I wanted to personally thank everyone who has supported RapReviews on Patreon so far. As of this writing we have 20 patrons, many of whom have pledged above the $1 per month I requested, which has taken us 35% of the way toward our goal of having the webhosting fully funded every month. As I said on Twitter you’ve made a real dent in the cost of running this website, but just as importantly you’ve all shown me that the work we’ve done over the last 20 years is valuable and appreciated. Words alone can’t express how much that means to me.
The good news is that this inspired me to not only write more reviews (as you’ll see from this week’s update) but to make some positive changes as our editor-in-chief. You may have noticed in the last few years that I have been self-censoring in my reviews and encouraging other staffers to do the same. Google AdSense has a tendency to flag websites that use excessive profanity and block them from receiving advertising placements, which crippled the revenue stream we needed to keep the site running. Thanks to your support I’m no longer that concerned about being flagged any more, so I’ve told the writers to not cover up or avoid swearing in their reviews.
The goal is now as it was before to hit 100% of our funding for hosting at $100 per month, at which point all banner ads on the website will cease. This should not only improve performance loading articles and reviews when you visit the site, but reinforce and emphasize the point that this website is “by the people, for the people” and that your support has led to the change that YOU wanted to see. I don’t want to get pie-in-the-sky which is why I’ve kept our goal so modest, but if the patronage continues to grow week to week as it already has, we can obviously open up to even more feedback from the community.
I once told Matt and Grant that “If I’m paying the bills, I’m going to run it how I want.” That was both stubborn and foolish and they deserve an apology, and so do all of you. The last year has shown me that changing how we do things has not only made this site more functional, it’s also made it more fun to write again. Thank you all for making me change for the better.