SchemingMind.com Knowledge Base
Why is SchemingMind not Free?
There are considerable costs involved in running SchemingMind; the most significant of these is server rental, which currently costs the equivalent of approximately forty new member subscriptions each month; other costs include equipment and software purchases, organisational membership of the English and Welsh national correspondence chess federations, and entry fees for ICCF events in which SchemingMind teams are represented.
- We want to keep the cost of membership as low as possible, the more paying members we have as a proportion of the total, the lower we can keep the subscription rate.
- We like to run the site on the best possible hardware, with reliable and efficient hosting arrangements. We could probably make considerable savings by cutting back on the hosting; we choose not to.
- We have a small income from Amazon for the sale of chess books through 'The Book Shop', however this covers less than 5% of the total running costs of the site.
- We hate advertisments on websites as much as you do! - we will never show syndicated ads on SchemingMind.
- We know you don't want to subscribe to membership before you've had the chance to try the site out; we give all new members a free trial of up to fifty games - please let us know if that's not enough to fully evaluate the site, and we'll extend the trial.
- We know that however low we make the subscription fee, some people will have difficulty paying. If this applies to you, please let us know in confidence - in most cases we will award free membership under our 'scholarship' scheme where genuine hardship can be shown.
- We know that not offering free membership will keep us relatively small; we see this as a good thing.
At present, all the money we collect from subscriptions goes back into running the site. We're not a business and have no requirement to make a profit; all we ask from our members is a small contribution to the running costs.
Current subscription rates are £15 GBP, $25 USD/CAD or €20 EUR.
Austin Lockwood (webmaster)
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