Edit: New Paypal link for one-off payments is https://www.paypal.me/OWTB. It'll continue to work on a monthly payment solution. Thanks again for all of the donations.
This is a reluctant appeal to you, the OWTB members, for help with the financial burden of keeping OWTB going, with a new option to set up a small monthly donation through PayPal.
The OWTB forum was established back in early 2007, when the Rivals network - and with it JKLatics - was going by the wayside. What started as something pretty small grew rapidly to the point that, seven years on, OWTB has seen almost 5,000 member registrations and has a record of 751 people online at one time. This growth has made various upgrades to the site, and the package that we buy to support it, essential. This has meant significant increases in costs and, as many of you already know, paying for the running of OWTB has increasingly become an issue.
In the early days the site was funded by the staff team. Pretty soon, OWTB replaced the club's messageboard to become the official forum. However, a few years later. when the club expressed concerns about the site's content and their desire for us to moderate in a manner were not comfortable with, we took the decision to take the site independent again, in spite of that meaning that we would assume responsibility for the cost of running the site again. For a period after that, we had a sponsor to help us cover such costs.
Today, though, beyond the very generous donations we have received from many members along the way, we are back to self-funding the site and it doesn't come cheap, I'm afraid. The notion of subscription-based access to OWTB has been discussed in the past, as well as subscription-only content but this not something we are particularly keen on and we would like OWTB, in its entirety, to remain available to all Latics fans.
So, what I'm asking is this: what is OWTB worth to you? Would you be willing to part with a small amount each month to help support the running of the site? If all regular posters on the site signed up to a monthly donation of 50p, we wouldn't have to worry about paying the bills from now on!
Using the link below, you can sign up to donate 50p, £1, £2 or £5 a month via PayPal. If anyone wants to donate a different monthly amount, please let me know and I will add the appropriate option.
If money's tight or you've had enough of reading the depressed ramblings of fellow Latics fans and you want to cancel a monthly/annual donation subscription, you can unsubscirbe through your Paypal account. If you want to change the amont of your regular donation, you'll need to cancel the existing one before signing up to the new amount.
Much has changed since the original message below was posted. Thanks to members' generous donations and the pennies generated by the ads on the site, we have been able to cover costs without dipping into our pockets for some time. The bills however have continued to rise. There's still money in the pot but I worry that we'll be cutting it pretty fine in a few months' time based on current donations and the current costs. As Ackey has mentioned, we have looked at what, if anything, could be scaled back to reduce costs but unfortunately there isn't really anything we can do on that front.
I have upgraded our Paypal account to a 'Business' account which means we'll pay more fees to Paypal but this was the only way to host the buttons I've posted above and for us to receive any new recurring payments (such as monthly or annual payments) which has played a big part in making the financial side a lot easier since the original post. This change means we'll pay a % of all donations received to Paypal + a flat 20p per payment, which means more will go to Paypal based on the frequency of payments. People may wish to consider switching to an annual payment, rather than monthly, so I have added that option above. I appreciate that won't suit some as well as a monthly payment, however.
There is one-off donation button too or you can go simply to paypal.me/owtb
If the particular donation option you'd like to isn't available from the buttons above, give me a shout and I'l try to accomodate that.
Thanks as ever to everyone who's donated! Cheers.
New Paypal link for one-off payments is https://www.paypal.me/OWTB. It'll continue to work on a monthly payment solution.
Thanks again for all of the donations, it's very much appreciated!