Frequently Asked Questions

The NearlyFreeSpeech.NET FAQ (*)

Member Support (*)

What is the status of my support issue?

How can I get specific software installed for my site?

What is a system problem?

Do I really have to buy a subscription membership just to get a simple question answered?

Why was my system problem report closed as "works as configured?"

What are the options available for member support?

What are the various responses to a system problem report?

Why was my system problem report closed as "not a system problem?"

How can I give you private feedback about your service?

Can you help me restore something that has been deleted?

How do system problem reports work?

How do I "cash out" unused support points?

Why don't you answer @nfsn tweets?

Why don't you provide free support?

What is an assistance request?

Why don't you provide more detail in response to system problem reports?

Even though we investigate all system problem reports sufficiently to understand what the problem is, we provide only generic responses.

This raises an obvious question. If you're reporting a problem and we know what the problem is, whether it turns out to be a system problem or not, why don't we tell you what we found?

We've actually tried that in the past, and it was a disaster.

Like paid support, system problem reports are individual and private and handled by skilled professionals. However, system problem reports have several significant advantages over paid support:

  1. They are free.
  2. They go to the front of the line.
  3. They are handled outside our standard support hours.

Consider two people with the same problem: their site is suddenly offline and they don't know why. For both people, the cause is the same, their domain -- registered somewhere else -- is expired and they just didn't notice. (Which could happen to anyone.) At midnight, Person A submits a paid support issue and Person B submits a system problem report. Both people get the same response. But Person B gets it hours sooner and for free. Not only does that reward Person B for misusing the system, which is unfair to both us and Person A, but worse, there's no disincentive, so it also encourages Person B to do the exact same thing next time.

We can't charge for system problem reports, because system problems are largely budget-independent and if you find one, we don't care how much money you do or don't have, we want to hear about it.

As a result, we are forced to limit system problem reports in some way to prevent them from becoming a de facto 24x365 "free support" option that would have to be paid for through higher prices charged to everyone else (see option 2). Since we're not willing to do that, we have chosen to limit system problem reports by ensuring that they cannot be used to provide or obtain support.

How do I buy support points?

What if I can't figure out which support option to use?

Why does your support cost so much?

Why shouldn't I wait until I need support to set up a subscription membership?

What are support hours and expected response times?