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Creating this thread to discuss funding this site and discuss creative options.


I like the idea of an amazon affiliate link for the site, and we can all share products we actually love, and have personally tested and reviewed. a group curated cool tools and stuff thread that buying anything off of supports.

also maybe a paypal donate button and a patreon account?


I think a PayPal donate $5 button would be OK… do we have a handle on the likely running costs?


I’ve mentioned elsewhere, but: I like the idea of a Patreon account to handle some of that. Lets me easily kick a couple of bucks a month into the pot.


I would prefer to avoid the Amazon affiliate lunks [typo but it stays.] That’s one of the things that has annoyed me about that other place, especially after they started tacking their affiliate code onto every Amazon link.

I like all the other options, but please include a method that will allow those of us who don’t use PayPal because they are chaotic evil.


I’m not the one handling the expenses, but I want to throw in a word of caution; when affiliate links and donations start flying around, it’s likely to raise some thorny issues. Right now it’s all teacups and teletubbies, but eventually somebody is bound to wonder where it’s all going, and the somebody who is handling the money is going to have some expectations, and potentially some tax issues. Incorporating is going to be necessary at some point.

I like the idea of a donation based model, at least for now, and taking an idea I got in a PM a little further, I think transparency might be the solution here; I propose that whoever is out of pocket on behalf of this site (@LockeCJ, I assume, but also @tinoesroho? others?) should post a monthly account statement of expenses, and that becomes the funding goal for the month. Everyone can contribute (anonymously) what they are able/willing. When the funding goal is met for that month, donations are shut down. The downside is that it means people might be out of pocket for a month [edit: we could also do this a month in advance for known, fixed costs], but the upside is that we don’t raise anything more than what we need, we don’t need to worry about where the money is going (with a basic level of trust) and we all get a feel for what the site costs to run and how those costs are changing. If we get to a point where there things are going up a lot, we can discuss other options then.


So far, it’s just me on the hook for this thing, although I’ve certainly received plenty of advice, feedback, and encouragement. I’ve also received some generous offers for funding.

So far, I am in this for $4 and some time. That’s obviously not sustainable from either a technical nor a economical perspective. This is something I think we’re going to figure out pretty soon, but for now I just wanted to create something so that people could have a place to go in case they burn the playhouse down.


That is a good point, i wonder if it can be contained to only one section, i’d find that acceptable. i do agree that it is tacky adding it to any link that appears in regular threads.


I’ll go one step further and wish for a script that actually took any and all affiliate links off.


Yes. It is great to hear that people want to financials to be fair and equal. That is extremely noble.

It is my opinion that someone still needs to step up, anonymously or not. The hard truth is Patreon, affiliate links, and donations are “lumpy” forms on income. As in, you bring in $500 one month, and you bring in $5 the next. It is just the way things like this operate.

I have reached out in private with some ideas. I like the idea of donations and patrons, but I don’t want server and bandwidth bills–which are generally fixed costs–to be impacted by the variable nature of donations.


I used to mod a board that had a “Kitty Fund” people would kick into so often to kill off the ads. It was a feature of the board. Not sure if discourse has any kind of built in funding option, but maybe we should research that. Could keep things simple.

After that, I like the Patreon solution.

Re: accounting - we are all kind of vapor people here so I think as long as figures are low, hell, take my money. What are we talking, the price of the occasional starbucks?


Why not allow them to build up a 3 or 6 month buffer? That’ll help smooth it out (or let us know we need a different funding model)


yeah, there are tons of models that can be used. it is really up to the founders on how they want to conduct their business. there are pros and cons to almost any structure.


Can I ask for a step in a different direction? Is it possible to rewrite Amazon links so that, instead of adding an affiliate code, the link went to the website instead?


I agree with @waetherman that donations will do as we kick this thing off.

As I wrote in the What IS This Place thread, I like the idea of divvying up the expenses in the form of a small subscription. Every other site on the web is barely surviving by inundating its audience with ads, affiliate links and native advertising. If we build the idea of slow growth and member subscription into the marrow of the site, then it will always be sustainable and ad-fee.


Ad free gets my vote. They’d just get blocked anyway.


Concerning affiliates, I wouldn’t be opposed to having a single link that people could deliberately make their purchases through if they want to support the site.


insert this gif


I think it would be nice to leave room for the occasional, totally transparent, totally unobtrusive sponsored post. I’m thinking something like the “jumbotron” spots on maximumfun podcasts. You do run into pricing challenges, though, which could be uncomfortable, as any posts would likely be friends and friends of friends for quite a while…


i’m guessing bake sale? :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: