cc licensed ( BY NC SD ) flickr photo shared by howvin

I have gotten an impressive stream of support, donations with my request to help support Feed2JS, enough to keep the site up and running (which apparently has been stable). But I’ve not been comfortable depending on a future path of donation support, although y’all have demonstrated the potential here.

It ought to be free.

I had a few nibbles of interest of offers to support the costs (in exchange for some visible sponsorship on the main site), with one that looked very viable, but still up in the air.

But a new one is on the table, and it would pay for the ongoing server costs in exchange for text links ads in the footer of the Feed2JS site. I felt a bit squeamish, but it seems pretty minimal; I would get to know the site listed since they are static text. And frankly it seems like no impact for the people who use the site. I would still provide only a “powered by feed2js” in the output, and even that can ve easily hidden by CSS.

I know some may object, who can cast a stone my way for sucking up ad paid route. But to me, it takes away the paying for the server as an issue, and can make room to focus on the ongoing effort to get people lined up to work on improving the site.

Which, ahem, has gotten no responses in an open google doc I set up. Maybe that was not the best route to solicit input. I guess I need to learn some git and set up a hub.

So I am asking the question of anyone who cares, if a few text ads at the bottom of feed2js.org is the incarnation of the devil. I’ve pretty much made up my mind, but wanted at least to put out the question.

Profile Picture for Alan Levine aka CogDog
An early 90s builder of the web and blogging Alan Levine barks at CogDogBlog.com on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person.

Comments

  1. Just do it, dude.

    Everything’s a trade-off. In a perfect world, hosting would cost nothing. In the real world, you’ve got to weigh whether the value of access to Feed2JS (which seems to be pretty high, based on some of the information you’ve given in the past) is worth the crappiness of a couple ads. Seems pretty clear to me that the trade-off is easily worth it in this case.

    Take it from someone who is constantly juggling how to subsidize the production of software intended for widespread use by folks who don’t pay for it!

  2. I still run a variant of the original feed2js. Occasionally I get queries from our network guys asking how one machine can be responsible for such a significant chunk of our very significant bandwidth. AOL Movies had it on their home page at one point (that was a real problem), and even now a major police service in a western democracy is using it.

    I’ve asked myself the same question in terms of retiring the service, since there’s no real management support for it. It just works, you know.

    One approach is to degrade the service and hope to drive people away :-) e.g. by increasing cache duration, which I’ve done once or twice. Putting an ad on there would probably help too and completely freak a bunch of people out. The opportunity for mischief sometimes is very tempting.

    Maybe if you put an ad on it for .com referrers only?

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