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How much would you pay for a Voyageurs memership cost?

How much would you pay for a Voyageurs memership?  

64 members have voted

  1. 1. How much would you pay for a Voyageurs memership?

    • $20/yr
    • $10/yr
    • $5/yr
    • I wouldn't pay anything, but I don't mind having a two tiered membership system
    • I'm opposed to any sort of fee structure!


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Well it's been a week since I posted this and almost 50 people have voted. Let's hope it's representative of the membership.

First off, notice that the question could have been posed "How much should a Vs membership cost?" (indeed I screwed up the title for the thread). I chose to avoid this since it really doesn't matter what people think if nobody's going to pay it.

Second, before we analyse the results, we should keep in mind any selection effects. One could argue that people not interested in paying would just shy away from the poll altogether. One could also argue that newer members might consider themselves not enough part of the group and therefore feel reluctant to vote. So we are possibly selected to old members and those willing to pay.

On to the numbers:

Of those who responded, 67% would pay and 73% wouldn't mind having a fee structure. This is pretty high to argue with IMO. A clear majority of people responded favourably to something.

1. Isn't it true that the local supporters groups are already doing all of the organizational stuff we need?

Of those that live near the 'big 3' clubs that responded, only 30% opposed a fee structure. On the other hand, the 'No' side is composed of 54% those who live near the 'big 3' clubs.

2. Are we sure that 'true' Voyageurs are in favour of this?

Sort of highlighting the reason why we need some sort of accountability actually. It is entirely possible that a bunch of Jamaican sock puppets are trying to destroy our group by inacting membership fees, etc. Well in that case, we need to consider various ways to qualify who is a Voyageur.

2a. People who post a lot

Posting a lot doesn't mean too much, but it at least indicates you spend a significant amount of time here. Of those who voted, the median number of posts is roughly 700. Of voters with post counts above this value 33% of them are opposed, while 62% of those opposed have high post counts.

2b. People who go to the games

While a lot of the voters are on the 'Vs MNT Caps' thread, of those with more than 10 caps listed, it's split 50/50 in favour/against. A better indicator of participation would be to check people's invovlment in modding, t-shirt/scarf sales, christmas cards, parades, press releases, etc., but I can't be arsed.

2c. People who have been around a long time

The median join time of voters is Jan 2004. The oldies are slightly in favour of a fee structure: 54% voted for it. Of those opposed 75% were around in 2003. I'm not too surprised by this, since you always expect a certian portion of people to support the status quo.

3. Will a fee structure scare away potential members?

No. Of those who joined in the past 2 years, only 17% oppose.

There you go. Take from that what you want.

A few other things. It should be completely clear most posts in favour of this also indicate that it should be two-tiered. That is to say free membership will always be an option. You just might not get the scarf, miss out on some travel perks and have to let the paid members have the first crack at seats.

Also, I really think this is an optimal way to get a reliable head count. I could create 1000 new accounts on this board and then we could claim that our membership is growing by leaps and bounds, but that wouldn't mean much would it? We need to assure people that there are bodies behind these posts.

Timing: I actually imagine this will take some time to set up. While we are on the 'off-season', it might be a good idea to get the kinks worked out now.

Of course all of this discussion is rather meaningless until some people actually go out there and do something. Not it (called it)!

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A few comments.

If ever there was a membership fee applied (I voted yes btw, mainly because the time I spend on here would be worth $20 to me), I think the best solution would be to give insentives to join the membership, all the while keeping an open culture for newcomers because honestly, I am not sure if I would have paid $20 when I first joined this forum. Big Soccer would probably have me by now or something.

Anyways, here is my idea (on the fly):

Non-members receive:

- Access to everything on the forum, except to one section for Members only;

- Receive monthly or by-weekly newsletters;

- Can pay for separate things (scarf, t-shirt, wtv.)

Members receive:

- Access to everything on the forum, including the Members only section;

- A Voyageurs scarf;

- A Voyageurs t-shirt;

- A Voyageurs CD with Canada specific chants on them (Virage Taraji from the Espérance Sportif de Tunis does this. I found it was a cool idea and it can be update as years go on);

- Supporters group tickets for team Canada matches;

- Membership card (tacky I know, but people actually like these things);

- A vote as to how the money being amassed gets used (flags, tivo, banners, sending them from one end of the country to another, etc.).

The Members only section would only be to discuss money distribution (what to buy with the money in the coffers), ticket offers (password to buy tickets on ticketmaster, discussion about where people should sit, etc.) and anything related closely or by far to those two issues.

Anything sport related would be available to everyone and would look slightly the same as it does now.

Anyways, fill in the details where you want them, but I think something like this would be best if ever there was the intention of creating a formal membership group.

Edited by Sébastien

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Again is....(now) 48 votes enough to make this call? Is it fair to say "17% of those who joined in the last two years opposed" when that should really say "of those who joined in the last 2 years that actually voted only 17% oppose".

Sample size is way to small to make such a call, I'd say - if we are relying on a vote to make the decision. If some V's rep is going to just make the call that's a different story. So long as votes are being relied-upon, I'd say 48 isn't enough.

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This thread has some purpose as an informal poll of what a small group of members opinion on the subject is. As any sort of vote or indication of what the majority want it is completely illegitimate. Not only is the sample too small, probably more than half of the membership doesn't even look at this part of the forum nor know about this thread. Additionally the very nature of the thread will inspire more people in favour of the fees/reorganization than those who are opposed. The only way that we can have a meaningful vote is to set up a criteria of who is eligible to vote and send all of these people an e-mail as well as posting a thread in every forum on the board.

Once again I am opposed to the fee though mostly because any fee will neccessitate a restructuring due to the funds involved. At the moment and near future I think our present structure works well and corresponds to our size and the amount of activity in both the group and national teams. It may seem that we are not overly organized but there is a pretty good informal structure and when something needs to be done people usually step up and do it. I see a lot of people in favour of fees/reorganization/incorporation who have never volunteered for projects or gotten really involved with the organization. I am somewhat sceptical that enough of them will do so once a reorganiztion occurs and will never vote for a reorganization until I feel confident that there is a group of competent individuals ready to take over the organization and run it properly. It is easy to vote for fees and reorganization but another matter entirely to become involved in running the group. Do not ignore the fact that when we reorganize in a more official manner that it will become far more complicated and time consuming to run the Voyageurs and this may also cause some of the current people running things to become less involved.

To mention a few other issues that have been discussed, I am pretty sceptical we have the numbers to interest Air Canada or other transportation companies to offer travel discounts. Never hurts to try or ask but I don't see us getting big savings especially since as long as someone plans in advance and looks around one can usually find better savings than group rate discounts of full fares. I also think ticket distribution is a non-issue because we should not be distributing tickets as this is a very complicated and financially risky venture. What we should be doing is continuing to develop a strategy with the CSA for getting early access to tickets and ensuring only Canadian fans have this access. As far as what VPjr did, it was cool that he bought so many tickets and made them available to Voyageurs or Canada fans who didn't buy tickets early enough when they should have. However, he was able to do the large ticket sales because he has a lot of connections with youth soccer groups and was willing to take the financial risk. If an individual such as VPjr is willing to take such financial risks that is laudable but I don't think the Voyageurs should be taking large financial risks to buy up tickets for youth soccer groups and members who did not utilize the pre-sale. Sometimes UM does group purchases of tickets to Impact games and believe me it is incredibly complicated and time consuming to distribute 50 to 100 tickets to guys that we see on a regular basis so I can't imagine what it would be like to distribute hundreds to thousands of tickets to people from all parts of the country.

Edited by Grizzly

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The only way that we can have a meaningful vote is to set up a criteria of who is eligible to vote and send all of these people an e-mail as well as posting a thread in every forum on the board.

OK let's do that and get on with organization, structure and fees. Simple majority rules. Enough of arguing.

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The only way that we can have a meaningful vote is to set up a criteria of who is eligible to vote and send all of these people an e-mail as well as posting a thread in every forum on the board.

Once again I am opposed to the fee though mostly because any fee will neccessitate a restructuring due to the funds involved. At the moment and near future I think our present structure works well and corresponds to our size and the amount of activity in both the group and national teams. .

Excellent idea re: the voting. Could not agree more re: the opposition for having a fee.

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Always good to have this type of discussion running. I think we still need to sit back and actually reflect on where we are right now to understand on where we could go. Getting an idea of what the actual numbers are for us is important. Before we vote on anything, shouldn't we at least figure out a proper way to get solid membership numbers?

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I think as long as they're signed up to the forum, or however we decide to distinguish members, they should be allowed a vote. Just because someone is brand new to our group doesn't mean their opinion is any less valid. Yes, this raises the question of what's in the best interest for our group, in that, how does someone who's really only looked at the boards during the Gold Cup and World Cup Qualifying have a properly educated opinion on issues that are posed? My thoughts are that since they are such fresh members, they might be able to offer an opinion that us hardcores aren't really able to conceive since we're well beyond their point of activity within our group.

Anyway, I think we need to leave the idea of a mass vote alone until we actually figure out what we're even trying to accomplish, and whether we'll even need to find out what our total membership is from the get-go anyway.

Edited by Tuscan
splelnig wror

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Walking away from the problem doesn't solve anything. Whenever somebody with initiative and motivation tries to accomplish a stand, we find ways to invalidate such actions.

A poll was set up with clear results. Then we say the poll is not representative of the whole, that each member should be contacted individually. Fine, so let us do that, but then that is not good enough as we question who is a member. To complicate matters more we question that new members know nothing about the issues on hand. I wonder, what will be next?

To me what we are voting for like wether or not to incorporate as a society, to have a organization chart, to institute a membership fee, to set up a number of yearly goals, etc. are all matters of common management sense regardless of the technical aspects of soccer, its players, coaches, games, etc. I venture to say that our lack of organization and being just a website, will be our undoing in the long run. As Canadian teams grow and multiply, fans and suporters will segregate in each club of their choice. Much the way it is elsewhere in the world. Perhaps the only common ground left for us voyageurs will be National teams. Unfortunately our national teams are not that successful and hardly play at home to keep us all united.

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^ I appreciate what you are saying. Via this discussion, I've decided to pursue an initiative which might help this discussion along. I hope to start producing bi-weekly newsletters to send to all registrants of this forum. In this newletter, among other things, I hope to highlight interesting discussions in order to engage people into participating. As Grizzly mentioned, this part of the forum is not as well-travelled as others and I'm sure there are a number of members which have no idea this discussion is going on. However, in order to do this, it's going to take a little bit of setup (amassing email addresses, formatting the newletter etc.) so please be patient.

I think this discussion is good, however I don't think we need to start making all the decisions right now. Keep hashing it out.

One thing that is sort of glossed over are the incentives that membership would entail. Everyone realizes that there should be incentives for joining, but either don't provide any examples or when examples are provided they end up cumulatively costing more than the membership fee (running us into a loss with each membership). One thing that could possibly be pursued is having a membership equal one vote in how things are done or what initiatives should be pursued. A little while ago we were running press releases all over the place (around the hiring of Mitchell and the Simoes saga, I believe). Sometimes, it took too long for these to get out because we couldn't vote on whether this should fall under the Voyageurs banner or not. This way, we have clear indications as to who is eligible to vote in these situations and if 75% of members vote then the motion is carried or something like that. Of course, if this is pursued, I would hope that the membership fee wouldn't be more than $5 or make it per donation (one membership per donation no matter the amount and one membership per person ie. multiple donations does not equal multiple votes).

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I have not voted, (one desktop in storage, 2 dead laptops and lots of reading to catch up on)

I am definitely opposed to a fee based membership and the resulting beurocracy that will come with it.

Forums do not make good systems for membership. Most normal people don't know what they are.

Forum = nutcases like us

Membership = website front end sign up which is just for membership . Which also points them to the forum if they want to wreck their life.

The software I am planning on using is called CiviCRM. It is a membership management system, donation system, event management and mailing list system all in one. Please check it out at www.civicrm.org

We have two years to establish our presence before WCQ.

Things we need money for:

Proper mailing list service so we don't burn the domain. This costs money.

Event presence. Games, dinners, award galas, booths, tables. We need to show up, so far we haven't.

Advertising in exchange for articles. Soccer 360, Inside Soccer, Provincial newsletters. We need to write those articles and if we have to buy people a gift certificate at the CSA store to do so... so be it. It needs to get done.

Small budget to buy coffee cards for people who write articles and contribute content. Just a simple thank you.

Proposal

1. Set up the membership system on the site.

2. Do a small,donation based essentially internal funding drive with a simple achievable goal with a plan for that money.

3. Every funding plan and drive is outlined on the site. The money raised and what it accomplished. We raised this, and did this.

4. Evaluate that in six months and see how it goes.

Proposed funding drive.

Target: $500

Goal:

We use this money to establish concrete relationships with Inside Soccer, Soccer 360 and xxxxx to contribute articles and in exchange advertising at a discounted rate.

From xxx date on, no one should pick up one of those magazines and not see something about us in it.

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I have not voted, (one desktop in storage, 2 dead laptops and lots of reading to catch up on)

I am definitely opposed to a fee based membership and the resulting beurocracy that will come with it.

Forums do not make good systems for membership. Most normal people don't know what they are.

Forum = nutcases like us

Membership = website front end sign up which is just for membership . Which also points them to the forum if they want to wreck their life.

The software I am planning on using is called CiviCRM. It is a membership management system, donation system, event management and mailing list system all in one. Please check it out at www.civicrm.org

We have two years to establish our presence before WCQ.

Things we need money for:

Proper mailing list service so we don't burn the domain. This costs money.

Event presence. Games, dinners, award galas, booths, tables. We need to show up, so far we haven't.

Advertising in exchange for articles. Soccer 360, Inside Soccer, Provincial newsletters. We need to write those articles and if we have to buy people a gift certificate at the CSA store to do so... so be it. It needs to get done.

Small budget to buy coffee cards for people who write articles and contribute content. Just a simple thank you.

Proposal

1. Set up the membership system on the site.

2. Do a small,donation based essentially internal funding drive with a simple achievable goal with a plan for that money.

3. Every funding plan and drive is outlined on the site. The money raised and what it accomplished. We raised this, and did this.

4. Evaluate that in six months and see how it goes.

Proposed funding drive.

Target: $500

Goal:

We use this money to establish concrete relationships with Inside Soccer, Soccer 360 and xxxxx to contribute articles and in exchange advertising at a discounted rate.

From xxx date on, no one should pick up one of those magazines and not see something about us in it.

very well done. When you are ready to start collecting donations, I'll be happy to contribute.

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As previously mentioned, there are a lot of good ideas and suggestions that are being made in this thread, however I wonder how much of it is going to get lost to the archives. I believe if a few people feel strongly about the topics discussed, it is imparitive that they get together via scheduled online meeting and start to hash out an outline of what is being proposed in this thread. SoccerOnly made a good point that we need to start with some simple and clear objectives and build from that. While all of this discussion is good, its far too massive for the casual to come on here and comprehend what is being discussed and interest is being lost.

Personally, I have given a lot of my time/money to the V's in ordering and delivering the Voyageurs Merchandise, and I feel very connected to this group, however I don't yet agree with a paid membership structure until we have a proper group structure in place with clear benefits for being a paid member. However I do believe these benefits can be developed in time, but we need to start with an outline and a path for development before we jump into a paid structure.

I am not anywhere close to a group founding member and I would not feel right changing the group dynamics without overwhelming support from the members. And seeing as though we have <150 votes, I would say that is a fringe percentage of the population.

Just my 2 Cents

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I have not voted... ...no one should pick up one of those magazines and not see something about us in it.

This is great, and I'll work with you in setting this up.

Do most of us on here have a Skype account? Aside from the 25th, I'm free all evenings next week. We should set up either a mass audio chat (it can be done without being too crazy) or a mass text chat to lay the ground work for this project. Time to get the ball a-rollin'!

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A few comments.

If ever there was a membership fee applied (I voted yes btw, mainly because the time I spend on here would be worth $20 to me), I think the best solution would be to give insentives to join the membership, all the while keeping an open culture for newcomers because honestly, I am not sure if I would have paid $20 when I first joined this forum. Big Soccer would probably have me by now or something.

Anyways, here is my idea (on the fly):

Non-members receive:

- Access to everything on the forum, except to one section for Members only;

- Receive monthly or by-weekly newsletters;

- Can pay for separate things (scarf, t-shirt, wtv.)

Members receive:

- Access to everything on the forum, including the Members only section;

- A Voyageurs scarf;

- A Voyageurs t-shirt;

- A Voyageurs CD with Canada specific chants on them (Virage Taraji from the Espérance Sportif de Tunis does this. I found it was a cool idea and it can be update as years go on);

- Supporters group tickets for team Canada matches;

- Membership card (tacky I know, but people actually like these things);

- A vote as to how the money being amassed gets used (flags, tivo, banners, sending them from one end of the country to another, etc.).

The Members only section would only be to discuss money distribution (what to buy with the money in the coffers), ticket offers (password to buy tickets on ticketmaster, discussion about where people should sit, etc.) and anything related closely or by far to those two issues.

Anything sport related would be available to everyone and would look slightly the same as it does now.

Anyways, fill in the details where you want them, but I think something like this would be best if ever there was the intention of creating a formal membership group.

I like this idea, it gives people the chance to grow attached to the Voyageurs forum and then you are able to get your merc. The only thing I dont like about a membership is that I firsy signed up on the site while I was going to School. I was a great place to learn about Canadain soccer, I didnt have the extra money to get all of the sports channels I needed to watch Canada's game so I would come on here to find out where on line it was being streamed. So I dont think I would have paid to join the site until I became attached to it like I am now.

The only thing wrong about Sebastien's idea is that it would be a fair bit of money to pay for a person who may not have a lot of extra income. it would be at least $40 im assuming so the website does not lose money.

having said that I know have a decent job so I would be ok with paying a fee per year. It would go back into the site and or used by the group in some way. So its not like a person is making money off of it, I think there are a number of people on here donating a fair bit of money so we all can enjoy this site.

lastly, If there was a member fee a cool think woulf be to get more photos on the website, It might help people realize how much fun sitting with in the Voyageurs Section is and it could help grow the site and the section. Also I am from Sask in the middle of nowhere when it come to Candian soccer and the photos could help me feel like I was sitting the the Voyageurs section at the game a bit more when the games are too far to go too.

thanks for reading my post, it got a bit long.

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I pay about $15 for The Redpatchboys so paying about $20 to be part of the Voyaguers would be good. I would not mind seeing $1 FOR EVERY MEMBERSHIP Going to Soccer Canada programs.

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