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Clarification for commercial user policies.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by paul, Jan 11, 2005.


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  1. paul

    paul Staff Member Founder Administrator

    Jul 20, 2000
    Texas
    Hopefully I can sort some things out here :). I wasn't too clear in the policy about the user title bit - I've edited it to make it more clear after getting a lot of confused emails. The vehicle for disclosing commercial affilation is the user title, or the small black text that appears beneath your username (most of you have either "registered user" or "supporting member". A commercial user would have his or her's changed to something that discloses their commercial affilation, such as your business name - see policy).

    If you are a supporting member the usertitle is editable via My TalkBass -> Edit Profile. If not, you do not have the ability to customize your own usertitle, so please send me an email to specify your choice and I'll set it for you.

    The purpose of this is to move LOUD, colored, linked commercial signatures from the equation (though not seen on this side of the forums much they were becoming free adverts on the BG side), while still disclosing commercial affiliation.

    I sincerely hope that this policy does not hinder any of you from offering this community the insight and experience that it has thus far gained from your participation. If you have any questions about what this policy limits as far as forum participation, please don't hesitate to contact me or your friendly DB mods :)

    Jeff - I too look upon the 'old days' with favor. But back then all I needed to do was keep the server running, answer a few emails, and the site would run itself. Now I spend all day working on the site, and usually about 20 days out of the month I've got a symphony or opera gig at night (thank goodness I recently discovered slow-breath meditation, otherwise I think I'd be insane ;) ) That coupled with the dramatically increased costs associated with pumping out gigabytes worth of bandwidth daily have made it an absolute necessity to accept advertising such as you see. I'm proud to be able to offer relevant advertisements, vs the "PUNCH THE MONKEY!" generic ads that once graced the site, and I'm extremely grateful for our many sponsors, as well as supporting members that keep this operation alive.
     
  2. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    I have an Idea. If TB (Paul) is selling Banner ads (and i am interested in this for my business as well) to commercial customers then why not charge as in 'classified' type rates for those businesses that want to have their website link in their signature as well. We can have it in our Profile as well so what's the big deal.

    Magazines sell regular Display ads as well as Classified ads which are smaller and cost less. If a person in business replies to a post, then why not let him pay to have his website in his Sig. Some only post when their 'tune' is called. Some post out of personal interest (like I do up here in DB) and some do a little of both (It's been great, but the parties been crashed!) like I also do.

    I was sort of Instrumental (as I don't sing at all..lol) in the 'birth' of the Luthier's Forum in BG. I have given alot to TBers that never gave me a nickle of business and also a few that have. My business has not increased at all since I've been up on TB with either my Strings or Basses. People like what they like regardless of who is up here or who is not as far as Bass Builders or String companies go. People have a mind of their own and will buy what they like or are convinced by others to buy. An advertiser cannot sway a sale if his 'peers' advise him otherwise.

    I think Paul should re-think his approach to this new policy as I have not seen too much misuse of their posting privileges to make ads in regards to selling. There are other rules that govern that and it's easy enough for a Mod to delete anything form anyone when rules are broken. Like for instance, NAMM Preview posts.. WOW, This isn't an ad for the Thread Starter? It is.. so delete it and send him a warning. 2 strikes and your banned for a week.. 3 and it's a month.. 4 and it's a year.. But to punish the rest of us is a bit hard to swallow...... I offered to buy an add 3 years ago but it was not for sale as ONE Single AMP Company had the Page in BG Paid for.. Now.. It's open to more than one single advertiser...

    Oh and Sam, instead of 'Basseheir', how about "BassSmith" as a professional title..... Or medically speaking, "Bassologist"?
     
  3. paul

    paul Staff Member Founder Administrator

    Jul 20, 2000
    Texas
    Ken,

    With all due respect, it may have appeared as though the forums weren't being abused and it may seem as thought the current rules were working, but behind the scenes things were an absolute mess. We had no clear policy on signatures, so some user would come in with HUGE RED text yelling SALE SALE SALE in his sig - we'd ask him to change it, and then follows weeks of emails complaining that "so and so can have a commercial sig, so why can't I...". That's just one small example... Other users would take every opportunity to come in and suggest their product in every instance whenever it was even barely on topic - clearly they were here to sell. But with no firm rule or definition, where do we draw the line - when does the post become spam and when is it 'friendly help'? I could go on and on :( Over the past several months this commercial user policy has been in development, with input donated by forum mods and users, and it's quite a bit more 'tame' now than it was... I hope it serves TB well, but as with everything it's open for tweaking and revising, so if you have suggestions feel free to send me a note -

    Regards,

    Paul
     
  4. paul

    paul Staff Member Founder Administrator

    Jul 20, 2000
    Texas
    A good suggestion. on the BG side Nino-Brown recently suggested that all supporting members or gold supporting members be afforded the use of commercial links in sigs. It's sounding like a good idea to me, I'll give it some more thought - any changes to the policy will be posted as a forum announcement.
     
  5. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    Paul, Even without the Sigs. you have people starting Namm preview threads and dealers showing their visits to various shops so you can buy THAT product from THEM.. That is SPAM regardless of what's in the signature. And building progress pics.. What a farse if that's not Spam.. That's what their website is for.. TB is for conversation and trading ideas... Sellers need to watch, listen and speak when spoken to, 'overtly' or 'covertly' !!....

    Besides, NAMM is mainly for the Trade and not for musicians.. Many get in but most do NOT belong there. So why the NAMM preview thread in a NON Trade Forum.... SPAM, SPAM in or out of the can and I don't eat it in either form!

    Commercial users should only reply when asked for or to clear up confusion. They shoud not start threads that involve the products they make of sell...... That is a Better rule IMO...

    People speed all the time.. They don't close the roads because of it, they just give tickets to the ones they catch !!
     
  6. paul

    paul Staff Member Founder Administrator

    Jul 20, 2000
    Texas
    I totally agree - and If I'm not mistaken the new policy will not allow such participation? A commercial user is not to start any thread or contribute info on any product they sell, to any thread if it has not been specifically requested (http://www.talkbass.com/forum/faq.php?)...

    This is one exception that I put in after an outcry from the TB crowd - the arguement was that building progress threads are a resource of value to those who would learn from the builder, and that the builder is doing the site a service by basically posting a 'lesson in bass building'. It was argued that these threads were of such enjoyment to so many users over the history of TB that they should be allowed. I'm still on the fence, but am willing to see how it goes.

    This is exactly what the policy is meant to accomplish - I hope I've worded it correctly (http://www.talkbass.com/forum/faq.php?) ... :)
     
  7. paul

    paul Staff Member Founder Administrator

    Jul 20, 2000
    Texas
    I'm sure we have more moles than I could even imagine, but such is the nature of the internet... I did include some language in the policy to address this... I'll paste it here:

    --Please be honest when representing yourself on TalkBass.com. Using two or more user accounts concurrently is prohibited. If you operate duplicate user accounts on TalkBass and post as a shill, or post in a manner that hides your commercial affiliation, the entire posting history of all your accounts will be wiped from TalkBass, and the action will be made public. TalkBass.com reserves the right to check/verify all incoming internet IP addresses for verification.
     
  8. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member Administrator

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    here's some further clarification of the commercial user policies for the basses forum.
     



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