Too many of us are obsessed with the bottom line, making money, and taking advantage of others if it means increasing the balance of our bank accounts. America has always been about betterment — even if it means taking advantage of others to get there.
The American Way is no longer the American Dream, or home ownership, or education — no, the American Way is all about serving, and collecting, the mighty advertising dollar. Sell your eye for a penny; click your wrist for a nickel.
If we prefer truth over paid sponsorship in publication, how is that model sustainable between reader and publisher?
Good son of Nebraska — and internet genius, Ev Williams, is struggling with this conundrum — with his Medium publishing project:
The vast majority of articles, videos, and other ‘content’ we all consume on a daily basis is paid for — directly or indirectly — by corporations who are funding it in order to advance their goals,” Williams wrote. “And it is measured, amplified, and rewarded based on its ability to do that. Period. As a result, we get … well, what we get. And it’s getting worse.
If Ev Williams doesn’t know how to make an internet publication work without the direct involvement of our Corporate Overlords, then what comfort is there for the rest of us stuck adrift on a virtual sea?
If you are a longtime reader of this blog, then you know it has always been our philosophy to never accept advertising. We made that decision right at the start of all this because we didn’t want our articles to be colored-in-action by advertising sitting next to the universal truths we were sharing.
There is only one sun — and we each have a decision to make — do we worship the warmth of money, or do we want everyone around us to feel the same heat without payment in kind desperation?
It takes money to run this blog. WordPress.com wants to be paid. Domain names cost money. There’s bandwidth in serving up images here from my private server. While I pay out more than I take in, that is a choice I am delighted to make because the aftermath always lands in our favor; reflexivity has more value than breaking even.
We don’t actively ask for donations for publication, but once a year, we offer the “Best of” this blog for those who wish to contribute to the ideals we have helped propagate in continuous online publication since 1996. Sometimes people want to give back and that’s one good way to be a part of the greater purpose.
Advertising taints everything it touches — it is impossible to divorce vision from intention — and if you are selling adult diapers and alligator shears alongside your high morality against evildoers, you cannot hope to retain a kernel of integrity.
If every action serves a meaning, then clicking a flashing advertisement refocuses attention from attachment to distraction. Selling soap becomes a priority over sowing the wild mind.
And so here we stand — with you, always — in the fertile fields beyond the fallow hollow.