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Linz

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There are more than one supplier "shooting these fish, in this barrell". Not too long ago another supplier posted how great his product was and another jumped on that thread too about His product and brewery taking awards....

Seems that some are more active than others.......not that we 'want' more activity

Since the 'identity' of these suppliers are know to Mods and others....Maybe have them sign in as their business and allow them to post specials twice a week... We can have thursday night shopping specials..be like the QV/Paddys markets, but on-line

They can have their own personal IDs to dole out help/advice for brewing but if they 'sell/advise to buy a different product' under the personal log they are banned for 2 weeks??


Are we up to 8c or 10c now???
 

Pumpy

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Ross has always gone out of his way to help people with brewing thier beer, well outside his 'call of duty' ,It is one of his great 'passions 'and he enjoys sharing that with everone .

Well before he was selling hops, his interest in hops was such, that he was going through my fridge chucking all the hops out saying "You cant make beer with these Pump's they dont have any aroma and the packs aren't sealed properly "

I am sure the will always be some grey areas, which ovelap into his business and forum interest ,however I honestly believe his interest in this Forum are not financial as his previous contribution has proven .

I have learnt what a valuable asset this forum is to us brewers the information gained is far more than one could ever read in any book.

As with all our posts they are well within the moderators control and any time I have stepped over the mark,the moderators have always brought me back into line .
I place my trust in them . :)

Pumpy
 

Franko

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Well said pumpy I agree
 

AndrewQLD

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Ray,
Craftbrewer actively supports this site by a paying a % of all sales to the forum, so there is no free advertising.
As far as him posting to the site, all of his post titles mention the business name along with a subject content.
If you do not want to read the craftbrewer threads then don't, he has given you the opportunity to not read them.
AHB now has a steady income which I imagine is a great relief to the mods, what harm is there.
We have a retail section, why not use it, are you going to complain about any of the other people who use the retail section or are you just targeting one particular person?

Andrew
 

goatherder

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I think this is an excellent debate to be having.

I also support removing the retail threads from the latest threads list.

Another forum (non-beer) I am in went down the commercial route. The only commercial postings allowed were from the paid sponsors. As the sponsors wanted value for money, the mods became very heavy handed, to the point of deleting and censoring posts which appeared to advertise other vendors. Any posts requesting equipment information are almost always met with a reply of "why don't you talk to our sponsors". I think the usefulness and sense of community of the board really suffered as a result.

I'm all for retail postings, I think the members will choose the good threads and post to them. I think sponsorship will need to be an increasing part of this board as bandwidth isn't free. I hope we can maintain the balance that exists now, and most importantly, keep the editorial and commercial issues separate from each other.
 

Doc

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Disclaimer: Please don't anyone take this post personally or see it as slagging off other brewing related resources in Australia. These are my observations only, and are not intended to offend.

I think I know where you are coming from Ray.
OzCraftBrewer went through growing pains a few years back, and also went out to the market for sponsorship. Some great suppliers stepped up to the mark as well as some individuals (ala what we have done here with CraftBrewer.com.au and the Paypal link).
However now a few years on, the advertising is currently Cryer Malt (distributed by a founder ??), BeerSmith Australia (distributed by the founder), and Barley Crusher (also distributed by a founder ???).
I notice you don't communicate as often on OzCraftBrewer anymore and OCB post totals on the site appear to be well down. I don't mean to be rude or even try to make comparisons, but are you invisaging a similar track associated with site popularity, and trying to make it self supporting ?

Beers,
Doc
 

peas_and_corn

I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I cannot mash that
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As I see the issue, it's not really about whether Ross is providing a good service or not- it's great; I bought hops off him before and there will be a hop sock in the mail either today or tomorrow (with a few hops thrown in for good measure). However, the main criticism is a lack of clear consensus of the role of advertising is within the forum, and this needs to be addressed. If another paying sponsor came along, will their logo sit alongside Ross'? What if a third comes along? (I know this sounds fanciful, but a possibility).

This thread is giving an interesting barometer of where people stand (which, of course, depends entirely on where you sit).

Maybe this post makes sense...

Dave
 

Ross

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If the retail threads ever get removed from the "latest threads" list it will be a sad day IMO (& that's not just from a commercial aspect). They are very much part of the forum balance & I personally would not want to go searching For "Mashmasters" or any other retailers latest product/special offer in the off topic section & retailers would soon tire of searching to see if someone had asked them a question. As said by the majority - If there's no interest in the thread, it'll die & disappear very quickly.

What I would support, is that all retail threads should start with the retailers name.
This way, the retailer is being upfront & those that have no interest in a commercial offering, can just ignore it - I personally have made a point of doing this already:
EG:
Craftbrewer - releases HopSock ....
Mashmaster - temp controlers...
Country brewer - promote your comps here...
Northern Brewing - liquid yeast special...

Speaking as a commercial sponser, I certainly don't want to see paying or non-paying commercial entities censored in anyway, as long as they stick by the forum guidelines & I will fight to keep it this way. I have no issues with reading competetitors offerings, keeps us all on our toes. CraftBrewer does not expect nor want to be treated any different to any other supplier.

2c + 2c worth ;)

Cheers Ross
 

Snow

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I agree with elements of all the posts in this topic so far.

In the end, it's Dane's site and if he wants sponsorship from 1 or 2 or 10 suppliers then so be it. If he wants a fully commercialised site that makes him a packet of money, then so be it. If he wants to strip it all back to a bare, community based brewing forum then so be it.

That said, Ross is supporting the site. he is not "shooting fish" in any barrel, because we are not stupid "fish" and this aint the only "barrel" on the WWW.

Ross is not engaging in "subliminal advertising" His advertising is obvious and is available to be read or ignored. If someone starts a thread on Simcoe hops and Ross responds with an opinion on that hops properties, brought about because he actually stocks the stuff an has used it and therefore has an opinion, then that is no subliminal advertising. If however, he responds by saying (uninvited) "oh by the way I have this hop instock and it's $3.00/100g", then that would be inappropriate advertising IMO. However, Ross doesn't do this because he has integrity and understands what makes this site great. Of course if during the same thread, someone says "hey Ross do you have these Simcoe hops everyone is raving about?" and he responds " sure I do. Have a look at my catalogue on the Craftbrewer site and let me know if you want some", then that is appropriate IMO and is definitely not subliminal advertising.

FWIW, I think Retail topics should remain in the most recent threads list.

Sorry for waffling :rolleyes:

Cheers - Snow
 

Beerpig

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De ja vue?

I raised this matter very recently in the wetpak thread (the thread was half deleted)

Anywho, my two bob -
Ross sponsors this site which is terrific for the forum. For this sponsorship his company link & banner appear at the top of every page. That should be where the promotion ends & Craftbrewer becomes another retailer who is obliged to follow the rules for retail posting. I have absolutley no problem with advertising as long as the rules are applied evenly to all

Treat all retailers the same way

Cheers
 

dane

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Advertising and Sponsers are oing to be a a part of AHB from now on. It's just not viable with the site growth for me to continue to cover the costs. That said I don't think it's a bad thing. Pretty much every site, even the most hardcore community based site will have some form of advertising.

I like the idea of prefixing threads with the company/retailer that is posting, there is probably a facility to have a required text box where you have to type it in prior to submitting the post. I will look into that.

I don't think the retail topics in the latest threads is too much of an issue, at least at this stage. At the current rate if no one replied to the post it would be off the list within 30mins anyway.

Just so everyone knows a % of sales from Craftbrewer go towards AHB so it isn't free advertising as such. Craftbrewer's sales go directly to supporting AHB and keeping it running. The only reason a sponser or advertisment would be brought on would be to help support the site and its growth and it would never be aligned to a particular product or store.

We will be keeping a close eye on the retailers forum but at this stage I don't feel there is a need to review it.
 

Jim_Levet

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Sorry It stuffed about & I submitted twice, can someone fix that as I haven't 12 cents to spend on this topic
James
 

T.D.

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I think exluding the posts from the "latest threads" section is not the answer. Clearly the retail threads are popular - as Ross said, its the posts by every day forum members that are keeping them alive, not the business owner. I think it would be wrong to restrict or regulate threads that are clearly popular.

That said, I would hate to see this forum become dominated by commercial advertising. That's not what its all about. I think something should be done, but not restricting commercial threads. What we need is simply a more transparent atmosphere. My preference is for, as was previously suggested, some sort of difference in the appearance of the title in the "latest threads" - whether that is a different colour or italics or whatever, I believe that would essentially satisfy peoples' concerns expressed here. It would then be obvious if a thread was designed to promote a product, and any member could decide whether they want to or don't want to read a topic before they open it up. I don't believe these threads are "cluttering" up the latest threads list at their current level, but I would probably not like to see many more appear.
 

PostModern

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Well, as a moderator, I think I should probably hold my tongue on this, but I don't know how to do that :p I don't mind the site having financial sponsors, in fact it's important that we do in order to pay for the hosting and bandwidth that increased popularity is costing. My concerns with Ross (whom, I've had the pleasure of meeting) and Craftbrewer are twofold:

1. The banner ad at the top of this site does not say "Site Sponsor" or anything similiar. Anyone who doesn't know the site would see the Craftbrewer logo with more vertical space than "aussiehomebrewer.com" and assume that this is a forum run by the business much in the way that Country Brewer host a forum: here which is doubtlessly a commercial forum.

2. Carrying on of Craftbrewer business in non-related threads. eg, threads where a customer replies to Ross's on-topic post with a question about an order's status and Ross responds with dispatch information. Now a thread about, say, chilling wort has three posts relating to the business processes of a site sponsor. This is happening less, and I the mods are generally deleting posts along those lines, as with any other off-topic or disruptive traffic. No offence, Ross, but that is what PM and email are for.

Apart from those minor gripes, both easily overcome, I have no issues with site sponsorship. The money will certainly help the community to continue and thrive. Who knows, we might even get a news and articles section out of this sponsorship? Eh Dane?
 

johnno

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Well I reckon anyone selling stuff here should be sponsoring the site.
 

sintax69

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Top idea with the prefix
I think most people here dont mind the retail section and or ads (how else do I get my new toys)
What I would hate to see is this board turn into another grumpys board where you cant talk about nothing but what they sell (i know is there board and shop and all that) It is a balancing act that dane has to play between running cost and reveune sources and keeping all happy. I hope to god that it keeps its independance and if it does not well like everything people will vote with there feet and move on.
 

berazafi

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That would have to be the quickest site modification I have ever seen
 

tangent

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my 2c:
As long as people can realise who's selling stuff and who's recommending stuff (big difference IMO), then bring it on!
I wish more stores would offer AHB members more discounts and consumables. It's a rather under-utilised section of this site.
I know Holden Hill give the BBC a discount, why not all of us? It might make the drive worthwhile.
 

lunanick

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This site is welcome to all the paid advertising it can attract. good luck to it.

But any advertising must be clearly identified as such, and this sponsorship must not be allowed to interfere with its independence.

I am a member of another site (not beer-related) and its owners signed contracts with advertisers that prohibited the mention of competitors in the forum.

It was a condition of becoming a member that you agreed not to mention advertisers competitors. If anyone did, the post was quickly zapped.

ridiculous.

It would be terrible if we got into a situation where mentions of cheap products or services, for instance, were wiped because they concerned a advertiser's rival.

From what I can gather, Ross is a tremdous fellow, but if somebody somewhere is selling safale for $2.50 a packet I want to read about it.

Sorry Ross but I don't believe that your, or anybody elses, commercial arrangements should be allowed to find their way into the "editorial" section of the site.
 

dane

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berazafi said:
That would have to be the quickest site modification I have ever seen
[post="128768"][/post]​

Why thank you :super:
 
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