p2pnet news view P2P:- At the end of last month p2pnet became the first site to sign up for Crosbie Fitch’s 1p2u micro-patronage project and to date, I’ve clocked up 21p from two readers (thanks ), which is about 38 cents in Canadian dollars.
One penny may not seem much but to put it into perspective, p2pnet is still a non-entrepreneurial one-man project. I’m a musician and p2pnet started life when I thought it’d be fun to share, and collaborate with, other musicians via MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) which, at the time, I’d only just come across.
In other words, p2pnet became an advocacy site completely by accident.
It’s supported by an anonymous contributor, and by renting space to online concerns whose owners are friends as much as advertisers.
The income, hovering marginally above an amount most North Americans would consider to be completely inadequate, supports myself and my family, and keeps the site online.
I say this because for a while, to boost the income, I tried textual advertising — you know, green lines under given words and when your mouse pointer goes over them, a window pops which you have to click to close. Either that, or it stays up for a certain number of seconds before it shuts down.
For a brief period the text ads looked promising, but things soon deteriorated to the extent the ads were literally earning only pennies. More importantly, the pop-ups were annoying readers. So I cancelled them.
My readers are my publishers
For me, Crosbie’s 1p2u – one penny to you — epitomises what the net is supposed to be all about. Reasonable people behaving reasonably to the benefit of everyone, instead of just a few.
What it boils down to is this: under the 1p2u concept, readers aren’t customers: they’re patrons in much the same way that in the old days, artists, writers, musicians and other creators survived when someone recognized the value of their works and decided to provide them with resources of various kinds, including money, so they could continue to create to the comfort of society as a whole.
In my case, my readers become my publishers, which I think is pretty cool. If they like what I produce, they pay me to write more. If they don’t, they don’t.
But it’s only a penny!
Most people can afford one penny, or the local equivalent, and pennies mount up. And anyway, I believe there’s such a thing as ‘Enough’ and I and my family don’t need much to be happy and content.
So, under 1p2u, I’m the writer. You’re the publisher. And what you’ve paid to publish now belongs to everyone – to the public – and whether or not you want to pay me to write, or produce more news, which can then similarly be shared, is entirely up to you.
When I was talking to Crosbie about his (to me) brilliant 21st digital century patronage concept, “We’re restoring the original meaning of the word ‘publish’, ie, ‘to deliver to the public’,” he said.
“It was only copyright that changed it to mean ‘to let the public look, but not touch, read, but not copy, be inspired by, but not improve’.
“It’s time to liberate the people, to let them share and build upon their own culture once more. We’re taking the people’s culture back from the publishing cartels.”
[PS - 1p2u is still in the Alpha development stage, with all that implies.]
Jon Newton – p2pnet
First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi
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