"I need some work done, whether that is easy or hard for the person I hire isn't relevant... and if they answer my question too quickly that certainly shouldn't be a problem either."
" if, on the other hand, you want someone to actually dig up an answer to your question (and whether that is easy or hard for them isn't relevant) then you should have to pay."
I have no problem with having to pay for work, nor with how quickly I get a reply. Chris's know-how with technology automatically makes him a tech-support guru candidate and I have no wish that he does all his answering pro-bono. What I was saying is that charging 27$ flat out, no matter what , is not the way to go IMHO.
Example: If you were to go to the auto mechanic for a problem you have in your car, And you have no idea what the extent of the problem is , how easy or hard it is to fix, or what would it cost, and when you ask the mechanic for the cost he says "that'll be 200$, no questions asked, flat rate". You'll say "cool! I might have a very big problem. I might save on this one!" and then he goes and you see him turning a small knob in your car to the right, and everything is suddenly fine. Would you feel cheated out of a 100$? Wouldnt you feel that the guy could(should) have said "look, it's a real simple thing, 10 seconds and I'm done. It'll cost you only 20$" ?
I know I expect this kind of courtesy when I go to any professional.
What if the mechanic had to replace the whole engine, doing a 3-day work just on your car. Do you think he'll still charge you the flat rate? Or will he say "Look, it was a real b*tch to fix, it'll cost you 2000$"?
My point was that Chris should have lower rates for easier questions and higher rates for harder questions. That's all.