At the end of September Dropzone.com will launch a voluntary Premier Membership service. The decision to move forward with voluntary user supported subscription services was made for a few reasons: I want to keep Dropzone.com on the web and without this, I can not pay the bills. We want to keep advertising content low and we want to provide you with the best possible service and the coolest features we can! That's it.
Dropzone.com is a very advertising-lite site. We don't bombard you with pop-up ads, or plaster the site like a Nascar car. Even though we serve millions of pages every month we choose not to join large advertising syndicates and expose you to streams of irrelevant non-skydiving promotions and ads. We want to keep it that way. We continue to appreciate the support we get from the skydiving industry in this.
Rather than turning to large corporate sponsors from outside we'd prefer to come to you, the community, for support. People have shown over the years that they are willing to donate and get involved.
I very deliberately made a decision that nothing that has been free up to now will become a paid service. You will be able to continue enjoying Dropzone.com exactly as you have without ever giving us a penny. That's the way I want it. We will create additional Premier services, and those users who find them valuable can subscribe on a voluntary basis. I think they're pretty neat!
We understand that not everyone will support or agree with this decision and as I said, you're welcome to continue to use everything you always have on Dropzone.com for free. The Premier Features is of value to you or it's not. That value is worth a fee to you, or it's not. That's why it is a voluntary subscription.
So what will be included in this Premier Membership you wonder? Well, we've started by putting together a nice packet of cool features. We'll continue to build this out and increase the value for our Premier Members. We'll also continue building some funky free services as always!
Just a few of the Premier features included in the launch:
Advanced Search of User Database
POP Access the your Dropzone.com Mail (Check mail with Outlook etc)
Mail disk space bumped up from 3 MB to 50 MB
Organize Forum Private Messages into Folders
Search Private Messages
Access to Premier Support Forum
Classified Ad Keyword Notifications
Upload 4 additional photos with a Classified
Add a clickable link to an external site on your Classified
Display a "times viewed" counter on your Classified Ads
Upload photos directly to Personal Gallery without Admin approval
Flagged as a Premier Member on Dropzone.com
Exclusive Gear give-aways, competitions and raffles
Talking about gear give-aways... Keep your eyes open for our launch special. We're going to give-away a complete system from Aerodyne! That's right, one Premier Member will walk away with a new Icon, a Smart reserve and his or her choice of a Pilot or Vision main!
And how much will all of this cost me? Think in the range of half a jump ticket per month, or a MacDonalds happy meal and a beer! I think it's worth it. The coolest thing however is that you'll be supporting Dropzone.com and in doing so provide me with the opportunity to get out there build an even greater site for all of us to enjoy.