Up until now, my expenses for running Life After Mormonism has been about $5 per month plus domain registration once per year at about $50, totaling about $110 per year. Starting in July, Ning (networking host) will be raising the monthly cost to $19.95 per month ($199 per year if paid in a lump sum) which will increase my costs to about $250-$290 per year. While $19.95 isn't that much of a monthly expense for web hosting, it does squeeze this single income family of 5's budget enough to raise the questions below. So let's get to the feedback portion.
My question to you all is, does "Life After Mormonism" provide a unique enough experience to the Ex-Mormon online world to merit its continuance? If you answer in the affirmative, is it unique enough that you would be willing to donate $0.50 to $5.00 to help share the load?
Here's an overview of features I believe to be unique to LAM in the Ex-Mormon online world(excluding some of the facebook groups perhaps):
- Customizable Profiles
- Friends list
- Private (except for the main page)
- User privacy settings (hide your profile from all users except friends etc)
- User Search by location, age, name, gender, relationship status (makes finding other exmos in your area easier)
- Post/embed videos
- Post photo albums/make slideshows
- Events Calendar with RSVP
- 24/7 Live Group and Private Chat
- Threaded Forum Discussions
- User Blogs
- Twitter/Facebook friendly (post to twitter/facebook from LAM)
- User managed Groups (Exmo & Single, PNW'ers, SLC Postmos etc)
- Birthdays in Calendar
Aside from these uniquenesses, the increased costs will be beneficial in that the google ads will no longer appear and neither will the Ning branding at the top. Further enhancements will also likely come about due to these changes at Ning. You can review the new Ning pricing/plans for services here: http://about.ning.com/announcement/plans.php
Again, please post whether you think LAM fills a unique niche in the Ex-Mormon online world, maybe explain that answer, and whether you think it is unique and worthy of donations (even if you're not currently in a position to donate etc). The pricing/plan changes don't become available or enforced until July so we have some time to think this through and then raise some money depending on what feedback this discussion results in.
Regardless of where this all ends, I want to thank each of you for your participation and for being a member of this community.