Dom Howson's Sheffield Wednesday column: Give credit where credit is due to Owls for silver membership scheme

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Going to kick off with a positive.

Fair play to Wednesday's hierarchy for listening to the feedback from supporters at Monday's fans forum on their membership pricing structure. The fans voiced their displeasure at the event and the club responded, introducing a new silver membership scheme.

Credit where credit is due to the Owls for taking swift, decisive action.

Did they get the pricing structure wrong in the first instance? Some people believe the gold membership is too expensive and does not represent good value for money.

But at least the Wednesday board have shown a willingness to compromise and give supporters another alternative. It is a positive move and the Owls will now be hoping that is reflected well in the membership numbers.

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Owner Dejphon Chansiri understands that not all of his decisions will be popular with the fan-base. He acknowledges mistakes have been made in the past and he has not done "everything right".

"I'm still learning every day," conceded Chansiri.

Costly errors have certainly been made with their recruitment drive and the supporters have been asked time and time again to put their hands deeper into their own pockets to help fund a competitive team.

Yet it is impossible to question Chansiri's enthusiasm, passion and love for Wednesday. Not many chairman up and down the country would take time out of their day to be grilled by fans for over four fours on a variety of different subjects.

Chansiri does that a minimum of four times a year.

What the Chansiri regime welcome is feedback on what the club doing well and what they can improve. They don't mind criticism - as long as it is constructive.

Chansiri, who has pumped millions of pounds into the club, said: "If you are going to criticise, do it in a positive way.

It is refreshing and healthy that the Wednesday chief wants there to be an open two-way communication between the club and the supporters. As the custodian of the club, Chansiri feels it is his duty to interact with the fans and keep them in the loop on what is happening behind-the-scenes.

"We are a family club," said Chansiri. "This is why I want to talk two ways.

"I want you to know the good and bad side."

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Chansiri could have played down the Owls' financial problems. He did not have to admit Wednesday have been under a transfer embargo since April for breaching profitability and sustainability rules.

But it is not Chansiri's style to sugarcoat things. He thinks it is important to be open and transparent through the ups and downs.

If anything, he was perhaps too honest the other day as he laid bare Wednesday's precarious financial position.

It is clear Chansiri is desperate to recreate the buzz and excitement the club had in the 2015-16 season. He wants to bring the feelgood factor back to Hillsborough.

With Profitability and Sustainability troubles casting a dark cloud over S6, Chansiri recognises they need the fans more than ever to get behind the team. The silver membership scheme has helped generate some positivity but it is the players who must step up and deliver on Saturday.

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