Running thesession.org

Running thesession.org

Hey everyone,

Some of you probably noticed the sporadic influx of spam postings over the past week or two. Sorry about that. As soon as I delete one account, another pops up—it’s like playing whack-a-mole. For a while there, I had to put a 24 hour brake on new members being able to submit anything in an attempt to mitigate the potential damage. I’ve since reduced that (to just half an hour). If the spammers return, I might have to crank it back up.

Anyway, like I said, I’m very sorry about that spam. Rest assured I’m doing everything in power to combat it, which mostly involves me being on high alert for new membership activity.

While I’m giving you the scoop on how I’m dealing with that issue, I thought it might be a good idea to let you know about the general costs involved in running The Session. Here’s a breakdown:

Hosting: $40 a month with https://digitalocean.com plus an additional $8 a month for automatic backups.

Email: around £50 a month for https://mailchimp.com to send out newsletters, plus an additional $7.50 every few months for https://postmarkapp.com for member-to-member emails, and $20 a year for a https://www.fastmail.com/ account.

DNS: $14 a year to https://dnsimple.com for the domain name, plus an additional $20 for the secure certificate.

Version control: $7 a month for a micro plan on https://github.com/


So all in all, that works out at an average monthly cost of around $120-$140.

If you’d like to make a donation towards the ongoing costs, you can do so from the front page of the site, where there’s a form linking through to PayPal:
https://thesession.org

I recently added the ability to make a recurring donation—you can select the amount from the dropdown on the homepage, and that will be passed on each month.

All donations are gratefully received, but if you’re not in a position to give a donation, don’t worry about it: every time you add a new tune setting, or keep a session listing up to date, or add new information to a recording, you are keeping this site going strong.

You’re the ones who really make this site. I’m just the caretaker. 🙂

Thank you all,

Jeremy

Re: Running thesession.org

Hiya Jeremy. I’ll discuss with Mrs. Sgriob about donating something when she’s had her coffee and toast. The Session is a terrific resource for ‘folkie’ musicians. It’s my go-to site whenever I need to refresh my playing of an old tune or to find new ones.

Sorry to hear about your troll problems. It’s an annoying reality of modern life, sadly, akin to hay fever, psoriasis and Argentine ants.

Yours ay, Sgriob, Santa Barbara

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Jeremy,
Had not realised just how much was involved in running this site, both in time and in financial costs. Has not even been aware of such creatures as mailchimp! All adds up, and I’m sure that you’ll be getting more support once people read this and realise what is involved.
Thanks for all you do to make the site such a great source of music and much more besides.

John K

Re: Running thesession.org

Jeremy, thanks very much for putting up the donation link and making it easy to do. And double, triple thanks for all the work that goes into making session.org the amazing resource it is. It’s the go-to place for most people in the sessions here in Colorado Springs, USA. I just sent a donation (it worked perfectly) and I set a reminder in my calendar to remind me every year at this time. I’ll spread the word at session today.

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I’m not the most prolific contributor, but I’ve been a member for a long time. I probably log on most days just to see what’s stirring. So thanks again Jeremy for sticking with it! Donation sent.

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bobmarlec, y’know I’ve thought about doing the T-shirt thing. I might look into that.

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Hello from Maui…
your session.org is most definitely worth contributing towards…a worthy cause to help promote this music.
i have built a small library of favourites using this resource and will certainly contribute to the cause.
when i tire of the monoculture here in Hawaii, the banter and comraderie found here on the session remind me of how creative and talented folk musicians can be, somewhat renewing my belief that people can be inspired and motivated to higher acheivement, even if they don’t happen to be famous.
of course, there is always the tune police to contend with which is a major reason why i have not submitted any of my own settings but that may soon change. you see, me being a note reader from way back, i tend to view ABC as rather silly and not worth the time and trouble to learn, but that is only my own opinion.
but i can use software to convert midi to ABC and then be able to make worthy contributions to the database.
So thanks Jeremy and keep up the good work!

Re: Running thesession.org

Ditto to all of above
Sent
Brill site
Blue skies
Ged

Re: Running thesession.org

Thanks for the reminder.
Thanks, Jeremy.
Donation sent.

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Thanks for all the work you do, Jeremy. Fiddle Aunt and I have made a one off donation but we will do this every year (on Mollie’s birthday).

We both appreciate the site and feel you do a great job. 🙂

Re: Running thesession.org

Thanks again, Jeremy. I’ve just tipped a donation into your Mustard Bucket 🙂

Re: Running thesession.org

Jeremy - would it be feasible to use a Wordpress page just for signups?

There are some excellent spam-catcher plugins there - that I know for a fact.

There is also word that they can capture offending IPs, block them, and even give you option to notify agencies like www.spamhaus.org , but I can’t confirm that.

Just thinking, the main www.thesession.org page shows to everyone, but the ‘register’ button could trigger the Wordpress page, then a final redirect back to thesession.org home page.

It would certainly capture all that simplified Chinese stuff (if that’s what it is) and whack him out.

Just a thought.

Re: Running thesession.org

Hi Jeremy,
Thanks for the great site. Made my donation.
Wouldn’t extra authentication for registering help your problem with the bots?

Posted by .

Re: Running thesession.org

Many thanks; have made a donation now in gratitude for a few tunes learnt! God speed!
Gerry

Re: Running thesession.org

You’re quite right to let us know the cost of this project Jeremy - but I wish you’d have let us known earlier!
I’ve now made a small contribution, which I intend to do again soon.

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That’s no problem, Danny - you can always backdate your contributions to the date of the site’s inception. 🙂

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I should have done this donation a long time ago, for the many times I’ve used the Tunes as a resource. Thanks for the passion you put into making this happen.

Re: Running thesession.org

Thanks

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Hi Jeremy.

A good site, for sure but, as Marty Baum points out, often spoiled by the pompous ragings of the tune police and their denigration of those they have deemed to be lesser beings. It’s one thing to offer constructive criticism and quite another to have one’s contribution treated as crap. Hasn’t happened to me but I’ve seen some of the comments (in response to the efforts of others) that border on vicious in their cruelty.

In my view, that’s a hell of a lot bigger problem than spam and the reason I no longer participate. Deal with that and maybe I’ll make a contribution.

Re: Running thesession.org

I’ve happily made my donation and totally agree with all the positive comments already made. I would surely be up for the tee-shirts.

Posted by .

Re: Running thesession.org

Great site, thanks for all the brilliant effort, Jeremy. Donation sent as well! I would proudly wear a thesession.org T-shirt.

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Having not seen any spam posts I reckon you must be doing a great job in removing them. It probably helps that I’m in a very different time zone.

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Mr. Fidkid, not to put you on the spot, but given your humors and skill set, you should probably be designing the shirts!

Re: Running thesession.org

Thank you all so, so much for your donations—I really appreciate it.

I’ve also had some great anti-spam advice and I was able to add some code today to help with that. Alas, a spammer still slipped through the net again today and briefly wreaked some havoc before I shut down the account. Apologies.

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Donation pending Jeremy. Thanks for your hard work!

Posted by .

Re: Running thesession.org

Totally appreciate all your work, Jeremy! A fantastic site that I use all the time. Will forward this discussion to our session list and hope it yields some donations. And have been meaning to donate again, so great to have a kick in the rear. Thanks (for reminder, kick and whatever else you intend to furnish)! Charlie Durfee

Re: Running thesession.org

Just an idea but I’d be interested in contributing a track or two towards a compilation "session.org" CD?????

Re: Running thesession.org

A t-shirt would be fantastic, as would a CD compiled from the playing of the users here. Both I would buy and gladly contribute to in any way!

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The trouble is that anything that generates a profit violates the .org obligation. The Session is non-profit.

OK, so the next thing to do is to ask for "voluntary" contributions. Yeah, that can be done.

Re: Running thesession.org

He can still be "non-profit" and sell things that make a profit, he just couldn’t pocket the money himself. Organizations sell stuff all the time, and put the money in the coffers for new projects or times when donations aren’t covering the cost of doing business.

But regardless, I don’t think there are any rules about using a .org url anymore. There are certainly organizations using it that are for profit, and it’s a go-to for many different kinds of organizations like schools, public media outlets, advocacy groups, and open-source/public projects like archive.org.

For the record, I’d go for a CD, if only to hear the actual playing behind all the advice (and the arguments)… But I’m sure the music would be grand, too.

Re: Running thesession.org

I would be happy to contribute a design for a thesession T Shirt, I’m an artist and graphic designer so vaguely know what I’m doing. Contact me directly off piste if you are interested. I assume the ‘interesting’ messages above are the ‘work’ of the aforementioned underground creatures who should have something better to do with their time than interfere with people pursuing an interest that adds to the good things in the world. More power to your elbow Jeremy and to hell with the detractors.

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‘gyuifyiuo’ manages to spam the thread re spam!! 🙂 Where would you be going.

Posted .

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UNLESS it’s all really a false flag operation by Jeremy to increase donations!

(Okay, I’ve been living in Texas too long.)

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Spammer - how sad! What a waste of life…

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Haven’t they got anything interesting to say?

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Really sorry about that spam getting through. I’ve reinstated a long probationary period for new members before they can post a new discussion, but they can still add comments straight away. Looks like I’ll have to adjust the code so it applies to comments as well.

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How about a Turing test for the first post(s) or something?

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I still have the ‘Mighty Craic’ contributions from site members here. It was all made public at the time, but I’m sure many contributors no longer post here.

It’s a shame, because there was some great playing from some of them.

Unfortunately it will all need to stay silent.

Re: Running thesession.org

"You’re the ones who really make this site. I’m just the caretaker."
You are the owner and the moderator and the person who dreamed it up, not just the caretaker.
The good thing about this site is the tunes section.

Re: Running thesession.org

"How about a Turing test for the first post(s) or something?"

Doesn’t always work. Sometimes you feel the comment is a little "off" but you’re not quite sure. Usually it takes about two or three goes to spot and by that stage, they’ve got enough status on the site to start posting about one a minute.

It wouldn’t be too bad if a) it was in English (or Irish) and b) advertised something really useful like a fail safe way to learn ITM.

Thanks for all the good work, Jeremy.

Re: Running thesession.org

Small donation just sent!

The business model they have over at banjohangout.org might be worth checking out - basic membership is free but an annual subscription provides extra benefits and one of the subscription options includes a t-shirt - t-shirt design changes every year.

BTW I don’t recall ever receiving a newsletter, is there an option somewhere to sign up for that? I do have the "receive email updates" option ticked in my profile…

Re: Running thesession.org

Have a chat with The Reverend, Jeremy. He seems to be managing marketing of goods relevant to our interests.
Meanwhile, earlier today, 5 minutes after I had read you complaining about spammers, up popped some more - what on earth are they selling ?
Keep trying to keep this site free ! And well done generally !

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This site is a great service Jeremy in so many ways! Thanks for all the work you are doing to keep it going and guard it against the bots/spam! And for telling us clearly what you need. Will do.

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The site is a brilliant resource; thank you so much for curating it, Jeremy and thanks to all the erudite contributors. Donation duly sent.

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Thank you, Jeremy!