Posted By Dr Rivet on 01/29/2008 6:34 PM
I guess having a society of less than 2000 people worldwide justifies the expense of credit card processing, internet online membership paying etc. Apparently in the UK there are all kinds of rules about how funds are handled and the privacy of personal information that don't apply [certainly in the USA] in other countries. This makes it very difficult for them to use any "automated" method for dues payment by other than "standing bank draft", a process between you [as a member] and your bank. G1MRA doesn't get involved in the process except to be notified that the money in their account came from your account.
Oh, on the contrary, they will only deal in cheques and cheques only. "A bit more modern" was actually hinting at the thing called "bank transfer", as that is absolutely doable within Europe, and at a fair price too. I did ask "the guys" at G1MRA about doing such a transaction, but there was no way this could possibly be done... I would believe that an organization such as the G1MRA would have a bank account for the "club"?
Even Paypal would hardly cost them anything...
So I will get back to joining once they discover this 'modern' way of transporting money across distances.
As for online content being 'free for the taking' I do believe Tag Gorton of Garden rail have gotten a different opinion after he started up. I, and I am certain many others, jumped at the chance of subscribing to an online edition of Garden rail.
I also buy Pecos yearly CDs, that contain their magazines from the previous year, lot's of good drawings in Continental and Railway modeller. People don't expect everything on the internet to be free,
There are many benefits of an electronic subscription:
- I don't have to cram my closets full of old editions in the case I might actually need the information in one of them, they are stored either on a server or on a local harddrive (or two).
- I can print what I want, and to the scale I want, when I need it.
- I never lose an issue in the mail
- I get the issue first/on release day
- Payment options are usually better (than cheques)
I do not however make heavy use of DRM protected downloads, as I can't usually use it on all of my equipment, this goes for music and movies that I would like to play on my media centre computer, some movies will not play fullscreen due to DRM, some will stop after the menu and some woun't play at all. Even if you are sitting with the original cover in hand and the original media in the player...
Also, do not make the assumption that the crippling US copyright laws apply all over the world. The actual law in Norway clearly say that you can make backup copies for yourself, and copies for family and friends, and there is not even a definition in the law of what a 'friend' is.
I usually do not take advantage of this, as I like to have an original. And like I said to Tac/G1MRA if I could pay for the mag and BUY it I would.