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Username vs. Email. Allow login and self-service operations for members without email

Although the last update of WA software allowed site admins to create membership entries without email addresses, this only addresses a small part of the problem.

We want to move away from costly site admin intervention, ideally new members will create their own entries and we will only validate them once dues have been paid.

This means that we really do still need to allow:
(1) members to sign up without email addresses and
(2) members to sign up with duplicate email addresses.

I assume that (2) will have to mean moving away from having the username == email address and the introduction of proper unique usernames for login purposes. This in itself will be a very welcome addition.

worthing and adur chamber of commerce

177 votes
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iant shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

Hi Supporters,

Thank you for all the feedback and support for this suggestion. After reviewing all the comments and related feature suggestions, we have decided to separate it into multiple ideas and close the original request. For more details, see our explanation below.

Based on the original request and all the comments we believe this suggestion is trying to combine and solve the following problems:

1) some members want to be part of an organization, but they don’t have an email address

2) some members don’t have a personal email address and use a shared email with someone that is also a member/contact

After careful consideration, we have decided that we won’t be able to support the first scenario in the foreseeable future, for both practical (e.g. additional manual work for admins) and security reasons (e.g. no way to recover an account). However, the second scenario (supporting members with shared/family emails) and other related requests are something we do plan on working on.

So, while we are closing the original request, we welcome your support and feedback on the following:

Family/child memberships

Multiple Membership Subscriptions

Allow Renewal Invoice Generation without Emailing

Note, we have also renamed the original suggestion to reflect the points covered in the first scenario.

Thanks again, and we look forward to your feedback.


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  • Ann Moran commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    We have members who need to belong to two membership levels, but only have one email address and it is difficult/impossible to get them to set up another email address. So we have to pay for two plans. Very frustrated the WA can't seem to 'get' this problem or sort out a workaround.

  • Debra Joy Groesser commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    We have issues with people trying to update their email addresses and ending up with a second account, especially during our renewal periods. I agree the Member ID would be better as the primary key to avoid this issue.

  • lhorvat2 commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I believe Dave is referring to the WA System field "Email" as a primary key field, i.e. data in the field MUST be unique, just as the Member ID field is unique. Because of this requirement, two people may not share an email address AND have separate Profiles.
    My thoughts on this topic: The WA System fields currently are Member ID, First name, Last name, Organization, Email, and Phone. WA requires TWO unique fields per Contact (I understand the value of two primary key fields). However, I see another option for a second unique field.
    In addition to the Member ID which is generated by WA from One Number Wheel for EVERYONE, each organization could generate an Org Member ID from there own specific number wheel. The two fields could remain separate -OR- they could be concatenated, either hyphenated or as one longer number.

  • Dave commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    As each member is allocated an identifying number, why can't WAS use this as the primary key instead of the email address?

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    We are an organisation of over 3000 members with around 280 shared email addresses. We use email forwarders to cope with this but it is frustrating to have to use forwarders in this way. Two years ago, we were led to believe that code was being developed so that when two members shared the same email address, there would be a login option that would allow the appropriate record to be selected on login. This would be ideal for us. Was a test screen developed for this option, and if so, could the screen be posted in some way to allow a vote on that option?

  • Tim Whitney commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Folks, I also have husbands/wives sharing emails - yet they are in two separate organizations. The husbands are the key members and main organization - dues, etc. The ladies org is much smaller...

    Thus, for members sharing email - I used https://www.mailinator.com (free) - which creates a temporary inbox for some of our ladies. This allows WA to send emails, without failures, and this temp inbox auto-deletes in a short amount of time.

    Is it perfect? No. The ladies sharing a husbands email have also been given the option to get their own email address - some have - most will not.

    So far, this is working for me - it might work for you.

  • This is on radar for analysis - we're not yet sure if we actually want to have usernames instead of email. When our membership development team starts analyzing this, they will share there questions and findings here.

    Note: even though it is on our radar, there always can be a number of internal reasons when we may decide not to work on in. Do no consider my comment above as a promise to resolve it soon.

  • Jay commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Is this on the radar for implementation? I have read the comments below, but I also would like to have the OPTION to enable multiple memberships from the same email. I have a smaller membership and 13 families comprising of 27 individuals use the same email. It would be nice to allow a primary person to manage the household's memberships.

    I'll volunteer to run a BETA if this means that I would be able to implement this.

  • Bill Brenner commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    About a third of our membership do not have a unique email address and have for years used a single contact in their organization to receive email on their behalf. When importing our membership contact information I created a custom work email field. I was able to add the members without a unique email address however I cannot send them an information to their admin contact. I would like to see something similar to this that would allow you to select a custom field as the send to email address instead of having to use the default email address field. I think this may solve a lot of problems for people in the same situation.

  • Tim Swanson commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Do not allow more than one email per adult member. This goes against best practice with respect to acceptance of terms and conditions, most notably waivers. Our insurer requires us to uniquely identify each adult member using their unique email address. There are many outdoor organizations that need membership systems and very few systems that handle waivers properly. WA is close. Don't go backwards.

  • VBSR commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    We have many members with one email and two companies. We would appreciate it if you could please fix this problem. Thank you.

  • wouter commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    why not use email comment


  • wouter commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Solution for family members.

    Currently it isn't possible to assign the same membership email to multiple members. This would be handy for parents who subscribe their young children as member to the organization in our case a sports-club.

  • Walt Bilofsky commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Please avoid using developer/admin terminology in the end user/member interface.* It's a small point, but it helps our members feel engaged.

    In this case, you say on the registration form "Select contact to register for event."

    They are not contacts. They are people.

    If you want to also accommodate cases where they are something else, like businesses, avoid the terminology altogether by saying "Who is registering for this event?"

    * - Another instance of this is exposing users to the developer/admin term "bundle". See https://forums.wildapricot.com/forums/308932-wishlist/suggestions/8828305-customizing-the-term-bundle

  • Corinne Colbert commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Tim, I'd like to hear about your workaround as well. Our breed club has a significant number of couples who use the same e-mail address (often linked to their kennel domain) and the thought of assigning dummy e-mails to them all makes my head spin.

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