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Thread: Ways to show your support of our forum

  1. #1
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    Ways to show your support of our forum

    As many of you are aware, but some of you may not be, the server costs for our forum is paid by the donations to CosmoQuest via AstroSphere New Media, the Non-Profit which serves not only CosmoQuest's forum and Citizen Science projects, but also AstronomyCast, 365 Days of Astronomy, Education & Public Outreach broadcasts, and more.

    The cost to maintain the server for the forum is not cheap, but we choose to maintain it because the sense of community at CosmoQuest is extremely important. At the top of the forum, in the navigation bar, you'll see a "Donate" button discretely placed which allows you to actively support your community. In addition to the knowledge that you've helped maintain our community, we'll be launching out badges publicly recognizing you as a contributor to our fine community.

    As of right now, there will be three tiers:
    $60 over 12 month period = Supporter
    $120 over 12 month period = Sponsor
    $600 = CosmoQuest Hero

    Obviously, any donation of any quantity is extremely generous and is greatly appreciated by all of the CosmoQuest team. There is another way to help support CosmoQuest, and that's by purchasing items from AstroGear.org, which proceeds to go to AstrosSphere to cover all costs associated with CosmoQuest as well. There are T-Shirts, AstronomyCast lanyards, posters and more, all of which gives you the opportunity to proudly show your support.

    Thank you all for your continued commitment to this community and for maintaining fantastic dialogue throughout the forums. We're all very excited about new things coming to CosmoQuest and your support is always appreciated!

    For further information see the blog post that Pamela posted here.


    Best,
    Scott Lewis
    KnowTheCosmos

  2. #2
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    When the merger was announced one of the main reasons for BAUT to be merged was the (high) server costs that had to be paid from the owner's personal funds. People at the time suggested donating as an alternative way of solving that problem. That idea was rejected in favour of merging with cosmoquest. And now we're getting donate buttons.

    Don't get me wrong, i'm all for people donating for science outreach projects, but surely you must see the irony here...

  3. #3
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    And I suppose, given the grants, google ads are no longer an option. Wonderful.
    "Words that make questions may not be questions at all."
    - Neil deGrasse Tyson, answering loaded question in ten words or less
    at a 2010 talk MCed by Stephen Colbert.

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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    When the merger was announced one of the main reasons for BAUT to be merged was the (high) server costs that had to be paid from the owner's personal funds. People at the time suggested donating as an alternative way of solving that problem. That idea was rejected in favour of merging with cosmoquest. And now we're getting donate buttons.

    Don't get me wrong, i'm all for people donating for science outreach projects, but surely you must see the irony here...
    full disclosure,
    I made the suggestion to Pamala on google plus that she could add a discrete donate button above the forum section.
    So long as its discrete, people dont have their ears bent about contributing - I see it as the people who have said they wanted to help have now got their chance...everyones a winner
    I aint gonna get a badge, but as a thank you for facilitating many a good argument, I was fine tipping a few quid.
    I dont really get involved with the other areas of cosmoquest, but I do appreciate having the forum kept pretty much intact.
    It is my hope that cosmoquest do understand that the forum is important to people in its own right, however they choose to brand it.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    When the merger was announced one of the main reasons for BAUT to be merged was the (high) server costs that had to be paid from the owner's personal funds. People at the time suggested donating as an alternative way of solving that problem. That idea was rejected in favour of merging with cosmoquest. And now we're getting donate buttons.

    Don't get me wrong, i'm all for people donating for science outreach projects, but surely you must see the irony here...
    I, for one, would have loved a t-shirt with the BAUT logo on it.
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  6. #6
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    You need to plug the Telescopes4Teachers.

    If you are taking suggestions for gear, I would like to get a coffee mug, water bottle or red tinted flashlight.

    If those items were too hard, then a waterproof sticker pack would be cool DIY option. CQ, Astronomycast or BAUT themed.

    EDIT - It occurs to me that there is a lot of different options for funding the CQ brand. Would it be possible to compile a list of all the different options and programs as a sticky? I seem to recall a "feed Preston button" for Astronomycast, but I can't remember which choice does that.
    Solfe

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
    When the merger was announced one of the main reasons for BAUT to be merged was the (high) server costs that had to be paid from the owner's personal funds. People at the time suggested donating as an alternative way of solving that problem. That idea was rejected in favour of merging with cosmoquest. And now we're getting donate buttons.

    Don't get me wrong, i'm all for people donating for science outreach projects, but surely you must see the irony here...

    The "message" I'm getting is that it was wrong to suggest contributions when it was for BAUT only, but now that it's about cosmoquest, contributions are A-ok.

    You may call that irony...looks more like bait and switch....wait until after the merger, and then ask for contributions.

    Pamela, can you explain why people here should not be a bit upset about this??...and a "good luck" to you in advance, cause you're gonna need it.
    The facts, gentlemen, and nothing but the facts, for careful eyes are narrowly watching. Isaac Asimov

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    I, for one, would have loved a t-shirt with the BAUT logo on it.
    Good idea....meaning it will be ignored.
    The facts, gentlemen, and nothing but the facts, for careful eyes are narrowly watching. Isaac Asimov

  9. #9
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    Ya know, not to put too fine of point on it, but I consider the title of this thread to be rather insulting to those who have freely shared their knowledge, and time trying to "battle" scientific misconceptions.

    ....which is what this board was all about at one time...

    What is this board "about", now?...you tell me.
    The facts, gentlemen, and nothing but the facts, for careful eyes are narrowly watching. Isaac Asimov

  10. #10
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    I'd have liked a BAUT t-shirt, as well.

    As to supporting CQ monetarily, the way I figure it is there are any number of us for whom $60, $120 or even $600 is no big deal. I was a member of a forum a few years ago - a moderator, actually - whose owner fell on hard times. A few of us offered to fund the expenses or even buy the forum outright to keep it going. The owner was stubborn and refused. So now it's defunct and a whole bunch of us have lost something we put a lot of time into and derived much enjoyment from, all because the owner wouldn't accept our money.

    I'm not saying CQ is in dire straights or any straights at all. I have no idea except for what's been posted here. But asking for donations is a reasonable thing, in my opinion. I don't really care what was said or promised when the CQ/BAUT merger happened. I like this forum.

    The badge thing might not be a good idea, though.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by geonuc View Post
    I don't really care what was said or promised when the CQ/BAUT merger happened.
    Who said anything about "promises"?


    Perhaps I should re-read the thread in question...thanks for putting me on to that.
    The facts, gentlemen, and nothing but the facts, for careful eyes are narrowly watching. Isaac Asimov

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    Quote Originally Posted by geonuc View Post
    I'm not saying CQ is in dire straights or any straights at all. I have no idea except for what's been posted here. But asking for donations is a reasonable thing, in my opinion. I don't really care what was said or promised when the CQ/BAUT merger happened. I like this forum.
    I like this forum, too, but the argument was that the CQ grants would pay for it. That's why we agreed to switch to the name, no matter how unpopular it was. Not that "agreed" is quite the word, as we were told we didn't have a choice. We were told that they didn't want to take our money, and that was why we were merging. (I don't have a lot of money, and our budget has gotten even more strained for the foreseeable future, but I would have given something, especially if a BAUT t-shirt were in the offing.) It feels to me as though we were told we would be listened to and then have been ignored. We were told they didn't want to take our money, and that the merger was the way to prevent that. Now, we're stuck with a name few of us like. We've been told that we can't keep the colour scheme we prefer, even, if we don't like the new one. Oh, and could you give us money anyway?

    The badge thing might not be a good idea, though.
    The badge thing is a terrible idea.
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  13. #13
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    Re: Ways to show your support of our forum

    People seem quite annoyed about this. What did I miss?

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    Expecting everybody to pay $1 to join would be better than expecting some people to pay $600.

    (It'd be nice to require micro-payment - it'd keep more spammers out - but I guess it can't be done as it would lock out some of the audience we are trying to encourage, e.g. school-age kids who want to ask an astronomy based question and deserve a non-crank answer. And people who don't really want to be "members" but register to ask a one-off question.)

    I find this awkward. Frankly, even $60 per year is more than I'd pay to remain a member. Sorry. But I'd feel bad not making my voluntary contribution while knowing that others have. (And vice versa).


    I'd buy a BAUT t-shirt, not a CosmoQuest t-shirt. Sorry.


    How about some statistics? ... (let's do science ...)
    What does it cost per year to run the forum?
    How many active members are there? (Say, average 1 post or more per week?)
    Last edited by pzkpfw; 2012-Dec-30 at 11:01 PM. Reason: vice versa
    Measure once, cut twice. Practice makes perfect.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glom View Post
    People seem quite annoyed about this. What did I miss?
    A lot of remaining resentment as to how the merger was handled in the first place.
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  16. #16
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    Re: Ways to show your support of our forum

    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    A lot of remaining resentment as to how the merger was handled in the first place.
    What was wrong with it, apart from the awful forum skin?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glom View Post
    What was wrong with it, apart from the awful forum skin?
    Mis-steps and confusion mostly. I can't really complain that much. If this round is cleaning up the overly prolific forum topic page, then I have fewer complaints. (Edit - other than the red color... I got nothing so far.)

    Quote Originally Posted by pzkpfw View Post
    How about some statistics? ... (let's do science ...)
    What does it cost per year to run the forum?
    How many active members are there? (Say, average 1 post or more per week?)
    Using some arbitrary numbers, 12 years of operation, 52 weeks a year is 624 posts. There are 564 users who have more than 624 posts. I am kind of surprised at the low numbers. That includes banned users and such since all I did was look at the members list. Obviously these might not be reasonable numbers, they were very arbitrary and not anything like what proper web traffic tools could provide.

    How much does a board cost would have to do more with traffic than users. The board DB must be pretty big, but that must seem like a fixed cost verses web traffic. Y posts times x users per day is pretty small verses all the Google search that must come in.
    Solfe

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    Quote Originally Posted by Solfe View Post
    How much does a board cost would have to do more with traffic than users.
    Yeah, I'm just looking to get (yearly cost of operation) divided by (some quantity of users) = (amount needed per year from those users).

    564 users each giving $1 won't buy many cans of beans.
    564 users each giving $600 means $338,400 - would that cover the costs?
    Measure once, cut twice. Practice makes perfect.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glom View Post
    What was wrong with it, apart from the awful forum skin?
    The awful forum name. The fact that it was presented as a fait accompli about three days before it happened. The fact that I'm not sure any suggestions from any long-term members have been considered, much less implemented. The fact that we were told that everything would be okay, and we'd just get used to it. The fact that quite a lot of things spent weeks broken despite us being told that one of the reasons for the merger was to enable real tech people handling the software, and the fact that we weren't given much in the way of details about how/if things would get fixed.

    Quote Originally Posted by pzkpfw View Post
    Yeah, I'm just looking to get (yearly cost of operation) divided by (some quantity of users) = (amount needed per year from those users).

    564 users each giving $1 won't buy many cans of beans.
    564 users each giving $600 means $338,400 - would that cover the costs?
    Well, this member with over 624 posts isn't giving $600! That's almost a month's disability check!
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  20. #20
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    yeah, I think this is about a remaining bit of resentment from the merger.

    The request for donations is for Astrosphere costs generally - The cost of the forum is just a part of that. No one is expecting forum member to cover the costs of the forum.
    Nothing hinges on members paying up. The costs are covered if no one gives a penny - its just that leaves less to be doing other projects.

    Like I said in my post above, I suggested the button be put there, just so that the people who during the merger who went on about how they were prepared to contribute could have that opportunity.

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    The way I see it is, what is being paid for and how?

    If CQ needs a single person to do some work on the board and that one person is paid, then ask yourself how little money you would take to do so? That is the baseline. I can't complain about fund raising at that point because I would ask for a good chunk of change.

    I am always amazed when I encounter a website that has largely unpaid staff and it and it's staff consistently performs better than a site with paid staff. CQ/Baut mods aren't the only ones who perform this service, but they are archetypes of a very small group who do so.
    Solfe

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    ... We were told they didn't want to take our money, and that the merger was the way to prevent that.
    That's how I remember it also. Of course, at that time, the membership of cosmoquest was very small. Now that they "own" the membership of BAUT (yeah, thanks a lot, Phil), they have a large membership from which to solicite funds.....that could not have been done by cosmoquest before the merger.

    What I don't know, is why couldn't it have been done at BAUT instead of the merger?....but I guess the answer to that is obvious.


    The badge thing is a terrible idea.
    Badges?...we don't need no stinkin' badges.
    The facts, gentlemen, and nothing but the facts, for careful eyes are narrowly watching. Isaac Asimov

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    if i remember right, Fraser said that he spent a few hundred dollars a month.
    You should go re read the thread, but from what I remember he basically said he couldnt be bothered to collect funds and he doubted he would get enough in each month to pay the bills anyways.
    So yeah Gillian, they did tell you they didnt want to take your money and the merger was a way to prevent that.
    What this is is the charity asking for donations to the charity - as charities do

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    Quote Originally Posted by mutleyeng View Post
    if i remember right, Fraser said that he spent a few hundred dollars a month.
    You should go re read the thread, but from what I remember he basically said he couldnt be bothered to collect funds and he doubted he would get enough in each month to pay the bills anyways.
    So yeah Gillian, they did tell you they didnt want to take your money and the merger was a way to prevent that.
    What this is is the charity asking for donations to the charity - as charities do
    I don't think re-reading the thread will actually "help"...I'm sure that when members have a chance to review what was actually posted, the criticism will get much, much worse.
    The facts, gentlemen, and nothing but the facts, for careful eyes are narrowly watching. Isaac Asimov

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    Quote Originally Posted by R.A.F. View Post
    Wow....you should write all of cosmoquests press releases...you almost had me believing what you were saying...almost.

    ..and I don't think re-reading the thread will actually "help"...I'm sure that when members have a chance to review what was actually posted, the criticism will get much, much worse.
    that almost sounds like an accusation RAF....is it? if so, of what.
    What bit of what I said are you doubting?
    I hope I am able to actually reply to this post, unlike the last one that got hung up because it had been deleted by the time I clicked "Post"

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    I deleted the part of my post you had issues with...before I saw your answer.
    The facts, gentlemen, and nothing but the facts, for careful eyes are narrowly watching. Isaac Asimov

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    In re-reading, I think it is more charitable giving to science websites rather than "support this forum". Sure the forum gets some of it, but there are a bunch of other associated websites that share the gift.
    Solfe

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    Quote Originally Posted by Solfe View Post
    In re-reading, I think it is more charitable giving to science websites rather than "support this forum". Sure the forum gets some of it, but there are a bunch of other associated websites that share the gift.
    If it were phrased that way, I, for one, would be a lot less annoyed. "Ways to give to science" does not trigger the same issues, at least not for me.
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  29. #29
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    I've got an idea. I'll start giving money to this forum, when Phil starts posting to it...regularly.

    ....so I guess my money is safe.


    Seriously, though, people here have always prided themselves that this was a "free" forum. Now like our name, that has been taken away, too.

    I really don't want to know "what's next" from the cosmoquest overlords, because I know it can't be "good" news.



    aside....I am curious how long it will take before the realization that "something is wrong". What was it last time, something like 3 days?

    Hopefully the response will be quicker this time.
    The facts, gentlemen, and nothing but the facts, for careful eyes are narrowly watching. Isaac Asimov

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    Quote Originally Posted by R.A.F. View Post
    aside....I am curious how long it will take before the realization that "something is wrong". What was it last time, something like 3 days?

    Hopefully the response will be quicker this time.
    I realize it. I'm just not sure, at this point, whether it's worth my time and trouble to voice my opinion. After watching the way the merger, and its aftermath, was handled, I look at it as any opinion I voice will just be ignored.

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