Re: Intending to make AbiWord Weekly News subscription based

From: Jesper Skov (
Date: Thu Jul 04 2002 - 01:24:25 EDT

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    On Wed, 2002-07-03 at 10:33, Jesper Skov wrote:
    > I feel I need to know that I'm not just continuing editing AWN because
    > it's what I've been doing for more than a year. I need to know that
    > the readers appreciate it - otherwise, there's little point in
    > continuing (I mean, I know the information I put in AWN, so I hardly
    > gain anything from doing it). So I've decided to go commercial.

    William Lachance pointed out that AWN is one of the very visible things
    we have which makes AbiWord look like an active project, unlike many
    others where all time between releases is silence before the storm.

    I know that. I joined AbiWord development originally due to AWN (which
    lured me) and POWs (which kept me in). This is also why I started
    editing AWN when Sam stopped.

    But the problem is, I'm not sure it's worth spending my time/energy on
    AWN anymore. There's been far too little feedback from readers for me to
    want to spend more time on it. Going subscription based is my attempt at
    finding the energy to continue by forcing the readers to acknowledge an
    interest in what I do, basically.

    I've briefly considered adding a clause to the effect of:

     If more than 200 people pay for a subscription in any one quarter,
     AWN will be publically available in that quarter.

    Of course, it requires very little imagination to see the resulting
    private/public/private/public states each quarter this could result in.
    Not to mention the fact that those first 200 subscribers would feel
    suckered when I started making AWN public again.

    There is an alternative which I didn't bother mention because it's so
    unlikely to happen; some corporation with an interest in AWN continuing
    to be publically available could pay me the equivalent of 200
    subscriptions per quarter. I would still get no feedback from the
    readers, but at least I would have financial compensation (yeah, my time
    is for sale).

    Nobody would be more happy for AWN to remain public and gratis edited by
    me, but it would require a fundamental change in human behavior or some
    corp to give me money. Both rather unlikely, I'm afraid...


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