So yesterday the guys at Penny Arcade made a bold proclamation that I think is kind of interesting…

http://penny-arcade.com/2012/07/09/penny-arcade-sells-out

Essentially, they’re experimenting with the idea of replacing the advertising segment of their business with a crowd-sourced segment, ironic because that’s actually how the comic got one of its first big breaks early on – the guys were ready to quit because they were broke, decided to put up a donation box as a last-ditch attempt, and ended up raising $10,000 overnight from their fans! So it’s interesting to see here a decade or whatever later them drifting back to give that model another shot, granted now a considerably bigger entity than they were before.

Their goal is to raise enough money to remove advertising from penny-arcade.com for 2013 – an ambitious goal which they’ve priced out at a cool $1,000,000. Of course, this isn’t their entire budget, as they still make money from PAX, merchandise, sales of their video game, and so forth … a million dollars sounds like a lot of money until you start shilling it out for office space and salaries and health insurance for a dozen employees. And true to Internet form, they’ve already got their share of haters, citing that they’re already successful enough and that somehow this new business idea is a slap in the face of their fans who … blah blah blah – the arguments are pretty stupid and ring of bitter folks who either don’t even read the strip or don’t care enough if the business is around tomorrow anyways, so whatever…

I think it’s an interesting proposal because oddly enough, PA is one of the few sites that I actually don’t mind the advertising on because they’ve always done a really good job of only accepting ads from games and companies that they can legitimately get behind, and they also adamantly refuse obnoxious ads that want to talk back to you and auto-play video and all of that. Still, I also get their point that to some extent these advertisers still control the site and end up taking up parts of their time that they could be devoting to other free projects, so the idea of cutting traditional advertising completely out of the loop to give them an even more unfiltered approach to their fans is kinda cool. I mean, I’ve absolutely loved a lot of the PA Presents projects over the years, but who’s to say what else they could come up with if advertising isn’t as much of a priority.

Overall I think it should be interesting to see how it all works out. On one hand, there are already a lot of questions because the “rewards” are somewhat more symbolic than the loads of swag that people are used to getting and the goals are pretty subjective, and yet still at the time of writing this they’ve already managed to raise $100,000 in the first day it was online! I haven’t really decided if I want to contribute or not – I’m fine with the site continuing on as it is, but perhaps in the upcoming weeks when we start to get a little more info about some of the alternative projects that they’re entertaining…

As for now, at least you can’t say that the promo video isn’t hilarious!  :mrgreen:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© 1999 - 2017 Comedic-Genius Media, All Rights Reserved.