Yeah, It’s Probably Time For A Tip Jar March 27, 2013
The site crashed four times on Monday. Thanks to all of you sharing that post all over the internet, the little weakling servers I’ve set up for this site couldn’t handle it. (But seriously, thanks to all of you for sharing that post all over the internet.)
All in all, more than 13,000 unique IP addresses accessed the site on Monday (and countless more probably tried to but found an error message). I really don’t know if that’s good or just average for a little independent blog like mine – I mean, there are D-list celebs who have 90,000 people read their Tumblr – but for me, a nearly-full Assembly Hall wanting to read what I have to say is quite humbling.
And expensive. I’ve maintained this site for more than four years now, and I’ve financed the entire thing on my own. Hosting and servers. Trips to bowl games in San Francisco. Hotel rooms in Rantoul. People told me at the time to put a donate button on the blog to help defray the costs, but that just felt wrong to me. I’m writing for passion, not money. I’d be at the bowl game anyway. Getting a press pass meant I didn’t have to purchase a ticket, so I’m actually SAVING money!
But as this thing has grown, and as more and more of you follow me and email me and comment on posts and send links to your friends, the finance side has become a little harder to manage. Take Friday, for example. I want to cover the Illini scrimmage at Gately Stadium in Chicago, but I live in the St. Louis area. I have a half day off work, but travel to Chicago (and an overnight stay) aren’t cheap.
Which, in my brain, brings me to a blog crossroads. Keep improving this site and my coverage, or, for the first time, limit what I can do because of money. Believe me when I say I wrestled with this. I just added the “Tip Jar” page and it made my stomach turn. I hate the idea of asking for money.
But I also hate the idea of not being able to expand what I’m doing here – maybe even stunting the ultimate goal of doing this full time – because I was too proud to beg. So a Tip Jar it is.
At the top of the page you’ll find a Tip Jar link. That takes you to the Tip Jar page where there’s a PayPal link. It’s really simple. If you believe in what I’ve been doing for the past four years, now is the time where you can help out. My plan is to expand my coverage in the years ahead. I even have a little project in the works to expand this site substantially. But I’ve probably reached the limit of what I can finance on my own.
So to the dozens who have emailed me over the years upset that there’s no way to contribute or no ads to click on to support me (seriously, dozens – it made people angry for some reason), I surrender. The Tip Jar Cometh. I lay down my enjoyment of beat writers looking at me in the press box with “you do this and don’t make a single dime?” expressions and humbly ask for your help.
I have big dreams for the next 30 years. They include a basketball national title and a Rose Bowl win. And with your help, I’d like to be there to cover it.