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Got account closed message telling to signup for monthly journal  RSS feed

 
s ravi chandran
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Hi,
I was trying to post a new question, but I got a message that account has been closed as I have not subscribed to monthly journal. Would you please tell me if there was any notification for this circulated? Has it been made mandatory? I just signed up for that to use the forum.
 
paul wheaton
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Yep, that's a new thing. And that was something that I pushed through.

We send out the CodeRanch Journal usually once a month. We had some people become really upset that they received the journal. They didn't seem to bother to look at the bottom of the journal to see how they could unsubscribe. And when we looked at their history we can see that CodeRanch was a significant help to them at solving their problems.

In the end, this really upset me. I like the idea that we are building community about discussing the fine art of excellence in software engineering. And the people that sent such hostile e-mails did not appear to be members of our community, but people that would just use us to get answers. Plus they were simply hostile.

After a great deal of thought I came to the conclusion that sending out a handcrafted email once a month was a very tiny price for people to have posting access to our site. I think that members of our community would enjoy our monthly journal. And these rather hostile people that simply use us will choose to no longer post here.

So, if a person chooses to post here, they need to be signed up for the monthly CodeRanch Journal.
 
Peter Muster
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I was just wondering the same thing. The message I received when I tried to respond to a post was:

"Your Coderanch account has been closed because you are not subscribed to our monthly journal. If you wish to un-close your account, please click here to go to your email preferences and subscribe yourself to the monthly journal."

I don't find this hint very diplomatic. I tried to help someone who got a problem with a JTable and suddenly there was this message preventing me from posting a solution that might hopefully solve his/her problem. I appreciate the idea behind it but why not link to an official statement or post the reason right there. My first impression was "Great, now I have to accept to receive regular spam in order to keep my account active. What's next, accepting regular mails from sponsors and advertising partners?". It made a similar impression to me when I first saw those advertising posts at the end of each thread. My first thought was that the forum was compromised and dominated by spammers. Then I saw the statement elaborating the reason for this style of including adverts on the site and I don't mind it now.

Both features are introduced in a way that casts a poor light on this site which is sad because the intention is pretty constructive. At least that's how I perceived it.
 
paul wheaton
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Do you have suggestions for better wording?
 
Henry Wong
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Perhaps the "closed" wording is a bit too strong, as it can have another meaning... as implying that the account has been suspended. How about...

This Coderanch account cannot post because it is not subscribed to our monthly journal. If you wish to enable posting, please click here to go to your email preferences and subscribe to the monthly journal.


Also, on the checkbox for "Monthly Coderanch Journal", how about adding a mention of "required for posting", so that it won't be accidentally disabled.

Henry
 
Peter Muster
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I like Henry's version. Also I would add a link at the end for further information:
This Coderanch account cannot post because it is not subscribed to our monthly journal. If you wish to enable posting, please click here to go to your email preferences and subscribe to the monthly journal. Why should I subscribe?

The link should lead to page with the official statement. I personally think that transparency works "deescalating" most of the time. People tend to be hostile to something that does not give them any benefits at first glance but introduces restrictions especially when they don't understand the intention or in lack of knowledge construct their own opinions what (potentially bad) could have led to employing these restrictions.
 
paul wheaton
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What is the message with something a little bit more fun. Maybe something that says that this software has a great big button that says people can only post if they are signed up for the monthly mailing. And we thought: that sounds good, after all, if people don't want to hear all of our handcrafted wit and charm once a month then it seems more like they want to use our stuff rather than be part of our wacky community.

I don't know. I just made that up. It's pretty close to the truth. And I think it sounds a bit more fun.

If we could whip it up into Cowboys speak that would be even better.
 
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