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Ironside

Charging for the forums.

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Right, the advertisements could be in a section of the main page, or maby in the form of an article\interview with\about the developer. Thes advertisemens would be in the "free" area of the site to advertize to the greater GDnet Community as opposed to just the members of DeveloperNET

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I think charging for more stuff is a cool idea. However, it might flop. Especially if the "more stuff" is a forum for paying members only, if not many people decide to pay very soon after the switch, then the payers may be unhappy.
Jake

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Which is why I said initially that I didn''t think that maintaining a public forum and a "members only" forum was possible. But I think if GDnet catered to the developers/publishers first by saying that they''d some how advertise their products to the larger "non member" community then I could see people paying for that. As the developerNET membership grew the forums would only increase their value as more and more developers/aspiring developers discussed what they were working on, and thing''s they''d learned selling their own games.

Perhaps the advertisment could be in the form of an "image of the week" where members of the DeveloperNET community could submit images of their products and do a small write up about them? Just throwing out ideas

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Ironside, as someone already stated, the problem isn''t necessarily the amount of money charged for the service. It might be the actual paying procedure. Kids can''t pay on the net as they don''t have a credit card. And not everyone''s parents are willing to do that for them.

And while, as you state it, these younger users tend to bring the quality of the forums down, I think it is still important for us to provide them a valuable source of information. I for one still remember how hard it was to learn the ropes when there was no source of information available.

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AP:
Please read the whole thread before responding. I initially suggested that it would be a good idea to charge for the forums. Dave stated that he did not want to alienate anyone who couldn't pay, or start charging for currently free services.

So I suggested revamping the DeveloperNET secion as a pay for member service. Something that indie Developers and Publishers would pay to belong to. These are typically people who have enough money to pay for such a membership. The discussion here is not weather they could pay or not, but rather what content should be provided them so that they would feel they were getting their moneys worth.

Members of this "New" paying developerNet group could have their own forums. The public forums would still exist in their current form. Initially the member forums would probably have a lot less quantity then the public ones, but likely would be much higher quality. The ASP charges $100 bucks a year for access to their newsgroups, and they sign up new members daily.
Why? because they are quality, and you can't find a solid supporting community like that anywhere else on the net.

However it would be nice to offer something additional besides member only forums for members of DeveloperNET. I suggested that GDNet advertise member products on the public areas of the site. GDNet has a huge audience and I know indie developers would love to reach them if it were cost effective.




Edited by - ironside on March 5, 2002 6:35:34 PM

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Well, my thoughts would be:
quote:
Original post by Myopic Rhino
I don''t want to comment on what those services might be, because right now, we''re just tossing ideas around. But I assure you, when the time is ripe (i.e. not now), we''ll get the community involved to be sure that the things we provide are actually of benefit to you.

I will say that so far, nothing that''s been suggested in this thread is a new idea to us. Nor are the arguments for or against each idea.

I''m going to contridict myself and mention one thing, though. Removing ads was one of the first ideas we had as a premium service. Removing bulk ads isn''t a problem, since they don''t pay much, and probably don''t interest you. The problem is the ad campaigns that we sell ourselves, like the JobSmack banner up right now. These banners actually do pay pretty well, and the reason the advertisers are willing to pay for them is because they want to reach experienced game developers. Since that''s the same group that would be likely to pay for premium services, we''d have a much more difficult time convincing companies to advertise with us. So, at least initially, we''d have to keep those banners. But at least you wouldn''t be seeing casino banners, and the popups could go too.

Ultimately, we realise that the more we offer with premium memberships, the more people will be willing to sign up for them. The thing that we need to determine is whether or not we can come up with enough things to interest enough people to make it worth our efforts.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
I cant see what could be added to a premium section if you are serious about not removing anything that is already available for free. Oh and Ironside, I understand you are jazzed about joining the ASP and congratulate you on doing so but chill out. This isn''t ASP, this is GameDev. If we wanted to join the ASP we would.

Doug

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quote:
Original post by Myopic Rhino
Well, my thoughts would be:



Guess that''s what I get for not reading the post

quote:

The problem is the ad campaigns that we sell ourselves, like the JobSmack banner up right now. These banners actually do pay pretty well, and the reason the advertisers are willing to pay for them is because they want to reach experienced game developers. Since that''s the same group that would be likely to pay for premium services, we''d have a much more difficult time convincing companies to advertise with us.


Actually, I wouldn''t have a problem with ads like the JobSmack one. As long as it''s not intrusive or annoying, I wouldn''t have a problem with some ads similar to that on a "premium" part of the site... as long as they''re not moronic "YUO HAVE TEH MESSAGE!!!!!" ads that appear sometimes in the bulk pool

While we''re talking ads, do you check where a user is pulling a page''s ad from? The reason I ask is that it seems kind of redundant to have a banner for JobSmack and then have the little picture next to the buttons below it.





-Agent1
[Join the OpenNIC]

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Doug

I''m not "jazzed" about joining the ASP, I was just amazed at the quality of the news groups they offered. I love gamedev.net which is the reason I started this thread. I wanted to bring up what I consider to be a huge opportunity for GDnet. Right now the Independent Game Development Community is fragmented, the indie companies that are out there don’t really talk to any of the others.

GDnet is perhaps the one place where efforts could be made to bring that community together. But there has to be a motivation to do it, and right now that motivation isn''t really there. As I see it GDnet caters to two totally different market segments. The first being the new game developer or maybe even new developer with nominal dev experience and little to no game development experience. The come here and to NeHe''s site to learn the basics of game development. Then there''s the other market, these are typically the people answering the questions on the forums. These folks know their stuff, while they may not be full time independent developers, they may aspire to.

I think that GD.net has an excellent opportunity to offer services to the latter group. The current features are great for budding game programmers/designers. If there was a pay for service that catered to the more experienced members of the community GDnet could do some wonderful things for the indie game dev scene. For instance, Market numbers/Market Research, right now there''s no real numbers on what the indie game market size it. It sure would be nice to know what games sell the best, and what marketing methods work the best.

As it stands now, independent developers tend to work in a vacuum; each learning the same lessons, there''s no central repository to learn from other people mistakes and leap-frog ahead.

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