My name is Chris. I discovered your site this past December I believe it was. I love it and have been enjoying the articles and comments. I’ve always been a car and bike guy but got into the liberty/anarchist movement back in the summer of 2012. I got a speeding ticket and decided to fight it. That led me to Marc Stevens, then Larken Rose, Stepan M., James Corbett, and many others. And you as well. I’ve learned so much in not even 2 years and it’s transformed my life. Anyway, I’m babbling on.
I don’t want to see you have to go back to Google if you don’t want so I sent a $20 bill in the mail yesterday.
Thanks very much for the kind words – and donation!
I, too, would like to avoid having to crawl back to Goo-guhl. We – that’s myself and Dom, the guy who handles the “tech” side of EPautos – have racked our brains, tried everything we can think of. The core problem is probably the same double whammy problem virtually every web site that’s not one of the 800 pound Gorillas (e.g., Huffington Post – or Edmunds.com) of the Internet is dealing with:
First, the vast majority of people out there aren’t willing to support the sites they regularly visit.
Content providers – the modern term for online publishers/writers, etc. – are in the untenable position of pretty much having to put their work product out on the “street” for people to simply take – and then hope that some of those people will pay for what they take.
Second, advertising does not pay. Thanks to Goo-guhl. Their Ad-nonsense model is a marvel of Company Town Corporatism. Where once (pre Internet) advertisers directly paid a publication “x” dollars per issue/per month (and so on) to advertise, now they work through Goo-guhl and pay a fractional percentage. The rates are not based on the publication’s circulation but on Goo-guhl’s inscrutable “clicks” formula – typically pennies per click.
The only way the ads make money is if you have a gigantic audience (several hundred thousand a month).
And even then, the return relative to audience/readership is absurdly low.
To put the above in context:
Pre-Internet, a daily/weekly that had a circulation of 100,000 paid subscribers a month at say $10 a month would be a million-dollar operation, with a paid full-time staff. A quarter page ad in such a publication would sell for several thousand dollars per issue.
Today, online, a publication with the same audience generates a fraction of that – an amount insufficient to provide even one person with an income comparable to a full-time minimum wage income. Often, less than that. The advertisers – including major corporations – are able to flood the Net with their ads, but pay each publication next to nothing. Goo-guhl is one big Company Town. They own – or control – almost everything.
This puts tremendous pressure on people such as myself to do something else. Something that provides a living wage.
For writers and editors, that usually means going hat in hand to some corporate gig, where you’ll write what they tell you to write. And not write about the things they tell you not to write about.
It doesn’t have to be this way, though. While Goo-guhl wields tremendous power, people are still free to support other-than-Goo-guhl, other-than-corporate media.
But if people want Clover-free independent journalism, they’ve got to be willing to support it. Very few anti-authoritarian writers are independently wealthy and have the luxury of being able to work for free – or to not have to worry about earning a living from their work.
That’s the jist.
As of this morning, we’re still about 40 percent below our break-even point for the month.
I will continue to tread water for as long as I possibly can, but the bottom line is I can’t do this indefinitely. At some point, something’s gonna have to give.
If you want EPautos to survive, please consider supporting EPautos.
Our donate button is here. For those not Pay Pal-inclined, you can mail us at the following:
721 Hummingbird Lane SE
Copper Hill, VA 24079