Supporting Thrasher's Wheat
It's you -- readers of this blog -- that make Thrasher's Wheat what it is. We feel that we're just here merely to post news, provide a forum to chat and try to keep things tidy and rollin' along.
But as we've mentioned recently, the costs of operating TW continue to escalate as we add more services, such as the email updates and Twitter feeds (see right sidebar for more info). (Also, if you're curious and a data freak, you can watch TW traffic in real time here and always in right bottom sidebar.)
We've moved gradually from trying to raise funds via Amazon.com commissions to PayPal donations. This approach was OK for awhile, but as traffic rises, commissions and donations have not kept pace.
It has always been our intention to remain a solely reader supported operation.
As some may know, we do TW in our "spare" time which means we no longer sleep or eat (much to Thrashette's supportive dismay). But seriously, we want to continue the existing model of reader support. It's you guys who make this work.
But we have looked at alternatives such as accepting advertisements which we do not like. We don't like them as a web surfer. We don't like them in terms of managing our little blog. Every moment we deal with ad admin, is another moment we're not handling Neil news and correspondence.
So last month, we ran a poll asking readers about accepting advertisements to defray operating expenses. The results were somewhat surprising in that about 80% of readers thought it would be OK to have some combination of ads, donations and commissions to keep TW running. We have heard you say that you like what we do and want the service to continue. And we're grateful for your interest and financial support.
So here's what we'll try next as an interim step.
We've created a Neil Young store on Amazon.com. The idea is to use that as a gateway to Amazon for purchases of your Neil Young CDs, DVDs, Blurays, books, and stuff. It will also serve as a gateway for other Amazon purchases of electronics, toys, etc.
So here's the Neil Young store on Amazon.com. Clicking thru and purchasing will generate a small commission for Thrasher's Wheat to help us run this blog.
We think this is a win-win for everyone. Fans, Neil Young's family & friends, and TW.
Now, a footnote on this whole move. This Neil Young store on Amazon.com only generates revenue from USA purchases. Which is too bad since over 60% of TW traffic comes from abroad (Canada, UK & Germany are #2, 3, & 4 respectively in terms of traffic).
We've heard from folks around the world asking about Amazon sites for their countries to help us out. Here's the problem. We simply can't. It would require for us to establish an account in each country with Amazon and a payment plan. Then we would need to manually code each each country's unique Amazon URL. We just don't have time and feel it will be worth it.
So we need folks outside the USA to support TW via PayPal donations. You only need a credit card. A PayPal account is unnecessary. The transaction is handled privately by PayPal. TW doesn't see any CC info whatsoever. This is a highly secure payment method.
The PayPal button is always available on upper right sidebar via the How To Support Thrasher's Wheat link.
Also, the Neil Young store on Amazon.com will always be towards the bottom of right sidebar.
Again, thanks everyone for their contributions. But mostly thanks for all the reviews, photos, links, videos, and comments. And your kind and supportive words, especially. We truly enjoy sharing the Neil love around the world. We've been doing this on & off for 16 years on Rust/HH/RH and 13 years on TW and we'd really like to continue -- readers willing.
So by helping us out, you'll also help out Neil. And maybe in some small way, it helps the LincVolt project. Because we all want to light a candle, make a difference, be the rain, and be the change.
Be the wheat.