I’m going to answer the questions to the best of my ability! Beware,
there is some brainstorming ahead.
We’re hoping to get your feedback on how many of the following
premium features it would take for you to feel like it was worth
paying $12/month for Beeminder:
For the record, the only thing I pay for that has any set monthly fee
is my apartment. I’m a total cheapskate. $12 seems like an awful lot
to pay to risk having to pay more.
- No need to remember to cancel your subscription – if you don’t use
Beeminder all month, you’re not charged for that month. 
Maybe this would help. Not sure if it would motivate me to sign up,
but it seems kind and would gain trust.
- You get god-like powers over your yellow brick road: you can add
arbitrary flat spots, change the steepness retroactively, etc. Soon
we’ll add the ability to relinquish that control selectively, if that
tempts you to cheat on your contracts.
God powers would just make akrasia easier, no? Maybe I misunderstand,
and maybe one of the god powers is to make it impossible to change!
- You can jump the pledge schedule – go straight to an amount that
motivates you to stay on track instead of suffering through a few
initial derailments (which always entails the risk of getting
demoralized and not resetting at all!).
I don’t think I’d pay to reduce the risk of not resetting. But, if I
were paying, I’d probably reset more quickly, knowing that I’d get
more for my money.
- Serious VIP treatment for the brave souls who first guinea pig this
stuff for us!
Hmmmmmmm. What kind of VIP treatment are you talking about? Like
getting to be on the mailing list? Or emailing the developers
- Specify who your forfeited pledges go to. (This one isn’t
implemented yet, just seeing what people think.)
I wouldn’t pay for that.
 It infuriates me when companies profit off my akrasia. I want
Beeminder to only profit off of fixing akrasia! 
That would be great. I’d pay for a system where if I were paying, it
would keep me on my goals. And I’d probably pay more if it helped me
set better goals. For instance, if I could stay under a certain weight
by paying $20/month, I’d pay.
What I don’t want to pay for is the option of tracking how
(in)effective my weight loss program is. Notice that there are two
uncertainties already: it’s just an option to track (I could stop
using BeeMinder) and what I’m doing might not work.
So I’m thinking of something like a positive health plan where you pay
as long as you’re healthy, and when you get sick, your doctors pick up
the bill because they’re not doing their job. To go back to the weight
loss example: if I start to gain weight, my $12 might pay for someone
to pound on my door and get me to work out a little. Of course, while
I’m above the weight goal, I don’t pay . . .
Because, ultimately, I want to pay for results. To translate the
“pound on my door” example, maybe if I slip and fall off the road, I
get lots of help and encouragement to reset and get going again. Like
a phone call. I might pay for that, if it worked!
On the other hand (and I’m not suggesting this at all, just thinking
out loud) it would be interesting to set up an antagonistic dynamic
between me and bee minder. That is, we both have something at stake.
You lose as long as I stay above the road–or at least I gain
something from you.
 A funny thing to say, given our business model so far (collecting
pledges on failed goals), but I’m serious: paying those pledges is
just part of climbing the fee schedule till you hit your Motivation
Point. Beeminder injects massive motivation along the way and you’re
paying in proportion to the motivation Beeminder provides and in
proportion to how badly you need Beeminder!
The current business model is slightly flawed in that way. If you move
people quickly to their “sweet spot”, they cease paying, no? You have
unlimited downside (hosting/support costs potentially forever) for
each of the non-paying users. I can see why you want to get paid for
the successful users.
Anyway, I’m a cheapskate and these things might not work for me. The
biggest motivator that kept me on one of the roads for several months
was that I was keeping that goal free. Now that I have to pledge
money, I don’t want to reset! I suppose I’ll try it though,