After a promising start, sidelined for almost two weeks by a website server crash, the scramble to catch up has been met with mixed results. A lot of you have been supportive of Past Daily during this fundraiser; either by new contributions or renewing older ones. That has been incredible and I love you all for it. But some of you have decided supporting history and helping keep a website up and functioning is just one more thing in a tsunami of appeals you’re hit with on a daily basis and you have overdosed.
There’s a new phrase being passed around; it’s called Crowdfunding Fatigue. It’s when you spend most hours of most days fending off appeals from people and organizations to give to this cause or support that cause. Seems as much as you support, the more you are asked to support – and sometimes those feelings of doing good are often replaced by feelings of resentment of being taken advantage of.
Believe me; I know. Like everyone else, my in-box is crammed to capacity with appeals, requests and harangues. Someone once said that if we supported all the causes and appeals we got every day, we would need a fundraiser for our own welfare because we’d be reduced to poverty within minutes because of it.
I have always stressed to you that it’s not my intention to beg and cajole you for contributions, and I have always told you that I would rather have your continued support by visiting and bookmarking Past Daily and by telling your friends, than feel obligated or guilted into contributing to us.
I can’t charge you a subscription fee. Aside from the legal ramifications, it’s not something I ever intend to do. I feel that information, research and discovery should be free for the asking because it’s more important that you have access to useful information rather than holding it ransom to only those who can afford it.
Running this website is costly, I won’t lie to you. Aside from the upkeep of the site (and in this latest disaster, restoring it to where it was before it went down), there’s also the issue of on-going preservation and archiving. The cost of housing the collection alone is roughly double what I pay for where I live. Couple that with maintaining vintage equipment for the preservation process, repairing equipment that has broken down or buying a new piece of technology to improve the preservation process, those expenses add up. At present, we’re trying to move the archive to a more accessible and less expensive place and boosting our ad revenue as well as stimulating more traffic from social media to our site. Those are all things I am actively doing, as well as negotiating for an institution to take possession of the archive when I finish digitizing it and putting it up on the website. But I am not asking you to shoulder the responsibility for making all that happen. The reason I do a fundraiser once a year is to help supplement what we need and to help plot a strategy to keep everything up and running smoothly; simple as that.
History is important,it’s crucial and necessary especially in the current social and political climate. We’re bombarded by news and reports and spin, not realizing a lot of what we’re currently going through is something that has happened before, if not repeatedly before. And as much as I love TV and video, there’s something about listening to a historic event that adds further weight and authenticity to the goings on around us. For example; the photo above – a football game from Florida in 1955 may seem like nothing special, and a quick glance may not reveal anything unusual. But spending time, looking at the photo, mulling it over for a few minutes, you start to realize what the importance is – the whole issue of Segregation in our country was very real and very commonplace in the 1950s, and you can’t forget or gloss that over. To many, the world was not the idyllic place so often described in movies or wistfully recounted in essays and articles; they were times of great struggle and upheaval, and it can’t be painted over – it serves as an example. And that’s why history, recorded history; the voices of the eyewitnesses, the people who were there or were responsible are crucial and need to be preserved. That’s what I am trying to do. That’s what Past Daily is all about.
And so, every year we do a fundraiser and I ask for you to be willing to chip in what you can, either by PayPal or by Patreon and help be part of this preservation of history and keeping it available for those who want to find out, those who want to know about and those who want to study to make available.
I won’t be bothering you after this latest update – that’s it for this year. No more appeals and no more begging until 2020. It’s back to business. But between now and then, please consider chipping in what you can. Join the others who see the possibilities and want to help continue the work by contributing whatever you are willing to give to make all that happen.
I can’t begin to tell you how grateful I am to those of you who have contributed during this fundraiser – you have made all the difference in the world. To those of you who have extended your hand in other ways, I owe you a lot and I never forget the favors of your kindness and compassion.
So do what you can – either by Patreon: Become a Patron!
Or by PayPal:
Click on those links; they will take you where you need to go, it all takes about 30 seconds. But the benefits last for decades.
My thanks and love to you all.
Gordon Skene – Past Daily