Here are answers to some of the questions you may have:
- Why would I join YMUG?
- What sort of things can I expect?
- How much will it cost me?
- Will I get a full 12 months’ membership, regardless of when I join?
- Many other groups charge much more for a year’s membership. Why is YMUG so cheap?
- I don’t own an Apple Mac. Can I still join?
- I can’t attend meetings. Can YMUG still help me?
- I don’t even live in Yorkshire! Does that matter?
Why would I join YMUG?
Get support and enhance your skills
You’ve got questions. YMUG members want to help you find the answers. Enhance your computer skills so you can take yourself to a new professional level. Or, create projects for your family or hobbies. User groups can help you work harder or play harder.
From time to time, YMUG receives exclusive benefits from a large number of companies. As a user group member, you can save money on software and new and used hardware from many of the top vendors. We also have a members-only classified ads section where you can buy, sell or swap goods and services cheaply.
Find local resources
The Internet provides many answers and resources. However, nothing beats the personal connection of meeting with local Mac users and exploring the resources that are available locally — from resellers to technical support to community activities.
Make new friends and contacts
Meet people who share your interests and passions. Find a group of friends with whom you can talk about the Mac or just hang out. Go to a monthly meeting or to special events, or just make new contacts online.
Put something back by teaching others
Maybe you’ve got some of the answers. YMUG is a rewarding way for you to share your expertise. Someone may have helped you learn about technology; now you can repay the favour while meeting new people and making new contacts.
And why YMUG, rather than another group?
Because we are the biggest in the UK, with the potential for more support and answers to your questions; no group offers more by way of services and facilities; and we don’t charge the earth!
What sort of things can I expect?
You will receive a weekly newsletter by email, packed with news, tips, notices, and a humour section at the end.
These are infrequent emails sent out with notices and news items that cannot wait for the weekly newsletter.
Enigma – YMUG’s online magazine
This is a quarterly publication in PDF format which is free for all our members to download, print out, or read online, featuring a wealth of news, opinion, lifestyle, and articles from around the world of Apple and related areas.
mactalk – YMUG’s email-based discussion group
Optional subscription to mactalk puts you in immediate contact with over a hundred other YMUG members, enabling you to get and give the fastest support we can offer, and is the vehicle for the sharing of tips, help, opinion and humour via a choice of individual emails circulating the whole group, or via a more infrequent ‘digest’ version. Subscribe and unsubscribe as often as you like.
ymug.org – the YMUG website
This is the hub of all things YMUG related. Not only the place to join the group, but also offers a Members’ Area which is the portal for all sorts of services and facilities such as Classified Ads, Forums, Special Interest Groups, Galleries, Archives, and much more, and all freely available to our members for as long as they remain members.
We try to hold meetings monthly at various venues around Yorkshire, so you should be able to find at least one near you sometime during the year. This is a big county, so we move around! The meetings take the form of relaxed social gatherings with hands-on help and support clinics, presentations, question-and-answer sessions, and so on.
We try to give our members the facilities they want, and it’s all covered by the low membership fee!
How much will it cost me?
We believe that for the quantity and quality of facilities on offer, we are unbeatable!
Full membership for up to one year is only £5.00 – and has been held at that price since YMUG was formed, more than a decade ago!
You can pay up front for membership into the future at the usual price of £5.00 per year, but we can also offer you our SPECIAL DISCOUNT of a FREE FIFTH YEAR when you pay for four years at once (£20.00)!
We have two options for family membership.
A four member licence and a six member licence. Purchasing a family licence option will get you full membership and a number of discount codes (sent separately) that you can give to members of your family so they can sign up on the site. Family members currently enjoy all the benefits of full membership.
Overseas members and expatriate Yorkies (and other Brits) can enjoy all the benefits of being a member of YMUG, except perhaps the monthly meetings. For their convenience, we do accept payment through the PayPal system in a few currencies other than British Sterling, although of course, you are encouraged to pay in GBP. If you are wanting to join YMUG but cannot use the PayPal system, do not have access to banks which can make payments in GBP, or cannot pay through relatives resident in the UK, we do allow free membership for those who really cannot contribute to our funds — at our sole discretion.
Free membership is offered to those members who give their time voluntarily to offer help and support frequently to other members, and those who hold office in YMUG, volunteering their services on a regular basis.
No administrative fees
Some methods of payment (eg, PayPal and credit cards) involve administrative charges being made to the companies accepting the payment. Currently, we do not pass these charges on to our members, as we believe that these methods of payment make our lives a little easier than some other methods, like cheque payments for instance. We don’t like paying these extras out of our funds, but we also don’t like asking for you to pay more! Of course, we reserve the right to change this policy in the future, should it erode our funds beyond what is reasonable.
There is rarely any charge over and above the full membership price of £5, although we do reserve the right to accept donations towards, for instance, catering at meetings when provided.
Will I get a full 12 months’ membership, regardless of when I join?
YMUG’s membership year used to begin and end on 1st August — Yorkshire Day — and membership renewal for everyone was due then, regardless of when they joined. We did offer reduced prices near the end of the year to allow new members to get the same great value whenever they joined the group.
However, we now give members a full 12-months’ membership (or multiples of 12 months), starting from the day they join (unless they are subscribed to ‘taster’ trial membership periods)!
Many other groups charge much more for a year’s membership. Why is YMUG so cheap?
We have never raised our prices!
All the people who run YMUG volunteer their time for free.
We are a totally non-profitmaking organisation, which means that most of the funds are spent on room charges at meeting venues, internet hosting and domain fees, print and offices sundries, and so on. What little is left over each year serves as a war-fund to cover the costs of replacement projector batteries, cables, and so on. On occasions, out-of-pocket expenses can be claimed by members when engaged on usergroup business, and may be reimbursed at cost, at the discretion of the secretary or committee.
We do not pay wages, nor do we have rents and rates to pay. Hence we are pleased to offer the services and facilities of YMUG to its members at such a cheap price.
I don’t own an Apple Mac. Can I still join?
Switchers are always welcome!
You might be considering switching from a PC to a Mac, and have many questions to ask about the differences you will encounter.
You might only have access to a Mac at work, but want to become more expert at using it.
Your introduction to Apple might only extend to your trusty iPod or your new iPhone.
Whatever your interest, we want to welcome you to YMUG, and extend to you all the benefits that we offer each and every YMUG member.
Of course you can join us!
I can’t attend meetings. Can YMUG still help me?
Meetings are only a part of what YMUG has on offer
It’s a big part, and many people enjoy the contact with other members that the monthly meetings provide. However, we offer much more than just the meetings, and only a percentage of members are able to attend.
Some people even prefer to “lurk” in the background and choose to only have online contact with other YMUG members, and many get all they want out of YMUG without ever contacting anyone else, except when renewing their membership each year. Some would like to attend but live abroad, or even outside Yorkshire!
We feel sure that YMUG has much to offer you, even if you cannot attend meetings, and we are always interested in receiving feedback and suggestions from you as to how you would like to see YMUG improved.
I don’t even live in Yorkshire! Does that matter?
The Yorkshire Mac User Group is not only for Yorkies!
We are only called YMUG because we are based in Yorkshire, but we have members all over the country, and around the world.
Yorkshire is the biggest geographical area in the UK and we move our meetings around the county so that we can reach more people who would like to attend a nearby meeting at least once a year, but technology being what it is, we are able to have members beyond the boundaries of Yorkshire, and often way beyond!
We currently have members in Australia, New Zealand, the United States, France, Spain, Switzerland, Ireland, and so on. They don’t usually attend meetings, of course, but everything else we offer can be accessed from all over the world – and nowadays even whilst on the move.
You don’t even have to be an expatriate Yorkie. We welcome members to YMUG from all over the place – even Lancashire!