Dr. Jillian T. Weiss

Comment of the Week: Bil Browning on Alex Blaze

Filed By Dr. Jillian T. Weiss | June 12, 2011 7:30 PM | comments

Filed in: Site News
Tags: blogosphere, LGBT blogosphere, Managing Editor

Comment of the WeekOn Alex Blaze's post End of an Era: Thanks for the Good Times, in which Alex explains his decision to step down as Managing Editor of The Bilerico Project.

Bil commented on the history of Bilerico, noting that Bilerico has struggled to make the finances work:

"The small salary that Alex was making here at Bilerico, while more than most bloggers will ever make, isn't enough to live off. And, quite frankly, for as little as he makes, we can't pay that based off our advertising revenue."

And, of course, that's why there is now a KEEP BILERICO ONLINE: DONATE button on Bilerico. This blog is a treasure for the community, with its niche in LGBT politics, Midwestern style. And, as Hoosiers know so well, but the rest of the country sometimes forgets, there is no such thing as a free lunch.

We had a discussion a few months ago about the DONATE button idea, and now, with the blog redesign, it's here. What say you, Projectors - are you willing to donate to keep Bilerico online? If yes, what did you donate and why? If not, why not?

Here's Bil's full comment:

Alex, Jerame, and I were the original forces behind Bilerico Project and we've struggled every day to build it, grow it, and keep it afloat financially. We wanted to provide an authentic media source that was more than entertainment and pop culture but not exclusively political or movement-oriented either.
Here's Bil's full comment:

As midwesterners, we felt ignored by the larger movement and wanted to bring some struggling and overlooked voices to the conversation and put them on the same stage with longtime leaders, activists and thinkers. We wanted to carry the stories and thoughts of the entire community - no matter our age, our race, our gender, or ability of body or mind - because we're proud of being queer in all our shades and sizes.

Unfortunately, we've never been able to pay a liveable wage for anyone while doing that. All three of us have done consulting work, taken second jobs, and generally gone without to stay focused on the project. For as many years as Alex has worked on the site, he hasn't been paid nearly enough to repay his dedication and loyalty.

The small salary that Alex was making here at Bilerico, while more than most bloggers will ever make, isn't enough to live off. And, quite frankly, for as little as he makes, we can't pay that based off our advertising revenue.

Thankfully, Alex will continue to be a contributor and a member of the Editorial Advisory Board. He's not going away, but he is stepping back from the daily grind and challenges that comes with running the site.

He is our friend. He is part of our family.

But he's not responsible for all of you meatheads any longer. :)

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Thanks for reminding me Jillian. I had to search way down on the page to find the donate button. I notice though that it is nicely positioned just to the right of this reply text box.

I sent $25. I wish I could spare more. If even half the people who follow Bilerico on Facebook were to match that amount then about $85,000 would come rolling in. That would buy a few groceries and maybe get Alex a raise to stay around.

Jillian the response so far has been underwhelming to say the least. Can you bump this up to the top?

I for one will really miss Alex, he is a treasure without a doubt.

You need to move the donate button to the top of the tool bar, next to home, politics, etc. But I suppose you could keep it where it currently lives, AND on the tool bar. Is there any way to increase your ad revenue?

While I love my daily dose of Bilerico, how about taking the weekends off? It wouldnt give the hard working Bilerico-ites any more funding, but would give them some breathing time.

I sent $20 about a week ago. I'll send more when I can.

I enjoy reading Bilerico pretty much daily, although I agree with Gill that taking the weekends off (or maybe just fewer posts?) would give the bloggers some breathing space.