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.