ErosBlog has been rumbling along now for more than thirteen years. There’s no shame in admitting that sometimes, the blog — which is me — has gotten stuck in a rut. There are plenty of posts I’m proud of, sure. But too often, here we are: still in the rut.
On too many days, an Erosblog post is one line of text, one image, and perhaps an attribution. My loyal readers deserve better. What does a post like that have to offer, that would make ErosBlog more worth visiting than a randomly-selected porn Tumblr?
I believe my very best sex blogging work has more in common with the Bernard Montorgueil post I put up yesterday. I’m proudest of the posts that synthesize my fascination with obscure porn, my decades of “experience” as a porn enthusiast, my formidable search skills, and my willingness to pursue a research project down into the tiniest and most ridiculous electronic dead ends and internet rat-holes. Sometimes I may call this higher-quality work by different names, like “erotic art curation or forensic photoarcheology or deep-dive provenance research into viral photographs or reluctant internet-business journalism with cynical commentary.” But call them what you will, all these higher-quality posts share one thing in common: every last one of them took at least half a day to create. That’s minimum. Some take much longer. A search-heavy research project can consume dozens of hours, because there’s always a deeper rabbit warren to get lost in, or another broken link to pursue into the most gruesome depths of the Internet Archives.
On the other hand, I can find and select and crop and make a one-image post in five minutes or less. Is it any wonder that ErosBlog can sometimes go days or even weeks looking like just another slow-paced image blog?
The brutal truth is that, as a business, ErosBlog doesn’t generate enough revenue to justify spending half of my work day (or even longer) on a single post. Once upon a time, it did, back when a lot more people still bought porn-site subscriptions after following my affiliate links. These days? No. Most of the time I spend here now is time I have to steal from better-paying work that I enjoy rather less. Without boring you with my troubles (we all haz them) even the “better-paying work” I steal the ErosBlog time from doesn’t pay all that awesomely well. To meet my responsibilities properly, I “ought” to be doing more of that work, while further reducing the time I spend here.
I would find that outcome…unwelcome. Maybe you would, too.
This is all to explain why I’m looking at the crowdfunding model, and especially the recurring-patronage version that Patreon has pioneered. Perhaps ten thousand people still look at ErosBlog on an average day; that’s down considerably from our heyday, but it remains a lot of people. If I had an easy way to collect small sums on a regular basis from a slim percentage of my most appreciative readers, it could radically transform the economics of the venture. Set it up correctly (and this I consider to be the genius of the Patreon-style model) and it would actually create daily incentives to do more of the good work, and less of the lazy stuff.
Of course, I might instead make the humbling discovery that nobody values this project enough to contribute actual money to its maintenance and improvement. That, too, would be useful to know. Then maybe I could do a little more paying work and still find time to return to my computer gaming habit!
That wouldn’t completely suck.
This post is here because you’re most likely going to be seeing “fund me” pitches in the near future. I think it’s only fair to let my loyal readers know why that will be happening. If you’re reading all of this, you definitely qualify as a loyal reader! Thanks for that.