Vanity promo (invite) code
invitations, paid features
Pay a small but reasonable fee to automatically create a custom promo code, suitable for printing on business cards and the like. (Regular promo codes would still be available for free at site admins' discretion, by filing a support request in the Account Payments category.)
Site administrators can already generate promo codes, which can be given to people needing bulk invitations (migrating an entire community, attending a conference, in response to Greater Internet Events). Promo codes are currently issued for free, at site administrators' discretion; individual extra invitations are also issued for free at site administrators' discretion. Promo codes can be preloaded with paid time, and to avoid abuse, are not bottomless, and can also be cut off if it becomes apparent they are being misused.
There are more situations that could be suited to promo codes than there is necessarily staff availability to grant and oversee them.
Perhaps you'd like to hand out cards to friends and new contacts, and would like to invite at least some of them to Dreamwidth. Printing up individual invitation codes is not only tedious, but runs the chance that someone wouldn't use the code you gave them, and then you'd have to make the call to either leave it unused or re-issue the code (and then if the person you gave it to was saving it until they had the spare time and motivation, they're out of luck).
Perhaps you want to migrate the users from that community *now*, and you know that staff are on vacation until a little too late to help you.
Users would be able to spend points to create a custom promo code without needing site admin intervention. This would require a promo code control interface visible to the user, while not limiting site administrators' ability to monitor the activity of user-controlled promo codes to prevent abuse and anticipate site growth.
How many points per invite? There would need to be a reasonable minimum limit needed to create the promo code, and a reasonable maximum number of invitations the promo code may hold at one time. (For development, the price per invite, the minimum, and the maximum should probably be set as a cap, so it may be modified on the back end on other installations. On other sites, site administrators could set the points-per-invite cap at 0 for all users or certain users if they wanted those users to be able to invite their friends freely but without completely open registration.)
Should users be able to withdraw unused invitations that they'd spent points on (decreasing the number available in the promo code), and get points back?
Limiting the number of invites that may be held in a promo code at one time would limit the possible damage if a spammer got their hands on someone's promo code, or if a spammer bought an account and created a promo code.
If spammers did get into a legitimate user's promo code, could the points spent to create the codes be refunded to the user upon the destruction of the spammers' journals? In case of a spammer purchasing a promo code, nuke from orbit.
Users should be able to set their own promo code within certain reasonable restrictions (must be at least a certain number of characters, not more than another certain number of characters); it might be a good idea to allow users to automatically generate a promo code in case they aren't feeling particularly clever about creating one, and/or don't want to claim good namespace.
Users should be able to load invite codes they received (assigned to their account? what about assigned to other accounts under control? If that, then what's to stop someone from wandering about and snagging up other codes people have publicly posted?) into their promo code, and should be able to generate individual invite codes out of the pool in their promo code.
Promo codes could be loaded with initial paid time for the new journals (first month, perhaps) if the user setting it up wants to shell out for that.
There should be notifications that could be subscribed to for various activity -- codes getting low, new account creation, possibly more.
The purchase page should have a link to create a support request in the Account Payments category, and a note explaining that promo codes are also available for free upon request, something like: "Invite codes and promotional codes for group invites, can often be obtained for free by opening a request in the Accounts category and speaking with an administrator about the specific situation. Free invite and promo codes are distributed generously but with respect to keeping current site growth controlled and sustainable."
* Revenue for the site
* Automatic - no need to ask for something
* Immediate - no need to wait for an administrator to check the requests and grant more codes/a promo code
* Feature that daughter sites might be able to use
* Shameless moneygrubbing.
* Could discourage people from asking for free promo codes
* Supposing a spammer got in there, eww
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