As you may have seen sometime ago, we’ve been looking at options to keep our small forum well maintained and supported, so we can all be friends and keep this little community happy, healthy, and interesting. I’d personally love for this to be more than only a place to virtually socialise & organise stuff - and as such, things are in the works to make change - core FOA members now meet bi-monthly to talk about future ideas and events, and we have our first significant event coming up on Dec 1st (Show & Shine).
Whilst we have had some great suggestions and a couple of new advertisers, we are looking at restructuring the forum to ensure that it is not costing money to run. As you already know, there are some banners on this site - but 95% of them are running at a significant discount, more as a show of solidarity to small cycling brands, rather than an financial tour de force.
So… We are looking to implement PAID membership to keep the site running and to break even, and to also continue to employ someone on a casual/very part time basis (have you guys heard of Rolly? He’s kind of quiet on here but you may have seen his ginger beard from time to time…) - part of his job is to organise events, and to try and create a platform on which FOA can grow and evolve for the future. Ideally we would like to be in a position to fund events in each state, and not be totally Vic-centric. The annual fee to become a member will be $20.
At this stage we are going to implement the annual fee and keep things running exactly as they are - membership is voluntary, and non-members will not be penalised for not supporting the site (well, perhaps a little, socially… :p)
The benefits of membership are as follows:
- Warm and fuzzy feeling knowing you’re keeping this place running!
- No more waiting to get trading access.
- Allowing FOA to run and maintain events.
- Pre-registration for any paid events (or limited number events)
- Discount on FOA merch (Rolly really will be doing a cap run shortly!)
- Still MUCH cheaper than eBay for those that use the Trading Access to sell things ($25 is the approximate cost to sell $400 worth of parts on eBay). Many users would sell much more than that over the course of a year on FOA.
This isn’t something that was decided upon lightly, but it needs to happen to save FOA from disappearing into the digital ether, or just becoming a place which runs without love or direction. I’ve spoken to a mix of users and the general consensus is that FOA is more than just a forum to talk about bikes, and it would be a great shame if we had to shut it down. I personally simply don’t have the energy nor time to do all the things I would like to do here (and haven’t for some years), but I’m hoping with some additional support good things will get better.
So… Have a think about how many people you’ve met through FOA… And how many good times you’ve had at all of the various events that have been organised through these pages… Rolly tells me he only knew 4 people when he moved to Melbourne in 2009, now look at him go!!
MEMBERSHIP IS $20/YEAR - and you can get on board here
Edit: Want your first year of donor status for $0?:
[u][b]If someone designs a cool FOA donor icon, they get donor status for nix.