Kottke quits his job and attempts to pay his way in the world with his blog. I think he’s completely mad. After all, who will pay good money for kitten pictures?
I’m not sure that this is going to change anything in the blogosphere – put simply, there are plenty of blogs out there that offer high quality content (note that I don’t include myself in that category) and do not make a charge for it. Also, there are plenty of non-blog sources of the sort of technical and opinion pieces that Jason writes – some of which are paid-for but many of which are free. Since Jason is not making any compulsory charges for his content, the question has to be whether people will pay enough voluntary contributions to him for him to keep writing without any other means of support, and the answer to that will depend on just how much people value his particular take on the issues with which he concerns himself. I admire his nerve but don’t fancy his chances. Plenty of other people ask for donations to help keep their sites going, but I don’t see many people that actually get much income that way.
And speaking of donations:
EDIT: Jason has an RSS feed. He distributes his content widely and for free. I’m still not getting why people are going to pay enough for him to share his opinions without any other work. Mind you, film critics do that all the time.