May 4, 2010 at 2:49 pm #1258555
I'm not sure where to post this, as it seems like an admin issue but thought chaff might also be suiting.
First, I have personally enjoyed reading the three winning Lightweight Testimony articles as I'm sure other members have. The notion is that we can relate because every UL backpacker had to start somewhere and chances are, it wasn't from scratch. But I believe that BPL should have released these articles for all to enjoy.
These LWTestimony articles are the type of articles that I would like some backpacking friends and family to be able to read. Some are currently in the process of lightening up, and others are either leaning in that direction or they have never even heard of lightweight packing. The LWTestimony articles help summarize the UL principles, and could possibly garnish more readership and/or membership for BPL.
For example, a traditional backpacker upon reading a LWTestimony article:
"OH WOW, I can totally relate to that 50 lb pack. This guy converted to the UL ways so that means I can too! I'll join BPL and with their help I can achieve a five lb baseweight!"
Now I know this is an extreme case, but you probably get my drift.
If everyone had access to these recent articles I believe that all parties involved could benefit.
Just a thought. Anyone else?
Also to BPL:
Less content, while making it only available to members seems to me as counter-productive regarding readers/subscribers. You should have one of at least three articles open for all to view. IMO. Then new readers keep checking the site, possibly becoming members or telling others about BPL. And current members are pleased w/more content.
Again, my 2 cents.May 4, 2010 at 2:53 pm #1605971
Rog TallblokeBPL Member
@tallblokeLocale: DON'T LOOK DOWN!!
+1May 4, 2010 at 4:10 pm #1605995
Jim ColtenBPL Member
another +1 …. with pretty much the same rationale Nicholas provided.
I wouldn't buy into his idea of a certain % of content be available to all readers but testimonies about personal transformations to UL or why UL appeals to the writer should be free.
Other topics should remain subscriber only.May 4, 2010 at 5:04 pm #1606009
Nice one. You got me, I was a bit offbased suggesting that a certain % be available to all readers. Just getting carried away :) Content based, reader availability is probably more like it.May 4, 2010 at 5:36 pm #1606020
dittoMay 5, 2010 at 2:09 pm #1606547
Addie BedfordBPL Member
Hey guys – thanks for the input. I've been pretty locked down into publishing only for members lately, but you have great points. I just got in a rut and didn't give the nonmembers on the site much consideration, especially about testimonies.
I've changed all the testimonials to be nonmember, and I appreciate this feedback!
AddieMay 5, 2010 at 2:26 pm #1606554
Addie, I think that is great. Thank you for the prompt response.May 5, 2010 at 3:46 pm #1606617
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
> I've changed all the testimonials to be nonmember, and I appreciate this feedback!
Good call. Thanks.
cheersMay 5, 2010 at 6:56 pm #1606689
Mary DBPL Member
@hikinggrannyLocale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
I'd like to suggest that the articles for Scouts and similar youth groups also be free. It looks as though that was the case up until about a year ago, but a couple of recent articles on Scouting have been members-only. We're talking public service here! What do you think? Lighten up the kids and there will be a whole new batch of BPL members/customers coming on in a few years!
I'd still like to see "cottage industry" gear reviewed here on a regular basis. It doesn't get reviewed much of anyplace else! If I want a review of a Kelty pack or an REI sleeping bag, I'll go to Backpacker Magazine. I'd like to be able to go to BPL to find out more about the ZPacks Hexamid or the new SMD tents and pack or the new MLD items.
As for the BPL store, I gave up on that about a year and a half ago. I did buy a few things, but mostly it was an exercise in frustration. With big ticket items, I'm willing to wait, but if I want to buy several inexpensive items at the same time to save on postage, I'm out of luck. I never found more than one of the items I wanted in stock at a time.
An opinion you might want to think about, coming from my business background: IMHO, BPL should decide whether its primary business is information or selling gear, and stick with one or the other. At the moment, it appears that both sides are suffering from what may be an incompatible mixture. For one thing, I believe that there is a potential conflict between BPL's gear business and its impartiality in gear reviews (brought up in several prior posts). For another, the staff and software appear to be stretched a bit too thin to handle both. I personally am in favor of the information side (and more of it), but that decision is, obviously, up to the business owners! Maybe you really are making more profit on the store side, and I'm full of it….May 5, 2010 at 7:25 pm #1606706
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
> I believe that there is a potential conflict between BPL's gear business and
> its impartiality in gear reviews
We do not publish any Review articles on gear made by BPL.
Us Staff who write these Reviews don't get given hot-off-the-press BPL shop items anyhow! (Sniff)
So in practice you won't see any conflict at all. We aim to keep it that way.
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