you decide to go.

Cheers,

Brently.

#3 Scoota G

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 01:12 PM

A private section sort of sounds like the "sealed" sectoin in one of those Men's magazines. Open it up and all you would get is Zeds with all the paint stripped off.  :-\

#4 Mr240z

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 01:17 PM

I would like to see a private section for donating member's.

We donate to keep this site alive and running and should have or own section for topic's
that started all this talk..

That's what they do on other forum clubs that I donate to...A Member's section for all the special stuff that comes up.
That gives us first bite on things that come up...And after we have talked it though we can move it to a general section for all to see.

That's my 2c

#5 Zedman240®

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 01:47 PM

I would like to see a private section for donating member's.

We donate to keep this site alive and running and should have or own section for topic's
that started all this talk..

That's what they do on other forum clubs that I donate to...A Member's section for all the special stuff that comes up.
That gives us first bite on things that come up...And after we have talked it though we can move it to a general section for all to see.
That's my 2c


+1 with that too.

From what I've seen, as long as the technical info is available for all to see that is what I think is a big bonus of this forum. People who are looking at buying a zed throught to modifications etc can freely browse and take in all this info that is freely available. A "sealed" section encourages more people to donate and keep this forum alive and have access to the bonus side to this forum. I donate as much as I can when I can because this site has helped me heaps and I've been able to offload parts when I have needed to. Doing all what I have and not donating, I don't think i would be able to sleep at night...

Concerning any info that goes into the "members only" section, that can be the choice of the creator of the thread. If they choose to list it freely to all, or just to donating members first then openly... My 4c

#6 Sirpent

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 01:55 PM

+1 with that too.

From what I've seen, as long as the technical info is available for all to see that is what I think is a big bonus of this forum. People who are looking at buying a zed throught to modifications etc can freely browse and take in all this info that is freely available. A "sealed" section encourages more people to donate and keep this forum alive and have access to the bonus side to this forum. I donate as much as I can when I can because this site has helped me heaps and I've been able to offload parts when I have needed to. Doing all what I have and not donating, I don't think i would be able to sleep at night...

Concerning any info that goes into the "members only" section, that can be the choice of the creator of the thread. If they choose to list it freely to all, or just to donating members first then openly... My 4c


+1

#7 Cdr Zero

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 04:02 PM

Personally I think a separate section for donating members is a bad idea, I think you run the risk of creating a 'second forum' and an elitist streak may begin to creep in among the donating members.  They may refer to other threads for previous information which others won't be able to access etc.  I believe all the information should be available to everyone, information on Z stuff is hard enough to come by as it is.  :)

#8 chartoo

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 04:25 PM

Maybe you could just have certain threads viewable only to donating members and not an extra section. For example i click on "Show unread posts since last visit." and i will see the see the extra members only threads but an non member wont see them. Then they can become viewable to all after a certain time period. If you get what i mean? I dont know if that even possible LOL

#9 Glen

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 04:54 PM

I'm with another website, Theres basically 2 community's there. The comunity i run has 150 members and we have no private sections besides admin only. The 2ND comunity has lots of private sections, the 2ND community's growth is very slow. We started out with the same numbers.

I understand what your saying there Dimitri, but i have never been a fan of private sections unless its for the admins. I think allowing more personally PM space is one thing to give to donating members, maybe there's other things as such...

#10 gav240z

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 07:44 PM

Interesting points I can see both sides of the argument.

As an example I had a lady in Sydney contact us today with a 240z for sale that's been in storage for 15 years. Do I offer contact details to donating members first? Or do I post it in our classifieds for everyone?

In the past I've always put cars for sale in the classifieds or told the seller to do it themselves. However with the scarcity of cars available I'm wondering if 'donating enthusiasts' should get first dibs?

Or perhaps I'm taking this thread in a wrong direction.

A private forum for admins would be ok, problem is there is Lurch, Sulio, Craig and I and we all communicate via email so a private forum seems like overkill.

#11 chris240

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 09:13 PM

Gav...your 1st post got it right.
On a few occasions Ive muttured the words.."dont change".
this is a web based forum...nothing more nothing less. Its not a club.

#12 MickyG

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 09:39 PM

As an example I had a lady in Sydney contact us today with a 240z for sale that's been in storage for 15 years. Do I offer contact details to donating members first? Or do I post it in our classifieds for everyone?


She's effectively offered it to the Z community first by contacting you rather than EBay/local classifieds.  To give her the return she deserves it should be offered to everyone in that community, not just those who've kicked in &/or joined the forum.  If you choose to limit the market for your own stuff fair enough but if a third party requests your assistance to put something to the market then you can either refuse altogether or put it out to everyone.  Anything else compromises you personally.  (With no disrespect or suggestion that you have ever, or will ever, do so!)

There are a number of people who appear to want a "sealed section", (access to signed up &/or donating members only), & those who support the status quo.  Why don't you create a sealed section with no structure, i.e. everything gets lumped in together, & anyone who wants to use it can do so & people who aren't joined up can see topics but not view threads.  (As an inducement to join up.)  This keeps existing members who want something exclusive to the inner sanctum happy while allowing pretty much anyone to see everything with pretty minimal effort.

I've also got $5 says there nothing posted in the sealed section after the first two weeks.  ;)

When it's dead after a few weeks/months you can either delete it or just leave it there for the once per millennium that someone wants to use it.

#13 gav240z

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Posted 21 December 2009 - 11:34 PM

Interesting points. I tend to agree that a private section is not really necessary and I think it would get seldom usage, but I could be wrong :).

If anything I think we have too many sections in the forum and i'd like to cull some of them, but I'm hoping to migrate the forum across to Drupal eventually which will mean the classifieds and events sections will get their own sections (instead of being part of the forum).

I tend to agree I should give everyone a chance to purchase a car that comes along.

#14 luvemfast

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 06:11 AM

Gav...your 1st post got it right.
On a few occasions Ive muttured the words.."dont change".
this is a web based forum...nothing more nothing less. Its not a club.

Agreed, we had a discussion a while back about becoming affiliated with NDSOC, which would have made this forum a club. The forum members chose not to become a club, so it should then remain an open forum!

#15 Zedman240®

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 07:33 AM

With that lady selling that zed, that choice of being private or open will be entirely up to you Gav; You could ask her but to me I think she just want to get it sold so I'd post it in the open forum. I'm hoping not to create a "us and them" situation between donating and other members, but as what happened to those zeds in the paddock. I don't think he wants another flood of pick-a-part type patrons sifting through his yard. Posting in the private section would be good and any other interested member could be sent a PM.
I'll be happy with whatever is decided on. I'd think it would be a bonus.

#16 Sirpent

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 07:50 AM

I'm still on my "P"s when it comes to being a member on this forum, and there is no right nor wrong opinion here, but what has to be appreciated is that this is a resource and resources achieve two things (A) They deliver a benefit, and (B) They do cost something in doing so.

So as the member info is freely available on this site, I downloaded it just to get an idea of what kind of beast we are dealing with here, what it delivers and what it draws in with regards to sustaining itself, here are the results.

1425 Total number of registrations

Registrations in 2005 – 164 of which 85  are still active or 52%
Registrations in 2006 – 195 of which 104 are still active or 53%
Registrations in 2007 – 288 of which 149 are still active or 52%
Registrations in 2008 – 328 of which 206 are still active or 63%
Registrations in 2009 – 449 of which 224 are still active or 54%

768 Total number of active members

60 Total number or donating members


629 Members that have posted between 1 and 49 times
13 of the 629 are Donating or 2%

99 Members that have posted between 50 and 1000+ times
47 of the 99 are Donating or 47%

So the question is with the growth curve of this forum, the cost of running it, the wealth of info that is being compiled in it’s archives all adding up to it becoming a resource to both current and future members, I would think that a meagre mandatory donation of lets say $25.00 a year from even 50% of the active members would generate close to $10,000.00 per annum.

This would go a long way to helping Gav and Company maintain and develop the site providing even greater support to both current and new members.

If you are a long time user, and havnt contributed in some way, ask yourself, has this forum delivered you more value than a $25.00 dontaion would have cost?

For me it has many times over, so if we apply that the 50% of the current active members are of the same opinion, then membership has value, and this resource carries value.

Splitting this forum down the centre and creating an Us and Them scenario would be against the core value Im sure Gav had when he set it up, there is no reason why a prosepctive guest or registered member couldnt see and interact within the majority of areas within it, but I believe there comes a point were casual use becomes dedicated use and for this a manditory donation (Now thats an oximoron) shouldnt be dismissed.

gav you and the mods have done a great job, but dont underestimate nor undervalue it.

Ok, you can all start throwing knives now...........LOL

Cheers

John


#17 reverendzed

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 09:28 AM

I agree with John that there are significant opportunities for an invested growth in financial resource for the 'forum' through means that are not exclusive.  I put 'forum' in commas because whilst I understand and participate in a forum of shared intellectual resource via the web I believe that Auszcar is so much more.  legally we are not a 'club' or incorporated association however with the lasting friendships that are made and the 'help a mate' mentality that I have experienced over the last 3 years, we have traveled so far beyond a faceless forum.  When I stood amongst my Auszcar mates and gave a short memorial for our friend Warren it occurred to me then how much significance this 'organisation has had on many.

While any contributions made to the forum remain arbitrary and ultimately up to the web admin as to what that looks like, never underestimate the power of this social network to produce great long term relationships that have meaning beyond the written words of a 'forum'.

Whilst I could care less about whether we eventually incorporate into an official club the face to face and care of each of those who participate is a very important part of my interaction, whatever we do in the future has to benefit more than a forum, it has to benefit a 'community'.

Just the Rev's 'pastoral' observations! Merry Christmas.


#18 matt drago

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 08:24 PM

I wasn't going to put forward my opinion on this subject, as I have become somewhat of a lurker these days.  Between work and family, I have little time for the hobbies these days, but I am sure that I will get back to it sooner or later.

As many have said to date, there is a wealth of information on this site, much which has helped me during the work that I have done on my car.  I've donated to help out the guys continue to make this resource available and not become a site that slips into the bit-bucket.

My opinion, when the affiliation with NDSOC was raised, was to not go down that path.  I have been around car clubs for a long time, and I do not like the way that they can become segregated and the like.  This is one of the reasons that I continue to read the info here and come to the occasional event.

I would like to continue to see this site remain totally open and one that is available to all.  I think this is what was envisioned for this site when I first heard about it and joined up around 5 years ago, and I hope it continues to be.

#19 KatoKid

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 08:56 PM

I'm a new member (will donate tonight so I'm not accused of being a hypocrite) and a new Z owner largely because of this forum. The readily available information that this forum provides is the only reason I became interested and gave me the knowledge to make an informed decision to purchase a Z and save another iconic car from the scrapheap. Not saying that I wouldn't have gone down this path if access was restricted but being human beings we tend to take the easy path meaning that difficult to obtain insight will restrict the number and enthusiasm of potential new Z owners. Some may see that as a good thing so depends on which side of the fence you sit on.

David




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