The Beat has joined the crowdfunding revolution! Now you can support the stuff we do here directly with your dollars via the Patreon platform. Lot’s of folks have suggested that we do some kind of crowdfunding campaign over the last year or so, but I’ve chosen Patreon because it’s method—recurring monthly payments—seem like a more usable model for an ongoing website than the one and done big bang of a Kickstarter.
The Patreon model charges a set amount every month. You can always change it or cancel it. It gives your complete flexibility over how you spend your funds.
For you traditionalists out there, I’ll put it this way: once you would pay $5 a month for a magazine you really liked. Now you can pay $5 a month for a website you really like. Same deal.
For you up to date folks: I’m doing this because I don’t want to go corporate. Being independent is the most important thing for me in doing this site—and believe me I’ve turned down big offers over the years because it would have meant changing how I run this site. In the end being authentic to what my contributors and I believe in is the surest road to success.
In addition, I’ve also lost my Google Adsense money over the Beat being reporter as an “Adult content site” because of posts such as this. Go ahead….be prepared to be shocked and sickened by the filth I’m posting here.
The truth is, Google’s AdSense guidelines prohibit “Strategically covered nudity” which could be just about anything in a superhero comic or movie—not to mention most of the great art ever produced.
I’m appealing this, but in the meantime, even if I post amazing exclusive content of Steven Spielberg kissing Benedict Cumberbatch that goes viral….I get nothing. Remember what I was saying about big corporations earlier today? Too few baskets for too many eggs means lots of breakage. And that’s what crowdfunding is meant to ameliorate.
What will your money get you? Continued Beat reportage, and eventually expanded searchable reviews, more inside charts, a podcast, web chats and the rest. Go to the page to find out. . It’s ambitious but someone has to do it. I’ve been here for ten years and I won’t be going anywhere soon.
Here’s the shorter version: by supporting this website you ensure more and more gifs of happy kittens every day.
Here’s my pitch from my Patreon page. And above is my little video. Thanks for your time and thank you for your continued support.
This is a crucial time for the comics medium in America and around the world. With the advent of digital comics, tablet readers, graphic novels, and blockbuster movies, comics culture is increasingly influential in broader pop culture. And it isn’t just in the US, Japan or Europe: emerging comics scenes are blossoming in India, Eastern Europe and everywhere.
For ten years the Beat has been covering these developments, with perspective, impartiality and maybe some humor here and there. But in those ten years everything about the way that the web works has changed. And the world of comics, as mentioned, has expanded exponentially.
That’s why I’m going direct to you to help support independent, open minded and forward looking comics journalism. In the time I’ve been doing the Beat I’ve been advertising supported, but that model no longer works because as sites full of ways to lose belly fat, top ten Kim Kardashian butt shots and trumped up gossip get more and more traffic, the only way to compete is to go the same way.
And I’m not going to do that. The Beat is going stay focused, fresh and smart.
In addition, I’m in constant danger of losing my AdSense revenue due to Goggle’s mercurial and inflexible content rules. I’ve been suspended from AdSense for posting images that Google itself puts in Safe Search—one image that was flagged was the poster for a major motion picture released by a major studio. AdSense has long been the “micropayment” system that keeps original content on the web afloat but it is no longer safe or profitable. Without AdSense even if a post goes “viral” I won’t benefit or profit from it. There has to be a better way.
And I hope this is it. Your Patreon pledge will enable The Beat to stay independent and to expand its coverage into other areas and hire writers at fair rates. One of the thing I’m most proud of in my career is my eye for talent, and former Beat writers are now running their own sites, getting nominated for awards and creating acclaimed comics. I want to continue this idea of an incubator and expand it with more features and more rewards for them. And I can only do it with you, people who care about comics of the past present and future.
By supporting the Beat you support a forward looking, diverse take on comics, comics convention, animation, collectibles, filmed entertainment, digital, and the amazing hybrid mediums that are just now being invented that will change the way we look at entertainment in the future.
I invite you to come along. The future looks great and The Beat is going to give you a balcony seat for the revolution.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.