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Thursday, 08 June 2006


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The problem is, if it became standard practice, we'd all be shuttling the same ten bucks (or whatever) back and forth to each other all the time. It would be kind of like a giant pyramid scheme, or something.

David R. Block

Or I would have to play benefactor and I can't afford to support that many people.


Porlock Junior

An appealing idea; and after all, there are blog readers who are themselves non-bloggers or post so rarely that they might as well be, and they would be a source of net income to the blogosphere; or, of course, they could choose to be cheapskates and cads.

But did I miss, or did you omit, the grubby technical details? A good system of on-line micropayments is badly needed and has been for years, but where will it come from? Not that no one has tried, but I can't recall any of them getting anywhere.

Adam Kotsko

The Paypal tax would kill this scheme.

Scott Eric Kaufman

Dr. B., I'm not sure that's true. As Porlock Jr. notes, there's a real distinction between bloggers and commenters, esp. at the bigger blogs. I know a lot of my readers don't have their own blogs, or have ones I don't read regularly (too many blogs, too little time), and which I therefore wouldn't donate to. I think if everyone were upfront about it, no one would consider bloggers crass for it. I mean, I'd donate $0.25 to you, and you (may) donate $0.25 to me, but think about all those blogless commenters who would do it too; some of the more prominent bloggers would shuttle pennies back and forth, but the rest of the commenters would generate pure "profit." I think you should try this: you're prominent enough that I bet you could make a couple hundred a month if you wanted without anyone casting a leery eye at you. (And, of course, you should link to me if you do, since I love traffic.)

David, you need only support the best, and when you wanted to. Forsake that cup of coffee man! You could help clothe a dishevelled scholar.

Porlock Jr., I'm thinking nothing more complicated than the Paypal "Donate" button or its TypePad equivalent. For many bloggers, it'd be a way of formalizing what they've already done with the donate buttons they've already installed on their sites. Speaking of which...

That said, I think this could be a way to improve content. I know I'd work a little harder if I felt a responsibility to entertain.

Adam Roberts

How could I be sure that my donated money wouldn't be used directly to fund split infinitives? Eh? Eh? What guarantees could you give me? Eh?


I think it would just be shuttled back and forth as well because everyone reads eachothers blogs so they would be paid for people reading their blogs, but then would be paying that money right back out to read others blogs. Because even if they were the top blog and everyone was paying them they would read everyone elses blog to see what there competitiion is.


Sorry I'm a little late here, but "taxing" people to read your/one's blog is oh so very left wing and inefficient!

What one has simply gotta do is stay free to air and advertise!

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