On Wed, 2010-02-17 at 00:29 +0000, Nathan Rixham wrote:

> Manuel Lemos wrote:
> > Hello,
> > 
> > on 02/16/2010 08:02 PM Nathan Rixham said the following:
> >>>> I need to find a skilled PHP dev, UK based, with long term availability,
> >>>>  in the short term to join me on a project and ultimately be prepared to
> >>>> take over the project and "own" it. Remote contract work w/ occasional
> >>>> meetings on site.
> >>> You may want to try searching PHP professionals with the specific skills
> >>> you need here:
> >>>
> >>> http://www.phpclasses.org/professionals/country/uk/
> >>>
> >>> Or you may want to try to post a job here:
> >>>
> >>> http://www.phpclasses.org/jobs/
> >>>
> >> Manuel,
> >>
> >> I'm sure there are some very talented people on your site (and in the
> >> community) - one slight problem though, I won't use you're website under
> >> any circumstance (been there, done that).
> >>
> >> You make every interaction with your site a horrible, painful
> >> interaction that is purely there to get as many adverts as you can in
> >> front of people, so that you can bleed every cent possible from the hard
> >> work and effort of PHP developers and innocent users. In short, you take
> >> advantage of your users, members and the PHP community - I've never seen
> >> such a bold and ongoing attempt to profit on the hard work and good will
> >> of PHP developers, ever, period.
> > 
> > There seems to be a misunderstanding here.
> > 
> > The PHPClasses.org site was created by me in 1999 with the purpose of
> > making it easy to distribute my PHP classes so others could test them
> > and send bug reports and suggestions.
> > 
> > Then I thought it would be nice to let others also share their code
> > there to do the same, if they want of course. Back then, there was no
> > advertising or any sort of monetization of the site.
> > 
> > Meanwhile the site has grown a lot. Now it has over 850.000 registered
> > users. Initially it could run on a shared hosting, but since many years
> > ago it needs dedicated servers. Hiring dedicated servers costs good
> > money as you know.
> > 
> > In 2002 I had to choose, either to dedicate to the site full time to
> > moderate the new site content and develop the features that it needed to
> > better serve the PHP developers, or shut the site down for good because
> > I would not have the time to take a day job and maintain the site at the
> > same time.
> > 
> > 
> > I took the chance and decided to work on the site full time. But I had
> > to find some way to make it generate revenue, basically turn it into a
> > full time business.
> > 
> > My first option was to provide a package of premium services for a small
> > subscription fee. I placed a survey asking the users about services they
> > could be willing to pay.
> > 
> > http://www.phpclasses.org/blog/post/10-Paid-site-services-survey.html
> > 
> > That was a good idea but it would take me a lot of time to develop the
> > planned services. So the alternative option that was available was to
> > put advertising.
> > 
> > I do not like advertising because it slows down page loading and
> > distracts users from the real content. But over the time, if it was not
> > for advertising the site would have been shut down a long time ago.
> > 
> > After a lot of time and development effort, in 2007 I finally was able
> > to launch the planned premium services.
> > 
> > http://www.phpclasses.org/blog/post/68-Launched-premium-services-for-PHP-developers.html
> > 
> > Premium services help in generating nice revenue, but honestly it is not
> > a big deal. Not only I have to keep the advertising, I also need to seek
> > other sources of revenue.
> > 
> > To continue to make the site useful for PHP developers, I decided to
> > develop a dedicated job board for PHP professionals that was launched in
> > 2008.
> > 
> > http://www.phpclasses.org/blog/post/79-New-PHP-dedicated-job-site.html
> > 
> > As you may figure by now, the site requires continuous development to
> > address the user needs. For instance, some site users complained about
> > the site design.
> > 
> > In 2008 I started developing a system that would let designers propose
> > new designs and users try the designs in different pages. When the
> > system was finished in late 2009, a contest was launched.
> > 
> > The winning design won a USD $3.000 money prize (and a big elePHPant).
> > The new design will replace the current in a few days, once we make a
> > few adjustments. The money prize comes mostly from the revenue of
> > premium subscriptions.
> > 
> > I am sorry if you feel that what I have done and will continue doing is
> > a bad thing and I am just taking advantage of the site users.
> > 
> > I suppose you do not work for free. So you cannot expect me to work for
> > free as well, as we all have families and have to put food on the table.
> > There are no miracles.
> > 
> > If what I did with PHPClasses.org is bad, my alternative is to close the
> > site because I cannot work on the site and have a day job at the same time.
> > 
> > 
> >> And then, you have the good thought to come on here and SPAM the hell
> >> out of your site at every opportunity.
> > 
> > What you call spam, I call word of mouth. You have expressed a need. I
> > know of a resource that can help you solve you problem, so I told you
> > about it. If telling about something that could solve your problem is
> > spam, I am apologise for trying to help you.
> > 
> > 
> >> ps: clicked the two links
> >>
> >> http://www.phpclasses.org/professionals/country/uk/
> >> All I can see at this one is a list of "O.... ....." which isn't much
> >> good to me or the developer that's supposed to represent - and surprise
> >> surprise to view any of there information I have to register, sign up
> >> and buy a premium subscription - so no, no information there that was
> >> off use at all in any way.
> > 
> > That is not accurate. There are premium subscribers and non-premium
> > subscribers. If you are a premium subscriber you can have full access to
> > the contact details of all listed professionals. If you are not a
> > premium subscriber, you can only be contacted by employers that are also
> > premium subscribers.
> > 
> > You do not necessarily have to pay to become a premium subscriber. For
> > instance all nominees of the innovation award get a free life time
> > premium subscription. That is one of the ways the site compensates users
> > that submit innovative classes that you probably not find elsewhere.
> > 
> > http://www.phpclasses.org/award/innovation/
> > 
> > http://www.phpclasses.org/winners/
> > 
> > Anyway, premium subscriptions are inexpensive. They just cost USD
> > $5/month (minimum 3 months) or less ($4/month if paid annually).
> > 
> > You also get other benefits besides having full access to whole PHP
> > professionals listed in the site. You can check it out here if you want
> > to know about other benefits.
> > 
> > http://www.phpclasses.org/premium/
> > 
> > 
> >> http://www.phpclasses.org/jobs/
> >> And here I can pay $75, $60 or "Very delayed - Job announcements that
> >> are notified first only to featured professionals, and then much later
> >> to all other users after 23 days for only 7 days." - think I'll give
> >> that one a miss.
> > 
> > I am not sure what you are complaining. Posting jobs in many well known
> > sites that are not even focused in PHP, costs many hundreds of dollars.
> > 
> > Even if you consider the PHPClasses.org too expensive, it still lets you
> > can post your job for free. In that case, all the premium subscribers
> > get access to the jobs much earlier, and everybody else gets access to
> > the job for free during the last 7 days of the 30 during which the job
> > is exposed.
> > 
> > Anyway, I find $75 very inexpensive, especially when compared to what
> > most companies are willing to pay as salaries. $75 is just a few hours
> > of paid PHP consulting work in most PHP companies. Unless you are
> > looking for a very short term employee, you will have to pay a lot more
> > than $75 to hire a good PHP professional.
> > 
> > 
> >> Thank you very much for all you're help and sorry you couldn't bleed
> >> some money out of me on this occasion - perhaps you'll manage with
> >> you're next spam to the list.
> > 
> > Personally I regret that you need to be hostile and rude when I was
> > legitimately trying to help you. I do not recall ever seeing you here.
> > You seem to act as if I hurt you in someway in the past. If I ever did
> > that, I sincerely apologise.
> > 
> > Anyway, I just think you probably are misunderstanding my work. I hope
> > it does not upset you that I carry on working on projects that I believe
> > to benefit the PHP developers in general.
> > 
> > 
> I'm unsure now TBH
> 1/2 of me is reading your response and thinking; sure sounds fair;
> the other half me is thinking "if I took all your opensource work (and
> other peoples) then wrapped it up in a site filled with adverts, then
> piggy backed on paid services like job postings and premium members etc
> to it - so that I could make a living; would that be a good thing to do
> / would it be "cool"? then counter thought of if those people
> contributed the code.
> in all honesty the following are the sticking point that make it hard
> for me to decide if I was right in my earlier response:
> 1: that the "sign up to get the class" is even part of the equation
> 2: that developer listings are visible to premium only peopl
> 3: that users can't delete an account
> 4: the amount of adverts
> Certain things like having paid Job postings on there
> are fair enough and I'll remove from the equation; just the 4 things
> above that I can't decided over.
> Maybe I am misunderstanding, perhaps I was a bit harsh - I would be
> interested to know if it is a "full time job"; obviously we can't have
> you working for nothing whilst you're family suffers.
> It bothered me that I may have flamed you for no reason, so I took
> council from a few people - one said I was definitely right to do so;
> one wasn't sure after your response; and the other said "opensource
> people shouldn't play that game" (ie monetize / pull a salary from
> contributed work). I'm wondering why it is that people are unsure about
> your website, yet see sourceforge and github etc with there adverts as okay.
> Regards,
> Nathan

I think the design probably doesn't lend itself to the best of
perceptions, but as Manuel explained, that is soon to change.

I myself do find the site confusing to navigate, which doesn't always
help when looking for a PHP class to fit in a project that's already
going to a tight deadline. I wasn't aware of the other parts of the
site, but I can understand a paid model for the job section, which
essentially makes it behave a little like an agency.

With charging for the open source items, that does seem a little
old-fashioned. What about allowing the contributors to offer up paid
support for their code, with the site taking a cut. Charging for the
support and documentation of an open-source system is a model that seems
quite popular in the open source world (look at a lot of Linux distros,
for example). You'll still have people being a bit tight and not wanting
to pay, but there will be more people (I think) that would want to pay
for the documentation if it was reasonably priced.

In fact, a system like that could possibly improve the state of
documentation for some systems.


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