Web's Up, Time to think about modernizing Email

CPCUG needs to rethink it's email system.

If we move to free memberships, we will need to change our email service and start charging for it. Our email service, as presently configure is unusually expensive, and being subsidized by other CPCUG.org activities.  The main reason for this expense is that we allow practically unlimited storage, and a few CPCUG.org email users take unjustified advantage of it. They have been asked to reduce their storage voluntarily, but have not all responded.

CPCUG can and should substantially reduce email costs but we need to impose storage limits and require less manual account administration. Our new website makes the last approach viable, should our Board so decide. Since there are a large number of fee email options we may see some fall off in our email box users, but we cannot afford to provide enterprise services for free or even the low fees we charge.

Most private email boxes are limited to 150 megabytes. Why not ours too?



CPCUG Hosted Email

Many years ago, when CPCUG.org began hosting email accounts, you couldn't really get a FREE email account (and the CPCUG.org email account wasn't free as it required dues paying membership). Things have changed and now users can get a FREE email account from dozens of hosts. Everything from Yahoo! to GMail to Outlook offer FREE email and great spam filters. I am not sure we even need to host an Email service for members. What's the point? We should maintain email accounts for the business of CPCUG.org but I fail to see the advantage for either the member or CPCUG.org in maintaining our email service. What do CPCUGers have to say?

CPCUG e-mail

I second Dennis' comments. Although we give up a bit in terms of privacy and putting up with advertising, we've got so many options for free e-mail accounts. Given the challenges for CPCUG.org to provide a similar level of service and functionality, and doing so cost-effectively, I don't see this as a compelling use of the organization's resources.

Free and Pay. Not all e-mail accounts are equal.

As a member in good standing with CPCUG.org for one heck of a long time, I am concerned that the groups' mindset seems to be changing from “member focused” to “ORG focused.” CPCUG.org exists for the benefit of the membership, not the other way around. I believe a very concerted effort to canvas the membership should be undertaken far in advance to ANY significant change (e.g. ditching e-mail, changing quotas) to the status quo. The membership is worthy of such and yes, YOU do owe it to us. Free e-mail accounts have been available, in many forms, for many years. I pay to use the e-mail service at CPCUG.org for several reasons. One, I believed I was supporting the group. Two, I wished an e-mail account not encumbered by advertisements or 'content searches' by those I have no control over. Bottom line is that 'free' accounts have a cost too, just not in dollars. “Free” accounts and “pay” accounts are not synonymous. As far as CPCUG.org e-mail service itself, if additional fees are required to cover costs then a structure can be suggested to membership for review and blessing. Phrases like “unusually expensive” or “unjustified advantage” are subjective and don't add to the conversation. With regard to the disk space available to the member, in a day of terabyte drives, how about 10 gigabytes of disk space? Think of it as user friendly. Would this be free? NO, and I am not suggesting it be. I simply wish the membership to determine these important issues.

E-Mail accounts FREE or PAY

I figure that paying my dues is really paying for the email account. I would be willing to pay a bit more for the CPCUG.org email but giving out free accounts would really open us up to spammers. Limiting the storage is a good idea and if some are abusing it. then cut them off and see if they complain. some might not even know they are storing lots of attachments and such. Just my opinion, which is most likely worth what you paid for it. :) Rich Schinnell