Sites worth paying for membership ?
January 12, 2013 5:05 AM   Subscribe

I want a list of sites/communities/forums that cost money to join but worth this money. I think that initial or continuous fee is a good filter against spammers. I am already member at somethingawful, and the great Metafilter. any more recommendations are welcomed.
posted by Ahmed_Nabil to Computers & Internet (20 answers total) 48 users marked this as a favorite
Been on the web, writing, reading and contributing, since 1992. The only two sites where I have paid a fee to join are Flickr and MetaFilter.

The latter is self-evident; my only regret is that I didn't join MetaFilter (many) years ago, instead of being an on-off reader. The former you can join (and use the community and communication functions) for free, but the small fee for going 'pro' removes the ads and data restrictions, allows you to post photos in more groups, and lets you download your original pictures. Also, privacy and the like are a heck of a lot simpler to figure out than Facebook and other services.

Agree that the small hurdles MetaFilter have in place (that small fee payable before writing, restrictions on posting frequency, self-promoting posters on the blue are hurled off) accumulate to a good deterrent against spammers.
posted by Wordshore at 5:37 AM on January 12, 2013 [1 favorite]

I paid the lifetime membership fee for LibraryThing to let me list all my books.

(I also subscribe to the NY Times online, Netflix streaming and Amazon prime, which I judge worth it at the student rate, but those probably aren't the kind of thing you're looking for.)
posted by Jahaza at 5:41 AM on January 12, 2013 [2 favorites]

I also pay for the full version of LibraryThing — it's free to record up to 200 books, but you have to pay if you want to record more. I don't use the community/discussion features a whole lot, myself, but from what I've seen it seems reasonably good in that regard.

(Also Cook's Illustrated in the "not really a community site and maybe not what you're looking for" category.)
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 5:45 AM on January 12, 2013 [1 favorite]

I think the fee for Pinboard is worth it.
posted by neushoorn at 5:45 AM on January 12, 2013 [11 favorites]

I paid for a forums account at Something Awful 7-ish years ago. I was glad to do it. Just yesterday I was reading a thread with pictures from a guy that scouts abandoned properties to determine if they should buy them at auction. It was horrifying/fascinating.
posted by chiababe at 5:52 AM on January 12, 2013 [1 favorite]

Ebert Club at $10.00 per year. I can't find a good link to join so you can search for it or write them at
posted by andreap at 7:19 AM on January 12, 2013

The Well. UNusually long-lived and high quality.
posted by Miko at 7:39 AM on January 12, 2013

Angie's List. I found some great work people to do renovations and to install door locks.
posted by Elsie at 8:01 AM on January 12, 2013

Angie's List didn't turn out to be a bargain for us. We needed a plumber last week, and used the Better Business Bureau site, for free, to locate a company with terrific reviews.
posted by toastedbeagle at 8:10 AM on January 12, 2013

I have a pro account on Flickr, and I paid to join both MetaFilter and Pinboard, all three of which I've been very happy with for years. I also pay for Netflix and Amazon Prime, but I don't think that's really what you're asking.
posted by asciident at 8:19 AM on January 12, 2013

nytimes. plus, i like supporting them.
posted by jcworth at 9:33 AM on January 12, 2013 [2 favorites]

used to like sorta fell out of my habit, but it was an early subscription site and i paid for many years. helps if you are far left.

( metafilter should pay me for periodically starting random shitstorms that entertain and enlighten, but I concede the $5 was well worth the investment. several times, i have been offered the $5 back if I'll go away. i'm waiting for a better offer. )
posted by FauxScot at 11:03 AM on January 12, 2013

Besides MeFi, I've paid for pinboard and flickr. There are other sites that I've liked that I've donated towards, but nothing that had a subscription-only feature of any sort.
posted by rmd1023 at 11:09 AM on January 12, 2013

+1s for Pinboard and Flickr.
posted by clavicle at 11:43 AM on January 12, 2013

I got bought a Something Awful account as a gift, but paid the $10 again when I was banned. It's a small price to pay, and I'm tempted to pay more for Archives.
posted by Charlemagne In Sweatpants at 2:15 PM on January 12, 2013

NY Times because of the quality of the content and the worthiness of supporting the role they play.
posted by Dansaman at 9:00 PM on January 12, 2013 [1 favorite]

Financial Times. My favourite purchase of last year thanks to MeFi. Consistent quality content does not come free.
posted by manny_calavera at 1:06 AM on January 13, 2013

Cook's Illustrated, for sure.
posted by exceptinsects at 9:48 PM on January 14, 2013

I would like to add a note about Flickr just to make sure the OP doesn't run out to get a Flickr Pro account without hearing a dissenting view. I have found Flickr overly complex and fairly confusing to use. I find I often don't know the fastest way to navigate to the function I want to do. I find the interface to fall short in terms of user-friendliness and intuitiveness. Just an example: if you want to re-arrange a slideshow, there are only certain set ways you can do cannot drag images around to the exact place you want them.
posted by Dansaman at 2:27 PM on January 15, 2013 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Recently joined, the 25 yrs at 106 $ subscription. the main forum worth it.
posted by Ahmed_Nabil at 8:51 AM on March 8, 2013

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