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future of city planner?
#1
Rather than rely on donations, why not use a freemium model, whereby you allow free usage for up to X city plans (2-3 maybe?), $2/month for 5 city plans, $3.50 for 10 city plans, and unlimited city plans for $10/month. I pulled these numbers out of my you know what, but it would only take a 27 $2 subscribers to cover your monthly cost. The one time cost would only require 128 $10 subscribers to break even. Obviously, there would be some additional administrative costs for billing, configuring server to control/limit # plans per account, etc. Regardless, you could easily convert this to at least a self-funding hobby, if not a small profitable sideline, which could probably become even better by adding some features that would add additional value to a user (see your feature requests!).
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#2
(03-05-2018, 06:24 PM)icecold Wrote: Rather than rely on donations, why not use a freemium model, whereby you allow free usage for up to X city plans (2-3 maybe?), $2/month for 5 city plans, $3.50 for 10 city plans, and unlimited city plans for $10/month. I pulled these numbers out of my you know what, but it would only take a 27 $2 subscribers to cover your monthly cost. The one time cost would only require 128 $10 subscribers to break even. Obviously, there would be some additional administrative costs for billing, configuring server to control/limit # plans per account, etc. Regardless, you could easily convert this to at least a self-funding hobby, if not a small profitable sideline, which could probably become even better by adding some features that would add additional value to a user (see your feature requests!).

That's a nice idea, and thank you for suggestion. I had it in mind for long time. Unfortunately, I cannot make it for legal reasons. Thus, I can rely on donations only. People started to support once they realized that their favorite tool might go offline. And I appreciate this very much.
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#3
What legal reason? When I asked them to add a new feature for city planing they gave me the link to your site (so I was under the impression that, you are supported by them), but it seems they are not supporting you. So, if you make money to support your site, they should not be able to say anything.
2nd if there are many people using this tool, use ads to support the site. Just relaying on peoples goodwill may not work.
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#4
(03-06-2018, 01:59 PM)Shadow Wrote: What legal reason? When I asked them to add a new feature for city planing they gave me the link to your site (so I was under the impression that, you are supported by them), but it seems they are not supporting you. So, if you make money to support your site, they should not be able to say anything.
2nd if there are many people using this tool, use ads to support the site. Just relaying on peoples goodwill may not work.

1) Innogames are not supporting City Planner. What they did, is allowed me to use my Importing functionality. That functionality is the result of my own investigation, without the help from their side. However, they have all the power just to block it, because City Planner appears to them like a bot.
2) I have already talked with them about introducing some paid features, not directly bounded to importing. The idea was that if I use their servers, I should not charge for that particular functionality. So, i thought, that I can, for example, add some premium features. They said that I cannot do this.
3) I do not want to argue with them, because they can easily make City Planner less more attractive. First, they can block all importing functionality, second, they have the right to ask me to remove all their graphics (city building images) because they are copyrighted.

As to ads... I never was a big fun of them. Plus, the City Planner is Flash based, which is probably the real issue right now for having ads. If somebody have any other idea, they are welcome to share. I would not mind to have some extra income from the project, at least to cover all expenses (basically time expenses, because it took few months to create the whole system). At the same time, I still believe that there are some people, who are open to donate. Some can donate just $1, but I have one guy who donated $100 few days ago. Actually, if all active users donate at least 1 USD, that would be enough for server.
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#5
What you, as users of City planner, can do, is spread a word, that the tool need help right now. Yes, everybody who is using the planner sees that message right now. However, when request goes not from one person, more people are willing to help.
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#6
(03-07-2018, 03:26 AM)Ok so where and how do I donate a few dollars a month and how will I know if enough people donated to keep this site from not closing??? Also will I be able to remove my monthly donation if I find that I don\t need it anymore or that I no longer play FoE??? Wrote:
(03-06-2018, 01:59 PM)Shadow Wrote: What legal reason? When I asked them to add a new feature for city planing they gave me the link to your site (so I was under the impression that, you are supported by them), but it seems they are not supporting you. So, if you make money to support your site, they should not be able to say anything.
2nd if there are many people using this tool, use ads to support the site. Just relaying on peoples goodwill may not work.

1) Innogames are not supporting City Planner. What they did, is allowed me to use my Importing functionality. That functionality is the result of my own investigation, without the help from their side. However, they have all the power just to block it, because City Planner appears to them like a bot.
2) I have already talked with them about introducing some paid features, not directly bounded to importing. The idea was that if I use their servers, I should not charge for that particular functionality. So, i thought, that I can, for example, add some premium features. They said that I cannot do this.
3) I do not want to argue with them, because they can easily make City Planner less more attractive. First, they can block all importing functionality, second, they have the right to ask me to remove all their graphics (city building images) because they are copyrighted.

As to ads... I never was a big fun of them. Plus, the City Planner is Flash based, which is probably the real issue right now for having ads. If somebody have any other idea, they are welcome to share. I would not mind to have some extra income from the project, at least to cover all expenses (basically time expenses, because it took few months to create the whole system). At the same time, I still believe that there are some people, who are open to donate. Some can donate just $1, but I have one guy who donated $100 few days ago. Actually, if all active users donate at least 1 USD, that would be enough for server.
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#7
(03-10-2018, 03:25 PM)Larue Wrote:
(03-07-2018, 03:26 AM)Ok so where and how do I donate a few dollars a month and how will I know if enough people donated to keep this site from not closing??? Also will I be able to remove my monthly donation if I find that I don\t need it anymore or that I no longer play FoE??? Wrote:
(03-06-2018, 01:59 PM)Shadow Wrote: What legal reason? When I asked them to add a new feature for city planing they gave me the link to your site (so I was under the impression that, you are supported by them), but it seems they are not supporting you. So, if you make money to support your site, they should not be able to say anything.
2nd if there are many people using this tool, use ads to support the site. Just relaying on peoples goodwill may not work.

1) Innogames are not supporting City Planner. What they did, is allowed me to use my Importing functionality. That functionality is the result of my own investigation, without the help from their side. However, they have all the power just to block it, because City Planner appears to them like a bot.
2) I have already talked with them about introducing some paid features, not directly bounded to importing. The idea was that if I use their servers, I should not charge for that particular functionality. So, i thought, that I can, for example, add some premium features. They said that I cannot do this.
3) I do not want to argue with them, because they can easily make City Planner less more attractive. First, they can block all importing functionality, second, they have the right to ask me to remove all their graphics (city building images) because they are copyrighted.

As to ads... I never was a big fun of them. Plus, the City Planner is Flash based, which is probably the real issue right now for having ads. If somebody have any other idea, they are welcome to share. I would not mind to have some extra income from the project, at least to cover all expenses (basically time expenses, because it took few months to create the whole system). At the same time, I still believe that there are some people, who are open to donate. Some can donate just $1, but I have one guy who donated $100 few days ago. Actually, if all active users donate at least 1 USD, that would be enough for server.

You should go here http://foemanager.com/community/showthread.php?tid=477
There is a link to donation website and answers to the question how to stop donations. You can see current amount on the donation website (it's public). I will also post on the forum when I collect required amount.
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#8
Hello There !

Some ideas to reduce the cost.

1. Short term : Use Dynamo DB instead of MySQL. With the free tier and your current use you should be able to reduce the database part by 10.
2. Long term : Instead o using EC2, building a serverless app using lambda would be interesting. The most part of the app may be static so only stored to S3.

See you,
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#9
your smoking crack the foemanager is not worth the amount you are stating for subscriiption fee what a joke
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#10
Hi,

I love City Planner and would hate to see it go. I do hope that those with a tech background will be willing to work with you to find a way to run the Planner at a lower cost. I know these things are expensive, whether or not a person feels it's worth it them to spend that much money on this is irrelevant to what it costs to operate, that's the number that needs to be focused on and dropped down, chipping away at it from all angles.

There's gotta be a way to run this at a lower cost 11,000 people paying $1,924 a year leads to an annual cost greater than 21 million dollars. I have trouble seeing that as operations costs unless there's a group of people looking to turn this volunteer project into a full-time job. This is something you have every right to do but this is not a successful way to go about it.

I have 20 years experience working Madison Avenue advertising and have retired into doing social media management and optimization. This game is big enough that Inno can afford TV ads, but awareness of your site isn't spreading in an equivalent manner strictly by word of mouth. You can't expect to run a business that you don't advertise for. In all my years of experience, every company that had promo costs as the top expense in their books are always the most successful businesses. There are plenty of things you need to be doing to make this work better with the public whether that's as a money-making business or not. Because what I'd like to tell you is my stock and trade I can't simply share these things publicly. I will offer my services to you for free or for a portion of the business if I think you create a successful business plan. I have had to leave out what my services are but I know what I'm doing and can get you references.

Please reply here if you'd like to continue our conversation further and we'll find a more private place to continue.

Thanks, best of luck no matter how you proceed!
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