It got pushed at my university as well but being out of the major city there was never any events or cross over that was convenient enough to go to.
Then after uni was a member mainly to enter awards, won a couple and still never went to any events, even the awards ceremonies to collect them, the site and community was only ever really pushing events that I didn't go to and was just too easy to slip out of it and seemingly was no loss.
AGDA being the easy whipping horse that they are a strange beast. They've copped a lot of flack over the years but do still exist.
It does seem so obvious, build a forum/community (like this one) bring some value to the members, and then run relevant events and awards with input and constant community engagement. Whenever I meet people from AGDA, state presidents and whoever, they are always seemingly smart people who for the most part seem genuinely to want AGDA to be something worthwhile.
The revolving door of people in senior positions, and fragmented state by state positioning must just beat the will out of them.
As far as remote members and benefits go, I can't speak of AGDA in anyway but I have heard rumbles that AusIfront has got some things in the works to move much more in the direction of both community and providing more beneficial utility for members.
I'm sure I'm not the only one but I've really never seen the benefit to join agda especially for the annual membership fee. I might go to at the most 2 of their events a year and the price difference between member and non-member is definitely not that much to encourage membership. Outside that and entering the awards, I've never really seen any other real benefits of being a member and simple things like not having a real online community just seems a bit odd really.
I'd love to know if anyone is involved in AGDA, what they feel the benefits are?
I've got to admit I'm a member of AGDA as much because I feel it helps support the industry as much (or more so) than because it's useful to me. Living in a major city I do benefit a lot from being able to attend events, and I find these are becoming more valuable as member feedback comes in and different ideas are followed through. Interestingly, I don't enter the awards. As an inhouse designer I find it hard to get past the idea that I'd pay the entry fee only to have people dismiss my work because it's not from an agency.