Thursday, January 01, 2009

Econ 101: A surprising update on my fundraising

Three months ago, I started an experiment in the brutal economics of online journalism: I would try to earn $24,000 a year as a blogger through advertising and reader donations. In an Oct. 13 post that attracted more attention than expected, I predicted likely failure -- which would push this blog closer to oblivion.

Dec. 31 -- yesterday -- was the deadline I set to earn the first $6,000. Truth be told, I didn't think I had a prayer, for the reasons I mentioned at the time. I told Sparky it would be a miracle if I raised $500 in donations, and said I'd probably shut down Gannett Blog soon after the start of the new year.

I could not have been more wrong.

In fact, I earned $5,211, nearly 87% of my goal -- more than enough to keep this blog going indefinitely, so long as I continue earning money near that pace. Thank you!

This will continue to be challenging. Most of what I took in, $3,883, came from donations. Many were in the amount I suggested, $5 per quarter. But many more were for $10 and $20, as generous readers opened their wallets wide, or paid for a full year in advance. (Three readers gave $100 or more.)

So, here we go again! I'm trying to earn $6,000 quarterly through sponsorships and ad sales. Please use the "Donate" tool in the green sidebar, upper right. Or mail cash/checks payable to: Jim Hopkins, 584 Castro St. #823, San Francisco, Calif., 94114-2594.


  1. Got mine in just under the deadline!

    At least I HOPE it got there ...

  2. Have you considered better advertising sources than Google Ads?

  3. Your donations will increase this year. Just keep on keepin on just like you are!

  4. Congrats! And I, too, will admit to a bit of pleasant surprise. I hope you can keep up the pace.

  5. Jim, I forwarded this section of the blog to the IRS. Expect a call from them! lsc


Jim says: "Proceed with caution; this is a free-for-all comment zone. I try to correct or clarify incorrect information. But I can't catch everything. Please keep your posts focused on Gannett and media-related subjects. Note that I occasionally review comments in advance, to reject inappropriate ones. And I ignore hostile posters, and recommend you do, too."

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