I first switched to Paid some years ago, before most of these benefits were available. (eg nobody had ads on their ljs then...) I made the choice partly to support lj, and partly because the lj servers were somewhat flaky at the time and my understanding was that Paid accounts got priority acesss in times of heavy load.
I don't know if that's still the case; but these days I stay Paid partly because that way I avoid ads, and partly because of some of the other benefits such as polls, more usericons, that sort of thing.
I've been paid before most of the features I liked were implemented (sracpbook; no ads; comment editing). The main reason why I originally got a permanent, and before that, paid account was for more icons, polls and custom mood themes.
I have a permanent account. When I used to buy continual paid time, it was for icons. I had the permanent account before ads became an issue, but that would be another reason I would have purchased paid time.
I initially bought the permanent account because I genuinely liked LJ and could see myself wanting to use and support the service for many years. As it stands, if given the same choice today, I would not purchase the permanent account. I no longer feel like LJ-as-a-company has the same sense of community that I felt good about supporting, and how long I can see myself continuing to use the service varies by day. I have seen too much customer jerking-around and all-around poor customer support to be able feel good about it.
2009-03-19 10:17 pm (UTC)
I'm amazed how few people are using AdBlock. I can barely remember what the web was like with advertisements; I don't miss them at all.
But not having a blank spot on my LJ where the ads would be if they were visible - that's a good thing. And one must consider the poor sad sacks who don't (yet) have AdBlock, even if it's generally because they clueless.
2009-03-20 12:44 pm (UTC)
I don't know about IE, but I have SafariBlock and I never see ads, so ad-free isn't only for people willing to put up with firefox's BS :D
wow, 27.5% of LJ users are too retarded to install AdblockPlus!
Or some of us browse from computers we don't own and don't have the luxury of customizing.
Many things I like about paid accounts, but I could bear to lose them all except scrapbook, where I have over 1000 photos uploaded.
I had a paid account for a while and now have a permanent account. I've always liked the extra userpics and the customization perks, and Scrapbook is quite nice (although it could stand to be tweaked).
I suppose the main reason that I paid for this account is that I just really enjoy being on LJ and wanted to have the full benefits of a permanent account, both for the convenience and to show my support for the site. I spend a lot of time on here every day to keep up with communities, and thanks to feeds I can have a bunch of my favorite websites rolled into the same page. I sometimes worry about the future of LJ, what with the current economy and the proliferation of Russian bots/spam, but I'm hoping things will improve.
Edited at 2009-03-19 11:17 pm (UTC)
I bought someone else a paid account because they'd reached 1000 friends and needed to be able to friend more people.
like many other people here, i'm on the fence with renewing my paid account when the time comes round. if it weren't for the history i have here and the ability to make specific comments private, i wouldn't renew. lj doesn't offer as many layouts, doesn't allow you to easily edit the html settings (i know NOTHING but was still able to navigate around blogspot), is in general, pretty unuser friendly and the home page is aesthetically boring. (in my opinion).
i love the fact that lj makes editing comments so easy to do and read, but lj definitely needs to step up their game in being as easy to use and creative as some of the other blogging websites out there.
I originally got a paid account because I really liked LJ and wanted to support it. What it has become is a way to avoid ads (among other things, but every time I am not logged in I am horrified by the ads). And I hate that, and I'm not even sure if that's reason enough anymore. I'm not too thrilled with the way you've handled things in the past, I'm not impressed with the way you do business anymore, and if I didn't have eight years of my life on here I'm not sure that I would bother. As it is I may not bother when renewal comes up, because I don't like paying for products I don't like. Maybe I'll just adblock everything for free.
Like many others, I voted for the reasons why I originally got a paid account, not necessarily why I have one now. If I had to see ads, I'm sure I would use LJ a lot less.
if the price goes up, i wouldn't renew. for the price we pay, though, and for what we get, i like having a paid account very much.
I initially signed up for paid so I could access more styles and customization, and then I got used to it. But since the introduction of ads, avoiding them has become a big motivator.
No ads is an EXTREMELY close second to advanced journal customization. Ads suck.
The one and only reason I have a paid account is so I can create rss feeds so I can add non-lj blogs to my reading (aka friends) list. I don't use any of the other features and don't particularly care about them.