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Topic: FOC and the buyout  (Read 5691 times)
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Mojo
« on: May 29, 2008 10:17:26 AM »

Now that Craftster's been bought out I feel weird renewing my FOC subscription (which expired today and got yanked fast!).  I became an FOC for Leah's sake-- to show appreciation for this one woman show and help support the site.  I was wondering what, if any, advantages there are to renewing now that we've "gone corporate."  I could always wait, I suppose, until some specific FOC advantages are hammered out.  Any thoughts on this?
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« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2008 10:33:26 AM »

Hi Mojo! First of all, thank you for being an FOC. Smiley I'm sorry that we don't have a longer "warning" period before the badge is taken away when your subscription expires. This is something on the "to do" list.

I do understand that some people that have become FOC have thought of it as a way to help me personally and that sentiment is very much appreciated! But just to call a duck a duck, subscription money is all about keeping Craftster running. It just so happens that peeps need to get paid to run Craftster. This was true then and is true now.

Here's what I said in the acquisition announcement about the FOC thing:

Quote
So, if I've become a Friend of Craftster, does that mean it was all for nothing now that some fancypants company owns Craftster?

Nope. It wasn't all for nothing. But you knew I was gonna say that, right? But, really, the fact of the matter is that many many websites have a subscription component as well as an advertising component. It's a very important part of the business model that makes a site financially sustainable. And the more that can be attained from subscriptions, the less advertising needs to be relied on which is always a good thing. And keep in mind that Craftster might be owned by a larger company now but it has it's own bottom line and subscriptions help it meet that bottom line.

And even though there already are some great extra features that you get by becoming an FOC, we plan to add more and more over time.

Basically the situation is that many of the sites NM owns, have a special subscription aspect to them. It's an important part of making each site financially sustainable. Running a web-based business and relying solely on advertising is tough. Getting advertisers takes a whole bunch of time and effort and cajoling. So this is why part of the income needs to come from subscriptions.

So I think you could look at your subscription from either of these points of view (or both):

1. a way to help Craftster meet it's financial bottom line and to afford the resources it needs (mo' money = mo' resources too!)

2. a way to get a few extra FOC features and perks (more will be added as time goes on)

Hope this helps you decide!
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« Reply #2 on: May 29, 2008 10:59:40 AM »

I really like hearing from FOC members on the Friends of Craftster board.  I guess it just seems more personal because it's a small group of dedicated members.  We've had some great conversations there and all of the input/feedback is really appreciated.  Without FOCs, it would be a quiet and lonely board (and I'd end up talking to myself more than usual).
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« Reply #3 on: May 29, 2008 11:04:20 AM »

Cheesy

There you go. Reason #3: Jean really shouldn't be talking to herself more than she already does.
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Mojo
« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2008 07:01:47 AM »

Thank you both-- I'll give your points some thought!
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« Reply #5 on: May 30, 2008 07:07:20 AM »

I really like hearing from FOC members on the Friends of Craftster board.  I guess it just seems more personal because it's a small group of dedicated members.  We've had some great conversations there and all of the input/feedback is really appreciated.  Without FOCs, it would be a quiet and lonely board (and I'd end up talking to myself more than usual).

Will our (FOC) input really be listened to now, or even asked for?

Talking to yourself is a bad thing?  Huh
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« Reply #6 on: May 30, 2008 07:12:49 AM »

I really like hearing from FOC members on the Friends of Craftster board.  I guess it just seems more personal because it's a small group of dedicated members.  We've had some great conversations there and all of the input/feedback is really appreciated.  Without FOCs, it would be a quiet and lonely board (and I'd end up talking to myself more than usual).

Will our (FOC) input really be listened to now, or even asked for?

Talking to yourself is a bad thing?  Huh

Yesss!  It's still Leah and I (and the whole mod squad) discussing all of the FOC ideas, changes, etc. on a daily basis.  We're still totally the crazy wizards behind the curtain.  It's just that now Leah has access to additional programming help/testing, an advertising team, etc.

Really, my days/views/communications haven't changed at all -- except every other Friday (because my paycheck comes from a different location now). Grin Cheesy
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« Reply #7 on: May 30, 2008 07:13:58 AM »

Thank you both-- I'll give your points some thought!

I'm glad you started this thread.  We definitely want to chat about what people are thinking and answer any questions along the way.
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« Reply #8 on: May 30, 2008 07:42:10 AM »

Will our (FOC) input really be listened to now, or even asked for?

Why wouldn't they listen to the most supportive and loyal Craftsters readers?! Cheesy Feedback from a select group of people like this is priceless to any company! Grin
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« Reply #9 on: June 15, 2008 11:41:13 AM »

My FOC expired today, and I'm finding I don't have the same inclination to renew either.

In the last few weeks there has been little to no activity on the FOC board, and certainly nothing to give updates of anything new. Perhaps some idea of what FOC will really be about now to the new owners.

Even though Leah, sweets, batgirl, kittykill, et all are still here it seems quieter. Maybe it's just my imagination  Undecided
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« Reply #10 on: June 15, 2008 02:27:22 PM »

The FOC board seems the same to me now as it was before.  There are a few active threads.

We'll let yas know when new features are implemented and if we have new ideas brewing and need input.  We have times where we are implementing/working on things in the foreground for everyone to play with and other times we're working on improvement "behind the curtains."  I guess we just haven't implemented anything super fun over the last few weeks. Smiley

I know Leah and I (and some of the other mods) have been super busy planning and preparing for the 2008 Moderator Meetup (where we are right now - woohoo!).  Leah's also been working on a huge project/opportunity that will be announced sometime soon.  I had to work quite a bit of overtime in preparation for this 5 days off.  I've still been able to check in sometimes in the afternoon and in the evening from the hotel, but otherwise, we're out tromping around the streets of Boston right now. Cheesy

Do whatever is best for your situation and keeps ya happy. Smiley
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« Reply #11 on: June 15, 2008 06:59:32 PM »

Yeah... Things have been crazy here in Craftster-land lately! I'm working away on a new top secret Craftster project which is supposed to be unveiled on Tuesday (hopefully if it's ready!) and if not Tuesday then very soon after that.

And on top of that right now 9 lovely moderators and their significant others are here in Boston for our annual "mod meetup." 15 peeps in all! So there's been a TON of preparation on my part to plan for it. Including a 13 page itinerary! Yes, I am totally OCD when it comes to trip planning! Cheesy We're having a really nice time so all the planning was worth it! Grin

I'm sorry it's been quiet over in FOC land. I'll try to check in there soon. NameMedia is working away on helping me get exactly the right kinds of resources that Craftster needs in order to grow and improve. It's hard to make it happen overnight. But progress is being made in this area. Smiley

But, of course, you should do what your heart tells you in terms of resubscribing to be an FOC. I've never wanted people to feel forced or pressured to subscribe. In my eyes, subscribing has been something people should do when they feel they get enough out of Craftster to help pitch in for it's financial needs. And it's financial needs haven't gone away just because it has a new owner.

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« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2008 06:31:04 AM »

I'm glad to hear that more new exciting things are in the works.

I still get so much from the site, and enjoy it just as much. Guess my thinking is that now (whether right or wrong),with it not being an individual ownership that perhaps my subscription really means nothing in the grand scheme. Undecided
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jessimocha
« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2008 07:16:10 AM »

Guess my thinking is that now (whether right or wrong),with it not being an individual ownership that perhaps my subscription really means nothing in the grand scheme. Undecided



this in a way relates to my question on this subject - i am not a FOC yet, i've been meaning to sign up for the past year (oh jeez! it really has been that long!), should i still sign up now? are you still needing and looking for FOC's? i don't mind that craftster's been bought out - i can totally see how that's for the best in the long run. but are the FOC's still a big part of revenue for the site, or a big enough part of revenue to keep us signing up for it? cuz i totally will if it's needed!

thanks leah and sweets, and all the mods, for your hard work. you've made this my favourite little corner on the great big internet Cheesy
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« Reply #14 on: June 26, 2008 08:36:32 AM »

Here's how I explained it in the acquisition announcement. Smiley

Quote
So, if I've become a Friend of Craftster, does that mean it was all for nothing now that some fancypants company owns Craftster?

Nope. It wasn't all for nothing. But you knew I was gonna say that, right? But, really, the fact of the matter is that many many websites have a subscription component as well as an advertising component. It's a very important part of the business model that makes a site financially sustainable. And the more that can be attained from subscriptions, the less advertising needs to be relied on which is always a good thing. And keep in mind that Craftster might be owned by a larger company now but it has it's own bottom line and subscriptions help it meet that bottom line.

And even though there already are some great extra features that you get by becoming an FOC, we plan to add more and more over time.
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« Reply #15 on: June 26, 2008 08:44:18 AM »

Basically there is this bigggg cherry pie (NameMedia) and we're (Craftster) a delicious piece of that overall tasty pie.  We're (Leah & crew) still responsible for making sure that our specific piece of the pie is chocked FULL of cherries, sugar, etc. (that we're meeting our bottom line responsibilities for the big pie).  We can't let our piece get skimpy and lose nummy filling. Wink  So FOC subscriptions are definitely part of helping us keep our bottom line in check.

Cheesy  Leave it to the pregnant chick to use a food analogy for finance explanation.  Is it lunchtime yet?
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« Reply #16 on: June 26, 2008 08:08:07 PM »

In the last few weeks there has been little to no activity on the FOC board, and certainly nothing to give updates of anything new.

One word - Summer!  (at least in the northern hemisphere  Wink ) Nearly every board (outside of craftster) I'm on has slowed down this month. I figure it'll pick up again in September or so.

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« Reply #17 on: June 27, 2008 04:13:20 AM »

In the last few weeks there has been little to no activity on the FOC board, and certainly nothing to give updates of anything new.

One word - Summer!  (at least in the northern hemisphere  Wink ) Nearly every board (outside of craftster) I'm on has slowed down this month. I figure it'll pick up again in September or so.

Oooh, good point.  Someone else just started a thread about the amount of new threads slowing down.  I know it's true for mr.sweets4ever and myself.  We're in project/cleanup/outdoorsy mode in the evenings and on weekends.
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RedMenace
« Reply #18 on: June 27, 2008 09:10:25 PM »

I'm sorry that we don't have a longer "warning" period before the badge is taken away when your subscription expires. This is something on the "to do" list.

So as an example:  If a person subscribes on 1/10/08 and then becomes a "swap angel FOC" on 3/5/08, their subscription doesn't expire until 3/5/09.

Could we maybe get our last subscribe date put into our profiles? That way we'd know well in advance without having to send out reminder emails? I'm planning to renew, but I'd like to wait 'til the last possible minute (assuming, of course, that I know when the last possible minute is) 'cause, well, that's how I roll...  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #19 on: June 27, 2008 09:12:01 PM »

Cheesy

I know yours is 9/23. Grin

Leah will have to answer to the rest of your suggestion/question, though. Smiley
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« Reply #20 on: June 27, 2008 10:15:11 PM »

isn't it already in our profiles, kind of?  there's the Friend of Craftster subscription history thing that says the last time you donated.  you just have to go to account related settings.
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« Reply #21 on: June 27, 2008 10:19:41 PM »

Oh, yeah!  Sorry for my brainfart! Cheesy  I forgot ya'll could see your own as well.  Thanks for catching that!
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« Reply #22 on: June 28, 2008 12:05:39 PM »

isn't it already in our profiles, kind of?  there's the Friend of Craftster subscription history thing that says the last time you donated.  you just have to go to account related settings.

A-ha! Good to know!
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« Reply #23 on: July 01, 2008 07:51:30 AM »

Yep! You can see it in your Profile under "Account Related Settings" and we also now send an email 2 weeks in advance of the expiration as well as the we always send on the exact day of expiration.
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« Reply #24 on: July 02, 2008 03:26:52 PM »

The two weeks got instituted too late for me- I got the "oh by the way you expired today" email today. I'm glad there is now a lead in.
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« Reply #25 on: July 02, 2008 04:00:46 PM »

Please remember you can always check your profile for your date, too! Smiley
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« Reply #26 on: July 10, 2008 05:02:56 PM »

I got one of those expired emails and looked and my status was gone. Didn't ever think to check my status. Not being a FOC really felt bad. Really bad. Especially since there was a thread in the FOC board that talked about how they didn't understand how people could come to Craftster and make like 500 posts and not support Craftster and since I have over 3000 posts I wondered if some people would be looking down on me......

Anyhow, I emailed Leah and she responded IMMEDIATELY and said that she appreciated my feedback on how I felt and would institute a renewal notice two weeks before it was due so more people wouldn't wake up one day and find themself Friendless Wink

I am proud to support Craftster! Even if the FOC only helps support Leah and Sweets in their salaries it is totally worth it to me! Craftster is still Leah! And I don't know what I would ever do without Craftster!

I just wanted to bring it up and tell you I understand what it feels like to all of a sudden be Friendless and let you know it was just an oversight and nothing personal....


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« Reply #27 on: July 10, 2008 05:05:24 PM »

oh yeah,
Boy am I jealous of all you mods out there in Boston!
Number one - it must be heaven to be amongst all that crafty genious!!!!
and number two - Boston was my old stomping grounds and I haven't been there in years!!!!
Have a ball mods! You deserve it!!!!
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« Reply #28 on: July 10, 2008 05:15:33 PM »

Since my first post in this thread about my FOC expiring I've been looking, reading and waiting for some sign that my FOC membership still mattered. Even though all the posts from Leah and sweets made sense, this post by kaleesi hit it home for me.
I am proud to support Craftster! Even if the FOC only helps support Leah and Sweets in their salaries it is totally worth it to me! Craftster is still Leah! And I don't know what I would ever do without Craftster!

I just renewed my FOC. Thank you kaleesi for that wake up call. Smiley
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« Reply #29 on: July 10, 2008 05:32:08 PM »

I just renewed my FOC. Thank you kaleesi for that wake up call. Smiley
Glad to have been of some help to such a totally talented Craftster Smiley
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« Reply #30 on: July 10, 2008 05:39:56 PM »

Wow, thank you SO much, kaleesi!!  Hubby & I just walked in the door and this was the first reply on my list that I've read this evening.  It gave me goosebumps!!

Thank you so much taking the time to write such wonderful, heartfelt words.  It really means a lot.

Hugs hugs hugs hugs!
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« Reply #31 on: July 10, 2008 05:51:12 PM »

Hugs hugs hugs hugs!
Awwwwww - I feel so warm and fuzzy!!!   Cheesy
But seriously, thank YOU sweets4ever and Leah (and all you mods!!!!!!!!!!) Without you all - Craftster would not be Craftster and I would not be coming here every day!!!
And here's another great reason to renew FOC...... we will have another mouth to feed soon.... baby.sweets4ever can't live on crafts alone Wink
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« Reply #32 on: July 11, 2008 07:25:41 AM »

Thank you kaleesi! You don't know how much it means to hear this kind of thing. Grin
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« Reply #33 on: July 11, 2008 05:06:57 PM »

Thank you kaleesi! You don't know how much it means to hear this kind of thing. Grin
I only speak the truth  Cool
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« Reply #34 on: July 11, 2008 06:08:21 PM »

Hugs hugs hugs hugs!
And here's another great reason to renew FOC...... we will have another mouth to feed soon.... baby.sweets4ever can't live on crafts alone Wink

I read this to mr.sweets4ever and he had a HUGE grin on his face.  Too cool! Cheesy
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« Reply #35 on: July 12, 2008 08:40:39 AM »

Wow, that was really seriously sweet.  I love Craftsters!!  (Total aside, I still giggle every time Craftster's spell check tells me that Craftster isn't a real word, and did I perhaps mean gravesides.) 
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« Reply #36 on: July 12, 2008 01:23:07 PM »

Wow - I never did a Craftsters spell check before - I love it!!!
See, there are so many cool things about Craftsters! What is not to love?
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« Reply #37 on: July 18, 2008 01:22:34 AM »

Here Here kaleesi !!!!  Very eloquently put!!! (I still don't know how to use the quote thing and I can't live without the spell check, thank you BTW)  You've hit the nail on the head on my feelings also!! Thanks.
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« Reply #38 on: July 21, 2008 02:25:34 PM »

I just joined craftster a couple months ago, and I have already clocked some serious hours here.
I have never fell in love with a website so quickly, and decided that I was going to become an FOC shortly after I signed up just because I like the site so much.
It's been on my list of things to do for a little while now, living on a very tight college student budget and all.

However, reading this thread just made me realize how much Craftster actually feel like a community, and not just a website.
I am going to get my subscription now.  NOW. 
 Cheesy
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« Reply #39 on: August 26, 2008 06:12:59 AM »

... we also now send an email 2 weeks in advance of the expiration ...

i didn't get this email, just a rude awakening to no foc status. hmm...
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« Reply #40 on: August 26, 2008 07:10:41 AM »

... we also now send an email 2 weeks in advance of the expiration ...

i didn't get this email, just a rude awakening to no foc status. hmm...

We recently fixed a little bug (due to my stellar math skills! Cheesy) where it was sending out the reminder 2 weeks *after* the expiration rather than before. This probably got fixed too late for you. Sorry!

But thank you for bringing this up because we need to hear about all the bugs! Grin
« Last Edit: August 26, 2008 07:11:27 AM by the craftster admin (leah) » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #41 on: September 22, 2008 12:20:24 PM »

obviously this thread is old but I thought I'd go ahead and post my 2 cents worth.
To me craftster is worth my money even though I could only give 12.00 last year I will probably give more this coming year. the money I've saved from making Christmas gifts using tutorials here is enough to justify it to me. The constant helpful insight when my brain just can't figure out how to do something, the support when something(craft or forum related) goes wrong, the kindness of the users. All that makes it worth the money to me. Not to mention I don't always have to ask my mother/grandmother for help anymore and can even offer her tips or tricks I've learned here!
To me that alone is worth the money. If you've used even one tut think of it as a contribution to keep that aspect of craftster here. Smiley
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« Reply #42 on: October 08, 2008 09:25:25 AM »

Thank you Eliea! It means so much to hear you say this. Smiley
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« Reply #43 on: October 08, 2008 10:24:58 PM »

Thanks Eliea! That's awesome.
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« Reply #44 on: October 09, 2008 11:18:00 AM »

shoot, i just realized last night that i still hadn't renewed my membership, d'oh! thanks for the reminder eliea.
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