If you’ve been reading SOB for a while, you may have noticed that the ads went away. I’ve had some issues with Google Ads policies (read as: “red tape”). First, my ads became 100% non-paying public service messages and the like, and finally they went away entirely when I changed themes — and I haven’t bothered to put them back (yet).
Well, just to continue to fool myself into believing I’m getting some kind of actual material success out of this endeavor, I’ve decided to try changing my approach to generating some paltry revenue. Look at the top-right, in the right-hand sidebar area, and you’ll see a light blue button-like thing that says “Tip Jar”. If you click on that, it’ll take you to a PayPal payment screen where you can donate money to me with the understanding that the more money I get out of this, the more motivated I will be to keep writing. This means that if my readers keep clicking on that and dropping $10 or so in my lap, I’ll probably write more — though always only when I’m inspired to write something good.
Believe it or not, material gain does actually help me find inspiration, if only because it allows me to slack off from other (more lucrative) places I might pour my inspiration.
I have an ulterior motive, too (What — money isn’t “ulterior” enough?): I’m curious about whether anyone out there appreciates my writing at SOB enough to actually directly contribute to the cost of domain registration, webhosting, and time spent writing and posting online. How many “true fans” do I really have out there? It doesn’t really take much to add up, if there are a lot of you (yeah, right — I should be so lucky). If there were, say, a thousand of you who cared enough to donate regularly, to the tune of about a quarter a day, I’d be able to quit all other paid work and do this for a living at a rate of about $90k per year before taxes.
Of course, the way taxes work for the self-employed, that might come out to the equivalent of about $30k per year (before taxes) for a normal 9-to-5 job, but I’d be willing to suffer at that rate of pay to do what I love and serve my fans.
I suspect I’ll actually make between $0 and $50 per year off my tip jar, of course — and I won’t hold it against anyone if it ends up being $0, of course. That’s the beauty of a gift economy: there are no real expectations. Everything I get, if anything at all, just feels like Christmas.
If someone out there takes the above to mean that he or she should donate twenty-five cents a day, I have a request:
Make the payments no more often than once every four months. I’d much rather get $30 at a time less often than 25¢ per day, for a number of reasons — including the fact that micro-payments with credit cards (how I imagine most such donations would come in) contribute to inflation by driving up the costs of low-price goods and services. In this case, the cost would be absorbed by PayPal, which would gradually increase its cut of what I (and others like me) make off your generous donations to offset the costs.
Yes, this means tips can be paid via major credit cards (and debit cards with the logos of major credit cards on them).
I don’t know if I’ll keep SOB ad-free forever. If I don’t, I’m not sure whether I’d be using Google ads again or something else. I don’t know whether the Tip Jar is permanent.
. . . and, of course, you should feel free to ignore this entire post, or to complain about my money-grubbing capitalistic tendencies, or have whatever other reaction you like. Keep in mind that trolling is frowned upon, and spamming is summarily deleted (or worse), though.
I wish I had something witty to say to wrap this up. Oh, well — no humor today.