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Thread: Ways the FORT is supported

  1. #1
    The race is back! John's Avatar
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    Ways the FORT is supported

    I've had a couple of questions about all the different ways our members and guests can help support the FORT, so I wanted to list them all here, so you know what each thing is and how it helps:

    1) Using PayPal donation (button is at the top of the main Forum listing). This uses PayPal, and about 97% of it goes directly to the FORT. Some have asked what a "standard" donation is, and I don't really have an answer for that, but in most cases, those who have donated have done so at around $20-25. But, even if you only want to donate $5, it helps.

    2) Using the Amazon Honor System (banner is at the bottom of almost all pages). This uses Amazon, and about 97% of it goes directly to the FORT.

    3) FORT Gear at Cafepress.com (Link is in the FORT Gear thread). When you buy FORT logo clothing & accessories from the site, a portion of the sale goes to the FORT.

    4) Non-Amazon Banner Ads (At the top of every page, rotating). I get paid a tiny amount from every non-Amazon banner displayed, regardless of whether you click on it or not. It totals about 50 cents per day currently, because the advertising economy is so bad.

    5) Amazon links and banner Ads (at the top of every page, rotating, and sprinkled in other various places). If you click on an Amazon link, and buy something from Amazon within 24 hours (it doesn't have to be the item you clicked on), the FORT gets 5% of the cost of the item. So, if you buy a $20 DVD, the FORT gets $1.00 from it.

    Let me just say thank you to everyone who has helped us out by buying something or donating! We're never in any danger of the site shutting down, though. I definitely didn't start the site with any expectation of making a profit on it, but the site being self-supporting is my ideal goal. Currently, with hosting costs and software support costs, it runs around $60 per month to keep the FORT running. My time is, of course, free.

    In the future, there will be a version of the software available which will allow me to give some benefits to those who donate, such as larger PM boxes, etc.

  2. #2
    The new me! Feifer's Avatar
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    WOW! Using the Amazon Honor System took less than a minute and I have a sloooooow connection. That was the easiest transaction I have ever made(note: I did already have an account with Amazon). The fact that it is not a hassle to support the FORT is such a BONUS and 97% is fabulous!
    It occurred to me that no matter how bleak things might seem at times, at least I have a head. ----Stargazer

  3. #3
    The race is back! John's Avatar
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    Thank you, Feifer! I appreciate the support!

  4. #4
    I need to get out more bloonman's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Feifer
    WOW! Using the Amazon Honor System took less than a minute and I have a sloooooow connection. That was the easiest transaction I have ever made(note: I did already have an account with Amazon). The fact that it is not a hassle to support the FORT is such a BONUS and 97% is fabulous!
    You were right, Feifer! It was very easy, and since I already have an Amazon account, took less than a minute.

    John,
    Do any of the people who contribute so much to the FORT receive any compensation? I'm thinking of you and lobeck specifically, though I am sure there are many people putting in large amounts of time behind the scenes to provide us with such a great site. Lobecks recaps are amazing and clearly take a lot of time and attention to complete in such a timely fashion--not to mention almost 7,000 posts. I just sent a contribution to the FORT, but just wondered if there was a way to give financial support to individuals, is one were so inclined.

    Thanks,
    Jack
    aka bloonman
    "I have abandoned my search for truth, and am now looking for a good fantasy." ~ Ashleigh Brilliant

  5. #5
    LG.
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    ok Lobeck's cousin Jack, I recognize you. Just kidding, it is super that you want to show your support to writers as well as the site, and I'm THRILLED that our own Lobeck is turning into so much of an internet sensation. It's stunning to think that this website is less than 8 months old and already has almost 2,000 members.

    I think I speak for all the moderators and writers that we put in our contributions because we love the site and want it to succeed. It's a labor of love. For the moderators and writers, this is more than just a website, as we're such a close group of friends from working here together so often, both in writing articles and in working together to keep the site running and up to the high standards our members have come to expect. If/when the site ever turns a profit and John gets back his initial investment and ongoing costs, then I think he'll be more than happy to thank his supporters, maybe with a lovely cheese platter.

    If you want to support the writers, tell your friends about the articles, because most of us write because we really want people to enjoy our work. Seeing a high number of views is very gratifying, as are posts, PMs and emails about how funny and smart we are.

    Thanks to everyone for their support.
    Help fight cystic fibrosis or just learn more about it at the cystic fibrosis foundation website, www.cff.org and help give my little guy a better future.

  6. #6
    The race is back! John's Avatar
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    No one who runs the site, including me, makes anything from it. It's a labor of love. Unfortunately, kind of an expensive one. Our current server costs around $105 per month. Depending on the current rate for banner advertisers, I can usually make about 2/3 to 3/4 of that in advertising revenue. The rest comes from the extremely generous donations of our FORT members, and if there's still a deficit, out of my pocket.

    To be completely honest, even if it cost that much, and I didn't bring in a dime of revenue to help defray the costs, I'd still happily run the site. The friendships I've made here are worth every penny.

    If we ever get to the point where we're turning a profit, it'll first go to expanding the services for users (for example, little stuff like $45 for registering the chat java applet, $85/year for the BB software, the domain name, and there are several things on my "wish list" of things I'd like to add to the site), and then, to compensate the mods and writers for the site somehow.

    Right now, my thanks and the thanks of the members and visitors to the site are all they're working for. I hope it continues to be enough

    Thanks for the donation, Bloonman! The only problem with the Amazon Honor System is that donations are anonymous - and it doesn't even e-mail me to let me know when someone's given. So I appreciate you letting me know. I'll add you to the list of Contributors.

  7. #7
    I need to get out more bloonman's Avatar
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    John and lurkinggirl,

    Thank you for the information about how the FORT operates. I suspected the mods and writers were doing what they do as a labor of love, but wasn't sure. If the site ever runs into financial difficulty, or you want to start paying the main people a small stipend, let me know and I'll help out again. And lurkinggirl--with almost 4500 posts, you *might* want to consider another screen name! Thanks for making me laugh with your witty comments!

    By the way, I *love* all these smilies!

    "I have abandoned my search for truth, and am now looking for a good fantasy." ~ Ashleigh Brilliant

  8. #8
    caf
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    Just made a contribution through PayPal. I just registered today, but had to contribute for all the enjoyment I've had in lurking and reading the various posts.

    Really like this site and hope it has a long run!

  9. #9
    The race is back! John's Avatar
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    Caf, thank you SO much!

  10. #10
    daydream believer oneTVslave's Avatar
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    It's so easy to contribute!

    Just wanted to let you know I just made a donation through the Amazon Honor System. It takes no time at all if you have ever bought anything from Amazon. I enjoy this site so much that I felt I had to say thanks...

    Hopefully this thread will get bumped up and others will do the same


    Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.
    - Albert Einstein

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