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As a TUG member myself, this question does not strictly apply to me. But, I was reading some pages on the TUG website and noticed the following benefit of our institutional membership:

In addition, institutions may have site-wide electronic access to the members area, without needing accounts for individuals.

How can our site's users (who are not TUG members themselves) realize this benefit? Is there a special account that should be used? If so, where can this information be found?

Additionally, are there any problems with the fact that our "institution" is public and community-based, hence any posting of this account information here makes it essentially public knowledge?

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    This page was last updated on 19th september. The benefits of the TUG membership were listed on meta.tex.stackexchange.com/a/1697/9517 before the first subscription. Note that this site-wide access was not mentioned in this list. So it could be that this possibility didn't exist back then. From what I understand, the TUG membership is in the name of Stack Exchange, is there a way to ping the guys up there to shed some light? – T. Verron Oct 1 '14 at 14:45
  • @T.Verron: You are correct that the institutional membership is through Stack Exchange. I thought raising this question would be the natural first step in attracting the attention of "the powers that be". I think the mods on this site have the appropriate contacts. – Paul Gessler Oct 1 '14 at 14:56
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    this question will get an "official" response from tug. it's being discussed by the board, although this may seem a simple question, we (the tug board) feel it's important that no misunderstandings arise from from a too-hasty response. – barbara beeton Oct 1 '14 at 15:18
  • @barbarabeeton thanks for letting us know it's under discussion. I can understand the complexity, especially with the points raised in the last sentence of my question. – Paul Gessler Oct 1 '14 at 15:22
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    In my opinion, it is obvious that TUG cannot give free access to the whole internet, just because we are registered on StackExchange. Who will be willing to pay individual membership fee to TUG if you get everything for free via StackExchange?That would be a commercial suicide (even for a none commercial organisation). – Sveinung Oct 1 '14 at 17:58
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    Thanks @barbarabeeton for considering! I lost my individual membership in the recent vote, that's life. :-) Users from the "institution" SE can be understood as employees and possibly unpaid associates, such as moderators. Oh, like me, what a coincidence :-o – Stefan Kottwitz Oct 2 '14 at 16:27
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    I already have individual joint TUG/UK-TUG membership, so this doesn't really affect me, but is it technically possible to create a TeX.SX login to the members area for users who have at least a certain rep to ensure people don't sign up for a TeX.SX account just for the TUG benefits without contributing to the TeX.SX site? (I don't know how the StackExchange login works, so I'm sorry if I'm asking a stupid question.) – Nicola Talbot Oct 5 '14 at 16:06
  • One down vote detected! :-) – Paul Gessler Oct 5 '14 at 20:04
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This statement is made on behalf of the TUG Board of Directors.

The entity that is an institutional member of TUG is the private company StackExchange. An institutional membership allows for up to eight delegates from the institution to benefit from the same advantages as individual TUG members. StackExchange has chosen to leave to the community the decision of which eight people receive this benefit; but this is very different from everyone who registers on TeX.SX automatically becoming a de facto TUG member.

As for site-wide electronic access, it was never contemplated that this would extend to every individual who creates a free/automated account, when an institutional member supports such accounts. As has already been pointed out, that would be tantamount to eliminating all TUG member-only benefits, since anyone can create a TeX.SX account.

While we are here, we would like to express our appreciation to StackExchange, and to all our institutional and individual members, for their generous support of TUG and TeX.

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