As many of you know, I have been blogging since 2003. I don’t think I have ever asked for money for myself. Once I held a pledge drive for an LAPD officer who had been paralyzed by a gunshot wound from a criminal. I occasionally ask readers to mention the blog to friends. But I haven’t wanted to ask for money. I don’t blog for money. It’s always been a hobby. And frankly, I don’t want to feel like I owe anyone anything.
But here’s the problem. Ever since the 2008 election — for about two years now — I have been trying to find some solution for the blog that would keep it up during big links without breaking the bank. It has not been a cakewalk. At one point during the height of the presidential election, I was incessantly nagging my host to do something to stop the down time I kept getting during big links. He reacted by ordering me off his server within 72 hours. If I didn’t move my site, the blog would be dead. I had to desperately scramble to find someone to move my site and save the data, and the bill — well, let’s just say you would probably be shocked at the size of the bill. (My wife sure was!)
Since then, I have tried to find out what I can do to keep the site up and working — especially during big links. (The best posts often get the biggest links — which kill the site. Meaning the site often goes down when the best material is up — and I miss a chance to bring new people into this community.)
The answer always tends to be the same: if you want to keep the site up during big links, it’s going to cost more money.
So as much as I hate to, I have to ask for your help.
There are shiny PayPal buttons over there on the right. I’d appreciate any help you can give.
This is important: if you’re going to use a PayPal account funded by cash, you can use the top button. That is best because I get every cent. If you are going to make a one-time payment that is funded in any way by a credit card, you have to use the second button. PayPal takes a small amount off the top, but that’s the nature of the beast. I can’t accept credit card donations made using the top button.
And I want to point out that third button, which is my favorite. It is a subscription button, which allows you to set up a recurring monthly payment of $9, which I am calling a “subscription.” I’ll take any donation, but I’d really encourage people to “subscribe,” as that would give me some idea of the resources available to me on a monthly basis that I could hopefully use to keep the site up through an Instapundit link, just once! A couple of you have already become “subscribers” without my mentioning it, and I really appreciate it. (I can also accept recurring payments funded by credit card at the third button.)
What are the benefits of being a subscriber? To be honest, I’m not sure yet. I’ll take suggestions. Maybe I could do the occasional e-mail with thoughts I don’t want to share with the general public? I have no idea. Right now, you’ll just have to be content with the satisfaction of helping out the blog.
The great thing about this blog — the thing that keeps me going even when work is crushing and help is scarce — is the community of readers. The commenters here are the greatest on the Internet. Period. Also, I am occasionally reminded that there is a wonderful group of readers out there who rarely if ever comment. I was thrilled to “meet” many of you recently when I asked for commentary from the “lurkers.” I have met many of you in person in the past, in various places across the country, and hope to meet many more in the future.
There’s no reason that this site should be the only one on the Internet that always goes down when there is a big link. The other sites that constantly ask for donations never seem to go down. I don’t want to be one of those bloggers who asks you for donations constantly. (Hit my tip jar! Hit my tip jar!) But I know we ought to be able to do at least as well as those other sites.
Again: thanks for any help you can give to the site. Let’s show the other sites who’s boss.
UPDATE: Thanks to Glenn Reynolds for the link. And the donation.