Olympus UK E-System User Group
Olympus UK E-System User Group

Join our unique resource for Olympus Four Thirds E-System DSLR and Pen and OM-D Micro Four Thirds photographers. Show your images via our free e-group photo gallery. Please read the e-group.uk.net forum terms and conditions before posting for the first time. Above all, welcome!


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  #121  
Old 17th July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

Congratulations and thanks to the membership for the donations. Awesome, great news. If I may make a suggestion Ian, have you considered doing a standard email thank letter to everyone who donated. I dont know how many members donated. That is none of my business, but a round robin letter could save you the task of having to write 50+ individual letters of thanks and allow you to concentrate on other matters. Positive thoughts
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  #122  
Old 20th July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

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Originally Posted by Ian View Post
Quite remarkable; we've beaten the £1000 mark! Thank you everyone!

I have a lot of thank you emails to write

If you haven't yet contributed but are thinking about it, please don't let this great news put you off.

Once again, thank you!

Ian

From a tiny acorn goes a majestic oak

Just goes to show what a supportive bunch we are. Great news Ian, given all the hard work you have done and continue to do keeping this site running and the substantial personal financial cost to you in doing so it is only right that 'we members' help out 👍.
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  #123  
Old 21st July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

John, I really resent your persistent efforts to sow controversy.

I wonder if you have more time on your hands than you know what to do with.

I will, however, give you a history lesson.

The e-group was conceived by Olympus UK as an unofficial way to bolster interest in the E-System. It was also a way of managing feedback from users. I volunteered to take on the task and the site was based on the forum and gallery I had already developed for my other sites.

For that I was paid a monthly fee for developing and maintaining the site, as well as acting as liaison between myself and Olympus UK.

When Olympus changed their direction and decided to rationalise their expenditure I fought hard to keep the funding going for the e-group.

Eventually, as key personnel changed there was no way my efforts could maintain the funding from Olympus.

At that point, I could have said - "Oh well, it was good while it lasted" and closed the e-group down. Instead, I decided that it was too valuable as an entity to be abandoned.

Yes, the e-group started as a commercial enterprise, but I now regard it more as a hobby. However, I do need to justify the time and cost in running it and I certainly would not have been able to sustain the site for much longer without additional funding.

My main income derives from working with other publications as well as my other websites.

Ian
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  #124  
Old 21st July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

I think what is really needed is signs of a bit more activity from Olympus. They seem to have gone rather quiet lately. The announcement of new products would generate more interest in Olympus beyond this forum and should result in increased traffic on this site. The spotlight seems to be shining on Sony, Fuji and even Panasonic at the moment. The new mirrorless cameras due to arrive from Canon and Nikon in a few months will not help matters either.

Ron
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  #125  
Old 21st July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

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Originally Posted by Johnheatingman View Post
Sorry if you resent my input, it was in no way intended to be controversial, simply an expression of opinion. Your response however was very predictable as you seem to resent any constructive comments and often don't have the courtesy to respond.

So far you have 3 forums, one virtually dead, one rapidly going the same way and this one. Given such a track record, I would have thought any suggestions or comments for reviving them would be appreciated but it seems not.

My comments were my genuine honest opinion having managed a successful business for over 40 years and a successful web site in later years.

Whether I have time on my hands is not your concern, however if none of us did have time on our hands this forum together with any others would die tomorrow so it was rather a stupid facetious statement to make.

You stated over 2 - 3 weeks ago that FTU was going to be updated and modernised "in the next few days" also promised the same here. So far all that seems to have happened is a manic attempt to drive members to purchase from Amazon. I appreciate the need for funding but it was starting to appear desperate.

Fortunately I never had need to request or seek additional funding for my business as I always welcomed suggestions for improvement and adapted accordingly. This resulted in me being able to retire with no financial concerns for myself or my wife and enjoy a very pleasant lifestyle. Yes, as you state, sometimes with time on my hands to enjoy my photography and several other hobbies and also become an active member of this great forum.

Like it or not, the forum needs a large increase in membership but I thank you for the "history lesson", the content of which I was already mostly well aware.

Best regards,

John

This is NOT helpful. I've no idea what your successful business and website were, but to compare them to this forum is ludicrous. Seeing as you are such an expert, with all the ideas, why don't you start your own website and show us all how it's done?
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  #126  
Old 21st July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

Think we need to keep things cool...……………..
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  #127  
Old 21st July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

Seems to me there is a lot of passionate support for this forum which is great to see. As Mark said let's keep it together.
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  #128  
Old 21st July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

I think part of the "problem" is what the forum is worth to us...….

I don't think Amazon's 2% is going to do the trick. I have in the last week spent £30 at Amazon which give a £0.60 commission to the cause.

Whilst that is not invaluable, its not gonna do the trick. Most of us making a major purchase will quite rightly seek out the bargains, which Amazon probably don't do.

FWIW, I think a voluntary subscription is good. I pay Adobe £8+ a month for a valuable tool. I believe this Olympus forum matches that. Thus I am prepared to do the same for OUR forum, and round it off to a tenner. (two bottles of wine)

We only need 20 of us to do similar to keep the forum alive.

Just depends on how you value this forum, and the work that Ian puts in. I am not after any privileges, but maybe they might be appropriate.

More thoughts...………...

Mark j
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  #129  
Old 22nd July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

I'm in a similar situation paying per month for Adobe but to be honest I've only just recently started to use their programs enough to justify it. I'd go along with your suggestions Mark although I'd hope that there would be more than 20 active members as regular subscribers such that the fees could be in the Magazine per month region which with a subscription is around £5/month these days. After all, the more active members the more useful and vibrant the forum. Privileges for subscribers, yes that would be nice whatever they are.
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  #130  
Old 22nd July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phill D View Post
I'm in a similar situation paying per month for Adobe but to be honest I've only just recently started to use their programs enough to justify it. I'd go along with your suggestions Mark although I'd hope that there would be more than 20 active members as regular subscribers such that the fees could be in the Magazine per month region which with a subscription is around £5/month these days. After all, the more active members the more useful and vibrant the forum. Privileges for subscribers, yes that would be nice whatever they are.
Yes, I wouldn't want to presume what other members would be willing or able to pay but personally I feel £5 per month to be about right.
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  #131  
Old 23rd July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ224 View Post
I think part of the "problem" is what the forum is worth to us...….

I don't think Amazon's 2% is going to do the trick. I have in the last week spent £30 at Amazon which give a £0.60 commission to the cause.

Whilst that is not invaluable, its not gonna do the trick. Most of us making a major purchase will quite rightly seek out the bargains, which Amazon probably don't do.

FWIW, I think a voluntary subscription is good. I pay Adobe £8+ a month for a valuable tool. I believe this Olympus forum matches that. Thus I am prepared to do the same for OUR forum, and round it off to a tenner. (two bottles of wine)

We only need 20 of us to do similar to keep the forum alive.

Just depends on how you value this forum, and the work that Ian puts in. I am not after any privileges, but maybe they might be appropriate.

More thoughts...………...

Mark j
Hi Mark, thank you for liking my photos on Flickr. In one of the forums I belong to, there is a life membership of £200. Imagine that multiplied by 20 = £4000, but how long would it last? maybe a year in running the site. For most of the regulars, this is not a hobby. I think this site, this club is much more than that.

I won’t get into club politics or into questioning the forums finances, because from experience elsewhere, those who have, have always ended up being hung, drawn, quartered and ultimately banned. Not that this is applicable to anyone here. Everyone in this thread is well meaning and wants the best for the forum, for the membership. Hopefully this club is more than a hobby and if it is, it certainly is worth investing money into it

I am happy to brainstorm to find solutions until Ian draws a line and says everything is Hunky Dory. In addition to Amazon, Another idea is to ask companies such as Wex or MPB.com to donate a sponsorship to the forum in return for promoting their names.....just a thought
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  #132  
Old 25th July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

I have been away and only just read this lengthy series of posts. I have donated and found no problem.

I find the forum an invaluable way of keeping up to date with what is going on in the Olympus world. It's good natured and there's a huge amount of expertise out there which forum members are willing to share. Life would be dull without it.
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  #133  
Old 25th July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

My penny's worth. I haven't used this forum for a while due to personal circumstances but was very happy to see it alive and well on my return. For that I would have to thank Ian and the moderators for continuing their work without, it seems due compensation. I'm happy to contribute and I'm sure many others are, and undoubtedly have. A small voluntary contribution to the site to keep it in its presently friendly and uncommercial format would to me be worth it. Might it be worth waiting to see whether that will turn out to be the case? If something is worth having it's worth paying for.
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  #134  
Old 26th July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

I would like to provide an update on the fund-raising. Thank you to everyone (70 in total) who have donated so far; the total received is £1193!

Five donors gave £50 each and one £45. By far the most popular amount has been £10.

Six donors have set up monthly subscription payments, which add up to £15 a month - thank you for this kind commitment!

Amazon commissions need some more work - part of which I hope to unveil very soon, but amounts to approximately £35 in the last 30 days.

Thank you everyone!

Ian
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  #135  
Old 30th July 2018
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Re: The reality is that the e-group needs your help

Hi Ian,

Thank-you for hosting this site. It's great that it is still going when so many other forums have sank because of the competition from, mainly, Facebook. Though not a daily visitor, I've always found it useful and friendly. It's somewhere where I can get expert advice.

We live in a world of austerity, minimum wages that are too little to live on, escalating prices and ever increasing charges for public services that used to be free. This makes donations difficult for many who have families to feed and mortgages to pay. But, that leaves a feeling of guilt if they get something from the forum, but cannot pay.

You, as you say, are running a business and just like any other employment you have to make a living from that.

I run my own business too and know that delivering a great level of customer service is costly but worth it. Until I read this post, I didn't know that this was part of a business you run. It is clearly great added value to your services.

About 18-months ago I set up a photography Facebook group in conjunction with the local paper for whom I write the photography column. I put a lot of work into it and nobody complains when I advertise the photography training courses I run through it. (I let other photography businesses talk about what they are doing too, so long as they contribute to the group.) I have a website and a blog and I am starting to include affiliate links in it. I too have to bring in an income from my business.

Personally, I really would not object to appropriate banner ads to help you fund the site. The likes of Amazon or Adobe and so on can afford to pay you and I would happily help to transfer money from them to you by clicking on their link.

Likewise, I would not object to you promoting your business here. Perhaps you offer something I could be looking for!

All the very best,

Ivor
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