In what will no doubt be THE blog news of the week – Jason Kottke has quit his job and will be doing kottke.org as a full-time job.
I’m intrigued by this, particularly as he is calling for patrons to donate money to his venture. More thoughts on this later but for the meantime:
1. This isn’t viable for many bloggers, on the A-list who probably get the number of hits a day that I take a year to gather.
2. WHY should I donate? Is it really a noble experiment to see if it’ll work or has he finally lost his marbles?
3. Do I value his content enough to donate? I think this may be the biggest issue – if I am going to donate, am I getting value for money? He’s already stated that all his content will remain free, and he needs the support to get him through the year. What happens if he doesn’t make it?
Questions, questions. No doubt this one will divide opinion. Whaddya think?
UPDATE: MeFi is going at this pretty hard but as yet (the last comment posted when I read it was from megnut) no one seems to thinking about this from a financial point of view.
I’ve read Jason’s site for a long time, on and off, I’m no crony but I have enjoyed reading his site. Whether you do, or not, is of course your choice based on your personal opinion.
Now, I’m guessing that he has a good idea how many people visit his site every day, and I’m guessing this played a large part in his decision. He suggests a nominal $30 ‘donation’ (micropatronage if you will) and I’ll bet a pound to a penny that he has factored in a percentage of his visitors donating that amount.
After all, be it grand experiment or narcistic self-promotion, without the ability to pay the rent I doubt he would be trying this.
Anyway I’ve not donated, yet, but will give Jason some time and see what he comes up with. If I think it’s worth throwing a few bucks at, to show my appreciation, not through guilt or as forced payment, then I’ll do just that. Either way, it takes some balls to do something like this, a quick glance through that MeFi thread confirms the expected backlash. So from that point of view I wish him good luck.
This’ll be interesting to watch.