Blog for Stephanie Bryant, a writer with too many hobbies and not enough time.

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Ads: Coming Back to Steph’s Blog?

I received lots of very good and useful feedback to my previous question (about leaving LiveJournal and the impact it would have on you all), and I very much your opinions. I haven’t decided on if I will leave LJ or not– probably not, and especially not if I do the following. I would especially like to thank halfawake, for reminding me that, while I love my WordPress blog, it’s the community of friends at LiveJournal that keeps me on the site there.

Anyway:

I am thinking about bringing ads back to my blog. LiveJournal posts would be truncated to the first paragraph or so, and require you to click to the ad-sponsored post to read more. The RSS feed would have small text-only ads at the bottom of the page. I might even participate in pay-per-post, which is a “Sponsored review” scheme– in that case, the posts could not be cross-posted to LiveJournal, and opting out would be difficult, since the whole post would be an advertorial. They pay pretty well, though, which is why I’m considering it. Ads would probably not interrupt the flow of text, but they would surround the posts like an army around a besieged fortress.

Why, given my previously-expressed opinion of advertising in blogs (I hate them), would I deface my blog this way?

No, it is not the howling of the wolves at the gates. Or, rather, not at my gate.

It’s to raise money for charity.

See, I figure in the 9 months between April and the end of the year, I could possibly raise enough funds, through ads, fundraising drives, affiliates, and direct donations, to make a very generous donation at the end of the year to Childreach. All proceeds would go to the charity, all expenses would be donated by me. My pie-in-the-sky goal? $8,500, to build a school and furnish it.

I think we could do it, and if not, maybe aim for a more modest goal of drilling a well for clean drinking water. We could call it “The School that Blogs Built” or “Blogs Dig Deeper” or something witty like that.

But wait. There’s more.

Anyone willing to “sponsor-out” of the ads would have that option. A modest direct donation (probably $20) would result in receiving a subscriber login to my blog, with which you would be able to read the blog indefinitely for free (and yeah, I’d figure out something similar for an ad-free RSS feed and possibly a FO cross-post for people on LiveJournal– I’m not sure, but I have a week to figure it out). Anyone running a similar campaign with the same goal on their own blog would also get the ad-free sponsor login. LJ users would be able to participate by having a donation link (but apparently, not click-through ads or banner ads).

So. What do you think?

Would ads on Stephanie’s Blog, with truncated “read more” cross-posts on her LiveJournal, frustrate you enough that you would stop reading? Would you participate (assuming the ads didn’t suck, of course)? Would you consider direct donating to remove the ads? All these questions assume, of course, that the proceeds go to charity– I know attitudes are different if the ads/blog are simply for-profit.

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2 thoughts on “Ads: Coming Back to Steph’s Blog?”

  1. Hey!

    I work for Google; I *love* ads! 🙂

    Seriously, I don’t mind text ads at all. I really dislike banner ads, and I also think they’re counter-productive. In fact, I wouldn’t mind if you tried to support yourself with ad income. There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch, despite what some people think. All the great things about LiveJournal come at a cost to *someone*, and I’m willing to fund that cost.

    Of course, Google has changed my attitude about that. My view is that advertisers pay tons of money for some nebulous return from people perhaps seeing the ad and perhaps buying the product. This money pays people who are doing interesting stuff on the internet, enriching our lives, and making the world a more squeaky, squiggly, sparkling place.

    Hurrah for ads! Some percentage of everything I buy goes to advertising that product, and I want to get at least part of it back by having it fund cool stuff. You hosting ads on your blog is my way of paying you (or your favorite charity) from the money Amazon charged me to own a book.

    PS – it should be charities *you* want to support. You’re doing the work. I’m just skipping through the commercials!

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