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Introduction.
Objectives.
Questions.
Stage 2 Development.
Stage 3 Development.
Interested Parties.
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Introduction. 
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2007.  At present... this is an embryonic website which has just completed Stage 1 of its development.  From this point on... it could develop in a number of different ways... such as...
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Non-profit Organisation.  During Stage 2 it could develop into some kind of registered Non-profit Organisation... just relying on good-will and donations... but there are some unappealing aspects to this route.  Fund raising is a specialist skill... very time consuming... and you need to be accountable to all those who are providing financial support.  Depending on how it is done... you may also need to conform with more specific legal requirements as laid down by the Charities Commission... which may all prove to be a very complex and restrictive way of operating.
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The next option would be to operate as a 'Social Enterprise'... becoming a "CIC" [Community Interest Company] where you use any profits to pursue specific objectives which would have benefits for the general population.  But again, you are subject to a CIC regulator.
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Commercial Development.  Or... as we move into the second Stage of development... it might be more effective to operate on a strictly Commercial Basis.  Looking for outside participation has not been a priority up till now... but as we move into Stage 2 a larger financial commitment and broader range of expertise will be required... and therefore we would be receptive to any Proposal which we felt could significantly move this Project forward.  The following Section concentrates on just one of these options... Commercial Development over two more Stages.  
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Warning... What follows is not some detailed "Business Plan" with all the "Figures"... showing you how to make an easy fortune... no effort required!  It is a basic outline of where we are... and where we'd like to get to.  [This is basically like standing at the bottom of a mountain... looking at the summit.  You know where you want to get to... but there are many possible routes... some will lead to the top... some will run into dead-ends... some may even lead to disaster.]  There are no guarantees here!  Can we make this any clearer?  No guarantees!!  So... please read on... but keep your eyes open... your brain in gear... try to come up with your own ideas... and then... make up your own mind about the merits of this proposal.
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Stage 1... [just completed] has been Self-Financed.  It just required the website to be completed in its basic form... Concept and Project outlined... plus a number of Articles... limited Promotion... and with no Revenue Streams developed. 
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Stage 2... will be a transitional phase... expansion possibly aided with some kind of outside help or Investment.  Website upgraded... and developed into a Social Networking Site.  Introduction of such things as... Forums: Message Boards: Chat Rooms: Newsletters: Blogging Facilities: etc. etc... so as to produce a much more... 'Interactive Experience'.  A major increase in... PR: Promotion and Marketing work... and development of Revenue Streams.
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Stage 3... could be described as the point where the Site becomes self-sustaining.  The website broken up into numerous sub-sites or sections aimed at individual Countries... or States... possibly translations into other languages.  Expansion financed with on-going Revenues.
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Sub-sites... splitting the website up into various sections could be done by us... but a better option might be to have autonomous sub-sites run by people who live in those areas... and speak those languages.  Each one creating their own customised version of the website... and then connecting it to our Home Page.
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This Section... will be available online until, either... we make significant progress into the second Stage of development under our own steam, relying on donations... advertising revenue.  Or... we have come to some alternate arrangement with an outside 'Participant'.  There are five sections below... each with a Link to a more detailed section.  Anyone exploring the possibility of becoming involved in a significant way should read all these sections.  
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Objectives.
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There are a number of Objectives... for the Concept... for the Project... and if we go down the Commercial route... for the Business.
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The Concept.
To further develop the theory of... an Information based System which reduces the level of Road Accidents: Injuries: and Deaths: by utilizing the power of the Internet... to harness the Skills and Knowledge of experienced Drivers.  Information that would identify the problems associated with... high-risk Individuals: the general Road Culture: and any problems due to the physical Road Environment.
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To further develop... various Strategies to rectify the problems of high-risk Drivers... based on... Motivation: Deterrents: Targeted Education: Social Pressure: Enforcement and Punishment.  A Multi-Strategy approach to changing a Road Culture.  And a system for dealing with 'Reporting Blackspots'.
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Also... another Information based System which is more appropriate for the resources and 'Driver Behaviour' problems experienced in Developing Countries... and to offer advice to any interested parties.
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The Project.
To provide the framework and facilities in order to become the 'Hub' of a Social Network of Communities.  To publicize and promote the idea of using Technology as a means of empowering the Individual... and local Communities: [rather than concentrating power into the hands of the State:] right across the Industrialised World... through an Online, Interactive Project.
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The Business.
To explore the potential of various Revenue Sources.  To fine-tune the process so that it could be replicated in a different country... or to develop a Template that could be passed on to any third parties which were developing their own version of the site targeted at their own Country or State.  [The whole of Stage 2 could be developed relatively quickly and cheaply.]
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See: Objectives - Details.
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Questions.
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Anyone seriously considering getting involved in this Project on a commercial basis will need to... do their own Homework: make their own Assessments: and draw their own Conclusions: based on their own... Skills: Resources: Priorities: and Objectives... [a kind of "Dragons' Den" type scenario!]  We have outlined some of the questions we believe any prospective 'Participants' will need to answer... for themselves. 
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Are Road Accidents a serious Problem?
Although we have become used to the current level of Accidents they are still a multi-billion Dollar problem... covering every single Country.  Worldwide they claim about 1.2 million lives a year... a figure which is increasing rapidly.  They are the biggest cause of premature death for young people in the Industrialised World... are a drain on a Nation's Health Service... cause untold Delays... and create increased costs for Industry.  So yes... they are a serious problem!
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Is this a Subject people are Interested in?
New Technology and the driver... it may not be at the forefront of every persons' mind but there are many, many people who are directly affected by these issues and/or have strong opinions on the whole subject of... Road Safety: Driving: Drivers: Enforcement Policies: Speed Cameras: Congestion Charging: Road Pricing: etc. etc. [1.8 million people recently signed a petition against the introduction of road pricing schemes.]
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Those might include... anyone directly affected by the consequences of a serious Accident: i.e. Friends and Family of those killed and seriously injured.  Professional Drivers... people who drive for a living... or any High-Mileage Drivers.  Driving Enthusiasts: Safety Campaigners: Pro-car Groups: Anti-car Groups: Insurance Companies: Manufacturers: Politicians: Emergency Services: Medical Groups: Cyclists: Motorbike Riders: Horse Riders: New Drivers: Old Drivers.  In fact... people of almost any age and living in any Country.  So... definitely not a small niche market! 
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Would the 'Road Supervisor' System work?
So far... we have had a lot of positive feedback... both from Pro-motoring and Anti-motoring groups.  [Even those with reservations... have not said that it would not work]  We recommend you read the website and make your own judgement.  Although this system is 'original' it has not been developed based entirely on our own opinions... there are links to many Articles which explain the problems in-depth... what works... and what doesn't.  These Articles also point to Research Projects which support our conclusions.  Read... The Concept and judge for yourself.
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Can you Generate and Sustain Interest over a long period?
This is not a problem that is going to go away... not in the next ten years... probably not even in the next twenty years.  Future Technology will bring many changes, possibilities include... blanket coverage with Speed Cameras: controlling vehicles using G.P.S. Satellites: or an 'Electronic Vehicle Identification' system.  No one knows how this issue will pan-out over the coming decade... all are very expensive... all offer limited solutions... all create new problems of their own.  So, our aim is to put an alternative concept into the public domain.  People have strong views on this subject and this website would give them the opportunity to express their opinions and concerns.
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Parameters.  There are no definite parameters to this subject... it could just cover New Technology in respect of Road Safety... i.e. Speed Cameras: ISA: EVI: the Internet: etc.  It could extend out to associated subjects like... Driver Training: Graduated Licences: Fines: Driving Bans: etc.  It could cover New Technology and the road user... so might also include... Road Pricing: Congestion Charging: Car Pooling: Pollution: Parking: Pay-as-you-drive Insurance: etc. etc.
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Can you develop strong online Communities?
We have taken a recent Article from an Internet Magazine which explains what you need to create strong online Communities and tested our Project against their criteria.  Do we have all the basic requirements?  Click on the details Section below... Read and Judge for yourself.
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See: Questions - Details.
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Stage 2 Development.
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This Business Model could truly be described as an Internet Business... as it would not be possible to carry out anything like it if the Internet did not exist.  It is the intention that we should simply act as the 'Hub' of a Network of Communities... promoting the Concept: developing Ideas: producing Content: providing the necessary facilities for 'Interaction' and generally stimulating and managing the flow of Information.  Everything which could by done on Computer... and via the Internet... should be done that way... keeping costs to an absolute minimum.
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3 separate Entities... all Inter-linked.
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1 - The Concept... is a Road Safety Concept which could be introduced by a Government as a means of reducing Accidents... by utilising the power of the Internet... to harness the Skills and Knowledge of experienced Drivers.  Read... The Concept. 
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2 - The Project... which is an online, Interactive Project.  To further Develop and Promote the Concept... to a point where it was being introduced in a Country or State by its Government.  Read... Help Us and The Project.
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3 - The Business... is about developing a Network of online Communities... concerned with a major Social Issue.  Providing an Interactive experience  for Visitors... a valuable resource for any future Subscribers... and a cost effective medium for Advertisers.
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As a comparison... we might compare it to something similar, [but a bit more conventional] like a Magazine that has the potential to develop two basic sources of Income... from Subscribers, that buy and read the Magazine... and from those that Advertise in the Magazine.  Only in this case the 'Magazine' is an online Publication.
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Readers. 
Initially... we have just left the option open for Visitors/readers to make a Donation, if they wish... so as to avoid any promises of producing things like Newsletters by specific dates... [we would not want to be in a position of having to produce a monthly Newsletter for a relatively small number of readers when there were more important things to be done.]  When numbers have reached a sufficient level a Membership could be offered to Visitors, which would give them access to the more 'Interactive' elements of the Website... or perhaps just some premium content.  Similar Organisations charge about US$25-35 for a single person... so for arguments sake, let's say Membership of about... US$30: or 15.
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Advertisers/Affiliates.
Initially... we were not carrying any advertisements.  April/May 2007... we started signing up with a few Affiliate Companies and experimenting... putting a range of different types of adverts on various pages... just to see what works... and what doesn't.  It's not that difficult to find these kind of Advertisers because they only pay a commission on actual sales... unlike other media, it is totally risk free for them.  However, there is one obvious drawback to a Website that may have Visitors from every corner of the Earth... it makes it very difficult to target a particular market.  For instance... there is little point having something like an Insurance Company advertising to people all over the World if they only sell their products in Britain.  [Most of our adverts are targeting the British market.]
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Fortunately... this is not an insurmountable problem!  As the Website is only a few Megabytes the whole thing could be duplicated: i.e. Let's say... you create 5 identical copies of the Website: [or 5 'sub-sites'] aimed at the U.S. Canada: Australia: Britain: and 'The Rest of the World'... which are all connected by a common Home Page.  On the Home Page visitors would click on a symbol... like their National Flag... and then be taken to a copy of the Website where all the Advertising would be relevant to their Country.  [Might also be achieved by opening a Google AdSense account.]
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Depending on the number of Visitors and where they came from... this process could be continued with individual States having their own 'cloned' sub-site.  In time... the Website could also be translated into a number of different languages... each with their own 'targeted' Advertising.  Or... as previously stated, you allow someone 'local' to create a copy of this site which they adapt to their own needs... and we just link it to our Home Page.
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Autonomous sub-sites.  If we decided to go down the route of having autonomous sub-sites... which would be a bit like creating a franchise... then our role would be a bit different.  Concentrating more on... the UK... the EU Organisations... International Bodies... working on solutions for Developing Countries... etc.  Possibly setting up a website specifically for 'sub-site owners'... providing them with 'Content'... plus articles on how to market and promote their site.
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Advertisers... while many Advertisers might be connected to 'Driving' in some way there is absolutely no reason why they could not cover a whole range of Industries.  Visitors would be from every type of background so there is no need to specialise in one narrow field.
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Important... if introduced... the 'Benefits' of any Subscription Costs should be obvious... i.e. apart from unrestricted access to all the 'Functions' of the Website... access to premium content, [like, Legal Information??] a monthly Newsletter/Magazine???  Subscribers should be able to recoup their subscription costs via a whole range of 'Special Offers' and/or 'Discounts'... 
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Publication.
The core of the 'Publication' would consist of the content on the Master-Copy of the Website written by us.  We could allow people to submit their own... Articles: Ideas: Comments: even to Re-write whole Sections: etc... which might appear in a prominent position for a short period of a Week? a Month??  Plus... all the Interactive elements such as Forums with 'Issues under Discussion'... or Blogs written by visitors.  [Anything really good might find a permanent place on the Master-Copy.]  So even though the core of the Website might not change much over the long-term... it could still have many elements which were changing on a daily basis.
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Costs...  The big difference with this type of Internet Publication is in all the associated costs... a million people a month could visit the Website and it wouldn't cost any more than 100-200 p.m... even using our own Dedicated Server.  Furthermore, a Newsletter/Magazine could be distributed by e-mail to a 100,000 Subscribers... [perhaps sending out 100 Gigabytes of data] and again... this shouldn't cost any more than 100-200.  This covers all the costs that would normally be incurred with the Printing and Distribution of a conventional Magazine.  [Or a simple e-mail could be sent out telling Subscribers that the monthly Newsletter is now available online... just "Click Here".]
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The 'Product'... that you are dealing with is really just... Articles: Ideas: Comments: and Opinions... the written word: i.e. 'Electrons' passing over the Internet.  So... apart from almost no Printing or Distribution costs: there is also... no need for a lot of Writers: [Members would generate a lot of content for themselves] few Deadlines: [this is not 'time-sensitive' Information] no Sales Force trying to sell Advertising Space: [just sign up with Google AdSense or some online affiliate programmes] no Credit Control: [no Credit given, so no bad Debts] no need for Stock Control: [no Stock] no Suppliers: few Advertising or Marketing costs: [visitors encouraged to "Pass the Word"] and few Transportation or Travel costs.
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Stage 1... there is also no need to be available seven days a week: [so could be done on weekends and in the evenings] no need for Employees: and no need for Commercial Premises.  All the time we remain in Stage 1 or early Stage 2... costs remain very low, so can be paid for 6-12 months in advance... requiring no outside Finance: Loans: or Cash Flow of any kind.  [This cost structure would also apply to anyone starting up their own autonomous sub-site.]
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Stage 2... expansion financed through an outside 'Investment' of some kind.  There is still no need for Premises: some outside assistance may be required but it is possible to engage a service for... Web Design: Technical Support: online Promotions: Marketing: Advertising: Accountancy: or Legal requirements... without employing anyone directly.  This way almost every aspect of development can be controlled to a budget... and Fixed Costs would continue to remain low.
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Going through the process of... having the website professionally re-designed... of developing the Interactive elements... of building Traffic through Viral Marketing... PR and Promotions... should provide invaluable experience.  Using the first effort as a Template... we could move on to another country... create another copy of the website and promote it in the same way.  Alternatively... you pass that experience on to someone local and just support them as they develop their own autonomous sub-site.
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See: Stage 2 Development - Details.
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Stage 3 Development.
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Stage 3... expansion financed with on-going Revenues.  So, in the longer term, moving beyond Stage 2... from a Commercial perspective... what exactly would we have to offer people?
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For Visitors... we could offer a Website of great interest that costs them nothing: a public Forum to express their opinions: the opportunity for Social Networking: and the ability to help influence the way that Technological changes are going to be applied to their every day lives by their own Government.  [In the future... it remains to be seen, just where the lines would be drawn to distinguish Visitors from Subscribers?]
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For Members... or Subscribers, we could also offer the chance to receive a weekly e-letter... monthly Newsletter???... more opportunity to take part in the 'Interactive' parts of the Website: i.e. Chat: Discussion Lists: Newsgroups: their own 'Space' or Blog???  In addition... it is possible that we could come to an arrangement with some Advertisers or Sponsors to offer the Members reductions on goods bought via the Website which means their 15.00?? [US$30.00] annual membership could actually save them money.  Plus... premium content, like... useful Legal Information: Special Offers: Writing Awards: Competitions: Prize Draws??? etc. etc.
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For Advertisers... we would offer a very effective means of advertising their goods.  As they would only pay commission on Sales... no Sales means it costs them nothing: [not the case with conventional advertising] it is therefore... risk free.  Alternatively... for some, paying per impression... or a click-through rate... might be an effective way of generating leads.
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For Society... in all cases we could offer something of value to those who associated with our Site... as well as the potential for a Country to make a massive saving in the area of Road Accidents: Injuries: and Deaths.
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Membership Numbers... it is very difficult to predict just how many Subscribers you could attract spread over a variety of sub-sites: [especially if there were a number of autonomous sub-sites] but this is not a small niche market... the 'potential' covers a very significant portion of the Industrialised World... i.e. anyone that uses the Roads... and has access to the Internet.
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Stage 3... as an example, let's say there were just 5 or 6 sub-sites... each with a Membership of 10,000...  and each paying about 15 p.a... plus a small income from affiliate Advertisers.  At this Stage the site could easily be run on a budget smaller than the income... and if the income decreased... any variable costs could easily be reduced... back down to virtually nothing if required.
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Stage 3: medium term... if you broke the Website up into 30 sub-sites... say 20 in the U.S. and 10 others... and each sub-site had a average of 3500 Members [30 x 3500 = 105,000] you would have something in the order of 100,000 Members... each paying a Membership of about 15.00 per annum... plus, innumerable other Visitors... which would also be earning you a commission whenever they bought something online.
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Stage 3: long term... let's be very optimistic... and say, in time... there were enough visitors for every U.S. State, [50] to have their own sub-site... plus another 50 sub-sites Worldwide... giving a total of 100.  And each had an average Membership of about 10,000... [100 x 10,000 = 1,000,000] each paying an annual Membership Fee.  Plus an income from Advertising... [every sub-site might carry dozens of adverts]... but in the process of expanding the Membership ten-fold... perhaps the Employee levels and other associated Costs only doubles.  After all, with the Internet, there is no fixed correlation between your Income... and the amount of Work that you do.  
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Potential.  We are not saying that we will be able to develop the site to such as extent... we are simply speculating on the Potential.  If you had the funds and the expertise... perhaps it would be possible to develop something that was really interactive, like... FaceBook, MySpace or YouTube... where members can really set the agenda... discuss any aspects of the Concept... the Project... or various other driving issues.  Where people can talk about themselves... write a blog which is relevant to driving in some way... or even upload photos of themselves... their vehicle... their street??? or videos of reckless driving... anti-social behaviour... etc. etc.
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MySpace was purchased by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp in 2005 for $580million when it had about 20 million members.  [At the time... many people thought the man had gone insane!]  By 2007 it had nearly 200 million members.  The site is free to use... but because of the vast number of members there is great potential for Advertisers.  [Google recently agreed to pay $900million to Advertise on MySpace.]
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Other Websites.  There are many other successful Websites around that have large Memberships and deal with some aspect of this subject.  Question is... do they also offer the same possibilities for expansion?  Readers should look at other Websites and judge for themselves... we cannot comment on the potential of all the others.  But... the key differences to look for are...
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* Do they just concentrate of one Country?

* Are they dealing with single Issues?
* How 'Interactive' is their Site?
* Does it deal with original Ideas?
* Is it an on-going... interactive Project?
* Is it a 'Social Networking' site? or does it just have articles?
* Does it appear to have a lot of operating costs outside the Website?
* Could it be 'cloned' so it is relevant to other Countries?
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Market Niches.  The Internet is more noted for being able to support very small market niches rather than extremely large ones.  Just because we say... this is not a market niche... does not mean that one large website cannot be split up into many small... distinctive sub-sites.  You can still have sections that would specifically appeal to... driving enthusiasts: teenagers learning to pass their test: silver surfers: or vegetarian cyclists.  While the demographic might be very broad... the subject matter can be arranged in narrow bite-size pieces... so in that sense, it can be a Market Niche.
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Franchise.
Perhaps 'Franchise' is not the right word... but it is the same basic concept.  There are some obvious advantages to going down a Franchise route.  Dealing with a complex subject... writing for specific Countries about local issues... translating articles into different languages... could all become very difficult and unwieldy.
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On the other hand... if you 'sold off' a particular area... you get an immediate injection of funds... it reduces the amount of work you need to carry out... and if they are successful, they should be paying you an on-going commission.
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Franchisee.  What would be in it for them?  If you're trying to start up your own Website from scratch... it can be a very long, laborious process, getting together enough Content to start your own Site... especially if you are going to produce all your own original Content.  For anyone who was considering setting up a 'Subscription Website'... this would instantly give them a great 'Subject'.
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They could quickly download all our Content... use a Template website... or customise it for their own website... add their own... Graphics: Local News: Links: Statistics: Chat room: Forum: Blogging facilities: etc.  Sort out a few things like... a Web Host: a Domain Name: a PSP: Search Engines: a Bank Account... sign up with some Affiliate Companies etc.  And in no time at all they could be up and running... their own Business... with low start-up costs... low overheads... great potential... and support from a 'Parent' organisation.
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See: Stage 3 Development - Details.
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Interested Parties.
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This is not a Project we can complete on our own.  At some stage we will need to enlist the aid of many others who possess a range of... Experience: Expertise: and Resources.  There are a number of ways this could be done... our main priority is just to find the most effective way.
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We do not intend to lay out a whole list of requirements here... just explain our vision... where we are now... and where we want to get to.  We are not looking for any particular level of Skills: Experience: or Financial Resources... and the type of 'Investor' could be anything from a single, talented Individual... with altruistic motives and only their time, energy and expertise to 'invest'... who would like to see the site develop into a Social Enterprise... where funds are ploughed back into pursuing the objectives.  To a Venture Capitalist... simply looking for a good Investment: to a Sponsorship by a large Multi-National Corporation... just looking to protect their commercial interests.  Any 'Investor' interested in helping to advance this Project should make their own assessments... consider what they have to offer... and what they expect in return.
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See: Interested Parties - Details.
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The Bottom Line is...
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there are an awful lot of unknown factors at work here... so any Interested Parties should have some very good Ideas of their own, about... what can be achieved... and how to achieve it.  We are not just looking for 'any old Investor'... as we know we can continue under our own steam... but, we would be receptive to any Proposals which we feel could significantly move the Project forward.
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So, let's be very clear... nothing is being handed on a plate here... this is not some get-rich-quick scheme... it is a long-term Project.  We are talking about an Opportunity... nothing more!  It will still require a great deal of hard work and innovation... and there are No Guarantees!  For anyone looking at it from a strictly financial perspective... when it comes to making a 'Profit'... you need to look at all the possible Revenue Streams... the Fixed Overheads... and the ability to keep Variable Overheads down when things are tight.  
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Finally: ask yourself... what is the worst case scenario? what is the best case scenario?  'Due Diligence' is the responsibility of the Investor... so, make sure you know exactly... what you stand to lose? what you stand to gain?.. how long you would want to be involved... and your exit strategy... based on your own criteria for success.
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Anyone who has a level of Experience: Expertise and/or Financial Resources which they believe could move the Project forward in a significant way, should submit their expression of interest by contacting us by e-mail on... awmacnamara@aol.co.uk 
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Following notification by e-mail... you can also write to us at...
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The Road Supervisors Network.

3, Barnett Lane,
Guildford,
Surrey,  GU5 0SA,
England.
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