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Let me start off by saying I am sorry for my bad timing. I have asked for donations and introduced a "member upgrade" within days of each other. It has come to my attention that some think I am out for "more" money. This is not the case but on hindsight my planning or lack of may have been bad.

Just some info to clear some things up...

I asked for donations because the expense of running SM is not cheap and bills were due. Many sites can run on $5.00 per month hosting plans but PHP and MySQL intensive sites such as a busy forum with high bandwidth cost alot of money. The server SM runs on costs me 130.00 per month. I run other forums that are costing me 3000.00 per year. Without donations and member upgrades I would have to shut those sites down.

Donations: these will help me pay for forum software licenses, gallery licenses, upgrades, yearly fees, add ons, domain registration fees and other expenses incurred. I am looking at addon of a chat system, a blog system and other forum upgrades that will both take money and alot of time to implement.

Upgrades: this is tied more closely to the features offered in the upgrade. Direct picture uploads and more albums in the gallery (along with added amount of pictures) are the main factors. Each image uploaded, even if its hosted somewhere else eats at our bandwidth, the larger the picture and the more pictures the faster our bandwidth is used. I am offering an "upgrade" to those who find these added features beneficial. It is not required and never will be for a member to participate here at SM.

So I should have introduced these as two different things and two very different times but honestly it didnt cross my mind as the difference between the two is very clear to me but at the same time I can see where they wouldnt be clear to others. Again, I am sorry for any confusion.

I will refund anyones money that feels slighted in anyway, if you made a donation and rather have the upgrade that is fine, please just PM me and I will take care of it. I am not here to make money or any sort of profit. Only provide a great place for each of us to post about our Malts and enjoy the company of others.

Thanks,
Joe
 

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Originally posted by Joe@Aug 18 2005, 11:06 PM
Let me start off by saying I am sorry for my bad timing. I have asked for donations and introduced a "member upgrade" within days of each other. It has come to my attention that some think I am out for "more" money. This is not the case but on hindsight my planning or lack of may have been bad.

Just some info to clear some things up...

I asked for donations because the expense of running SM is not cheap and bills were due. Many sites can run on $5.00 per month hosting plans but PHP and MySQL intensive sites such as a busy forum with high bandwidth cost alot of money. The server SM runs on costs me 130.00 per month. I run other forums that are costing me 3000.00 per year. Without donations and member upgrades I would have to shut those sites down.

Donations: these will help me pay for forum software licenses, gallery licenses, upgrades, yearly fees, add ons, domain registration fees and other expenses incurred. I am looking at addon of a chat system, a blog system and other forum upgrades that will both take money and alot of time to implement.

Upgrades: this is tied more closely to the features offered in the upgrade. Direct picture uploads and more albums in the gallery (along with added amount of pictures) are the main factors. Each image uploaded, even if its hosted somewhere else eats at our bandwidth, the larger the picture and the more pictures the faster our bandwidth is used. I am offering an "upgrade" to those who find these added features beneficial. It is not required and never will be for a member to participate here at SM.

So I should have introduced these as two different things and two very different times but honestly it didnt cross my mind as the difference between the two is very clear to me but at the same time I can see where they wouldnt be clear to others. Again, I am sorry for any confusion.

I will refund anyones money that feels slighted in anyway, if you made a donation and rather have the upgrade that is fine, please just PM me and I will take care of it. I am not here to make money or any sort of profit. Only provide a great place for each of us to post about our Malts and enjoy the company of others.

Thanks,
Joe
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[/QUOTE]


Joe
i didnt even have a thought about it, its alot of work to keep up an active website
and the fact that you do this is very kind
as for the donation i didnt even read really what you were doing with it nor do i care, i absolutely trust your intentions and whatever you need the money for i think everyone should just help out we all enjoy this site so much
so no explaining to me and maxi
 

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Originally posted by Brooks@Aug 19 2005, 09:35 AM
Did you mention something about a donation button that you were going to add?
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It's in the upper lefthand corner. It says "Make a Donation".

Joe, don't stress over this! I doubt anyone thought you were out for more money. Most of us realize this site has operating costs.

We appreciate everything you do to make this the best Maltese site on the Net!
 

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I have donated, and am happy to do so. If an additional donation/member upgrade is what is needed, I'll do that too.

I am so grateful to be at a FRIENDLY site, it is worth not only my time, but my $$$.
I enjoy coming here.
I don't always post, but I do like to read the posts, and Ihave learned many things about maltese behavior and norms.

So, Joe,PLLLLLLLLLEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAASSSSSSSSSEEEEEEEEE don't be effected by comments. I think most regulars realize your intentions. After all, you even STATED the site would always be free. No one is holding a gun to our heads to give $$$.


Oh, and I made my payment for the membership upgrade by paypal.........so I guess now I am a card carrying member. ...................Now where is that button for the SM Tshirts?????
 

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Joe,
I understand completely the amount of money it takes to run a site like this. I never thought anything of you needing donations and was more than glad to help. I wish I could have given more, but I have a lot going on this year, I will donate again during the year though. I didn't think anything was wrong with the upgrade you offered either, sounds like a very nice upgrade
I will probably join the upgrade forum myself in a week or so :D That way it will be easier for me to upload photo's of our little guy
Plus we finally have broadband so it won't take forever for each photo to download

Thank you again for giving us all a wonderful place to come and talk about the most precious and adorable little babies
You didn't do anything wrong, but if anyone was wondering or confused about the donations and the upgrade, you did well in explaining it, so no worries
 

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Originally posted by LadysMom+Aug 19 2005, 09:43 AM-->
<!--QuoteBegin-Brooks
@Aug 19 2005, 09:35 AM
Did you mention something about a donation button that you were going to add?
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=92238

Joe, don't stress over this! I doubt anyone thought you were out for more money. Most of us realize this site has operating costs.

We appreciate everything you do to make this the best Maltese site on the Net!
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=92242
[/B][/QUOTE]
I agree
 

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Originally posted by Caesar's Mommie+Aug 19 2005, 10:18 AM-->
Originally posted by [email protected] 19 2005, 09:43 AM
<!--QuoteBegin-Brooks
@Aug 19 2005, 09:35 AM
Did you mention something about a donation button that you were going to add?
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=92238



Joe, don't stress over this! I doubt anyone thought you were out for more money. Most of us realize this site has operating costs.

We appreciate everything you do to make this the best Maltese site on the Net!
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=92242

[/QUOTE]
I agree

<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=92263
[/B][/QUOTE]
I agree also!
 

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Originally posted by Lexi's Mom+Aug 19 2005, 11:20 AM-->
Originally posted by Caesar's [email protected] 19 2005, 10:18 AM
Originally posted by [email protected] 19 2005, 09:43 AM
<!--QuoteBegin-Brooks
@Aug 19 2005, 09:35 AM
Did you mention something about a donation button that you were going to add?
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=92238



Joe, don't stress over this! I doubt anyone thought you were out for more money. Most of us realize this site has operating costs.

We appreciate everything you do to make this the best Maltese site on the Net!
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=92242

I agree

<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=92263
I agree also!

<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=92265
[/B][/QUOTE]
Me too I agree 100 %.
 

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First of all I would just like to say THANK YOU for giving us such a wonderful site in which to come and discuss our furbutts. You are truly appreciated!!
I understand as I am sure all other members understand your operating costs. Whether both donations were asked for together or weeks apart I am sure everyone is willing to contribute. For myself I will make a donation first then two weeks later make the upgrade. (Have to wait for each pay period) Again Joe THANK YOU for all your hard work.
 

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Joe,

I can only speak for myself but I have a feeling that others will agree. I went to MO for a good portion of time...was an active participant and knew nothing about this site. If that site (MO) had asked for any of my money I would have thought something was wrong. I would not have wanted to give and such would not have done so.

Now, I belong to this wonderful site...where you can converse with people in real time....and with real feelings and opinions. We are a family because we are able to freely talk with each other...we can email whomever we want...we can ask about the Maltese as well as every other member of their family (including children of human parents and furbaby parents. ) We are able to share pictures and stories not related to only Maltese. I have seen people get annoyed with anothers opinion on one thread and then see the same people being nice and joking on another...because they know that is what family does.

What I am saying is that there is a trust here. I trust the people on here and the reason that is so is because the person who created the site made it be that way...Joe, you are the reason this site is what it is...a trusting group of people who care about one another and the ups and downs of our lives.

I have never been sensored in any way...I have been moved by each communication. Now you have said that to be even better you will need a donation...You have not demanded money and in fact asked in a way that no one would feel funny about not donating. I find this not only acceptable but I am glad you trusted us enough to come and say what you would like.

Then you gave us all the ability to decide if we needed the upgraded space which would cost a bit of money. I see no reason for you to feel "funny" about this at all. Those of us who will go ahead and become members will probably be people who will benifit from added storage space or the ability to send pictures easier than before...We don't have to do this....we will want to do this....some will choose not to because they are not picture senders or don't have too many email messages. It will be our choice and guilt should not even be a part of the thought process.

I love the way you handle yourself and this site Joe...You are an upstanding man who has helped us all by providing a great place for us to share. Thank you for creating this for us...and thanks for asking when the burden of this became too much for help from us.
 

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Originally posted by Teddyandme@Aug 19 2005, 12:24 PM
Joe,

I can only speak for myself but I have a feeling that others will agree.  I went to MO for a good portion of time...was an active participant and knew nothing about this site.  If that site (MO) had asked for any of my money I would have thought something was wrong.  I would not have wanted to give and such would not have done so.

Now, I belong to this wonderful site...where you can converse with people in real time....and with real feelings and opinions.  We are a family because we are able to freely talk with each other...we can email whomever we want...we can ask about the Maltese as well as every other member of their family (including children of human parents and furbaby parents. )  We are able to share pictures and stories not related to only Maltese.  I have seen people get annoyed with anothers opinion on one thread and then see the same people being nice and joking on another...because they know that is what family does. 

What I am saying is that there is a trust here.  I trust the people on here and the reason that is so is because the person who created the site made it be that way...Joe, you are the reason this site is what it is...a trusting group of people who care about one another and the ups and downs of our lives. 

I have never been sensored in any way...I have been moved by  each communication.  Now you have said that to be even better you will need a donation...You have not demanded money and in fact asked in a way that no one would feel funny about not donating. I find this not only acceptable but I am glad you trusted us enough to come and say what you would like.

Then you gave us all the ability to decide if we needed the upgraded space which would cost a bit of money.  I see no reason for you to feel "funny" about this at all.  Those of us who will go ahead and become members will probably be people who will benifit from added storage space or the ability to send pictures easier than before...We don't have to do this....we will want to do this....some will choose not to because they are not picture senders or don't have too many email  messages.  It will be our choice and guilt should not even be a part of the thought process.

I love the way you handle yourself and this site Joe...You are an upstanding man who has helped us all by providing a great place for us to share.  Thank you for creating this for us...and thanks for asking when the burden of this became too much for help from us.
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[/QUOTE]

Great points and very well said, I agree and would like to add that I know that you sincerely care about each and every one of us Joe.
I want you to know that I will be proud to become a full member and also am very happy to send a donation as well to assist you with the extra load.
Janet.
 

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I too love this site and when I get my paycheck next week will be making a donation. Between college for my stepdaughter and for myself money is a little tight until my next paycheck. I should have married a wealthy man...LOL.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Originally posted by Msloke@Aug 19 2005, 02:49 PM
Hey, I had another thought.....we need BUMPER STICKERS!!!!  And key ring thingys!  And an official membership card...how can ya be a "card carrying member" without a card?
 

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[/QUOTE]

bumper stickers will be available too once I get us a new logo done

thanks everyone for your understanding, I am not out for money or profit, just a better SM for everyone here, I appreciate everyones support and donations
 

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Originally posted by Teddyandme@Aug 19 2005, 11:24 AM
Joe,

I can only speak for myself but I have a feeling that others will agree.  I went to MO for a good portion of time...was an active participant and knew nothing about this site.  If that site (MO) had asked for any of my money I would have thought something was wrong.  I would not have wanted to give and such would not have done so.

Now, I belong to this wonderful site...where you can converse with people in real time....and with real feelings and opinions.  We are a family because we are able to freely talk with each other...we can email whomever we want...we can ask about the Maltese as well as every other member of their family (including children of human parents and furbaby parents. )  We are able to share pictures and stories not related to only Maltese.  I have seen people get annoyed with anothers opinion on one thread and then see the same people being nice and joking on another...because they know that is what family does. 

What I am saying is that there is a trust here.  I trust the people on here and the reason that is so is because the person who created the site made it be that way...Joe, you are the reason this site is what it is...a trusting group of people who care about one another and the ups and downs of our lives. 

I have never been sensored in any way...I have been moved by  each communication.  Now you have said that to be even better you will need a donation...You have not demanded money and in fact asked in a way that no one would feel funny about not donating. I find this not only acceptable but I am glad you trusted us enough to come and say what you would like.

Then you gave us all the ability to decide if we needed the upgraded space which would cost a bit of money.  I see no reason for you to feel "funny" about this at all.  Those of us who will go ahead and become members will probably be people who will benifit from added storage space or the ability to send pictures easier than before...We don't have to do this....we will want to do this....some will choose not to because they are not picture senders or don't have too many email  messages.  It will be our choice and guilt should not even be a part of the thought process.

I love the way you handle yourself and this site Joe...You are an upstanding man who has helped us all by providing a great place for us to share.  Thank you for creating this for us...and thanks for asking when the burden of this became too much for help from us.
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=92290
[/QUOTE]
You speak for me as well but I never could have written it so beautifully.
 

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Joe,

I think its completely understandable to ask for donations and offer memberships for a fee. My husband was surprised that these forums are free to begin with!! I am extremely sorry I haven't been able to contribute anything but we recently had some credit card fraud and are in the process of getting new cards. Plus, its embarassing to admit...but we are so poor right now!! We have 2 rents plus expenses of flying and moving every few months. As soon as we are stable, I plan to make a donation!!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Originally posted by scrappy@Aug 19 2005, 08:48 PM
and, and, and, Joe you need to make sure members outside of the US ummmm like me can purchase these great things too.  I have been looking for ages well ever since my daughter pointed it out to me on a car in a carpark which had one of those baby on board sign well it said "Spoilt Maltese on board"  How cute is that.  :D
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[/QUOTE]

the company I use ships internationally
 

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we love this place joe, and totally understand
 

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Originally posted by adorableaccentsdogbows.com+Aug 19 2005, 05:51 PM-->
<!--QuoteBegin-Teddyandme
@Aug 19 2005, 11:24 AM
Joe,

I can only speak for myself but I have a feeling that others will agree.  I went to MO for a good portion of time...was an active participant and knew nothing about this site.  If that site (MO) had asked for any of my money I would have thought something was wrong.  I would not have wanted to give and such would not have done so.

Now, I belong to this wonderful site...where you can converse with people in real time....and with real feelings and opinions.  We are a family because we are able to freely talk with each other...we can email whomever we want...we can ask about the Maltese as well as every other member of their family (including children of human parents and furbaby parents. )  We are able to share pictures and stories not related to only Maltese.  I have seen people get annoyed with anothers opinion on one thread and then see the same people being nice and joking on another...because they know that is what family does. 

What I am saying is that there is a trust here.  I trust the people on here and the reason that is so is because the person who created the site made it be that way...Joe, you are the reason this site is what it is...a trusting group of people who care about one another and the ups and downs of our lives. 

I have never been sensored in any way...I have been moved by  each communication.  Now you have said that to be even better you will need a donation...You have not demanded money and in fact asked in a way that no one would feel funny about not donating. I find this not only acceptable but I am glad you trusted us enough to come and say what you would like.

Then you gave us all the ability to decide if we needed the upgraded space which would cost a bit of money.  I see no reason for you to feel "funny" about this at all.  Those of us who will go ahead and become members will probably be people who will benifit from added storage space or the ability to send pictures easier than before...We don't have to do this....we will want to do this....some will choose not to because they are not picture senders or don't have too many email  messages.  It will be our choice and guilt should not even be a part of the thought process.

I love the way you handle yourself and this site Joe...You are an upstanding man who has helped us all by providing a great place for us to share.  Thank you for creating this for us...and thanks for asking when the burden of this became too much for help from us.
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=92290
You speak for me as well but I never could have written it so beautifully.

<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=92503
[/B][/QUOTE]
me too
 
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