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No. of Recommendations: 429
Something just occured to me. At the same time the Fool announced that folks have to pay for use of the boards they also announced that 1000 posters will get one years free membership. This is the lynchpin to the whole mechanism. Essentially those 1000 posters are the employees of the Fool that make the boards successful. They are the content. Tom is getting his content provided for $15. The lucky 1000 are working countless hours (don't let your real employers find out) to provide free content to the Fool. If the Fool was foolish enough to charge you folk this grand experiment would fail in a week. So here's my idea ...

LET'S GO ON STRIKE!!!

If the regular posters, the lucky 1000 (and you know who you are), all agree to avoid posting on the Fool for one month I'll bet the fee would be dropped in a heartbeat. Failing that, we can crawl back on March 1st, check in hand, and resume the position.

Let me be clear about why I am unhappy with this fee announcement (other than the fact that I'm cheap). I don't think the folks who provide the content should be charged for doing so. Nor should others be charged for the service the content providers provide for free. (Sell some advertising, Tom. That's the biz model anyways).

If you agree with the idea of a content strike please recommend this post (clearly a shameless plug for recs on my part ;>).

Content Providers of the Fool, Unite! Let the content strike commence February 1, 2002!

PhoolishRed

P.S. I'm serious.
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No. of Recommendations: 102
PP,

Normally your cynical attitude is a useful addition to a critical discussion, but in this case I feel you have reached the height of childish sophistry. You know security analysis better than I, but if I must genuflect in order to be enlightened by your vast intellect, then I shall choose to remain blissfully ignorant.

Actually I thank you (and another horse's ass on the AAPL board) for helping me understand how I really feel about how reasonable the $30 fee is ($15/year for the first 2) to participate in this community. It is a community, all opinions welcome, even yours. However, the idea that you are so wonderful that we can't do without you, or even a real man like Bruce Brown, and still not grow into a better community is absurd.

Were you as wonderful when the fool began as you are now? Did you not learn more than you taught? I guess it's easy for me to say this as I have certainly learned more than I have taught these past two years. Come the day, however, that I am even 1/10th the intellect you are, then I will surely be returning to the community some of that which I have received. This, after the yearly fees. It is not only my hope, but one of my investing goals that I might be able to help others one day who have only the means to purchase a hundred or so shares at time.

Go your own way, then, and save your $30. I sincerely wish you the best.

Darryl
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No. of Recommendations: 3
Philip,

Free subscription for 1000 posters cannot be not true. I got one, and I can only think it was because I have paid for a number of TMF products.

Before I knew I had a freebie, I heartily agreed with TMF's move, see my posts:

http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=16571429

http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=16571671

TMF is dead. Long live TMF
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No. of Recommendations: 10
LET'S GO ON STRIKE!!!

I got a freebie (hey, I'm the head elder zealot of the PLI board), but I paid to extend it for the next 2 years. So I'm not sure what the point is to this PP. In essence, you are trying to penalize those of us who figured that $30 wasn't too much to ask.

I'm just in this to make money. Restricting posts - and stock ideas - doesn't make this a productive effort.


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No. of Recommendations: 4
However, the idea that you are so wonderful that we can't do without you, or even a real man like Bruce Brown, and still not grow into a better community is absurd.

I hope PP finds it in his heart to stay - he really is one fine poster. His JNJ work has been extremely interesting and thought-provoking. He has good ideas and he can make you money. That's all that matters.




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No. of Recommendations: 29

Hmmm... so the logic goes like this? The 1000 posters go on strike and succeed in getting TMF to roll back the subscription fee? TMF decides instead to continue to cut staff and reduce the quality of the service (anybody who has tracked a portfolio here for more than a year will know what I mean). Ultimately, TMF spirals down to the level of other free sites on the web, achieving a signal to noise ratio of, say, the Yahoo boards?

Phillip I mean no disrespect in the above, I have seen you post on several of the boards I follow here and you are obviously a valued member of the community. But I think your idea is shortsighted. I think the move to a paid subscription model at TMF was inevitable and I for one welcome it. Hopefully it will allow TMF to build where they need to while maintaining a level of service in areas that have recently begun to sag as staff got stretched and corners got cut.

I hope you and the othe 1000 posters will accept your free year as acknowledgement of the value that TMF places on you and continue to post frequently. I'm sure I speak for many when I say that the value that we derive from all of you far exceeds a paltry $30 fee.

Cheers

MF
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Looks like a Feb. 1st strike is gaining popularity:


http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=16574649
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phoolishphilip:

Look what I found. Could it be that the UK does not fall in under the same regulations as we do? This was on the LBYM board post #234544. Is it a joke, or do we still have a BRK board in the UK to access for free. Have we been discriminated against, or what!
The following is a portion from a post on the LBYM board and the post number is 234544.

******************************
........"One of the things about LBYM is to find a way to do things that cost less. Yesterday, my first instinct was to go to MSN.
Upon further research, I learned that I can get something JUST AS GOOD for free- I invite you to the LBYM board at www.fool.co.uk (I wonder how long its going to take for the fools, er, Fools to figure out people are going there and ruin that one too...). Its FREE and has the exact look and feel of this board.

IWP"
*******************************
Is it possible the boards in the UK are not included in the recent changes? Anyone out there know?
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No. of Recommendations: 14
I honestly don't understand the indignance that some posters have about being charged to use a fast, reliable, easily-searchable and prolific forum. I also don't follow the logic that says "I post a lot of information at the expense of my time, therefore I'm a content provider". First of all, the expense of your time was always made at your choice. Second, are you saying that you haven't received any value from any other posts on these boards? That they haven't been a source of feedback on ideas, or a source of ideas? I think the value of these boards is being underrated in many other ways. What spam appears on the board is quickly removed. Noise is quickly pushed to the fringes by other posters or use of the ignore feature. These boards are liable to attract more posters with a genuine interest in investing simply because it is NOT Yahoo, or Quicken, or any other site that has similar boards. Yes, posters provide the content, collectively. But the Fool provides the site that keeps it all running smoothly. I don't see the logic of "striking" and feel that in the end, you hurt yourself more than anything else.
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No. of Recommendations: 3
I hope PP finds it in his heart to stay - he really is one fine poster. His JNJ work has been extremely interesting and thought-provoking. He has good ideas and he can make you money. That's all that matters

Greenmartian1 (and PP),

I didn't mean to imply that I had no respect for PP's work; quite the contrary. I simply can't stomach the attitude in his response to TMF trying to get a little revenue to buy storage space for all of Phil's/our posting.

Hope this clarifies,

darryl
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No. of Recommendations: 32
PP, I can see where you are coming from, but there is a fundamental flaw in your logic. See, it is not free for TMF to provide us with and maintain these boards. And right now, advertising revenue just isn't cutting it. So they are charging a token amount. Basically, this amounts to everyone pulling his or her share of the load. The way I see it, the nominal charge is RENT for the use of the boards.

We pay a monthly fee to go to the gym, for example. Why is it so hard to get our heads around paying a monthly fee to access boards that someone else has paid to develop, set up, and maintain?

And one last thing... I am not a "content provider". I am an investor who likes coming to the boards to chat with other investors. I don't feel the need to be compensated for my time here. If it is such trouble for you, then don't do it.

Am I missing something here?

Rt.
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I checked and found the UK does not list US companies. Sorry for posting before I checked.
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No. of Recommendations: 9
Darryl,

the idea that you are so wonderful that we can't do without you, or even a real man like Bruce Brown, and still not grow into a better community is absurd.

I'm sorry I got you a little hot under the collar. I don't think I am so wonderful. I think a lot of other people are wonderful. I just post alot. Look when I said "Content Providers" I meant every one who posts to these boards. Everyone who posts to the Fool is a content provider. Some provide more than others, and some provide better content than others (and I would not place myself in that category). It is no accident that some boards thrive while others die. The thing to recognize is that the Fool has nothing to do with the success of a board, and they know this! That is why they've tried to bribe about 1000 folks into keeping them alive. Really, why else would they give free membership to the most active, or most popular, or most ... whatever the darn criteria is ... posters??? Because they are the lifeblood of the boards. If these folks are that important to the financial success of the Fool, then hire them!

Now I've heard a lot of garbage about 4 cents a day, or $1.25 a month. Look, that is pure unadulterated bunk. If they can get you to pay for a free good, more power to them. I won't pay, and I won't contribute to a BB that makes others pay. While I love the Fool boards, unfortunately the Fool has chosen to build a business on a commodity basis and right now that commodity is offered for free elsewhere. I give to charity. I think there are more worthy causes than the Fools bad business model.

Were you as wonderful when the fool began as you are now? Did you not learn more than you taught? I guess it's easy for me to say this as I have certainly learned more than I have taught these past two years.

Nope. If you go back two or three years and read some of my posts to this board you will see I was (and largely remain) a complete moron. If I have learned anything about investing I have learned it from the Fool boards, especially the Berk Board. The key is that the education was provided freely by the contributors to this and other boards. Really, if they want to capitalize on the human capital that has made the Fool boards so successful, then hire them.

In a nutshell, the service they provide is freely available. The content they are attempting to capitalize on is not their own. They are clearly in a bind. While they sort it out I will be posting and reading elsewhere.

Ciao,

PhoolishPhilip
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No. of Recommendations: 42
PP:

I understand what you're saying, but I just can't get with you on this. Should a nightclub owner hire the patrons because the patrons create the scene that brings people to the nightclub in the first place? TMF is providing a forum. Apparently they think, for whatever reason, that they can charge for that forum. People will either pay or they won't.

The Fool denies that they "need" to do this to stay in business. I deny their denial. At the very least, they are doing it because they "need" to make more money. Whether they will go under or not is anybody's guess. But what makes you think, PP, that the other forums (Yahoo, whatever) which are currently free, and to which you wish to move, will ALWAYS be free? Are they not subject to the same economics as the Fool?

Extending the nightclub analogy, it's my understanding (not being one of the world's "cool" people I wouldn't know this directly) that nightclubs tend to let certain patrons through the door without a cover charge, in order to give the place a certain ambiance. That is the extent of the "hiring of the patrons" that they do -- a little thank-you. This has a clear analogy in the Fool letting certain -- indeed, a huge number, it seems -- of posters in the door for free. They're doing it to try to keep things as they were, while transitioning to the new pay-for-play format.

This whole argument about "we're the content providers and we should be paid for it" seems odd to me. I personally have posted over 1900 times. Did I do this for compensation? No, I did it for the give-and-take, the camaraderie, the info sharing. Why should I expect to be compensated now for doing the same thing I was doing before? And do I really object to paying 4 cents a day? You say this is "bunk". It's not bunk -- it's 4 cents a day. You may not like it being 4 cents a day, but it's still 4 cents a day.

Personally, I find a great deal of irony in the denizens of a board whose stock sells for $2400 a share at minimum caviling about a $30 two-year subscription. Especially when you can (so I understand) sign up for a 30-day free trial come Foolsday, 2/14, and see how the community changes. There's no charge for lookin', as someone once said in a rather different context.

If they can get you to pay for a free good, more power to them. I won't pay, and I won't contribute to a BB that makes others pay.

That's your privilege. Speaking for myself, I won't go somewhere where I can't find the same high-quality posters I've always found here. If I don't find them here anymore, I'll stop coming. But I'm certainly not going to be scared away by a 4-cent-a-day charge.

To try to add one more small bit of perspective -- I eat lunch at the same place virtually every day, and I eat the same meal, and it costs the same amount, $14.29 with tip. And I'm not going to pay 4 cents more to use the Fool? The LBYM folks would probably tell me to just stiff the waitress for the 4 cents . . .

UsuallyReasonable
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To try to add one more small bit of perspective -- I eat lunch at the same place virtually every day, and I eat the same meal, and it costs the same amount, $14.29 with tip. And I'm not going to pay 4 cents more to use the Fool? The LBYM folks would probably tell me to just stiff the waitress for the 4 cents . . .




Lemme guess...A burger, fries, and a whole lot of Jello!


Euro
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No. of Recommendations: 1
UR,

I don't think the night club analogy works. I prefer the water cooler analogy myself. Let's face it, most folks who visit the fool really should be doing something else other than chatting at the water cooler.

Personally, I find a great deal of irony in the denizens of a board whose stock sells for $2400 a share at minimum caviling about a $30 two-year subscription.

Let me tell you something. Finding the Fool Berkshire board, and the whole philosopy of value investing, was an epiphany for me. Why? Because for the first time in my life I found a realm of existence where being cheap wasn't ... well ... cheap. For the first time, being cheap meant being smart. It meant being wise. It meant (eventually) being rich (I hope). Value investing legitimized what is for me a way of life. Imagine finding a cheapskate with respect to adopt as my own personal role model (thank you Warren). I'm cheap. Pipes are free elsewhere. I hope enough friendly folk move to Yahoo to make it half as valuable a resource as this board has been.

This whole argument about "we're the content providers and we should be paid for it" seems odd to me. I personally have posted over 1900 times. Did I do this for compensation? No, I did it for the give-and-take, the camaraderie, the info sharing. Why should I expect to be compensated now for doing the same thing I was doing before? And do I really object to paying 4 cents a day? You say this is "bunk". It's not bunk -- it's 4 cents a day. You may not like it being 4 cents a day, but it's still 4 cents a day.

Look, we don't have to agree on this (obviously), but to my view of things the Fool is trying to capitalize on your intellectual capital. Sure they will say they are charging for the pipes and the filters, but let's face it--you're the reason I'm here. You, and people like you, are the reason these boards are (soon to be were?) a success. I'll miss you UR. I hope you will keep emailing :)

PhoolishPhilip

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No. of Recommendations: 13
Zambon:

I got one, and I can only think it was because I have paid for a number of TMF products.

I'm pleased for you but it's got me puzzled. I've checked your stats. You've posted 241 messages and received 298 recs (as of this moment). I note that you've mostly posted on a few company boards. You have been a registered fool since Sept, 1999 and 6 Fools love you.

I didn't get a freebie. I have been registered since April, 1999 and 33 Fools love me. I have bought several Fool products, including TMF Select and two seminars. I have made 363 posts for 838 recs (as of this moment). My posts have been spread across many boards and I freely acknowledge that I'm not a star on any board. However, I occasionaly throw up something that many others like. One of my posts on this board received 99 recs (http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=14118047)

I wonder how these decisions are made. The lack of transparency leaves a bad taste and it may cause me to fold up my tent and go. If I do leave, I accept that I'll miss a lot of good things but then, the type of posts that got 838 clicks will not be available to those who stay. Everyone will lose and the Fool will not get it's $30.

Incidentally, the free subsciption is not a gift at all. After two years, when you get one free and pay for the other at $30, you'll have paid the same for those two years as anyone who paid the special offer of $30 for two years. The only advantage is that you can take it free for one year and then leave.

So you see, my complaint is not about money. It's about homesty and managing such an important event in a transparent way. It's about contributing to a community and receiving from it.

I guess it's also about pride. I had contributed under the illusion that I was engaged in a quid pro quo arrangement and that, in return for benefiting from the insights of others, I would add my views. I considered what I said carefully, hardly ever behaved badly, and attempted to add value. Someone else (nameless & faceless & not accountable to the community) has decided that my contributions are not valuable but that others are.

It stinks.

I'm not trying to say that I am more deserving than Zambon. In fact, I think I like him as he is a fan of Southern hemisphere rugby (Go the All Blacks.) I have read some of his posts and he appeals as a responsible and thoughtful contributor, much as I would describe myself. I am saying that I don't understand the process.

Nor am I saying that TMF shouldn't charge. If everything was straight forward, I'd pay. As it is, however, I have some concerns about the management and those concerns may cause me (and possibly many others like me) to look elsewhere. As Marcellus says in Hamlet, Act I, Scene 4, "Something is rotten in the state of Denmark."

I have yet to decide.

Dennis
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In fact, I think I like him as he is a fan of Southern hemisphere rugby (Go the All Blacks.)

Screw the All Blacks! Go Springboks!!!
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Usually Reasonable:
I think you missed PP's point. He is talking principal...you are talking $0.04 cents. He is standing on principal and you have compared it to dollars.
Don't you see that you are both right? I feel sure PP can afford
$0.04 cents but that is not the issue for him. I can see his perspective. One could easily say that TMF is capitalizing on the posters knowledge that is being given freely. (not my opinion, but it could be said).

Oh,well. The camaraderie has been great and probably will not be found elsewhere. SO, enjoy life...we only get one chance!
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No. of Recommendations: 1
PP:

I don't think the night club analogy works. I prefer the water cooler analogy myself. Let's face it, most folks who visit the fool really should be doing something else other than chatting at the water cooler.

Hehe actually, the risk that TMF is taking in charging fees for access is pretty much summed up in the question of whether TMF turns out to be viewed by its message board users as more "nightclubish" or "water-cooleresque", the former being something more in the way of an event people seek out, and the latter something they do to while away a few minutes before doing something else. Those in the former group will pay, I suspect. It's a question of the size of each group.

Look, we don't have to agree on this (obviously), but to my view of things the Fool is trying to capitalize on your intellectual capital.

But they always were . . . weren't they? What were all those banner ads, and ads for Fool junk? And everything I post is copyright TMF. Others, most notably Elias, have gotten upset about this in the past, and not without reason. But there really seems to me to be very little difference between the before and the after here -- 4 cents a day, to be precise.

UsuallyReasonable
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Look, we don't have to agree on this (obviously), but to my view of things the Fool is trying to capitalize on your intellectual capital.

But they always were . . . weren't they?

Yeah, but I didn't have to pay for it ;)
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I think the Fool is trying to say is we are having a hard time funding our operation, like many other companies today. Other companies are asking is the service they provide on-line worth paying for. If not, should we continue to maintain it.

The Fool's boards is a valuable service, but for all the reasons previousily stated and more, but charging probably spells the ends of the boards.

Maybe the people of the Fool's board could offer a pared down and more focused version of the boards that wouldn't be as costly to maintain. Do we need all the user profiles, the political boards, etc.? What's the back to basics board offerings needed to maintain this community?
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Hi Dennis,

Incidentally, the free subsciption is not a gift at all. After two years, when you get one free and pay for the other at $30, you'll have paid the same for those two years as anyone who paid the special offer of $30 for two years. The only advantage is that you can take it free for one year and then leave

Not so you can pay now for 3 years!! Otherwise you are correct

Regards
Philip
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LET'S GO ON STRIKE!!!

Splendid idea, PP - A respite from this posting plethora plus the opportunity to rest up for a celebration with Punxsatwney Phil the next day!

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Ya. I agree with you. They should not charge to those people who contribute for this community. But, they must to do something in order to survive in this competitive markets and bad ecnoomy. I don't want to see this good website out of business because of financial issues. As far as I know, the advertising revenues are not enought save a website. Maybe all of members can come up some ideas for Fool to help them make money and keep discussion boards free of charge.


chmoning
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No. of Recommendations: 4
djrose --

<<I wonder how these decisions are made. The lack of transparency leaves a bad taste and it may cause me to fold up my tent and go. >>

Here's our explanation of how the decisions were made:
http://www.fool.com/landing/pb/pb_land_b.htm?#11

<< Incidentally, the free subsciption is not a gift at all. After two years, when you get one free and pay for the other at $30, you'll have paid the same for those two years as anyone who paid the special offer of $30 for two years. The only advantage is that you can take it free for one year and then leave.>>

It's recently been explained that those getting the free subscriptions can pay $30 now for TWO more years, giving them essentially three years for $30. So it's not such a bum deal. :)

The choice is yours, of course, but I hope you'll keep thinking about it for a while longer.

Best wishes --

Selena
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tantal,
I fail to see the necessity in making the issue so personal. I think PhoolishRed presented some very valid points.
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And if any of you need a place to talk for that month, please join

THE INVESTOR JESTERS
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/InvestorJesters/


Phoolish Philip wrote:
If the regular posters, the lucky 1000 (and you know who you are), all agree to avoid posting on the Fool for one month I'll bet the fee would be dropped in a heartbeat. Failing that, we can crawl back on March 1st, check in hand, and resume the position.

Let me be clear about why I am unhappy with this fee announcement (other than the fact that I'm cheap). I don't think the folks who provide the content should be charged for doing so. Nor should others be charged for the service the content providers provide for free. (Sell some advertising, Tom. That's the biz model anyways).

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Has this been posted here before?
If so how does it sound?


"There are two new features on SteadyGains:

1. We've added a free message board in response to Fool.com charging fees for their fabulous BRK message board. Hopefully we can build a dedicated community of thoughtful posters. See the message board at: http://pub45.ezboard.com/fberkshirehathawayfrm1"

brrkr

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If the regular posters, the lucky 1000 (and you know who you are), all agree to avoid posting on the Fool for one month I'll bet the fee would be dropped in a heartbeat.

......................

Yea, the fee will be dropped... probably along with the whole TMF site, WHICH WILL GO OUT OF BUSINESS IF YOU KEEP EXPECTING CHARITY.

Time to pay to play.

-Dave, who will be glad when all the pouty whiney-babies looking for handouts are gone in a month. I hardly need financial advice from someone who can't afford $30 for 2 years of scintillating interaction and entertainment anyway.
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I hardly need financial advice from someone who can't afford $30 for 2 years

LOL!!!

Never thought of it in those terms... in that case, let's raise the fee!

Rt.
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Let me be clear about why I am unhappy with this fee announcement (other than the fact that I'm cheap). I don't think the folks who provide the content should be charged for doing so. Nor should others be charged for the service the content providers provide for free. (Sell some advertising, Tom. That's the biz model anyways).

Selling ads shouldn't be the idea. Pay to read - free to write quality is good economic sense. See http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=16594369 and following.

I will not be going on strike. But hey maybe the fool should pay me ;-) as a strike buster.
At the same time the Fool announced that folks have to pay for use of the boards they also announced that 1000 posters will get one years free membership. This is the lynchpin to the whole mechanism. Essentially those 1000 posters are the employees of the Fool that make the boards successful. They are the content. Tom is getting his content provided for $15. The lucky 1000 are working countless hours (don't let your real employers find out) to provide free content to the Fool.

This is correct. The 1000 best contributers get free access because they are the reason the rest of us come. If I hadn't got a freebie I'd still pay because I enjoy the posts of the good boards and posters. That is surely the point. If the fool does it right it will attract more readers and make the current ones more dedicated - especially I guess the value investors :-) - because this will remove the riff raff. I think they might want to develop the model a bit so that as time goes on people get various discounts and even payments depening on the level of their contributions.

PS If you want to strike the correct time is a year from now when your content is proven to be good and you have TMF over a barrel

DD
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No. of Recommendations: 30
Content Providers of the Fool, Unite! Let the content strike commence February 1, 2002!

PhoolishRed

P.S. I'm serious.


I really try hard to appreciate the thoughts and ideas of others on the boards as a right to expression. I don't have to agree with these thoughts and ideas though. I grew up in the 60s, and have taken a stand on a lot of things I see as depressing to the population of the earth, but somehow can't put $30 for 2 years worth of access to the Fool up there with the great causes we have fought for.

The cause I do see worth fighting for though is to restore the Fool to what it was when I started posting and had difficulties with "Watch Spot Run" type reading materials. I have grown tremendously over this little time I have been active on the boards, and have watched while others have grown with me. I am proud of the fact that we managed to work the problems we found out by ourselves, but long for the days when TMFs were numerous, and able to jump in and help. Just for the possibilities of re-hiring the TMFs that have lost their jobs over the last two years, I'll gladly pay the $30.

How can I do this. First off, I guess I am rich. I can swing 30 bucks by just pulling it out of my pocket and handing it to my wife as a gesture to show I am funding my own expenses. Never really thought of myself as rich before.

What can I give up to cover for this expense though? I've got an idea. Power savings. I could;

Unplug one of the 4 TVs in the house. The power one of these TVs uses on an ongoing basis should probably afford me with enough savings to by the TMF Money Advisor.

Turn the stupid TVs off when not actually watching them.

Unplug one of the cordless phones, of course then we might have to actually walk to a phone with a cord occasionally, and remember to put the one we keep plugged up on the charger occasionally also.

Get rid of one of the caller IDs.

Actually hand wash a few dishes a week as opposed to letting them set in the dishwasher till its turned on.

Put a night-light in the bathroom and cut off the 60 watter that's always on.

Cut the shower off while soaping up, the water off while doing the brushing of teeth, and fill the sink instead of leave the water running while shaving. Grow my beard back! :o) (What about those expensive hair-cuts?!)

Set frozen food out in the morning to defrost instead of using the microwave.

Make a list of what's in the fridge and keep it on the door so my son doesn't need to stand there for an hour to realize there is nothing in there he wants.

Schedule maintenance on the computer and set up the power save option, and even turn the printer and monitor off when not in use.

The only thing that could be looked at as an actual sacrifice would be unplugging one of the TVs. (note: Even with the local channels only package, we still have MTV!)

This could go on forever. I haven't even looked at the ridiculous options we pay for on the phone bill, or the fact that I could drop Fast Access ISP for one month, still have a connection, and save the whole 30 bucks. (I consider fast access a TMF related expense, because nothing else on the web would warrant the need for this service)

Of all the ways I see that we waste money, I don't see $30 for two years of TMF as one.

I'll not be joining any silly rally to stand against the capitalist nature of the Fool. I've already gained too much for free, and I think anyone that can't afford the $30 could send an e-mail to one of the TMFs and find a solution to the problem without having to picket TMF headquarters ... though it might be fun. :o)

If my 30 bucks gets a TMFer restated, that in itself will be enough satisfaction to warrant the expense IMHO.

Chin
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No. of Recommendations: 0
Right ON! I think you are completely correct. You guys that take the time to add so regularly to these boards have a collective expertise that is unmatchable anywhere! I invest at Fidelity so I have access to one of the webs very best investors sites. I can get quick, comprehensive stock research, news, recommendations, charts, etc, etc, etc. I did not join the Fool for those things. I joined for the boards!
There are some contributors here, obviously the privileged 1000 who were granted the free year, who are the very backbone of this site.
I don't mean to take away from the original fools who own and run the site. God Bless them! They have some very valid points of view and have helped thousands of newbie investors like myself to ween away from investing magazines, newsletters and market shows and take charge of our own portfolios. I will always be very grateful for that.
But, now they want to take the boards away from anyone who does not want to pay hard cash. If the contributors like yourself, PhoolishPhilip, really do all leave these boards then there is no reason for any of the rest of us to stay.
I can name the persons who have contributed the most to me here, and they are the same names that are thinking of leaving and finding another free place for assembly.
I cannot tell you how sad this really does make me. One more thing that will be corrupted by the almighty dollar....and isn't that ironic, as the need for that same dollar is what has us all investing in the first place!?
Sorry it had to come to this, Penny
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No. of Recommendations: 2
LET'S GO ON STRIKE!!!

If the regular posters, the lucky 1000 (and you know who you are), all agree to avoid posting on the Fool for one month I'll bet the fee would be dropped in a heartbeat. Failing that, we can crawl back on March 1st, check in hand, and resume the position.

Let me be clear about why I am unhappy with this fee announcement (other than the fact that I'm cheap). I don't think the folks who provide the content should be charged for doing so. Nor should others be charged for the service the content providers provide for free. (Sell some advertising, Tom. That's the biz model anyways).


I do not agree to avoid posting. Let me try to be clear also. The Motley Fool is not the only publication to charge authors (as well as subscribers) for the privilege of publication. Many professional journals (not vanity presses) impose page-charges (so much money per page) on authors to help cover the costs of publication. This is because revenue from subscriptions (and from advertizing where the publications accept advertizing) are never sufficient to cover publication costs.
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No. of Recommendations: 6
Content Providers of the Fool, Unite! Let the content strike commence February 1, 2002!

Feel free to start your own service. Make sure you offer, for free, a bulletin board system capable of handling about 2000 messages a day, of holding, essentially forever, about 20 million messages.

Give them 24 hr/365 days per year service. Accept all comers, including those who hide behind multiple screen names (and in some cases, screen names practically identical with someone else's).

Set up a few hundred discussion boards. Give them new ones daily as people ask for them, who just want to see their name in print.

Make sure you have the computers, disk space, internet servers, routers, gateways, and, of course, a high speed connection to the Internet backbone.

And don't expect anybody to give you money for all this. "Information should be free" - right? "Everything should be free" - right?

Of course you could sell advertising. And certainly it works - right? Almost every day people here complain on board after board about those stupid ads, and ask how to get those programs that delete the ads. That would be another plan you could employ to raise money to keep the electricity on, the OC128 connection going, and the one or two programmers or system administrators you just might end up having to hire.
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No. of Recommendations: 1
Feel free to start your own service. Make sure you offer, for free, a bulletin board system capable of handling about 2000 messages a day, of holding, essentially forever, about 20 million messages.

Actually, I think it's closer to 10,000 messages a day (depending upon the day), and about 6.7 million messages total.

Not that this has any real impact on the rest of your post...

-Ortman
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