Thanks Emily! That sounds promising. I’ll be sure to send you a PM.
Oh how lovely it must be to be able to ignore the fact that you’re personally responsible in allowing other people to even have a living, and in neglecting that moral balance, fucking over the very people that’re helping you get those investors in the first place @patreon
i’ve seen some people switch to subscribestar, pixiv, kofi, and even using woocommerce subscription plugin for their own websites. I’m considering some of it myself tbh
I have to admit, while I’m not one of the “big names”, I am someone doing what you’re describing as using Patreon as a tip-jar (I would put it a little differently, but no nevermind here), and I gotta say: I’m over here thinking What are you people DOING?! Don’t you know Patreon is TERRIBLE for that?!?!
I, uh, see you’re noticing that.
It would be great if Patreon worked the way it represents itself to work, and I don’t think any of you are wrong to try to hold Patreon’s toes to the fire. I’m not suggesting you don’t complain. I am right there with you complaining (though often about slightly different stuff).
That said, if I can presume to advise you: do everything in your power to not do things on Patreon you don’t have to do on Patreon, just to preserve your sanity. And your relationship with your patrons.
I have lots of specific suggestions if you need them, but the most basic is: if Patreon isn’t doing what you need, maybe you should be evaluating whether you should be even trying to get that functionality out of Patreon? Can you do it somewhere else or just do without it all together?
Because Patreon is going to let you down, and let you down, and let you down.
@reyna I know you’re in a really hard position, one you may even feel is impossible. But when you post here, you often say things which make me cringe, in how they throw gasoline on the fire. I don’t think you have any idea that the things you are saying are exacerbating users’ anger, and that’s the opposite of what you want. But that is what’s happening.
And it’s not just you, @reyna; Patreon’s Communications team is falling into an incredibly common trap for big multi-user sites, where you don’t realize how your communication is exacerbating the hostilities with which you are greeted when you interact with the userbase, so retreat more from them or double down on doing the same things, making the problem worse. It turns into a feedback loop, driving worse and worse division between users and staff at Patreon.
I consult in this area from time to time (usually just in non-profits), and I’m giving you a freebie I usually charge for: Patreon’s creator-facing staff lean way, way, way too hard on niceness and affability to try to solve problems. In particular, you folks have a tendency to try to use niceness and affability to paper over faults in professionalism, transparency, and fidelity, which is an explosive move. Patreon is deep into the land of toxic positivity.
When that happens, the users escalate their nastiness almost compulsively, because they experience that toxic positivity as silencing and smothering, so their aggression up-regulates, as they struggle to make themselves heard.
I see where you’re coming from. If Patreon isn’t suiting our needs, change our needs or go elsewhere. The problem for most of us, it seems, is that Patreon isn’t delivering on the features that promise to fill our needs. We came in with expectations that those specific needs would be met, so it’s not as if we were wanting more than what was given to us (necessarily, obviously new features can be added, but I’m strictly talking bare bones here), but we’re not given them in the first place.
I understand how you feel, but I don’t know if it’s fair to point directly at her. It’s definitely a site-wide problem among the staff, and we have no idea what goes behind the scenes. We don’t know all of what she’s allowed to say or do. And if you’re a part of the Discord, you’ll have seen a recent debacle come up with what users (and Reyna) thought was a bug, until she talked with other employees to find out it was an intended feature change. So there might even be an internal communication issue in their company as well.
I definitely agree with this. But I will also point out, again, this is all on the Discord, which in and of itself is frustrating–but there seems to be more of a push than I’ve seen before in terms of correcting this issue.
Reyna posted today:
Hey everyone –
Before heading out for the weekend, I just wanted to drop a note and let you know that all the feedback, sentiment, and comments from the community we’ve received lately are not going ignored. I’m working with multiple teams to make our communication with you all about Patreon’s product development more regular and transparent. On Tuesday, I’ll be posting an early community-only edition of the 2020 Wrap Up + 2021 Look Ahead blog post that Patreon will be publishing publicly mid-week - your version will also have some extra bits of info not included in the public blog post.
2 quick reminders:
‣ Jack’s Creator Club applications close on Sunday 1/17 (see more in #patreon-announcements!)
‣ Monday is a holidays in the USA so the community team will not be back online until Tuesday 1/19. If you come across any bugs or issues, please submit a support ticket at Submit a request – Patreon Help Center
Hope you all have a great weekend!
This is of course, all still words and no, as of yet, visible action. But I’m looking forward to the promised communication changes.
At the very minimum, there is some promise with this thread:
This is one of the reasons I neglected logging in here for a while, well one of many reasons. It was somewhat sickening to see them crow about millions they’d gotten from investors as I was struggling to get by during the pandemic and battling health issues on top of it all…and then loading up Patreon for all its clunkiness and exasperating flaws after reading how they’d come up with sooooo much money to make Patreon better…really??
Okay so this is absolutely spot on. I have 8 patrons now, I lost a few during the early stages of the pandemic. And I have dedicated about 5 days a week to various content for my patrons, added merch, and gone above and beyond for my very small but loyal circle. I definitely need Patreon to do, and be, better for these loyal supporters who have kept me afloat when I needed it the most.
Yes! Patreon provides a boring business service for us: they make it easy for fans to bundle several small donations into one credit-card payment. They are not our friends, they are a contractor providing a service about as exciting as bookkeeping software or insurance. And being passed off again and again with polite nothings that never turn into action is not a friendly act and not a professional act.
It would be great if Patreon worked the way it represents itself to work, as a site fans visit for exclusive content.
“Friendly” words which just play for time (“the cheque is in the mail”; “that will be fixed in production”; “we think we can upgrade you to full-time in the coming fiscal year”) are not a friendly act. Encouraging Patreon’s customers (us creators) to use your site in ways which you refuse to support (but help Patreon turn our unpaid labor into Patreon’s money from investors fooled at storytime) is not a peaceful act.
The problem for most of us, it seems, is that Patreon isn’t delivering on the features that promise to fill our needs. We came in with expectations that those specific needs would be met, so it’s not as if we were wanting more than what was given to us (necessarily, obviously new features can be added, but I’m strictly talking bare bones here), but we’re not given them in the first place.
Oh, I want to be really clear, I don’t think anybody is wrong to be angry and frustrated about how Patreon has failed to support its offerings. Patreon represented itself to support things and people took them at its corporate word, and then are being left in the lurch. I consider myself included in that, as someone who has a by-post campaign, and just lost the basic user interface we had for that for knowing what is going on with our money. I figure the by-post model’s days are numbered, and I have no idea what I will do if Patreon kills it.
I understand how you feel, but I don’t know if it’s fair to point directly at her. It’s definitely a site-wide problem among the staff, and we have no idea what goes behind the scenes.
I am actually talking specifically about how @Reyna communicates, not what she communicates. For instance, responding to creators complaining that they’re unheard with “look at this thing that Jack just did where he spent time talking to creators on Discord and then made a powerpoint! see! there’s listening going on” was… oh god no. First of all, I clearly wasn’t the only one who was part of that Discord convo, personally, and took away a very different impression of the experience than “got listened to”; second, arguing with people reporting that they’re not feeling listened to is generally a terrible move to begin with, that pisses them off further, which is what, “but look, here’s an example of you being listened to” is: an argument as to why people shouldn’t feel the way they do; third, for a variety of specific reasons that was a very bad example of being “listened to” to point to.
Look, this isn’t even my fight, but even I am pissed off about the gallery thing now. Over and over again, users have requested a gallery view thing, here on PatreonCommunity and through other channels. And I was present in that discord chat with Jack, and even asked him some questions of my own, and someone brought up the gallery issue with a link to here and mention it’s been 2.5 years that visual artists have been asking for this, and – here’s the infuriating part – it was clearly the first Jack was hearing about it. And he was like, “Oh, hey, that sounds like a good idea!”
Everything about this is terrible: clearly, this forum is the place where user suggestions go to die. Apparently nobody within Patreon reads them or maybe the staff who do read them have no way to get the ideas in front of anybody with authority in the org? And that “CEO bungies into the Discord, and if you happen to be available during that two hour window you, too, could have a chance to be heard, if you can express your idea super concisely and are willing to fight for the mic.” Nothing about this is an example of something good, and pointing to is as an example of “look how listened to you you are” is not something that pours oil on the waters.
And this disconnect between patreon’s speech to creators and the policies they enact goes back a long time: remember when PT was turning against sexy content, threatened creators chose Liara Roux as their representative and sent her to SF for a scheduled meeting with the CEO, and it was cancelled the evening before? She released her briefing for the meeting in response Patreon Reference Sheet - Google Docs That saw low-level people at Patreon promising that “nothing has changed” while creators were being hidden or kicked off too.
I loved the idea of Patreon in 2013, and am happy to have them as a tip jar, but they don’t impress me as an honest and competent business. Taking four big loans for the straightforward business of hosting text and photos and processing payments sure feels like “investor storytime” rather than a business focused on customers.
Hi all - just want to reiterate that this thread and the overall sentiment of the community is not going ignored. Like I said, we are working to improve the communication with you all about product updates and changes. The thread below is a start, with a glimpse into our 2021 priorities that we want our community to see first before the post is shared publicly.
I can’t help but notice that the things we’ve been asking for are notably absent from this ‘update’.
Where is the gallery view?
Where is the improved API usage?
Where is the improved site navigation?
Where is the ‘next chapter’ function?
With all due respect, unless you can demonstrate some example of progress towards the things we, the creators, your actual customers, are requesting, maybe stop with the platitudes. They’re condescending and insulting.
I sure hope your new CPO looks at this thread and gets scared, because when a user base is this angry, it often leads to a mass die-off of usership. Patreon has competition, and that competition is starting to look very appealing.
We are your clients, not our patrons. If we leave, so do our patrons.
Stop worrying about them, and start worrying about what happens if we, the creators, declare no confidence in Patreon and find somewhere else to take our fans.
heads up for those of you looking for a patreon alternative after all the shit they’ve ignored, there’s a new platform getting it’s feet off the ground right now called comradery. i’m not affiliated with it, and i’m just learning about it as well but figured you’d all want to know.
especially since it’s looking more and more like a lot of us will be jumping ship due to them ignoring our pleas and forcing anniversary billing on us
@Momobeda I’m building my own subscription site myself. Will be leaving in a month or so once it’s built. I hadn’t realised that even though I’m in the UK, since Patreon isn’t, they have been charging my UK patrons VAT which is unfortunate!
Subscribestar is awful from my experience. Both in trying to use the platform itself, even more so if you’re a smaller creator, and I refuse to support companies that allow n*zi’s on their platform. Look into why they were created and why both Paypal and Stripe refuse to work with them.
Ko-Fi also does not allow adult content so a lot of creators can’t use that as an alternative.
Patreon is the only option for a lot of creators and it seems like very 6 months they’re doing something to make my life harder. I dont know any creators who like the things they implement and all of them complain about things Creators ask for that never happen. They’re far from great but alternatives for adult creators or creators with standards don’t exist.
i’m not sure what kind of nsfw content you make, but i’ve been enjoying my time on onlyfans so far. to be fair, it doesn’t work for everyone and has its own share of problems but it’s a pro-nsfw option.
That’s super unfortunate and I’m sorry you’ve had to deal with that! I’m admittedly curious what you’re using to creator your own subscription site if I may ask! I’ve only been aware of woocommerce subscription model implementing onto a personal website. Are you going through a different one / what’s your choice!
Hello, I posted this in the Discord and was asked to also post it here in this thread, re: anniversary billing —
Could a viable option be to force the Patron to select between:
- getting charged now and also the start of next month (explain they get access to this month’s items as well)
- delay getting charged at all until the start of next month (explain they don’t get access to this month’s items)
- anniversary renewal
And allow the creator to select if/which options are available?
Hi there! I’m building a Wordpress site but not using woo memberships as it isn’t as good as memberpress which is the plug-in I have chosen. There are LOADS of plugins for Wordpress and there is one for square space too.