When you create a Group on Stitch, Stitch will ask you who should be able to join your Group, with a page that looks like this:

Full Members only

If you choose the Full Members option, only Full members of Stitch will be able to join. Your group will be badged with a "Full members only" badge, like this:

You will sometimes hear these groups described as Premium groups, or simply Member only groups. 

Member-only groups are a great way to ensure that only members who have supported the community by paying Stitch's (very small) membership subscription can join, which helps ensure Stitch is able to keep running. Some members tell us they prefer member-only groups as they find Full members are more likely to attend their events, respond to messages, and be an active member of the community. 

Note that any activities or discussions created in a member-only group will also be for Full members only.

The only exception to this is that "new" Basic members (i.e. those who joined Stitch less than one month ago) can attend any 3 Stitch events in their first month, as a way to learn about Stitch from Full members. We encourage all Full members to invite new members along to their events and activities, as there is no better way to learn about Stitch than from existing members. 

After a Basic member has attended 3 activities, or if they have been a member longer than one month, they will not be able to attend any of your activities unless they become a Full member.

These rules are described in more detail here.

Basic members & Full members

If you choose the Basic members option, it will mean that all members of Stitch will be able to join your group and attend activities and events within your group. That includes both Basic members and Full members. 

This means your Group, and the activities and discussions it contains, is open to the public (since anyone can become a Basic member for free). 

Having said that, only verified members can participate in the group online, send messages to other members, or get involved in group discussions. 

These rules are described in more detail here.

Which option should you choose?

Either option is totally fine; the choice is completely up to you. The Stitch Community benefits from anything that helps convince Basic members to become Full members, so we generally like to see as many member-only groups as possible. But if you live in an area where the community is only just getting started, and you want to maximize the number of people who can come to your activities, then opening your group to Basic members can be a good idea.

Open groups are also great if you already organize a community group of your own, and are using Stitch to promote your events and activities. Making your group open to the public means your existing community members can join and fully participate for free, while Stitch helps promote your events and activities to the broader Stitch community at large. 

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