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Donations, Eric, BlogCritics Unite

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I am relatively new to BC. But, when Eric asked for donations I immediately responded with a $25 donation. To me, that is a fair price for this service. And, it is obvious that Eric and his team are putting in an enormous amount of effort to make this place GO. This is an excellent blog in my opinion.

When I donated, I did email Eric and tell him it is very diifficult to get people on the Internet to pay for anything that they are already getting for “free”. Unfortunately, some very good web sites go bye bye due to this phenomena. So now it is time for the users of this site to make a simple decision, do you want this place to succeed or not?

A $25 donations costs me about 7 cents a day. Less than a beer a month. Although, I am still drinking the same amount of beer, if necesary I would give one up in an effort to help make BlogCritics a commercial success. I’ll look forward to hearing from Eric in the next week or so how the users repsonded.

Now I will shamelessly promote myself. I am an old dude, 53. I post here under Robert T DeMarco. Most of my posts to date are about crimes against children. However, I have a second blog All American Investor Weblog which I intend to start working on in the near future. The mission of AAI is going to be simple and straightforward, to bring to the members investment information that helps them make intelligent investment decisions, and, higher than average market returns in their personal investments, IRA, and 401 K. I won’t state my qualifications here, but I have a lot of very bright people in my network from the old days on Wall Street. I won’t be promoting any special agenda on that site. Just bringing good ideas and ideas from others into the awareness of the users. Then the investors can make their own intelligent informed decisions.

While it is early in the game, I would appreciate if any forward thinking bloggers would consider linking to All American Investor Weblog.

For now, if you believe in Eric, pony up.

About the Author

Robert T DeMarco is CEO of IP Group in Herndon VA. IP Group offers software communication tools for use on the Internet. These include: PowerTools, Watch Right, Always on Time and IM Frame. Mr. DeMarco is the author/editor of several Weblogs and is also a member of the High Tech Crimes Industry Association (HTCIA). Mr. DeMarco spent 20 years on Wall Street during his second career.
Robert T DeMarco
IP Group Inc.
mailto: rtdemarco@aol.com

All American Investor Weblog
Watch Right Internet Crimes Against Children
Robert T DeMarco

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About Bob DeMarco

  • Eric Olsen

    Thanks Bob, I very much appreciate the kind words and the thought. And shameless self-promotion is what we are all about. Best of luck with the new site and I hope we see some of it here!

  • Sheesh, it seems like you donated for an ad (cheaper than a blog ad).

    Still, yep, I’ll be donating, despite Eric’s tone in the e-mail to all of us.

    The e-mail wasn’t way over the top, but it was a wee bit offensive. He said posting was a privilege, but it is equally a privilege for him to have us (if we’re contributing something) and he’s lucky, to have so many contributors.

    I strongly believe he knows and understands that, but it didn’t come across in the e-mail.

    He doesn’t want the site to die. THAT I understand. It’s a valuable source of entertainment and voices and he and others have put a ton of work into it.

    So, yeah, donations of even a few dollars shouldn’t be a problem for most readers and contributors here.

  • Robert, good luck with the ongoing bloggery. And Temple, i agree it seemed a bit harsh, but maybe we should discuss it via the same medium? And whilst i agree it SEEMED harsh, i know Eric didn’t mean any offence and is actually a rather swell and comendably hard-working guy (but don’t tell him i said that, man.)

    Good work Robert

  • Temple..

    I think you made a few good points. When I first started reading Eric’s email I also thought it was a bit “harsh”. However, I was not offended because I could also see it was full of emotion (not a bad thing). And it seems that several issues were “boiling up” all at once–and usually that means a bit of a temperature rise. I would give him an A for effort, and a C minus for diplomacy.

    I don’t know Eric personally, other than exchanging a few emails. Perhaps, it just a case of youth. But I did get an impression close to what you say.

    On another point. I would have donated more, and I probably will. I was thinking about what I pay for content and how I would price a service like this. Twenty-five bucks to me is the fair price. But when I think about the audience I get here, I tend to agree its worth more to me. So I will pony up more shortly.

    The bottomline, however, is clear and simple. The guy can’t go on forever making a couple of hundred a month. So the users/members need to make a simple decision, do you wanna support this place or not? The design, technology, and format here is really really good.

    To Aaron, thanks for the comment and encouragement.

  • bhw

    I also just learned that the rewriting of the comment script did not happen for free. So that’s another expense someone else paid so that our hobby site can keep going and have decent performance.

    It is pretty much a privilege when someone else foots the bill for your hobby [and mine].

  • Eric Olsen

    I would say there is no question the message was harsh.

    I have been trying to handle each of these matters for extended periods of time with little success by being subtle, diplomatic, and solicitous.

    The key, and harshest, point is that I finally realized I can no longer allow myself to be held hostage and, in effect, impotent by individuals.

    COLLECTIVELY, what Temple says is correct, and COLLECTIVELY of course we remain dependent upon the contributors, and I am personally VERY appreciative of individual contributions, which I believe I make amply clear; but we can no longer allow anyone to function as if they were bigger than the site. It’s a team, it has to be operated like a team.

    I AM sorry if anyone was offended, but I am convinced it had to be done, and had to be done in the manner it was done.

  • Yes, and I was not referring to whatever commentator problems Eric had. When someone can derail a site by their comments and starts to change the whole dynamic they SHOULD be banned or suspended.

    That part of Eric’s e-mail didn’t make sense to me because I don’t know who he was talking about.

  • Ditto Temple’s comments. My reaction to the email was the same.

    Bob, I’m happy for you having $25 to spare. I don’t. (Hint: There’s a PayPal link on my blog, too.)

    Someone said on another thread that Blogcritics should consider whether some of the content justifies the server space being used. Instead, I see more frippery being added, such as the Blogger of the Week, Day, or whatever it is. (A bone thrown mainly to the Right Wingers the proprietors consider their friends, I notice.) The gratuitous promotion of Al Barger’s ‘candidacy.’ And, now, Phillip Winn has suggested adding photos with entries and/or comments. MEGO!

  • Eric Olsen

    Mac Diva, I will only address the bizarre, and I do mean bizarre, accusation about Blogcritic of the Day.

    As I have said before, it could be done by a robot: I go down a list of the total posts made by all Blogcritics, from the most to the least. You were 7th – are you a right winger?

  • Eric Olsen

    bhw, I would very quickly hasten to add that TDavid did all of the coding work on the comments for free, out of the goodness of his heart.

    Phillip Winn has never received ONE DIME for his hundreds of hours of work on the site. He is, however – lest people think he is even more insane than I am – a part owner of the site.

  • First off, since I am writing, mostly about crimes against children, do those few of you who actually comment think I am a right winger? Let me clear it up, I am not even a conservative.

    Next point, I doubt server space is an issue when talking about the economics of this web site. I’ll defer to Eric, but that is usually cheap.

    The issue is paying the bills and letting Eric occasionally supplement his baloney sandwiches with a steak.

    Hey, anyone wanna help me with a blog and work for free? I need a techno “geek”. I’ll give free stock and investing advice in return. And, I’ll throw in the first few lessons on how to become a bonafide P*S*D*.

    And here is my first words of wisdom, you get more with sugar than you do with vinegar.

  • Indeed, BHW got the wrong impression about the rewriting of the comment script for the site from an email I sent earlier, and I apologize firstly to TDavid, secondly to BHW, and finally to everyone else.

    TDavid did rewrite the comment functionality for the site, taking previous hours to do so, for free! He charged us nothing at all, despite contributing inestimable value to the site.

    It was my poor wording earlier that gave BHW the wrong impression. Sorry about that!

  • bhw

    bhw, I would very quickly hasten to add that TDavid did all of the coding work on the comments for free, out of the goodness of his heart.

    My apologies for misunderstanding. Thank you again, Tdavid!

  • bhw

    BTW, there’s nothing wrong with making money, TDavid. I just thought it was an additional cost Phillip and Eric were absorbing that the rest of us didn’t know about.

  • Post the e-mail. I’m curious to read it.

  • bhw

    Sorry, it was an internal Blogcritics e-mail.

  • bhw

    I’ll sell it to you for $25, though.

  • Antfreeze

    As usual I may be a little off-topic here but I thought the pictures of the authors next to their article was a great idea for the simple reason that people might be a bit more civil to one another if they had a picture of an actual person in their heads when they were commenting.

  • If implemented (still not decided), the photos would be optional, which doesn’t solve the problem of someone determined to be uncivil. No worries, though, since comments are now being heavily moderated by someone other than Eric or me.

    And yes, it was an internal email, and I’ve been slightly perturbed to see so much discussion about it take place in this public forum. Not because I think we have anything to hide, but because I know how annoyed I get when I go to web communities and see so much “meta” talk, and I worry that we are alienating our readers in the same way.

    Still, the email is archived for anyone who wants to join, and we’re always taking new members. You just need to have a blog of your own.

  • Chris Kent

    The Blogger/site of the Week was a great idea and introduced me to some good sites and great work. It created a sense of community. Have a photograph next to a post/byline is also inspired, and would hopefully bring a face to the work and perhaps a civil atmosphere.

    But the pics could be abused by some of the more mean-spirited folks in here, i.e. people start posting false pics of Don King, Tor Johnson, Divine, Bart Simpson or any number of pop icons as a joke to go with a certain post or to offend others…..

  • People would have the opportunity to specify a single author photograph, and only original uncopyrighted works would be accepted without extenuating documentation. That same picture would be used for each post by that author, and any reports that the picture was of someone other than the author would be taken very seriously.

    Obviously, this is the internet, so we could never be absolutely sure if we were being duped in some cases, but then again, this is the internet, where photo-fraud is somewhat difficult to pull off because people have a startling ability to recognize photos from other sources.

  • The ‘internal’ email gambit is basically a way to hide dirt being done. In the most recent one I was accused of personally attacking a commenter (who the ‘rules’ do not apply to according to the same person who made the accusation) by calling him by his first name. (Which the commenter does not mind. I always refer to him that way.) I may begin a policy of posting the internal emails on a site to to be read by everyone.

  • Shark

    Always cooperative, always happy:

    “The ‘internal’ email gambit is basically a way to hide dirt being done. …I may begin a policy of posting the internal emails on a site to to be read by everyone.”

    And hopefully, that will instigate a new “banning” policy by BC — one long overdue.

  • I may begin a policy of posting the internal emails on a site to to be read by everyone.
    This should win you legions of new fans, Mac Diva.