I’m not sure if I can add much to this but I suppose it may be useful to know why I paid. I read and enjoy blogs all the time but generally do not often donate. In this case I must admit, in part, I was attracted by the anti-Times sentiment (at the time not realising the direct link and your earlier blog post) but more importantly it was the fact that I had actually gained useful information, I had indeed learnt a lot more about QR codes and mobile websites. In a way I felt I owed you something, possibly more than just gratitude. Don’t get me wrong I don’t value your knowledge at £2.50 but I thought that was a reasonable token of my appreciation at the time and would hope that others would do the same. If I was to continue to learn more direct useful information in the future I would have no issue with paying again.
Unfortunately, I am probably a minority but as someone who works and profits from open source software everyday I think I understand the power of voluntary donation – both time and money. I happily pay voluntarily for creative commons works like Cory Doctorow and have reoccurring voluntary paypal payments to my favourite podcasts.
I appreciate that The Times have issues that will probably not be solved by a Donate button but I do find that the whole enforced paywall lacks imagination and makes News Corp look innovatively bankrupt. As an ex-Times subscriber I am often targeted by post and email to try/buy the site but I just don’t get why I would want to pay for what they are offering and can only see down sides for them as they lose out in a link economy. Maybe I am missing the marketing message. This is a shame because whatever I think of other parts of News Corp I thought The Times was a good newspaper, employing many talented people and they could be making a far more positive contribution to the web.