Saturday, April 30, 2011

Blogger in Distress

Paula Hay has an interesting new blog with a theme of looking at the rise (and possible fall) of civilization through a religious lens.  Right now she is in personal distress and in need of donations.  I encourage readers to help her out.  There but for the grace of God...

Update 4/30/11: Good news.  Paula has a rather heartfelt and emotional video thank-you here. Apparently she got enough donations to get over the immediate hump at least, and she now has a place to live for the summer and some work.  Thanks to any readers who may have helped her out.

I thought what she did was a pretty interesting experiment (and rather gutsy).  In a desperate situation, can you basically throw yourself on the mercy of the Internet, and expect it to help you?  And, for her, the answer was yes!  Of course, she wasn't trying to raise that much ($800), but on the other hand, she only has been blogging for two months, so I assume hasn't built a very large audience yet.


Sam Norton said...

A friend of mine - an unemployed priest with a significant blog - has been doing something similar:

Stuart Staniford said...

Sam: That's even more interesting - he's trying to be full time reader-supported. That's something that I have definitely wondered about in some post FireEye existence. How big would the blog have to be for me to do this full time, run periodic "pledge weeks" (a la NPR) and be able to support myself and family without being beholden to any institution, thus maintaining the freedom to say what I really think. From his data, it looks like the answer would be "a lot bigger than it is now" (which was my intuition anyway..). But his results so far suggest that the basic concept could work with a big enough audience. (I should caveat that this is not a near term likelihood as I'd be foolish to get off the FireEye car until the ride is over).

Anonymous said...

Stuart -- thank you again! Yes it was pretty gutsy but it was certainly better than the alternative. I also have been toying with the idea of doing the NPR-style occasional pledge drive thing, it almost seems as if a multitude of distributed micro-paychecks is a more stable way to earn a living in this economy, especially for those of us whose skills are easily offshored. My longer term goal is to provide interesting enough content that at least some folks will find it worthwhile to pledge -- and hopefully in doing so I won't find myself scrambling like this again.

Anonymous said...

Ran Prieur is mostly there. Does/did some house sitting as part of the mix, but has mentioned that is no more.


How does he live?
"Outside the money economy as much as possible. I used to say I make all major life decisions to minimize stress, but lately I've taken on some burdens like buying primitive land and a truck and learning skills to navigate these difficult times. I spend the warmer months housesitting in Spokane and visiting the land to tend fruit trees and very slowly build a cabin. For more about that, check out the landblog."

Does he take donations?
"I have a donation page, but I'm doing very well for money right now. In terms of net worth divided by monthly expenses, I'm probably in the richest one percent. But if anyone feels like donating, I won't say no."