Suggestion: after a month, you must become a producer or leave the Gulch.

Posted by Mamaemma 7 years, 2 months ago to The Gulch: General
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It would be beneficial for a newcomer to have some time to determine if they want to be in the Gulch, but in order to stay, they should be willing to pay the yearly fee.
I would like to hear if this is a good idea or not, and why


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  • 16
    Posted by $ Mimi 7 years, 2 months ago
    ...so if I decide I would like to stop being paying member for whatever reason, i.e, budget concerns, memory issues, whatever, you think I should leave?
    The devil is in the details.
    One of the first comments I made when joining the board was to a non-member who wanted to know if they would be welcomed if they failed to upgrade. My position then, and is now, if you are interested in an occasional exclusive look into Ayn Rand’s personal experience or you want to take part in an occasional group objectivist lecture or meet an online guest, then upgrading is for you. Some of the things that I have had a chance to see or take part in as a paying member have been interesting. I don’t believe anyone should feel compelled to contribute or join. This is a very welcoming site. I would like to see it remain so.
    Although, I would like to see less contributions and insults from those who just don’t like Ayn Rand. It’s one thing for an online community to ‘hold your hand’ because you are bored and lonely, and quite another thing to hold your hand while you are taxing our patience and insulting our values.
    It’s not hard; it can be done. I’m not an Objectivist and probably never will be, but I have many online friends here who treat me very well and I upgraded for my own selfish pleasure.

    So, no thank-you. I do not like your idea.

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    • Posted by NealS 7 years, 2 months ago
      I agree with Mimi. I bought my wife the Rearden Bracelet, we had it modified with a magnetic catch. I bought one of the film canisters just for fun and mostly to contribute to the cause (more to come I was told). I made a donation to support the movies, the programs. I bought AS I, II, and III DVDs, a couple of them were personalized. I loan them out to people I want to convert to see if they agree with the concepts. I am not on the producers (fee) list. At this time I feel there is not any particular benefit for me to join. I think once I almost joined because I wanted to contact someone privately, but it still was not important enough for me to join. Maybe later. I really enjoy the Gulch. I toss in my feelings on occasion and really enjoy the responses. I enjoy most of the peoples comments most of the time. If you feel I should go, just let me know, please put it to a vote first.. I tend more to join if it's a lifetime membership. I got a discount (for my age) lifetime membership at the VFW. I have not joined the Eagles because they do not have a lifetime membership. Just my two-cents worth.
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      • Posted by 7 years, 2 months ago
        Thanks for your comment. I bought the Rearden bracelet for myself and one for my daughter, and I almost never wear it because it's impossible to put it on by myself. I never thought of a magnetic catch
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        • Posted by $ puzzlelady 7 years, 2 months ago
          When I purchased mine, it came with a magnetic catch. I just have to be careful because it sometimes comes open and falls off.
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          • Posted by NealS 7 years, 2 months ago
            My wife just did hers herself and it really takes some force to break it apart. It only takes a second to put on now, compared to both of us clumsily spending 20 minutes and finally leaving it at home. She recently got hooked on beading, I think she's made a few hundred pair of earrings and necklaces. Funny how these topics swish around here in the Gulch.
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            • Posted by $ puzzlelady 7 years, 2 months ago
              Topics are indeed like kaleidoscopes in any group of lively,intelligent and motivated people. Good luck to your wife with the bead enterprise. She could sell them on eBay or etsy (or here, once Scott sets up our marketplace!).
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      • Posted by BobFreeman 7 years, 2 months ago
        Neal, what's your success rate on conversion using those Atlas DVD's? 'I loan them out to people I want to convert...."

        Our conclusions after driving quite a distance to see opening night of each part was that they'd greatly disappoint anyone familiar with the book & cause those unfamiliar with the book to run away in shocked horror.
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        • Posted by NealS 7 years, 2 months ago
          I'm not really sure on the conversion rate, but one couple that borrowed them actually told me they realize they are more conservative than they thought they were. I did convert my 2 boys, who thought they were"democrats" because they though we were a democratic country. Totally ignorant on politics, just no time for it trying to live. At least they'll vote in our favor in the future after we discussed it.
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    • Posted by 7 years, 2 months ago
      Good points,thanks. I don't know if its a good idea or not, myself. That's why I wanted to hear what Gulchers have to say.

      Edit: clarity and spelling
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      • Posted by Maritimus 7 years, 2 months ago
        Hello, Mamaemma,

        I voluntarily pay the "producer" fee, once a year, to make it simple, because I dislike vehemently the "free" ride that actually someone else pays. I do not know who covers the bulk of the costs of running the Gulch, but I suspect it is the true producer of the AS movies. If I can save him pennies so that he can put together a production of an AS TV series, I am more than glad to do it.

        I enjoy the Gulch, except for devious trolls who come here to expound half baked ideas and theories, sometime to a point very close to dishonesty. For the part that I enjoy, the fee is a low price.

        Just my opinions.
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    • Posted by freedomforall 7 years, 2 months ago
      The webmasters can see the value provided in content and posting from those who are not 'producers.'
      (Disclaimer: I am not a 'producer'. I am a striker to the extent that is possible.)
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  • 13
    Posted by TeresaW 7 years, 2 months ago
    I did not know there was a fee. I thought Galt's Gulch appeared magically on my screen when I bring the computer up in the morning, like food in the store, water from the tap, light from the switch. I feel that I want it, therefore I need it, therefore I should have it without restriction, and it should just be there.

    Honestly, either viewing with my first cup of coffee in hand in the morning (like now, and not my wits quite about me yet) or on the fly across the day, didn't think about overhead. Will be $-ing on in fairly short order.

    I appreciate the value of the information I have received from Galt's Gulch over the past 2+ years, and the value of the time invested by the founders and contributors. But I had to grow into that. If I had been hit with a fee earlier on, I wouldn't have come back.
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    • Posted by sumitch 7 years, 2 months ago
      Doesn't buying the three donations to the movie count for anything? Doesn't the wish to join the conversation alone count for anything?
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      • Posted by TeresaW 7 years, 2 months ago
        (disclaimer: just off a 12hr night shift. short on brain cells) I believe you will find among these numerous responses that, yes it does count for something. I lurked for 2 years before testing the waters & throwing my opinion into the ring - recently.
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  • 11
    Posted by khalling 7 years, 2 months ago
    Why? Some of my best conversations are with "guests." Some individuals whose comments are hidden were producers. The only stipulation for producer on this site is value -ad. You are not the first to wonder why people don 't upgrade. As I said I can think of two prominent members who were banned and they were producers
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    • Posted by woodlema 7 years, 2 months ago
      Outstanding point. I guess first you need to define, "producer."

      Someone who contributes to the conversation? Someone who posts the initial topic? Someone who only by benefit of having money provides cash?
      There are many levels of production, but keep in mind paying a fee is NOT producing. That is trading value for value.

      The money I earn from my job and the activities I perform is what I produce. The product of my labor is the cash and satisfaction I receive.

      The product of my labor, "money." is what I pay for the "product" of someone else's labor, therefore, whoever is the "producer" of this forum, is the one who has the ONLY right to determine what he/she/them should receive as compensation for the value they provide in maintaining this forum.

      If they decided to charge a monthly subscription, they would certainly find out what the market will bear. then those who complain about a fee, are free to NOT stay and keep their money, or freely trade the product of their labor for the value they seem to want.

      Just my two cents.
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      • Posted by DaveM49 7 years, 2 months ago
        Perhaps one should be offered the option to become a producer by contributing content--cut and pastes don't count! However, that will not pay for the bandwidth and the cost of maintaining this account.

        I admit to having a "free" account for the moment. I will change that at the earliest financial opportunity.
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      • Posted by sumitch 7 years, 2 months ago
        Does all this discussion fall in any way to the "I will not allow anyone the right to my product without my permission or without being paid for it and they may not modify it without my permission in either case?
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  • 10
    Posted by $ jlc 7 years, 2 months ago
    Sweat equity counts. If someone contributes, then they are producing.

    We could make this a really exclusive club...of dwindling numbers. One of the great things about this list is that it has - due to the movies produced! - become a general venue for free thought.

    It still delights me that because the AS movies were made a real world AS movement has gained momentum.

    Jan
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  • 10
    Posted by xthinker88 7 years, 2 months ago
    Interesting idea. Personally i've been a paying member for over a year now. I know that because I just had to renew and re-pay. I've enjoyed all the conversations and meeting like minded people. To me, the value that I've received made me want to pay the small fee to sustain the site. I'm not sure how long I was a member before I paid.

    That said, I frankly haven't seen that there are any real benefits to being a paid member. Maybe I'm missing out on things and just don't know about them. To me the only value I've gained by being a paid member is that the site continues.
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    • Posted by 7 years, 2 months ago
      xthinker, if you haven't already, click on members above. There are some great things to see. I particularly enjoyed the posts on members, and watching clips from the making of the movies.
      But I agree; my primary reason is value for value and the continuation of the site.
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  • Posted by dbhalling 7 years, 2 months ago
    I believe you concern is with a mechanism for weeding out people who are not generally interested in reason and objectism - in other words they are here to disrupt. While this might be such a solution, it would also make it harder for people who are just coming to Rand and objectivism to learn without the pressure of immediately having to be an expert. I know k sees this as the great advantage of this site over other objectist sites and generally that is k's mission.
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  • Posted by $ Susanne 7 years, 2 months ago
    I started as a Moocher - for about a day or so. I got so much value out of the site; I had to give value for value.

    I have never - NEVER - regretted being a producer here. Even if I don't show up on occasions (and yes, I have vanished for a while), this is *home* for me, and to support that which supports my beliefs and values is a no-brainer to yours truly.
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  • Posted by richrobinson 7 years, 2 months ago
    An interesting thought but I think we need to be more flexible. With time constraints some newbies may take longer to decide and I don't mind those who just want to visit occasionally and not pay. With the Gulch growing to 20,000 members we do need to be wary of those who would come here just to disrupt the conversation. I have suggested limits on the number of posts and comments a non paying member can make. I appreciate your suggestion and look forward to seeing other ideas.
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  • Posted by Zenphamy 7 years, 2 months ago
    There should be incentives to become a paying member as well as dis-incentives for not doing so. I think a better idea is that non-payers be limited in number of posts/period allowed and possibly limits on comments. I as well don't think non-payers should accumulate points.

    I've noticed that some of the problems from non-payers has been the numbers of non-Objectivist postings. I don't look at the site as a news summary site, though I appreciate those posts of news items that relate negatively or positively to Objectivist thinking. I've also noticed a comment 'bombing' from those trying to drive their point totals up.

    I don't agree with a pay to stay, but I like incentive/dis-incentives.
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  • Posted by term2 7 years, 2 months ago
    I know its hard and expensive to maintain a website, even though from the user's experience it looks totally like nothing at all. Just a few clicks and you are there !!

    I have resisted doing the "producer" thing. It sounded a bit corny, and I couldnt figure out what I got by being one that would mean something to me. I can tell you that I enjoy the articles that are posted here, and commenting on them and receiving replies (very important) from like minded people who actually think. When I was at Stanford we had a objectivist club meetings where people could discuss ideas- I miss that now, since the best we get is Fox News (which isnt that great really), and misguided nonsense from the governmental powers that be. I have pretty much given up on Atlas Shrugged convincing enough people to scale back government that it would actually happen in my lifetime. BUT, I do want to live the rest of my life in a Galts Gulch environment to the extent possible. Maybe that involves a dude ranch or something where its run by sane people who understand freedom and guests come to have some time away from the craziness of socialism. I dont know. I am starved to have better interactions with people than I get now. I am tired of all this socialism, money debasing, and having to be concerned about how to evade (basically) as much governmental control as I can.
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  • Posted by Matcha 7 years, 2 months ago
    Really. I could certainly afford to pay but never really thought about it. Galt's Gulch just appeared on my computer one day. I did not look for it. Since Atlas Shrugged was one of my favorite top 5 books I checked GG out and started following it. I think if you will increase your readership if you leave it as it is. That is if you want more people to look at this philosophy. If you just want to sit around and think yourself super intellectuals who have the answers and chat among yourselves that's ok too. Atlas Shrugged is Ayn Rand's truth. It was her conclusion not yours. You are marketing her intellectual property that you believe you have insight into. I love her but I have to improve and build on her ideas. Better you should ask and not demand or you will lose your audience.
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    • Posted by sumitch 7 years, 2 months ago
      I love your reference to "super intellects". It has occurred to me that some come in and post just to impress people with big words. For myself I am not impressed with the show offs. I know the words, I could use them, but I feel that imparting information is more important than using a dictionary.
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      • Posted by $ MichaelAarethun 7 years, 2 months ago
        Purpose of the dictionary, at least those printed before PC, is to assist imparting accurate information. Otherwise you end up with words like decimate which means kill one tenth somehow changing to mean slaughtering everything in sight. Or unalienable and inalienable being used interchangeably. What need of handcuffs if you can chain the words?




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  • Posted by Herb7734 7 years, 2 months ago
    I happened upon The Gulch while looking for something else. To date, while I have made a number of posts, no one has sent me, or explained to me the criteria for membership, or anything else. All I know is what I've picked up by reading others' posts.
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  • Posted by $ puzzlelady 7 years, 2 months ago
    I've been a "producer" since the Kickstarter start, and I think of it as being an "investor". The actual work of producing value is done by others, in whom I am happy to invest because I want to see those values come into the world, for my own pleasure.

    Not having to see ads makes this forum superior and worth the club dues, so to speak. I pay dues on several other sites, like FreeThoughtBlogs and http://dictionary.com, to avoid being targeted by ads. Ads disrupt my concentration and clutter up the place, wasting my time and eating up bandwidth. I am not categorically opposed to entrepreneurs trying to get my business. I just don't want them trespassing in my intellectual spaces.

    There have been many conversations here by disruptive individuals, and while banishing them would be a relief, it helps the rest of us to see first-hand what we are up against in the world, and maybe to improve our persuasive powers to get rational ideas into the main culture.

    The logical way to reduce the trolls or excessively hostile participants, I think, is to make visible the names of all upvotes and downvotes, the way Facebook does.

    Each individual is unique in life experiences and internalized values. A decent respect for other individuals would make us withhold instant judgment and not take an all-or-nothing approach at the slightest nuance of disagreement and condemn the other person as evil. Judge and be judged, yes, but get the whole story, all the evidence, before passing sentence. People do learn, and people can change their minds.

    Anyone engaging in reasonable, civil exchanges of ideas and open to intelligently considering others' views contributes value. Name-calling and emotional tirades are not productive. But then, that's the admins' task to keep a bouncer at the door.
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    • Posted by $ Susanne 7 years, 2 months ago
      I love the Investor analogy to being a Producer... it fits the purpose (for me) of being a Producer - an investment in my community, one that has paid rich and continuous dividends!
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  • Posted by dukem 7 years, 2 months ago
    I have been both a non-paying lurker and a producer (twice). What I find in the Gulch is intellectually and philosophically stimulating, most of the posts are provoking and often fun to read, but primarily I find here a like minded community of people, mostly free of the trolls that dominate many other online forums. Perhaps it's because I live in a liberal community (whose governor recently resigned over ethics issues), and I am seeking a way to leave for the real (according to knowledgeable people) geographical Gulch. This online Gulch sustains me and keeps me sane, most of the time. I struggle to pay the fees, but some things are worth more than others.
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  • Posted by Matcha 7 years, 2 months ago
    You are right. If the community wants to be gated it is their choice. I do think the community might become stale. I had to step outside my comfort zone when I first read AS. It went against much of what I had been taught to believe. Never stop looking at new ideas and learning.
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  • Posted by CTYankee 7 years, 2 months ago
    If the OP wants to or believes that it's desirable to create a 'gated community in cyberspace' then the OP is free to go off and create one. The intertubes are boundless and the frontier is wide open.

    My $0.02 suggests that the policy of not allowing 'members' to upvote until they reach 100 posts has had the desirable effect of determining who actually want to participate and cull most of the deadwood.

    I'll lay my head on the block and say: If the owners of the board do not value my contribution they are *100%* within their rights to delete my account! I hope they won't.
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  • Posted by $ MichaelAarethun 7 years, 2 months ago
    When your answer is a contradiction check your premises. So now I'll go look and see what the yearly fee might be. As I recall it wasn't small. But I agree with some posting limitations. I'm sporadic due to the wifi hook up available but I can get the point across usually and spread some ideas and alternate discussion points even if I don't agree with them myself. Wait til you hear gun control and abortion. Then remember the purpose is start then engage in discussion especially on seemingly difficult subjects. Truth is most answers aren't rocket science and all of them are from moral philosophy. Back in a few.
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    • Posted by $ MichaelAarethun 7 years, 2 months ago
      suiI looked at the cost which about the same as I pay for daily enhanced local on and off shore weather and ponied up. In pre Bush Obama value it's about $2 a month. Well worth it. But I had to check the budget even for the amount and then decided on monthly.b

      OK the hard one abortion.

      The first two trimesters is a fetus. At some point it becomes developed enough to be he or she and at another point if a preemy has a better than fifty fifty chance of living if delivered and subsequently living a productive life. Fetus becomes Viable. At that point I draw the line because viable means the developing infant, unable to care for itself, is a citizen of the country and like any citizen deserves protection - cannot be executed without due process. At that point taking the life of the citizen as with any citizen is different than fetal abortion. Where ever that line is drawn. If not protected by the civil rights we, or at least we used to, enjoy it's straight up murder. End of conversation.

      thou shall not commit murder is the proper quote. Not thou shalt not kill. "To paraphrase ....god gave to the State the right to take human life in defense of the nation and....a number of other permissables.... Absent that sanction it's a crime. I stray into religion there but most monotheistic religions are big on protecting children.

      That is my own opinion after much thought and application of a moral philosophy and the application was more the product of reason and application of the entire Constitution than, for example religious teachings.

      What I find particularly barbaric is killing the new citizen at the moment, the second of birth and in a particularly brutal way which makes the reported Chinese use of a soft spot needle of formaldehyde far more acceptable.

      To the point once the initial line of viable was crossed the so called late term abortion, absent any acceptable medical reason which does not include fitting into a prom dress, should garner the doer's family with a bill for the bullet.

      Bluntly put. Works for me it's not everyone's solution nor should it be.

      The remainder of the reasoning is fairly common but I also help support two orphanages in my present community and pay education tuition for two preparatory students and one university student.

      To the extent I am able to do so.

      Your answer for your own self cannot come from anywhere but your own evaluation and your own morals, values, and standards. No one else can do it for you. Not a village and certainly not a government. From individual free choice.

      Whatever your belief system from wherever it is derived Moral Philosophy properly applied will serve to support that which is valid or cause change that which isn't. Instead of follow the leader you become your own leader.

      One last comment. Why is it only the woman's right to choose? And if so why should the man pay the costs? Difference between a true relationship or marriage or what term you use and a momentary convenient excuse. Some one else can rocket science that question.

      End of opinion on a difficult subject.



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      • Posted by BobFreeman 7 years, 2 months ago
        RE: "Why is it only the woman's right to choose?"

        --Because it's her body in which the growth is happening.

        Who owns your body? You or the State, the MDeities?
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        • Posted by $ MichaelAarethun 7 years, 2 months ago
          I'm not getting in the middle of that discussion. I only stated it to light a match and watch the burn rate of the explosion. On the other hand if you read the Constitution no where does it ban women from being drafted. Only gives age requirements for men.Reason for that was understood in those times. Cannon Fodder went to war and Baby Factories stayed home and produced the next generation of Cannon Fodder. Sure enough by the time Kuwait rolled around the mothers of that generations soldiers were among the first flag wavers. For a while. Most had never heard of the Fish Cheer. I'll have to do a piece on conscription one of these days. I was Infantry the Queen of Battle, The King of Battle is the Artillery. In my case they always missed. Who owns my body? I think it's the IRS.

          Only three things in life are certain and all have a common factor. Birth, Life, and Death. One per customer.
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      • Posted by BobFreeman 7 years, 2 months ago
        RE: "god gave to the State the right to take human life in defense of the nation and....a number of other permissables.... "

        Is that your opinion, or quoting someone else, ? If 'tis yours, what causes you to believe that god gave to the State the right to take human life in defense of the nation and....a number of other permissables.... ?
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        • Posted by $ MichaelAarethun 7 years, 2 months ago
          Old Testament and a follow on from it's predecessor Judaism and it's successors the New Testament and the Koran. Given as a historical background for much of the world who are or claim to be People Of The Book. The ninth in size and last in that thread to use a modern phrase of monotheistic religion the Bahai's shy away from either word and it's usage. Those who don't understand the past are doomed to repeat it's failures. The failure is in false translations. A new example of that would be balanced budget with a surplus. Sure enough that twisted sentence doomed the next generation to witness yet another failure. Found that out by asking a Minister an old high school friend. Unlike me he can do chapter and verse. He also pointed out that some of the permissables such as stoning adulterous wives no longer exists in part of the world but is alive and well in other parts.
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  • Posted by johnpe1 7 years, 2 months ago
    I really enjoy having many of the non-dollar-mark
    participants in this online neighborhood, so I would
    vote NO to your question, Mamaemma. . I wanted
    to support the Gulch and the movie, but I'm retired
    and comfortable. . some must pinch every penny
    and I want them here, too!!! -- j

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  • Posted by $ jdg 7 years, 2 months ago
    The day it happens, I'll simply start an alternative forum on yahoo or google. What value I see here comes from the posters, and they'd still be there, too.

    Another reason I hesitate to pay is that every week or so, somebody proposes to tighten the rules in a way that would force me out. I don't need that. Both official Objectivism and libertarian clubs do too much of that already, which is probably why they aren't growing. This movement needs "big tent" forums, and for now this is the best. Let's try to keep it that way.
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  • Posted by LibertyBelle 7 years, 2 months ago
    Well, I am unemployed at this time. I have been
    a supporter of Objectivism many years. I have been signing in and typing on this library computer.
    I did not know about having to send money any-
    where to use this site. I do not know where to send
    the money order and it would, for me, depend on
    the amount. In any case, I do not send money
    over the Internet, to any one, at any time, for
    any cause or reason whatever. Some organi-
    zations have wanted me to contribute to causes,
    and when I have requested a "snail mail" ad-
    dress, have failed to provide me with one. And
    that's their fault, not mine.
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  • Posted by LaMuse 7 years, 2 months ago
    I have been a lurker for about a year, maybe a little longer. I don't remember how I came across this site, but I find it fascinating and decided to subscribe to have the daily postings sent to me. I think I remember a long time ago that in order to fully participate, one had to either pay or submit a certain number of comments. Since I am very shy about posting, I felt like I would be more effective as a contributor if I had to work harder for the privilege of being a producer, by thinking, researching, and putting my thoughts out there. Once I have accomplished that, I will be glad to send $$. I just know that for me, I prefer the incentive of having to be a more active member.
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  • Posted by Owlsrayne 7 years, 2 months ago
    If I had the extra money available I would be a Producer, but food, guns, and ammo plus paying normal bills is enough for me at this time. Some day we will have a Midas Mulligan join Galt's Gulch maybe then we could talk about contributions.
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  • Posted by sumitch 7 years, 2 months ago
    Some of us can't afford the fees or just don't want to pay them. If we are blocked from this site, so be it. The site needs us more than we need it.
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