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|Free Republic 1st Quarter Fundraising Target: $88,000||Receipts & Pledges to-date: $85,145|
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Posted on 04/19/2012 1:22:35 PM PDT by Jim Robinson
I've checked with an ad agency. We can probably raise the funds we need to operate FR at our current level and at the current market price for online advertising if we run a banner ad at the top of every page and at least one rectangular ad in the above the fold body of the page and a couple rectangular ads in the sidebar. If that doesn't generate enough revenue, we can also run pop ups or pop unders and we can even run audio and video ads if need be. But of course, if we go full bore commercial, we'd have to insure strict copyright compliance with very brief excerpting of all articles to avoid lawsuits. And the agency would require that we install a filter to censor out any bad or unacceptable words in our posts.
Or, of course, there's always the membership model. We could setup a members only system where paying members get full access and non-paying members get throttled back, etc.
I don't like either of the above models and think we'd soon lose a lot of our readers and participants. Of course that may happen anyway if we can't fund it and if we cannot get our equipment problem under control, or if my refusal to vote for or support an abortionist/homosexualist/statist who has plans to install ObamaCare, er, I mean RomneyCare into all 50 states runs everyone off.
The donation model has served us very well since 1997 when we first started using it. It's very clean, uncomplicated and we attract participants who perhaps can't afford membership dues but do want to join the discussion and join our rallies, protests, prayer sessions, etc. And the advertising model would probably bring in the revenue, but it comes with strings attached.
I'm sure there are other ways and ways to combine features of various models, sell books, cds, gear, etc, offer no ads for paid subscribers, etc, even ISP services, but all of these also complicate matters.
I'm an old dog and I like to avoid new tricks, new complications, additional overhead, additional accounting, additional rules and regulations, etc, wherever possible. I like to stick to simplicity and with what works.
Thank you all very much for your continuing participation and support.
I didn’t know how much the costs had risen since I’ve not been with the team a long time. Don’t count the days either, just work. :-)
Of course that's just my perception..and my opinion might differ from yours.
If you say so. I concluded given the presence of this post that the current funding model isn't working or else why would alternatives be tossed out? It appears to me that revenues can't cover expenses. Now in my business, if that happened I would look to change the way I'm serving the market. Perhaps your experience differs.
I believe this thread is the result of some questions that were asked on FR2 when the main board was down today. If that’s incorrect Jim will correct me.
Thanks, but I don’t know what the $2.00 processing fee is referring to? That sounds like a misunderstanding somewhere to me. It might amount to a $2.00 - $3.00 fee on a hundred dollar donation, but otherwise credit card processing fees are a relatively small percentage, usually in the neighborhood of three percent or so. Maybe a little higher on smaller donations through paypal, because I think they have a fixed fee per transaction element as part of their rate which might drive it up to 4% or more on a small donation. And we have an estimate for the credit card and bank processing fees factored into our budget anyway.
I would like to avoid advertising if at at possible due to its many drawbacks. I’d also like to avoid going commercial at all if possible. I think it would change the nature of our grassroots conservative activist organization.
Interesting thread. I hope I can be of some help.
I'm sure you're aware of this: Alexa Traffic Rank: 4,763 Traffic Rank in US: 1,091. That is something advertisers, venture capitalists, foundations, etc. look for. You have many options. Trade off: more money, less control.
May the Lord bless you with wisdom.
LOL...you're serious and thats the funny part. People pay to use the site and are not guaranteed use of the site? How about if money for a service is rendered the service is given. Nevermind the censorship that is what all the bannings are. And you think I sound like a liberal?
I have little problem with the rules, but the vacuum you all want to exist in is making a mockery of this site. My way or the high way is not a very conservative trait.
The $2 processing fee was mentioned by someone upthread. If that is not the case, that is helpful to know. Thanks.
They are not buying the right to voice contrary opinions. They support the site to keep it up and running.
Nevermind the censorship
Free Republic is private property. No one has the right to post views contrary to the owners. That's just the way it is. It's Jim's house.
And you think I sound like a liberal?
Are you using the site for free and complaining about it? Yup. Just like a liberal. "I want it free and I want it my way!"
BTTT .... thanks for the link!
Believe me, I understand. I struggle to find a few bucks to donate every Freepathon I can. My family's business has been hurt by Obamanomics like you wouldn't believe.
Let me expand a bit on the funding model I mentioned in my last post.
Delphi Forums has (or had) a three tiered membership plan:
A) Basic membership: basic posting privileges, plus visible advertising, and no digital bells and whistles. I think it was $20 a year (might even be every other year).
B) Intermediate membership: basic posting privileges, plus visible ads, with some digital bells and whistles included. I think it was $30 a year.
C) Premium membership: full posting privileges, NO visible ads, all the digital bells and whistles, plus admin level privileges (if assigned by a forum owner). I think it was $50 a year. Naturally, JR would have to figure out what pricing structure works best for FR memberships.
The beauty of this design, is that even a church mouse like me can afford a Basic membership so I can post, but if I can swing just $50, I can enjoy the full benefits of the site for a full year.
The other side of the funding model is, of course, the paid advertising. It's a dual stream income model, with built in incentives for members to donate more. Deserving, but destitute members could still be gifted with community supported memberships.
I didn't mention the lurker level. There's no cost for that, but one can't post.
Yes, and I have nothing against capitalism and making profits on goods and services, because that is our God-given right and absolutely best form of conducting business and society in general, but in this case that’s not my intent. We do not sell products or services. We are not a commercial enterprise. We are a pro-God, pro-life, pro-family, pro-liberty activist organization, not a business. We have to pay our bills and our debts, so we have to raise money, but we’re not trying to get rich here. I’d rather have less money and keep complete control if it meant I’d have to give up even one iota of my belief in God or support for our Judeo-Christian founding principles and inalienable rights.
Thank you very much.
We need a FReeper PC/software thread that lists 'all the best protection software that is free' - or something like that. 8^)
Looks like you just failed.
Prove what you just posted or retract the smear.
I also don't buy freindships
And I don't tattletail in hopes of gaining favor. In case this goes over your head, I am referring to your constant need to bring JimRobinson into your conversations when you feel your doing a good job as a brown shirt for the site.
Windy, there are people for whom $20 is a fortune right now. I know several. If they had it, they’d use it for food.
Which is precisely what Jim Rob and the majority of Freepers REFUSE to do.
Tea Party On!
Why not have some sort rebate shopping program, where FR gets a percentage rebate of purchases made by FReepers?
Stabs the heart, doesn't it? I may not be in the position to donate much, but I do try to make up for it by defending the owner and his Mission wherever and whenever I see a need.