Can I pay for another Doper's subscription without getting his password?

Just curious. I’m paying for SSgtBaloo.

Warning: The following information is in no way verified by the staff at the Chicago Reader or the Straight Dope Message Board. This post is NOT to be considered an official response. Please proceed at your own risk.

There is no official word on this, but some people seem to be reporting that it may be possible in the following way:

  1. Click on User CP on the top left of your screen.
  2. On the menu on the left, click on Paid Subscriptions.
  3. Click on Order.
  4. Click on Order Using Credit Card
  5. Note the url in your browser’s address bar.

You will see a userid in the url. If you change this userid to the userid of the member you wish to pay for, you can then make a payment for that member.

e.g. SSgtBaloo’s SDMB userid is 44054 (you can confirm this from the profile page of the user).

Now if you replace your userid with SSgtBaloo’s userid, you will be able to make the payment for SSgtBaloo.

The url for SSgtBaloo will be:

You can confirm the user details by seeing the member name on that page. You can then proceed to fill in payment information and process the order.

I’m not sure if there’s any way to do this using the PayPal payment method.

Warning: This information is in no way verified by the staff at the Chicago Reader or the Straight Dope Message Board. This post is NOT to be considered an official response. Please proceed at your own risk.

If you wish to test this method and report back in this thread, I can confirm for you whether SSgtBaloo’s status has changed from Guest to Charter Member.

If anyone else has used this method successfully or unsuccessfully, please post to this thread and let us know.

I’ll probably test this method out myself sometime next week. I’ll let you know how it turns out, if someone doesn’t do it before then.

Well, I did it and it certainly looks like it worked. Interesting way of doing it, there.

Yes, SSgtBaloo has been promoted to the rank of Charter Member. He has already reported for his new duty.

Thanks for confirming that.

If you replace USERID with the userid of the person you’d like to sponsor, this should work with PayPal.

Ok…Maybe I’m dense, but I can’t find the Userid on someone else’s profile. Where is it, exactly?

Besides, since I begin using my own nickname, I’m presented with the payment for an extended subscription (i.e. 7,48 ) instead of 4,95 . Am I not going to end up paying this higher amount, using this method?

Not sure about other browsers, but when you rest your mouse on a user name in Internet Explorer, the user ID number shows in the bar at the bottom of the browser screen.

For instance . . . TubaDiva, u=32. That’s userid 32.

your humble TubaDiva

Thanks. It took me a moment before I could figure out where on the screen it appeared, but I eventually found it.

And the amount billed changed for the regular 4,95 $.
I’m waiting for a confirmation from the user that it worked. The profile still states “guest”, but I understand that this won’t change until the person will post.

I tried to pay for a friend’s subscription via Paypal using the suggested methods; the first time, I changed the user ID in the SDMB screen but not the PayPal screen. Then, realizing my mistake, I tried it again changing the user ID in the PayPal screen. It didn’t work either time. Now I’m a member until 2007 , which I don’t mind (Luckily it’s in the budget this month, I guess), but I really wanted to pay for my friend’s subscription instead. :frowning:

Okay, with caveat emptor in mind and all, I have to report that I tried the recommended method in this thread for the credit card version of sponsoring someone else without knowing their password. It gave me another year of membership for myself. I’m definitely going to get my friend to give me his password, etc., but I really did want to wait a couple of years before subscribing for 2007-2008! Whom do I e-mail about getting a refund? Anybody? Or do I just chalk it up to an $8.00 mistake? Help!

I had linked to this from one of the other threads a while back, but yeah we tested it out and it works:

I’ll get the techs to correct this situation, ggurl.

Can you forward to me the confirmation you received?

Please take this off the board, drop me an email.

your humble TubaDiva

ggurl, there are directions on the page Opal linked to that tell you how to subscribe someone else. They are easy to follow and they work just fine.

IF there is anyone else as slow-minded and technologically challenged as I am ( :frowning: ) , might I suggest do it the way I did it? That is, a person sent me a request and a password, I quickly mailed back - “OK, it’s done, now you check that it works, and I advise to to change your password at once, jsut in case I am secretly an evildoer”. OK, it means someone has to change a password they might be fond of, but that cannot be that big a deal, and it seems the simplest method to me.

This method is not really difficult. All you need to know how to do is copy and paste and read. :smiley: And from experience, it takes about 30 seconds. No waiting for emails to be sent and read, then logging out, then logging back in, then logging in using the correct password, then going through the subscription process, then logging out then logging back in, then sending emails again. Then the other person has to log in and change their password.

BTW, if you do use this method, it is possible someone may get multiple sponsors, if someone just sponsors before talking to the person. (Huh? No I don’t know anyone that did this. :stuck_out_tongue: ) You can tell if some is already sponsored but has not yet logged in to change their status. Their location and post count will show up once they are paid for, even if their status still says guest.