Car: Jag XF 3.0
Join Date: 10th April 2006
Thanked 2,774 Times in 824 Posts
My ethos has always been to provide a good site that encompassed all things Civic, for all people (hence the slightly restrictive forum rules). Initially I thought it could be done for free, but as the site grew then I realised that that wasn't going to be easy.
When some people really kindly wanted to contribute, then I thought that they should be able to do so, and they should get back a good chunk of something extra for their money. Hence the contents of the supporters area, and of course a nice silver sticker.
I think it should be entirely the decision of the member whether or not they contribute - and I have never really pressed the Supporters side of things. Some sites become clubs, with paying only members, and this is not how I think it should be done.
I have made donations in the past to sites (occasionally) and donation-ware software (when it really has helped) and this system works well, especially if the product is good and the donation small - but ultimately it is the decision of the individual and not the site owner or software writer.