Every so often, I put up a post to encourage you to invest in this blog and our assorted projects.
Winning a national award for this blog from GLAADseems like a good moment to consider what resources it takes to produce and how you can help.
As you can probably see, we’ve recently joined the SheKnowsMedia Network and run ads on the site to help defray costs. Our costs include webhosting, monthly web design and maintenance fees, domain registries, design work, social media scheduling tools to promote our content and more. It is roughly $350 just to pay those bills and most of that comes out of my pocket. The ads generate an average of $35/month right now.
We also try to donate to LGBTQ community events as sponsors, buy tickets, contribute to emergency appeals, and other expenses.
The #AMPLIFY project also has separate costs, including traveling and paying for advertising (mostly on FB) to promote the project. Right now, that’s being funded by grants and donations. In the coming months, we will need to work with an archivist to prepare the archive for a formal transfer, a webdesigner to improve the archive’s utility including search features and formatting the many images, and a sociologist to make sense of the immense amount of data we’ve collected. Our hope is to keep the archive active and accessible while also using the aggregate data to raise the visibility of the LGBTQ community and address our priorities – our priorities as everyday LGBTQ people.
We are unable to pay contributing bloggers right now, but if we did that would mean another $300-500/month.
Then there are equipment needs and other one-time expenses that pop up.
And none of this means I get paid. In fact, I’m using other gigs to pay for this blog and the projects. I don’t get compensated for my research time, to attend events, to write and edit blog posts, to be at meetings, to hours on the phone or to simply do my craft. Yes, occasionally, we get comped tickets to cover cultural events but no one pays for parking, mileage, meals, etc. Rather, we do. We are routinely invited to conferences and workshops out of town that I do not have the resources to attend.
This is okay in the sense that I do this voluntarily. I could stop if it became too much. And I have a plan to increase revenue from ads by promoting local LGBTQ businesses, but I need to secure a permanent web designer to make that happen. It is a chicken/egg scenario playing out almost daily.
If you are in a position to invest in our work or our specific projects, please consider doing so. The sustaining monthly donations in particular resonate with me because I know how tough it can be sometimes to spare that $5 or $10 in certain months when extra bills pile on. And I know that the people donating do so from on their margins, we aren’t subsidized by deep pockets that I know of!
Make a monthly pledge to our blog via Paypal
Join the Steel City Snowflakes with a one time or recurring investment in our projects. Click the image to see our current snowflakes.
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