Re: Intending to make AbiWord Weekly News subscription based

From: Alan Horkan (
Date: Thu Jul 04 2002 - 07:41:31 EDT

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    > 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.

    very good point

    > 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.

    i remember paul (?) tried to revive the Project of the Week ages ago. I
    agree it is important, so if people have ideas of how to run this
    efficientlly (maybe by selecting trivial/ehancement bugs?) and revive it
    please mail the developer list.

    > 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.

    Ah, the Street Performer Protocol,
    yet another way to earn a fair price.

    > Not to mention the fact that those first 200 subscribers would feel
    > suckered when I started making AWN public again.

    it might work if the fee is small, which it is. subcribers would get the
    news in a timely manner, which is what makes it most useful. if they knew
    in advance i would be surprised if they felt cheated, the old news would
    be added to the free archive eventually anyway (i would guess).

    > 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).

    in terms of feedback perhaps a message board at the bottom of the news
    would help ...
    might not be worth the setup and maintainance tho'

    > 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...

    Here's hoping it all works out well

    > Thanks,
    > Jesper

    Thanks for providing us with the free service for so long

    Alan Horkan

    PS i probably should not have replied to both list, consider carefully
    before replying to all

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