meta musings ~ blogs for bucks

Recently, I’ve seen a few people with writing blogs who are considering “monetizing” them. To my understanding, this means rigging the blog in a way to make money from it. Most commonly, I guess, is to add a plug-in that would post advertisements on the blog. The blogger would then get paid for allowing those ads, and I think in more sophisticated operations, would get paid more if readers actually click on the ads. (I understand this humble blog has some ads that appear from time to time. I’ve never seen them, I guess because I’m the administrator, and I certainly don’t make any revenue from them.)

In another case, I knew a blogger who had a natural history blog, and she was very good at what she did, writing informed posts in an engaging style. I read her blog regularly. She proposed making it pay by charging a fee for readers to see the content, citing several celebrity bloggers who did this and lived off the proceeds. I commented that I would never pay to read anyone’s blog (she had asked what readers thought of the idea), and I think I insulted her because while she used to respond to my occasional comments, she abruptly stopped after I said I wouldn’t pay for the privilege. The last time I looked, she was not charging an admission fee.

There are several websites I visit that have pop-up ads appearing on the margins. Many of these are animated and/or have video and audio. I’m never interested in what they are shilling, and I’m annoyed enuf with the ads I already see elsewhere apparently based on Google searches I made years ago. I don’t want to add to that intrusion by clicking on mindless ads further. Regardless, for me, these pop-ups slow down the scrolling. I can click them off, but they generally return if I click on some actual content on the site I want to see. And then the article I want to read won’t load fully for a while and I leave in frustration.

Aside from the fact that I consider “monetizing” to be sleazy in a way and part of the idea that a writer must have a “platform” or a “brand,” I don’t think this humble blog would pay me the price of a cup of coffee (if I drank coffee and knew the price). I have followers in the triple digits, but I don’t know how many actually visit the blog when I post. I do have a visitor counter, but that’s not only shown pathetic numbers, it’s also shown unreliable numbers. There are days, for example, when I receive one or two comments about a post and the counter shows that no one visited at all. Doesn’t seem possible to me. The little research I’ve done suggests that when followers visit, they are not counted. (Also, I’ve tried using Google Analytics to get a better picture, but I can’t seem to make it work. It shows zero visits to this humble blog.) So if revenue is based on visits, I’m going to be in the poor house.

So I remain baffled by this idea of “monetizing” the blog. It seems sleazy, it wouldn’t pay, and it would likely be one more thing I would have to manage.

Here’s a picture of a round rock:

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3 Comments on “meta musings ~ blogs for bucks”


  1. I agree completely… mainly due to my blog being more journal style and I’m happy with the community i have… no need to rock the boat but also it takes away the enjoyment of writing i would think.. the pressure to make people happy with what i put out there i just don’t need. Oh and I have given up on looking or understanding analytics lol

  2. markparis Says:

    I would starve, too. I think you and Robin are the only people who visit my blog.

    And a round rock! What memories!


  3. I think my biggest issue with people monetizing blogs is things I once liked suddenly become, “Hey, 10 Things to Do When You Run Out of Blog Ideas but Now Rely on the Money!” kinds of entries. (Where it’s clear they wrote something just to keep the money flowing.)

    I run ad blockers (not even because I hate seeing ads, but many have had malicious code in them), so I don’t see ads.

    I don’t mind very short ads when my wife and I sit down to watch YouTube videos because they can be skipped in a matter of seconds. I understand an effort goes into videos, and even blogs…but I’ve also never monetized anything I do — even though people have suggested having me set of a Patreon for my fiction podcast.

    But the moment that’s done, it comes with expectations — and I know I’m not going to meet some people’s desire that comes with paying $1/month and expecting a writer to dance at their command.

    And so, like you, I wake up early some mornings and write things for my little free blog…or work on podcasts and other free things I enjoy making.


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