2021 Membership Thread

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dogwatch

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Just be mindful of the severe lack of resources and staff the club have at the moment and the way the department is being run effectively via zoom and email. AFLNSW aren’t even fully back into the proper final stages of the return to work protocol so Vic will be a long way behind that, therefor the club is running on fumes behind the scenes.

Just try and be as patient as possible and see what happens when some normality arrives.
I agree with this - it’s a good point, but it’s two way.

The club also needs to understand how its initiatives so far seem to be failing the modest expectations of members. Ultimately that will be in the club’s interest as it may help mitigate the expected decline in membership and revenue.

Like so much else in 2020 we’re all in uncharted territory. Mutual patience, care and outreach are needed.
 

NBates

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Couldn't have said it better.



Offering signed jumpers, discounts, things like that. Not saying we should do exactly that, it would just have been a nice gesture to actually reward loyalty and I would suspect that many members would've just said no thanks to whatever they offered and to put it back into the club.

What we have got so far is two extremely confusing emails that seemingly say that it doesn't matter if you been a member for 50 years or 1 year you are in the same boat, while essentially paying the same per game no matter what kind of membership you have.

I thought they did do a survey regarding what we
The email states that if you want to reserve a seat it will be $10 per game. It states that if you want to do every game (all 9) it will be $90.

What’s the deal if you don’t reserve a seat? I wouldn’t trust just rocking up and hoping for the best, particularly with demand likely outstripping supply.
Yes, but my point was it says flat fee for the GAMES you wish to attend ("ability to secure a reserved seat for the games you wish to attend. You will be able to do this by paying a flat fee of $10"). So I'm wondering if you can book several games at once for a flat fee.

You might be right. It's just my thoughts. That's why we need clarification. I also think you are probably right as they will need to restrict the number of people who attend games. So they won't want people booking the whole season out as others won't be able to attend any games. So they probably want to ensure members get the opportunity to attend half - ?

There won't be any standing - that would be against Covid management (i.e. too hard to ensure people stick to their spot and social distance). I can only see them doing that if they paint squares on the floor where a group can stick too, but I'm sure that will be too hard to manage. There's only security staff at Marvel and we all know how much weight patrons will put on their instructions now.

I think if you don't reserve a seat there will be a general admission seating area, but you will still have to book to reserve your seat online - not paying more for a seat, but you will have to pay the $10.

So I think the big question is, will members be able to book multiple games & seats for the season all in one go?
 
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Dogs Rule

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Too early to speculate and I don't want to add to an already confusing communication from the club, but I had an AFL membership a while back which I no longer hold and the conditions were similar to what is being advised as well as having spoken to an Adelaide member in detail about how they went this year.

The main reason I don't have the AFL membership is the lack of access to Marvel seating ( 2000 odd seats on Level 1) as well as booking for each game which was a major PITA.

Booking fees add up as does the level of frustration when missing out on seating. It appears this is designed to limit access (as needed) but this was what interstate clubs did this year. It is likely wont be possible to attend each home game depending on restrictions as you will need to be logged on at a certain time / date to book, and once tickets are gone you miss out. If we only have 10K per game, that's one in four missing each game. Adelaide sold theirs based on level of membership, so lower category members may never have got to a game as they had access last to seating.

Not really a fan of this setup and I am seriously considering giving the season a miss next year, depending on what comes out over the next few weeks.

On a side note, comms from the club are really ordinary these days. Not sure why they cant provide this info to all members.
The club are quick with the social posts getting players to draw animals or answer dumb questions or other useless crap yet when it comes to members, we get this. Not good enough. Maybe more attention on members, the people who actually put money into the club year after year and less on surplus bull****.
 

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wayniac

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Judging by the low number of responses in this thread, Can I assume that a lot of members renew when they feel like it? Or are you delighted with this wonderful deal?

I have a Bulldog for life membership which is automatically renewed. I now feel like cancelling this because of the absurd $10 booking shemozzle.

FFS, why can't the club allocate seats to members for home games? I don't like the idea of a crap shoot booking a seat online.

2020 will go down as the year of the lame Covid excuse. Everyone is using it as an excuse to screw people over.

Last week the cops weren't stopping traffic on the Hume because of rain. "Too dangerous" was the excuse. If there is a truck rollover on the Hume in the rain, do the cops not stop the traffic?

Yikes.
 

Timewillcome

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The club are quick with the social posts getting players to draw animals or answer dumb questions or other useless crap yet when it comes to members, we get this. Not good enough. Maybe more attention on members, the people who actually put money into the club year after year and less on surplus bull****.
I agree, I feel like the comms have really fallen off a cliff from the heights of 2015-16 when they were super eager for engagement with members. 2016 seemed like job done and has been on the slide since. Team performance hasn't really allowed this area to be ignored and all the bandwagon support has started to drift away.
 

wayniac

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I've just emailed to cancel our memberships. We had a routine for the football, catch the train from Geelong, wander up to the ground, tea/coffee or a beer in the social club. I just can't see any of that working out. If your seat allocation is miles from the Victory Room, how are you going to get there at half-time? The idea of wearing a freaking mask for hours on the train doesn't appeal. The cheap parking at Docklands is now $30 and my grandkids in Ballarat won't be going with us there.

It's been a blast but I'm out for now.
 

Freshwater

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Have Victorian’s lost our minds this much? We are going n October 2020 and there will be 30,000 people in the Adelaide Oval and The Gabba in a few days. Surely by March or April we will have 30,000 allowed at Marvel? If not, I am not renewing. If you are worried about covid stay home.
 

Mantis Toboggan

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I've just emailed to cancel our memberships. We had a routine for the football, catch the train from Geelong, wander up to the ground, tea/coffee or a beer in the social club. I just can't see any of that working out. If your seat allocation is miles from the Victory Room, how are you going to get there at half-time? The idea of wearing a freaking mask for hours on the train doesn't appeal. The cheap parking at Docklands is now $30 and my grandkids in Ballarat won't be going with us there.

It's been a blast but I'm out for now.
That’s really disappointing to hear. Did you state your reasons in the email?

The $10 per game is a disgrace. Ticketmaster will probably add $2-3 on it as well.

The more I read the more I think the membership I’m paying for, ‘Gold 9’, is basically ‘access’ to tickets. So without going on Ticketmaster each week, paying my $10 per ticket and hoping I’m one of the lucky ones...what exactly do I get for my membership?
 

wayniac

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That’s really disappointing to hear. Did you state your reasons in the email?

The $10 per game is a disgrace. Ticketmaster will probably add $2-3 on it as well.

The more I read the more I think the membership I’m paying for, ‘Gold 9’, is basically ‘access’ to tickets. So without going on Ticketmaster each week, paying my $10 per ticket and hoping I’m one of the lucky ones...what exactly do I get for my membership?
I told them in the email that I wasn't happy with the $10 booking fee. I think Ticketmaster is a rip-off anyway, who does the $10 go to?

I've spectated around the world for various sports and the AFL takes the cake for ripping people off and the clubs follow their lead.

At the 2016 grand final we had a bunch of idiots who obviously were on some corporate hospitality package, getting up to go to the bar when the game was in progress. Real fans come second.

I've been to RL Challenge cup finals at Wembley where you could just about walk up and score a ticket and most Northern clubs have the annual trip to Wembley. When I lived in Oakland, the Athletics held $1 admission, $1 beer, $1 hot dog night games. It was fun.

It's like we're "under the Dome" now. The nanny state has convinced us that everything is swell. It isn't. The whole manufactured bubble where sports people can come and go and play sport in empty stadiums while we plebs have our face glued to the TV. To add insult to injury, not all games were free to air but we got all the gambling ads when it was free to air and Kayo had big blank pauses when there was no ad revenue.

Beats me why the several billion we give to the ABC can't extend to giving us AFL instead of the awful channel 7 coverage.

The good thing going forward is that I get my life back. I have lots of bucket list things I can spend my time on. I won't be chewing my fingernails watching the Dogs screw up winnable games.
 

Dogs 13

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Bulldog for life means bulldog for life for me (as long as I can afford it).

The guts of the membership still exists.

They've made some hard decisions, in hard times. Not really going to blast them over it or drop the membership.
I'll never drop our memberships, but I see a second year in a row of not getting to fully use what we've paid for if capacity is seriously restricted.

I've said this before, but I can see a lot of people across the board dropping off because they're conditioned to just watching on tv now.
 

Pugz89

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So the away games thing looks like all away gameS, not just one based on my email. Also, interesting its a $20 Bulldogs Shop voucher instead of beanie/cap/scarf now.

For reference, I am platinum GA which was the GA section beside cheer squad. Hopefully that remains and I'm not relegated to level 3 next year...
Screenshot_20201014-184524_Gmail.jpg
 

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ossie_21

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I’m still undecided on what I’m going to do. I’m just disappointed that moving to Melbourne to go to games and enjoy footy more hasn’t happened, my wife is pretty much over it and couldn’t care about the membership any more.

Paid up front for reserved seats that we couldn’t use, I upgraded mine and bought one for her. We took the option to downgrade when offered to the same interstate membership I’ve had over the last 5-6 years, so got a bit of a refund back but it didn’t help the sour taste. Not the clubs fault, of course.

Theres still 6 months or so before 2021 season gets here so who knows what will change in that time, but it’s seemingly more likely that it could be very similar to this season. Europe is having its second wave and in England they have already pushed back fans returning to stadiums for Premier League until at least March.

Pretty sure I won’t be on direct debit any more because we paid up front, but I don’t want to pay for seats that again we might not be able to use
 

DognBones

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This is a call to arms, folks. I know that next year's membership situation looks, on the face of it, a pretty raw deal but supporters like us on BigFooty are the life blood of this club. If we start cancelling our memberships or avoid signing up next year our club could be in desperate trouble financially. That is the last thing I would want to see having gone through the near death of our club in the past. By all means convey your dissatisfaction to the club if you wish but please do not walk away from buying your memberships. Next year could be even more of a challenge for us than this year!
 

philmb

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As an interstate member, going to a game is a luxury as it is with my membership seen as a donation more than anything. I'll of course be renewing my membership next year and will 'pay it forward' on others to underprivileged Bulldog supporters to make up for those that are looking to not renew their membership. If these new members just so happen to get to a game and cheer on a Bulldog win, I'll think it worth it.

As for the $20 Bulldog shop voucher, I for one opted for this during an end-of-year member survey. I would end up donating the scarves and hats back to the club to give out to the community as they saw fit.
 

dogwatch

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The club got back to me today after I suggested they check out the comments in this thread. (Thanks for your reply!) I'm sure they won't mind my copying it here as it's relevant:
Thanks for your email and kind words - I've passed on the feedback as requested to my managers.

You're correct in that the response has been 50-50 but once members email/call in and we explain it properly, they seem to be understanding and realise the changes implemented benefits them.

If you have anymore questions feel free to contact us and thanks again for the link to Bigfooty, the feedback on there will help us going forward!

Thanks,
Now I know that's not going to satisfy everybody straight off but it suggests it may be worth persevering. Or at least asking the question.

If they continue to monitor this thread it also means if you have any further areas of concern or confusion then posting them here might be the next best thing to contacting the club directly. Hopefully they will filter up to the right people at VUWO.
 

Marbyriver

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Could the $10 fee be due to the club not being able to guarantee that all reserved seat holders can access a reserved seat next season (considering the uncertainty of crowd numbers next year)?

Upgraded my GA this year to join the social club for the first time, away game add on also. Will most likely be relocating from Melbourne next year, although I won't get much use out of it personally happy to financially support the club as i'm in the position to do so.

Is anyone aware as to if the away game add on is free next year if you already have it on your membership?
 

NBates

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This is a call to arms, folks. I know that next year's membership situation looks, on the face of it, a pretty raw deal but supporters like us on BigFooty are the life blood of this club. If we start cancelling our memberships or avoid signing up next year our club could be in desperate trouble financially. That is the last thing I would want to see having gone through the near death of our club in the past. By all means convey your dissatisfaction to the club if you wish but please do not walk away from buying your memberships. Next year could be even more of a challenge for us than this year!
I concur. Don't want to go through '89 again.

If you can't afford it (and in the current circumstances it's completely understandable) then by all means cancel your membership.

Please wait until we get the full picture before deciding that the club is ripping us off. My biggest criticism of the club is what they have put out to members & then tell dogwatch " You're correct in that the response has been 50-50 but once members email/call in and we explain it properly, they seem to be understanding and realise the changes implemented benefits them." Dear Club Membership & Comms Dept - we shouldn't have to ring to get a clearer picture!!! Put it out what you do know in plain English. And if you don't know how it's going to work exactly as far as booking fees, seating capacity & allocation, explain that.

I'm shocked some people here appear to be throwing a tanti and cancelling membership over not getting more unnecessary cheap merchandise rather than over frustrating team structure and performance. But hey, it's crazy times and pent in anger over important things can eventually erupt over something trivial.
 

dogwatch

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I've had a further considerate reply from the Membership Department which is worth publishing here. See below.

They are listening. And they are obviously trying to clear up any confusion. If it's still not quite clear enough (or seems illogical etc) then I suggest you try to hang in there. Post any questions here - there's an excellent chance they'll be read and responded to.

Bear in mind that these people are working with reduced resources, under lots of pressure, from home and in an unprecedented set of circumstances, and that there is still so much uncertainty for the club and the AFL around how next season's fixture and restrictions are going to look.

We all want a positive outcome for the club and it's important to air concerns and grievances (otherwise they'll never get addressed) but please also spare a thought for the people trying to put the rubber on the road ...

I thought I'd get in touch after reading the forum last night to clear some confusion.

Firstly, apologies for the email that was sent out, upon reflection it is worded quite confusingly and we have passed this feedback onto our media comms team - keep in mind we are all currently working from home and reduced staff at the moment, not that it is an excuse but some perspective.

In terms of the away games - ALL away games in Melbourne will be free for members who pledged in 2020 (valued at $125).

In regards to the $10 booking fee - the reasoning behind this is in 2019, only 10% of members attended all 9 home games at Marvel Stadium. We made a decision to pull the $90 from your membership reserved seat fee and instead make it $10 per game e.g. if you attend only 7 of 9 marvel games next season, you'll be paying $70 instead of automatically having the $90 included in your membership and in fact saving $20 - I hope that makes sense and clears the booking fee.

The booking fee only applies to level 1 and 2 members (Gold and Silver), all bronze (formerly GA members) will NOT have to pay $10 for a reserved seat on level 3 as their entitlements usually entitles walk up access which we are unable to provide due to COIVD-19 and contact tracing purposes (all tickets will be reserved seating next season).

You'll be able to book and reserve your own seats 4 weeks before round 1, for the first 4 home games - you'll be able to book seats for friends and family too. We'll have more information on this process in the weeks to come.

Unfortunately, it is way too early to speculate on how many people will be able allowed to attend games and capacity as we'll need to wait and see what the government and AFL says in regards to restrictions - we thought we'd get that information out as soon as possible for our members so they're at least aware.

I hope this clears up some confusion and I'm happy for you to email me with any other conclusion/enquiries within the forums - maybe if you can send through a summary of questions that still requires a response and I can respond accordingly.

Thanks,
 

dogwatch

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And here's a follow-up summary from the Membership Department. It's a bit more structured and will hopefully clear up much of the uncertainty (it addresses one or two questions I still had). Given the difficult circumstances this is starting to look pretty reasonable and generous to me but that's for you folk who go to the footy most weeks to decide.

They are obviously working with a lot of uncertainty themselves - something they have no control over - but have undertaken to keep communicating to members as the situation becomes clearer.


**************************************************************************************

This goes into more depth for each query:

- All 2020 full season members have been rewarded with a FREE Melbourne away game add on. This will give them general admission access to a possible 5 away games in Melbourne in 2021 (so a total of 14 possible games in 2021 compared to the 11 they got access to in 2020) Away Clubs will be given an allocation for each away game, and depending on the capacity restrictions at respective venues (Marvel and MCG) we are hopeful of getting a good number of our members into these games. Access for these will be communicated closer to the season once venues have communicated their processes.

- Gold and Silver members will have to pay a $10 upgrade fee to guarantee a seat at Marvel home games in 2021. We hope these tickets will go on-sale at least four weeks out from the 2021 season and at this stage we hope to be going on-sale for the first four home games of 2021 at that time. There will be a transaction fee to Ticketmaster as part of this process, that is still being negotiated at this time and will be communicated to members once confirmed. If members book for four games at once, they will only pay one transaction fee.

- Members will be able to sit with other members in 2021. They will need to book their tickets in the same transaction to ensure they are sat together. They will need to use their member numbers in the buy process to ensure they can book. At this stage the maximum number is 6 seats in one transaction but this may increase if restrictions ease. Members will only have to pay one transaction fee.

- In the situation where contact tracing is not required any more to access stadiums then walk-ups bays will exist on level 1 for Silver members and on level 2 for Gold members. These bays will be subject to capacity but members will be able to sit in them at no charge. These bays will be heavily communicated to members each home game, whether there will be any, how many there will be and where they will be located. If these walk up bays fill up members will be able to access the general admission areas on level 3.

- Based on 2020 reserved seat membership numbers the Club is comfortable that even with Marvel Stadium at 25% capacity the overwhelming majority of Gold and Silver members would be able to guarantee a seat.

- Guest passes will be available for non-members when capacity allows. Price of these guest passes is still to be confirmed.


**************************************************************************************
 

cecil

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Honestly that reply leaves me with even more questions for my situation.

I've got a Home and Away GA membership. Have been told I save a miniscule amount of money because its Home games only this year. Then told I get a free upgrade to include Away games.

I normally upgrade to seats for any game I go with someone to (so we can sit together - not always members as I take a lot of different people). So this is saying as I have a GA membership (now Bronze) I dont have access to level 1 and 2 seat upgrades? And what happens to my seating now I can't walk up (which I do make use of a fair bit after work etc)? I'll obviously hold off getting in touch with the club as they are no doubt being slammed, but this info is super important and the fact such key messaging went out so poorly written is a bit of an indictment.
 

Mantis Toboggan

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I've had a further considerate reply from the Membership Department which is worth publishing here. See below.

They are listening. And they are obviously trying to clear up any confusion. If it's still not quite clear enough (or seems illogical etc) then I suggest you try to hang in there. Post any questions here - there's an excellent chance they'll be read and responded to.

Bear in mind that these people are working with reduced resources, under lots of pressure, from home and in an unprecedented set of circumstances, and that there is still so much uncertainty for the club and the AFL around how next season's fixture and restrictions are going to look.

We all want a positive outcome for the club and it's important to air concerns and grievances (otherwise they'll never get addressed) but please also spare a thought for the people trying to put the rubber on the road ...
Thanks Mr/Mrs Membership person. And thank you dogwatch for bringing this info to us. I think all the questions I had have now been answered.

I will be renewing as planned.
 

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