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A 'members-only' site
Thread poster: XXXphxxx (X)

XXXphxxx (X)  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:24
Portuguese to English
+ ...
May 23, 2012

This has no doubt been discussed previously, probably at great length, but what do we think of a 'members-only' site? Would this encourage more people to become members and thus bring down the cost of membership or does that not follow?

 

Jack Doughty  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:24
Member (2000)
Russian to English
+ ...
Counter-argument May 23, 2012

Would a members-only site mean that non-members would not be able to find out anything worthwhile about the site and would not take it any further, so there would be fewer people becoming members, thereby causing a loss?

 

Dr. Matthias Schauen  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 20:24
Member
English to German
More members = lower cost of membership? May 23, 2012

I would imagine that more members would lead to a growth of what the site will offer, and possibly/concurrently to a growth of staff, but not to a reduction of membership fees.

 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 19:24
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Greater difference between the two types May 23, 2012

Hi Lisa,

I don't think I'd be in favour of making it a private club, but I do think there is too little difference between the facilities provided for paying vs non-paying. The main example is in KudoZ use. Quoting from the membership sales blurb:

Terms research and assistance
Members can ask three-times the KudoZ questions as non-members.

Great! Thanks! In practice, don't non-paying users tend to ask three times as many as paying members? Don't they tend to ask a higher proportion of non-Pro questions?

I know there are exceptions, and some registered users are bona-fide translators who have given a lot of time to the site over the years, but it seems that many non-paying users think "I wonder what xxx is in yyy language? I'll ask on ProZ.com". They don't research it themselves - that's what us pros are here for.icon_mad.gif

I would like to see non-paying = non-asking. The glossary should be free for all to browse, but only paying members should be allowed to add to it. Maybe there could be a pay-as-you-go arrangement. Annual membership is quite expensive (though well worth it, IMO) and maybe difficult to justify if you hardly ever ask a KudoZ question.

I do think that people value things (anything) more if they pay for it, even if it's a token payment.

Sheila


 

Derrio  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:24
Spanish to English
+ ...
Jack... May 23, 2012

... has a point. I think if its too restricted for non-members, I don't think they will be able to see the full benefits of the site. I'm not sure I would have joined if I hadn't been able to try it out beforehand.
HOWEVER, the others make valid points too, particularly with regard to the asking of questions. Even the Royal Mail website in the UK only lets you check a limited amount of post codes. Perhaps this could be applied to Proz as well with regard to non-members posting questions (unless it already is and I've missed it!!).

Regards


 

Alistair Ian Spearing Ortiz  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:24
English to Spanish
+ ...
Don't forget the competition May 23, 2012

Another problem: if ProZ starts charging non-paying members for asking questions on KudoZ, then these people will flock to ProZ's competition, meaning that the pool of potential paying members will shrink.

 

DZiW
Ukraine
English to Russian
+ ...
$$$ May 23, 2012

Ok, so paying (privileged) members would rather have something 'at the expense of' non-paying (for what?!) than having something 'in addition to', right? Funny.

I tell you what--when I came to ProZ one always could make bids, but non-members had to wait some 24 hours and pay via earned points, and now ProZ can no longer offer jobs for non-members; just a forum and overabused KudoZ, let alone spamming ads.

In other words, the only useful thing (personally for me) is the forum (information about translation/interpreting in general), not some job-related mockery. Indeed, there are many similar sites and *free* forums, so if ProZ becomes a 'gifted club' I'm sure that very many people won't suddenly become paying members... Think again.

BTW, although I couldn't care less, but isn't there a Members' only highly restricted area?



_____________________________
P.S. Special membership offer
Over 95% of members recommend membership to others. Take your translation business to new ground. Join ProZ.com »


Could someone refer me to the poll or relevant statistics? Anyone?


 

writeaway  Identity Verified
French to English
+ ...
Imo the willingness to pay has nothing at all to do with the ability to translate May 23, 2012

Sheila Wilson wrote:


Great! Thanks! In practice, don't non-paying users tend to ask three times as many as paying members? Don't they tend to ask a higher proportion of non-Pro questions?


Based on what? And what is a "pro" question anyway? It's a question posted as "pro". What's in a name...

I know there are exceptions, and some registered users are bona-fide translators who have given a lot of time to the site over the years, but it seems that many non-paying users think "I wonder what xxx is in yyy language? I'll ask on ProZ.com". They don't research it themselves - that's what us pros are here for.icon_mad.gif

There are far fewer of one-off askers now. And as for those who don't research for themselves, I hardly think non-paying users have cornered the market on that one! Au contraire....

I would like to see non-paying = non-asking.

I would like to see not-knowing =not-answering

The glossary should be free for all to browse, but only paying members should be allowed to add to it. Maybe there could be a pay-as-you-go arrangement. Annual membership is quite expensive (though well worth it, IMO) and maybe difficult to justify if you hardly ever ask a KudoZ question.

Once upon a time we were ALL members. Some paid, others didn't . Those who paid did so at the time to help Henry keep the site afloat.
The mania for rushing to join Proz to ask Kudoz questions is relatively new and seems to be becoming the predominant reason for joining now. That's a pity. Once upon a time, we felt like a united community of pro translators, who could occasionally turn to Kudoz to get help if we got stuck or to help out for the fun of helping. And we only helped if we knew the field. There were lots of experts helping back then so it was win-win and learn-learn for all.


I do think that people value things (anything) more if they pay for it, even if it's a token payment.


If a lot of disgruntled long-time members are still around it's because we all valued Proz very much whether we were paying Members or non-paying Members.
Splitting the site even more than it already is would be a great pity. There is already the P badge forum where everyone is automatically a paying member. Imo it should be left at that.


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 19:24
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Once upon a time... May 23, 2012

writeaway wrote:
Imo the willingness to pay has nothing at all to do with the ability to translate


I don't disagree with anything you've said, Writeaway, and I just wish I could have been a part of the "good old days" on ProZ. But times change. Whether they change for the better or not is a moot point, but you can't prevent them from changing. And nowadays, everybody is looking for "freebies", not community spirit, self-help, peer support etc. It's sad, but there you are.

Shops often point out you are "free to browse". But you certainly aren't free to take things away, or to request special items - for that you have to pay.

Sheila


 

Cinzia Landi (X)
Italy
Local time: 20:24
English to Italian
as it is now, it is not very useful May 23, 2012

I sincerely admire those who say to have found new customers and a lot of business thanks to Proz. I really did not obtain anything. I only see bottom feeders, geniuses who can ask whatever they want, nothing in the middle, and lots of questions about trados, MT and the like. I am probably wrong, I am not doing the right things with my profile, CV, answers to questions. Ah, the last thing is the request for renewal 5 months before the due date. I really don't understand.

Zaza...
PS English is not an active language for me.


 

Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 11:24
English to German
+ ...
I hope I am not straying away from the topic May 23, 2012

but I would like to answer this post.

zazazaza wrote:

I sincerely admire those who say to have found new customers and a lot of business thanks to Proz. I really did not obtain anything. I only see bottom feeders, geniuses who can ask whatever they want, nothing in the middle, and lots of questions about trados, MT and the like. I am probably wrong, I am not doing the right things with my profile, CV, answers to questions. Ah, the last thing is the request for renewal 5 months before the due date. I really don't understand.

Zaza...


ProZ.com is the ultimate marketing tool. As a matter of fact, I don't have to lift a finger. Clients, both, agencies as well as direct clients find me through the ProZ.com directories, and on average I have to decline about 30% of requests because there are only 24 hours in a day. I am not talking about any offers with absurd rates, because they are filtered out.

The breakthrough started when I dropped my pseudonym as a user name and developed my profile under my real name and company name. Nobody trusts pseudonyms.


 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:24
Spanish to English
+ ...
Jumping the gun May 23, 2012

zazazaza wrote:

Ah, the last thing is the request for renewal 5 months before the due date. I really don't understand.

Zaza...
PS English is not an active language for me.


Yeah, what is that about? It does seem rather premature.

BTW I think your English in the post is fine.


 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:24
Spanish to English
+ ...
Disuasive tactics May 23, 2012

Rather than putting payments barriers up to "non-professionals" and time-wasters, I don't see why we can't just suspend some of more touchy-feely guidelines and be allowed to give brickbats or roastings where rightly deserved...

For example if someone posts 20+ queries on the trot in one morning (you know who you are) couldn't we be allowed to gently question their suitability for the task?


 

Derrio  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:24
Spanish to English
+ ...
I have to agree... May 23, 2012

... with Nicole.
Since being a fully paid up member for nearly a year now (yes, I've got the reminder re. renewal and the cheque's in the post) I have picked up a fair bit of business from the site, some of which has turned into regular customers.

By the way, a good point about pseudonyms which I hadn't thought of, so will be changing mine soon.

Thanks
Steve (the artist formally known as 'Derrio')


 

Robert Forstag  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 14:24
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Dream on! May 23, 2012

neilmac wrote:

Rather than putting payments barriers up to "non-professionals" and time-wasters, I don't see why we can't just suspend some of more touchy-feely guidelines and be allowed to give brickbats or roastings where rightly deserved...

For example if someone posts 20+ queries on the trot in one morning (you know who you are) couldn't we be allowed to gently question their suitability for the task?


***
This is a site that permits paying members to post 300 queries a month (3600 a year!). Is it conceivable that a professional translator could approach these limits without a large percentage of the questions being what many of us would call "illegitimate"?

Abuse is built into the very system. Thus, castigating behavior that the site rules encourage hardly makes any sense.


 
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