@sweep: @mirado: I feel strange when I read people write in how they pay the subscription but they don't expect anything out of it, that it's not a business proposition for them but instead it's a homage to the patrons. It's very much a business proposition for them so why should it be a one way street? It's not like the membership is a tip jar, otherwise content wouldn't be gated behind it. As gold members we pay in order to get something in return. Maybe I'm too in-tune with the ol' American values of the customer having some sort of rights, but if I'm giving someone money I do expect to have at least a little say in what I get in return for it. While in any other part of the site I enjoy the care free attitude, when it comes down to memberships I do feel like there should be some sort of back and forth relationship. To reiterate for the hundredth time, I love the site and the guys and have nothing but respect for Jeff as an individual and a professional.
Because I have disposable income, I love what these guys do, and too many of the things that I enjoy have gone and died due to lack of support, when just asking for donations might have floated it for at least a little while longer.
This is a much larger deal than it would seem. I also have seen quite a few sites and personalities I've liked go under because they could not afford to continue because the people who watched them every day could not or, in some cases even when given the opportunity, did not give back in any way, and ad revenue wasn't enough (especially Twitch ad revenue. It's downright disgusting how little they pay streamers now. They used to pay way more). That is why if I have the opportunity to pay a bit of money towards something I like, I will.
Heck, there could be no premium features and I would still pay to support the site because I like what they do and want them to continue on with it all.
That's the problem with the internet. People are so used to things appearing to be free that they forget that it costs money to do a lot of this stuff. Yet when given the opportunity to actually pay for the stuff they use, people don't, and in some cases have the gall to call sites or people greedy for doing so.
And on the topic of not listening to user feedback, there was a really great piece from Totalbiscuit on trying to read and listen to feedback. Basically, it boiled down to that so many people are so negative and critical that nothing he could do would please them, so he has stopped reading most venues of feedback because all it does is cause him a great deal of unnecessary stress and has a negative impact on his health. One example was if he made a mistake in a Hearthstone match he knew he would hear no end of criticism for it. Stuff like that. People being petty and awful. I don't normally read reddit but since this was him addressing the people attacking him on his own subreddit thingy I don't really have an option but to link it. It's pretty tough to read and really puts a perspective on just how awful the internet is a lot of the time. http://www.reddit.com/r/Cynicalbrit/comments/1xrx27/in_light_of_tb_abandonning_his_own_subreddit/cfe3rgc
And that's what it comes down to. If GB (or any site for that matter) wanted to take user feedback seriously on a larger scale it would be nigh impossible. For every good piece of feedback there would be so many cases of people being whiny and fickle that it would drive the person in charge insane. You can't please everyone. And that is why we see people saying "bye" when there are people posting large, complainy posts. In many cases, no matter what changes were done they wouldn't have been happy anyway.