View Poll Results: Would you continue to read RPS if it hid behind a paywall?

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  • Yes

    22 24.18%
  • No

    69 75.82%
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  1. #1
    Lesser Hivemind Node Timofee's Avatar
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    Would you continue to read RPS if it hid behind a paywall?

    So yeah... would you?

    Its possibly because I've been on holiday this week, so I've been reading the forum somewhat more than I would normally but there seems to be a lot of posts with people complaining about content/the community/the increased ads

    I just wonder whether matters would be improved by hiding behind a paywall, that way people 'buy into the ethos' and so (in theory) there is much less complaining. I must admit I side firmly with the camp that says if you don't like something anymore, whether that opinion is unfounded or not, just go somewhere else...

    I can't stand these comments to the effect of: "Oh it's all shit, but I stick around to tell them its all shit"

    Full disclosure: I pay my sub, and I'd be prepared to pay more. Indeed, I'm actually fine with matters as they are; sure some of the comments threads are frequented by some fairly reprehensible individuals, but I accept that's life and am generally capable of ignoring and moving on. Similarly there are posters on the forum with viewpoints diametrically opposed to my own but that doesn't necessarily invalidate them.

    I must admit it would be a pretty scary step to take as an owner who relies on this for a living, and I'm not sure if in their position I would be brave enough to, but I wonder if it would help alleviate a lot of the supposed problems that keep getting highlighted.

  2. #2
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gundato's Avatar
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    I am perfectly happy paying the "subscription" currently. I do the same thing with HiJinks Ensue and a few other sites and it is well worth it.

    That being said: if there were a proper paywall there is a good chance I would go elsewhere as the quality might increase (or stay the same, or drop) but the VARIETY would likely drop as RPS would then have to cater to a specific demographic.

    As it stands now: We can get articles like Cara saying that Sim City had potential and was really fun, but she didn't like the DRM. And we can have twenty articles like John saying how much he hates EA/Maxis and wants them to die :p. The point is, people who are interested will come by, those who aren't will skip. If they start having "proper" subscribers, then they need to make sure the people who are interested stay, which means focusing on what THEY want.
    Last edited by gundato; 08-04-2013 at 04:37 PM.
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  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus c-Row's Avatar
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    Depends on how high that wall would be. I am happy to pay my (not that high, mind you) monthly subscription fee to support the site, but there's a limit for everything.
    - If the sound of Samuel Barber's "Adagio For Strings" makes you think of Kharak burning instead of the Vietnamese jungle, most of your youth happened during the 90s. -

  4. #4
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus mickygor's Avatar
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    I wouldn't buy into a paywall. I like that I can choose to subscribe or not for the content I'm consuming. Turning good will into obligation would leave a bitter taste in my mouth.
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  5. #5
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    I probably wouldn't. Not that I don't think it's a valid idea, but it's also an obstacle to entry.

    I'm relatively short on cash and so have to target my finds appropriately, but actually it'd be more likely to be my laziness that would get the better of me. These days I often skip free sites if signing up looks like too much hassle.

    that said, I always forget that there even is a Subscribe option as it's so hidden away. They could make it a lot more obvious.

    There's also the point that subscribing doesn't remove ads right? I might actually do it for that alone just for mobile browsing, but I don't think that it does.

  6. #6
    Lesser Hivemind Node Timofee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gundato View Post
    That being said: if there were a proper paywall there is a good chance I would go elsewhere as the quality might increase (or stay the same, or drop) but the VARIETY would likely drop as RPS would then have to cater to a specific demographic.
    Interesting point, I don't necessarily disagree, although ostensibly they are already catering for a specific demographic - supposedly the more discerning, thoughtful PC-enthusiast. A lot of the complaints seem to be that this audience is being diluted / corrupted by others outside of that scope. Although I'd suggest that's probably quite shortsighted - I think any group large enough with have its fair share of assholes, but then maybe that's what a paywall would accomplish - reduce the scope somewhat and get back to this supposed 'golden age' a few peeps talk about.

    Quote Originally Posted by BillButNotBen View Post
    I probably wouldn't. Not that I don't think it's a valid idea, but it's also an obstacle to entry.

    I'm relatively short on cash and so have to target my finds appropriately, but actually it'd be more likely to be my laziness that would get the better of me. These days I often skip free sites if signing up looks like too much hassle.

    that said, I always forget that there even is a Subscribe option as it's so hidden away. They could make it a lot more obvious.

    There's also the point that subscribing doesn't remove ads right? I might actually do it for that alone just for mobile browsing, but I don't think that it does.
    I confess your view is probably closest to my own, I'm all about the convenience so laziness would potentially prevent me - certainly for a new startup that I wasn't aware of. Given I'm already contributing however, then I would continue to do so.

    PS you are correct re subs - there is no link between sub and ad content, although general feeling seems to be if you pay sub then you can feel justified in turning ad block on
    Last edited by Timofee; 06-04-2013 at 11:56 PM.

  7. #7
    Lesser Hivemind Node RobF's Avatar
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    Yes, yes. I would.

    Obviously I prefer RPS to be free because being behind a paywall makes sharing some of the brilliant stuff that RPS write incredibly difficult but if it was a matter of the sites survival or it would help go to make the site even stronger then yes, I would be fine with that.

    [edit] Shit, misread the question. No, I wouldn't "prefer" it but I would pay for it if it meant the site could go from strength to strength. Gating a community by who can afford to pay only results in the people who can afford to pay remaining, it does not magically make nasty comments disappear.
    Last edited by RobF; 06-04-2013 at 07:24 PM.
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  8. #8
    Obscure Node
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    Nope. Wouldn't even consider it. I like RPS, but there are other sites.

  9. #9
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus sinister agent's Avatar
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    A paywall is a terrible idea.

    If you don't like the comments, don't read them. It's really that simple.

  10. #10
    Obscure Node
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    Yes, yes I would. In fact I have been meaning to donate money (I dislike subbing after I kicked the WoW habit) yet keep on forgetting/postponing.

  11. #11
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    Honestly? No. I'd like to say yes. And I'd like to be the kind of person with the moral fibre to put my money where my mouth is and say yes. But honestly, no.

    Mainly because I'm cheap. And lazy. Oh, and because George Osbourne has seen fit to drive everyone other than his school chums into poverty. But mostly because I'm cheap.

    Don't get me wrong, of all the sites out there RPS is one of the ones that deserves it; it's undoubtedly the best gaming site and the only one I visit with any regularity. But fundamentally - I'm cheap.

  12. #12
    Obscure Node deadlyhabit's Avatar
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    If it's no ad content, and makes me feel like even at the slightest the ad revenue is not a subconscious influence to the writers fuck yes.
    This is why I love Forbes writers like Erik Kain.
    It would be like reading all the individual writers blogs/tumblrs/twitters without any ad revenue paying them or being a subconscious maybe they are getting influenced...
    I love the RPS writers and Op-ed and their own styles, but unless you use adblock, you get contradictory style ads from eurogamer on the side.
    If I can donate so this site looks like it does with adblock, just a normal blog no ads, all opinions and RPS people fuck yes.
    The Op-ed and writers are why we come here and keep returning, having no ads would kill all arguments on bs like PAID REVIEWS etc which may be a reality on some sites.

  13. #13
    Network Hub spacein_vader's Avatar
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    No, for similar reasons to Gundato. To keep subs up you'd have to start preaching to the choir. I like that RPS writers have opinions that differ to mine (and each other,) and aren't afraid to air them. RPS wouldn't be able to touch things like John's equality crusade due to ragequitting subscribers.

    Eventually even things that were uncontroversial but only appealed to a minority of subscribers would probably disappear too, leading to a narrow spectrum of content.

  14. #14
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    A few months ago my answer would have been yes. Not that long ago I donated occasionally and let RPS past my adblocker.

  15. #15
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Sparkasaurusmex's Avatar
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    I don't even have to read the posts.
    Simple answer: nope.

  16. #16
    Nope. Gaming news and opinion isn't something that I care about enough to want to pay for it. While RPS is one of my current favourite games sites that I visit daily, it's not the only one, and I'm sure I could find one or more replacements that would suit me to cover off both news and opinion.

    RPS is however one of the sites that I specifically exclude from adblocker. While this isn't about to change, I do think the new "outbrain" ads below the articles are less than appealing. Some of them spruiking links to 'news' articles that are 12 month old blog posts. The links to random RPS articles can be interesting though once you recognise that they are not necessarily recent posts.

  17. #17
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Berzee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thermal Ions View Post
    The links to random RPS articles can be interesting though once you recognise that they are not necessarily recent posts.
    Yep, I like it too. =) The wording just needs to be updated to something like "More from the archives of Rock, Paper, Shotgun" and then it will seem like a senile but benevolent reference librarian instead of a devious one who is sprinkling Robert Louis Stevenson books in with the new arrivals.
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  18. #18
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Squiz's Avatar
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    What's wrong with Stevenson?

  19. #19
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Berzee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by squirrelfanatic View Post
    What's wrong with Stevenson?
    Nothing's wrong with Stevenson; you'd probably be very happy to keep reading, once the initial confusion over thinking you'd picked up a New Release was resolved. :)
    Support for my all-pepperjack-cheese food bank charity drive has been lukewarm at best.

  20. #20
    Network Hub Dubbill's Avatar
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    He's dead.

    Edit: ninja'd
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