A Change in Pricing Policy

We’ve decided to experiment with pricing for awhile to see how it affects participation in the site. As I mentioned in another post, Askers can now post question for as little as $4. We decided that instead of imposing a minimum price based on our own idea of standards, we should let that happen organically by negotiation between the Asker and the Expert.

Over time, it will hopefully become clear what questions are actually worth. I would say I don’t recommend questions to be asked at the $4 rate unless they are absolutely beginner-level or unless the Asker is comfortable taking the chance on getting less-than-expert-quality answers. My guess is that questions below $15, say, will mostly be ignored by more experienced PHP developers.

In this scenario, it’s perfectly ok for Experts to comment and ask that Askers post the question again at a higher price, especially if the solution requires more than a couple minutes of figuring.

We are relying on the audience to communicate and participate more and make clear what their expectations are. As the FAQ page says, we don’t want anyone feeling they’re contributing time and effort to questions that aren’t worth the money. Experts should feel free to make polite suggestions if they feel questions aren’t being valued. We will monitor this over the next month or two and see how it goes.

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4 Responses to A Change in Pricing Policy

  1. Japh says:

    This is an interesting change. I will be curious to see what happens, as it seems to devalue the site a bit to me.

    Perhaps it’s just my opinion, but a $4 question seems to be something you’d get answered for free elsewhere. I saw WPQuestions as a place where people have urgent and serious questions with a real dollar-value for their business. $4 seems like a beginner question you could answer yourself just by a quick search in the WP codex 😉

    We’ll see what happens!

  2. Darfuria says:

    I think the latest $4 is a perfect example of something that, in honesty, should only cost $4 – especially with the answer provided.

  3. lawrence says:

    @Japh – I think you raise a valid concern. But the issue is, should we forbid such questions, or should we let askers and answerers work out their own sense of what the prices should be? We encourage you, if you feel a prize is too low for the complexity of a question, to simply say “I think the prize for this should be higher” or “I know the answer you seek, but I think you should raise the prize.” We’ve made it easy for askers to increase the amount of the prize that they are offering – they should do so if the experts tell them that the prize is too low.

    @Darfuria – I’m glad you think so. I know that sometimes I want to ask a question that is both very simple yet I need it answered quickly. Therefore I can imagine myself being in the situation of asking $5 questions.

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