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To be or not to be (a full member)
Thread poster: Rad Graban

Rad Graban  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:09
English to Slovak
+ ...
Oct 18, 2008

[Should really be posted in ProZ membership forum, but it wouldn't let me]

Hi all,

I’m wondering about the benefits (read “proper benefits”) of a full membership that I may not be aware of.

- I have a descent (I think) profile with all the information/details I am willing to disclose.
- I have a fair bit of KudoZ points for my language combination.
- I have some positive WWA entries from my clients.
- Prospective clients seem to be finding me on ProZ.com regularly and far too often.
- Bidding for a job costs me 100 browniz (not a big deal as I don’t do it very often).
- Checking Blue Board entries costs me 50 browniz each (again, not a big deal as I don’t need it that often)

What are the other benefits worth coughing out $100 that I am not aware of? Is there anything else I’m missing apart from blue ribbon or red “traffic sign” before my name?


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LittleBalu
Germany
Local time: 09:09
English to German
+ ...
Not a benefit, but ... Oct 18, 2008

... $ 100 per year isn't too much to pay (at least IMVHO) for using a platform that permits you to do all that (plus getting help from peers whenever needed). If nobody paid, this site wouldn't exist. As simple as that.

Best wishes,
LB


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Rad Graban  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:09
English to Slovak
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Maybe you are right Oct 18, 2008

LittleBalu wrote:
... $ 100 per year isn't too much to pay (at least IMVHO) for using a platform that permits you to do all that (plus getting help from peers whenever needed). If nobody paid, this site wouldn't exist. As simple as that.


I did expect the first answer to be excatly what I got.
You are right - $100 is nothing. I am just wondering as I feel slightly different about it.
Talking about peers - I'm trying to help as much as I'm asking for help.

[Edited at 2008-10-18 19:26]


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Marina Soldati  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 04:09
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Web hosting Oct 18, 2008

Hi!

Somebody correct me if I´m wrong, please, but I´m almost sure Proz.com can host your website, either with your own domain or a subdomain withing Proz.com.

If you have a website, you can compare the hosting costs among several providers of that service and Proz.com.

Regards,
Marina


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Rad Graban  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:09
English to Slovak
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Marina. Oct 18, 2008

Marina Soldati wrote:
If you have a website, you can compare the hosting costs among several providers of that service and Proz.com.
Regards,
Marina


Fair enough point. However, when it comes to websites, I personally think I can get more from web-hosting dedicated websites (e.g. 123.com) for £22 per year.


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Caryl Swift  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 09:09
Polish to English
+ ...
Following on from LittleBalu... Oct 18, 2008

- Prospective clients seem to be finding me on ProZ.com regularly and far too often.
- Bidding for a job costs me 100 browniz (not a big deal as I don’t do it very often).


LittleBalu wrote:
... $ 100 per year isn't too much to pay (at least IMVHO) for using a platform that permits you to do all that (plus getting help from peers whenever needed). If nobody paid, this site wouldn't exist. As simple as that.

I did expect the first answer to be excatly what I got.
You are right - $100 is nothing. I am just wondering as I feel slightly different about it.


I agree wholeheartedly with LittleBalu. Luckily, enough people do consider the site worth supporting and thus help to ensure that it continues not only to exist, but also to develop. You could also bear in mind that, possibly, more members might equal less need for advertisers - something that many people are vociferously disapproving of in these forums.

I was wondering if you'd done some calculating? What proportion of your income could be directly attributed to ProZ in terms of jobs and clients gained thanks to the site? What proportion could be indirectly attributed to ProZ - what I mean is clients gained thanks to the site who then become regulars? And what percentage of that does 100 dollars represent?

Please don't misunderstand me. I'm not for one minute suggesting that you actually post such personal information here. I'm just wondering if 100 dollars represents an unrealistically huge and unnecessary (tax-deductable) business outlay, in proportion to the income the site helps to generate for you now?

Then you can add to the equation the fact that memebership allows you to bid for all jobs in your pairs immediately and ensures that your bids are 'fast-tracked'. Personally, I have to say that my membership paid for itself several times over within less than a month and did so again when I renewed. And, in turn, this generated a number of new 'regulars'. Making it worthwhile from that aspect alone, never mind any other considerations.

Best wishes,
Caryl


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Amy Duncan  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 04:09
Portuguese to English
+ ...
My checkered history on ProZ Oct 18, 2008

I was initially a non-paying member, then a paying member for awhile, and then a non-paying member again because I was having financial difficulties. Then, as I gradually began to get more work, I starting thinking about being a paying member again, but, like you, I wasn't sure. Eventually I came to the conclusion that I should become a paying member again for all the help I get here and am able to give, for the camaraderie, but especially to support the site.

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Rad Graban  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:09
English to Slovak
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks for your input Caryl but... Oct 18, 2008

Caryl Swift wrote:
I was wondering if you'd done some calculating? What proportion of your income could be directly attributed to ProZ in terms of jobs and clients gained thanks to the site? What proportion could be indirectly attributed to ProZ - what I mean is clients gained thanks to the site who then become regulars? And what percentage of that does 100 dollars represent?


None really. I was a paying member for three or six months but never renew my membership as I couldn't see the difference between "full member" and "user".

Please don't misunderstand me. I'm not for one minute suggesting that you actually post such personal information here. I'm just wondering if 100 dollars represents an unrealistically huge and unnecessary (tax-deductable) business outlay, in proportion to the income the site helps to generate for you now?


Means nothing to me, if it's worth it (read: for my benefit or for the benefit of someone in need). If I got a newsletter or some kind of report from ProZ.com saying that XY amount was giving to XYZ charity, I wouldn't mind paying a thousand. But not for a blue ribbon before my name though.

Then you can add to the equation the fact that memebership allows you to bid for all jobs in your pairs immediately and ensures that your bids are 'fast-tracked'. Personally, I have to say that my membership paid for itself several times over within less than a month and did so again when I renewed. And, in turn, this generated a number of new 'regulars'. Making it worthwhile from that aspect alone, never mind any other considerations.


I don't really need to. I've (genuinely) posted this topic to ask if there is anything extra that paying members get (for themselves or just as a good-feel/personal satisfaction factor) except what I've listed in my original post.


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Vitals  Identity Verified
Lithuania
Local time: 10:09
Member (2008)
English to Lithuanian
+ ...
For me.. Oct 18, 2008

For me full membership mattered because:

1) It gave me 70% more translation assignments than before (getting the lion's share instead of the crumbs under the table). In my case, most of the outsourcers want you to be a paid member or give priority to them.

2) It helped me to find good connections - the customers who keep on supplying me with jobs not even thru Proz now, but my direct contact.

3) It gave me a chance to ask 15 questions a day (instead of just 5). It matters in some of my language pairs, as no decent dictionaries are available and sometimes I have to rely on the help of the experienced colleagues.

4) Proz.com offered a nice discount at the time when I was registering...


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Andrei Yefimov  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 10:09
English to Russian
+ ...
Good deal Oct 18, 2008

Hi everyone,

Rad, a paying member can see Blue Board entries. Sounds like a good benefit, doesn't it?

Andrei


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Rad Graban  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:09
English to Slovak
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Amy. Oct 18, 2008

Amy Duncan wrote:
I was initially a non-paying member, then a paying member for awhile, and then a non-paying member again because I was having financial difficulties. Then, as I gradually began to get more work, I starting thinking about being a paying member again, but, like you, I wasn't sure. Eventually I came to the conclusion that I should become a paying member again for all the help I get here and am able to give, for the camaraderie, but especially to support the site.


Agree, but thousands of members x $100/year generates slightly more than is needed to run a community website enabling to ask and answer questions. Basically, from what you are saying, there is nothing else but caamraderie and support.


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Rad Graban  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:09
English to Slovak
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Depends. Oct 18, 2008

Andrew Yefimov wrote:

Hi everyone,

Rad, a paying member can see Blue Board entries. Sounds like a good benefit, doesn't it?

Andrei


I don't read it that often.


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Friderike Butler  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:09
German to English
+ ...
Maybe no additional benefits, but a communal contribution on your part Oct 18, 2008

It looks and sounds like you are taking full advantage of all the benefits that ProZ has to offer - for free. Your originial question was whether a paid-for membership would give you additional benefits that would entice you to spend $100 of your hard earned money.

In fact there may not be any ADDITIONAL, measurable benefits that you would necessarily care about enough to see them worth paying $100 for. But I would like you to consider the points raised before and I challenge you to think outside of your own computer and your own bank account. ProZ offers a lot of features and support on the non-paying member level that other sites charge for. I appreciate the notion to keep the services accessible for linguists on all walks of life including those who just start out and for whom $100 may truly be an enormous amount of money and those who see translations as a passion and do it part-time.

For me personally, I feel that the site and the community have been such a tremendous support while I established myself as a translator and I benefitted in so many ways from the services the site offers, that I consider it my professional obligation to support the site in return - with my membership fee as well as by answering KudoZ questions, responding to Forums, posting positive or if necessary negative comments on BlueBoard etc. Active involvement in the community through my financial contribution as well as through communal effort.

The site is much more than just a small community website job. The work that is involved to run the site well, provide support, information, host valuable events, that all costs money. Compared to my ATA membership, which is more expensive than the annual ProZ membership, I feel I am getting a lot more out of my buck with Proz, but of course you are right - I simply chose to pay the membership fee and I would have been able to benefit much the same, had I opted to remain a non-paying member.

Of course, it is up to you how far you want to see the membership as a "donation" to the community, voluntary payment for services received or, as implied, a payment that wouldn't give you anything more than what you are already receiving, but unless $100 presents a hardship for you, I hope you consider "stepping up".

Best regards,

Friderike

[Edited at 2008-10-18 20:33]

[Edited at 2008-10-18 20:33]


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Rad Graban  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:09
English to Slovak
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
And now? Oct 18, 2008

Vitals wrote:

For me full membership mattered because:

1) It gave me 70% more translation assignments than before (getting the lion's share instead of the crumbs under the table). In my case, most of the outsourcers want you to be a paid member or give priority to them.

2) It helped me to find good connections - the customers who keep on supplying me with jobs not even thru Proz now, but my direct contact.

3) It gave me a chance to ask 15 questions a day (instead of just 5). It matters in some of my language pairs, as no decent dictionaries are available and sometimes I have to rely on the help of the experienced colleagues.

4) Proz.com offered a nice discount at the time when I was registering...


What do you get now apart from 15 questions a day? I'm not being horrible, but I really wanna find the answer to my original question. If you want me to put it in different way - "What else can I get from ProZ by paying, apart from what I have already mentioned in the priginal post?"


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Rad Graban  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:09
English to Slovak
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks. Oct 18, 2008

Friderike Butler wrote:
Of course, it is up to you how far you want to see the membership as a "donation" to the community, voluntary payment for services received or, as implied, a payment that wouldn't give you anything more than what you are already receiving, but unless $100 presents a hardship for you, I hope you consider "stepping up".


You have answered my question fully. I can be just as successful without paying as I can be by being a full member. I wouldn't be getting anything extra, contributing or helping any good cause for my $100. Discussion closed.
See some of my previous posts about hardship, community and "donations".



[Edited at 2008-10-18 21:02]


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