Things are not good.
I’m not sure why, what’s gone south, but we are losing ground. Not traffic, not readership. The articles are getting picked up by major media feeds (including Info Wars, which republished the Smokey & The Bandit piece; it went “viral,” they tell me) and I’ve been getting asked to be a guest on various radio shows – including NPR in Chicago – regularly.
The month is two thirds gone – and we’re two-thirds in the red as I type this.
Update: Were only about a third in the red now, as of July 26. But still have a lot to make up with just five days left in the month.
You may have read about Fred Reed (see here) who, like me, got “googled” and lost most of the advertising revenue his site used to make via Adsense – because he (so saith Google) violated some secret clause regarding the orthodoxy of content Google permits guys like Fred and me to publish. Deviate from their PC code and Google withholds – pulls – their advertising. Which amounts to a financial kneecapping because there is essentially no other way to generate meaningful revenue via advertising – because Google has a functional monopoly on online advertising.
Which leaves direct reader support.
Which could work beautifully.
The math is extremely favorable. Say a site has 10,000 people who regularly read/visit the site each month. If half of them chip in a buck – a single dollar – each month, the site is economically viable. It can pay expenses, including the living expenses of the poor dumb bastard who publishes the thing and produces the material. Pautos (and Fred’s site) have much larger readerships (the high water mark here was 120,000 something in a month) but – unfortunately – far fewer than 10 percent support the site. The actual percentage is probably around 3 percent. Fred has the same issue.
This is a disaster.
And it gives Google just what they’re after: economic control of the Internet.
If people cannot survive as reporters/editors/columnists/authors without bending knee to Google… they will bend knee to Google.
The bleak irony is that Libertarians – of all people – seem to be unable to grok this. All too many expect contrarian news and opinion to survive somehow without supporting it financially. How this is supposed to work, I do not grok.
I love publishing this site; love the editorial freedom to openly write about the Unmentionable Things. And I love the interaction with you, the readers – most of whom are smart, thoughtful people from whom I’ve learned a lot. But I cannot make a go of this without your support.
And right now, that support is in short supply.
I will never bullshit you. That pie chart is dead-on. It is kind of like a heart monitor – and right now, we’re defibrillating.
Seriously. Things are bad.
Please help, if you want this circus to continue… .
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