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The Internet The Almighty Buck

Rise of the Professional Blogger 231

Victor Cheng writes "Robert Scoble today points to a blogger who is claiming he earns between $10,000 and $20,000 per month via Google Adsense." From the article: "The cheque was the biggest cheque I've ever held onto (well the biggest I've held onto that has my name on it). The amazing thing is that in the month of May I earned more than I earned in a whole year in 2003 from a 'real job' (of course at the time I was only working a 3 day week while I studied part time) and well over half as much as I earned from Adsense in the whole of 2004."
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Rise of the Professional Blogger

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 17, 2005 @04:31AM (#13085671)
    I think its a valid question as the article really has no news value.
  • by Atario ( 673917 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @04:32AM (#13085672) Homepage
    'Nuff said.
  • On logging webs. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by hyperm0g ( 867446 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @04:42AM (#13085696)
    Honestly what on earth is with this 'blogging' craze? I refuse to even acknowledge 'blog' as a legitimate term. Web log perhaps, and I'm barely into my twenties! These web loggers seem to think they have stumbled onto some hertoforth undiscovered treasure -- compensated authorship! Wow, it turns out that a very small percentage of 'bloggers' have the writing ability to generate income doing said activity. Color me serpryzed. Oooh. I just invented a word. Serpryzed. I'm going to go append this to my meta-blog about blogging with a headline stolen from an obscure band from my assumed hometown.
  • $10,000 - 20,000? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by j_philipp ( 803945 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @04:43AM (#13085699) Homepage
    I'm missing the part in his blog post where he speaks about earning $10,000 - $20,000. He only talks about a big paycheck. Only in the comments is this figure mentioned. So I wonder where exactly the figure's coming from...
  • by LiquidCoooled ( 634315 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @04:48AM (#13085714) Homepage Journal
    Why do you have a problem with somebody making money?
    Slashdot exists to do the same thing, exept taco etc don't even do ANY work - its all submitted.
    I don't mind Roland or any other submitters as long as the subjects are interesting and direct links are available.
  • by TapeCutter ( 624760 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @05:09AM (#13085756) Journal
    A blog about how bloggers can get rich, gets him get rich from blogging.
  • by John Seminal ( 698722 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @05:10AM (#13085758) Journal
    It seems to me, there are more websites now with the intention of making money than with the intention of fostering a community.

    The strategy has changed. 10 years ago, if someone wanted to talk about tv shows, they might have started a website called TvTome, and let members contribute, and it was a real community. You would not believe how many knowlegable star trek fans are out there, same goes for quantum leap. These people wrote some great insightful episode summaries, which had great attention to the shows history, philosophical meanings, and excitement. While I did not see them all, I bet there was a nice battlestar gallactica section. Those posts are gone.

    Then someone got the idea to start advertising, and nothing has been the same since.

    Now websites have a plan, get members to contribute for free, and take those contributations and make money. Isn't that crooked? There is no "thanks", no respect.

    In the case of TvTome, cnet came and purchased them for a cool $5 million dollars. The owner of TvTome did not care about his community anymore, he wanted the money. And all the posts, everything the community contributed was lost. How many people want to put the effort into rebuilding what they already made?

    I'll give another example. AVS forums is a place where people talk high end projectors and plasma televisions and the such. The owner sells projectors, and made a new rule, only MSRP prices can be quoted. Yet, if it was not for the 100 or so very insightful members who offer great advice, his forum would be nothing, meaningless. People go to his forum because there is a smart community there that is willing to offer good advice. Meanwhile, the owner capitalizes off this and makes a profit. Seems to me, the people who should be making a profit are the ones giving their free advice and building the community.

    And then there is one DVD website where the admins went bezerk. They lost their minds. They started banning people left and right, people whos posts are still there and posts that are valuable. Why were these people banned? Your guess is as good as mine, I think one admin said he banned a guy because he had a link to amazon, and did not use the forums link to amazon which generates some money for the forum.

    I love the idea of a community, where people exchange their knowledge and friendship. I hate the idea of 1 person owning these communities and getting rich off the free work and contributations of the members.

  • Re:But WHY? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 17, 2005 @05:11AM (#13085759)
    He does what always pays best in a new market: He shows a way to make money.

    The spammers who make the most are those who sell spamming tools. The people who earned the most with the web in its early days were the ones who built the tools to make websites. The bloggers who make the most are those who blog about making money. The podcasters who will make the most will be the ones who tell others how to make money podcasting.

    He's a pro-blogger blogging about making money with blogging. He's right on the money and tells you to do something else, because if you started to blog about problogging, you would start to cut in on his action.
  • by DoktorTomoe ( 643004 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @05:26AM (#13085780)

    The world is neither black or white, and the sades of grey it is painted with are mostly the lighter ones.

    Of course there are sites that only exist for a quick buck. There also are a lot of valuable "communities" (albeit it has come to my attention that communities tend to make a lot less ad-related income than websites with litte or no user-interaction).

    However, running a popular web project is not for free - there are hosting costs, and there may be a point when you need technical assistance from a professional (geeks as we are, we know how much we are billing). And after all the work the site maintainer has put into a successful site, I really think it is legitimate if he wants to get something back.

    I am running a fairly popular german-language download site. Adsense does pay for the bills of hosting and for my work. It even allows me my rather costly taste for good coffee. I am not feeling like a criminal - after all, I've had and have most of the work with this project.

  • Yeah, money is evil [], it destroys communities and pretty much everything.

    But seriously, you exaggerate. Only few would make any money from their blogging or sites yet many sites appear. For most of the bloggers I know putting an ad link is something extra, something that you do just for the heck of it. You can easily tell those who blog for money (or try to) from those who blog to express themselves - the former usually don't have anything to say. And if someone has something to say that is so interesting to people that he is able to get real readership and thus ad revenue then what's wrong with that?

    Same goes for forums etc. - no one forces you to post on a form whose policies you don't accept. And if there is no forum/community that would suit you start one with the policies exactly the way you want them to be.

  • Sickening. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by BubTheZombie ( 900418 ) <> on Sunday July 17, 2005 @06:29AM (#13085902)
    It's things like this that prove that humanity as we know it is getting increasingly asinine. (As if that weren't already fucking apparent.) Blogging is the most redundant form of emo droning on the net.
  • by BoldAC ( 735721 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @06:35AM (#13085921)
    Money, money, money...

    What in the world ever happened to building a web site to help people, to spread information, and to build a "community." Even more so, when did money become the primary goal of a web structure?

    For example, slashdot was built for fun and information spread first. Only after it became successful did it start making lots of money. Now people do just the opposite... they design the web site for money first and if the site turns out to be useful, then it's an accident.

    In college, I designed the Moan and Groan Page [] (now very dead) where people could bitch about their hardware. It was the hardware/software explosion time and all the major players were pushing a ton of junk into the marketplace. People could search my site before they purchased anything. I got threatened my tons of companies... and lawyers who used the site came to my defense. The hosting was donated, etc. Then I started my real life (job, family) and had to leave it all behind.

    Once I established all of that, I returned to the web to start another project. What a difference those few years made. I wanted to start a similar site helping people with computer problems and [] was born. No thrills, no fluff, no pop-ups... just helpful computer hints. We make enough money from google to pay our server costs... nothing more.

    Despite the fact that we just provide raw information, we have never developed a huge community around us. Sure we receive a ton of hits from the search engines, but I miss that feeling of having tons of users helping and supporting each other.

    Now I have to worry about everybody stealing my information and slapping their ads all over it...

    What a difference a few years make...

  • Re:Numbers Game (Score:4, Insightful)

    by hankwang ( 413283 ) * on Sunday July 17, 2005 @07:24AM (#13086013) Homepage
    Wait a second... his site gets a piddling 3000 page views a day ... WTF?

    Read. He says that he has around twenty blogger web sites; he just doesn't tell which one is generating most of the revenue. For example his digital camera site has 20k views per day.

    Apart from that, Adsense revenue depends a lot on the type of advertisements. Advertisers only pay $0.05 for clicks on ads for small niche products with little competition. It can be over $10 for a single click on high-competition, high-profit products. See all the bogus web sites that are stuffed with "information" about debt consolidation, loans, online poker, etc.

  • Re:Numbers Game (Score:5, Insightful)

    by k98sven ( 324383 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @08:43AM (#13086146) Journal
    Something tells me this guy is making this all up.

    Now why would a guy running a blog named "Professional blogger - Helping bloggers earn money" possibly want to exaggerate the amount of money he makes off his blogging?

  • by bubbaD ( 182583 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @10:26AM (#13086464)
    like the...boom of the .COM days every idiot is going to go quit their job and try to become a pro-blogger.

    Thanks to the dot-com days these people don't have day jobs anymore. Really these scams have great appeal to the unemployed, who have extra time, are desperate, and feel like they have less to lose. And although its easy to make fun of "the losers," they're not paying income taxes or into social security, so we're all losing out.
  • by drsquare ( 530038 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @10:35AM (#13086500)
    What in the world ever happened to building a web site to help people, to spread information, and to build a "community." Even more so, when did money become the primary goal of a web structure?

    Who says they're building it just for money? Money does a lot of things. For one it pays for your webspace, domain name, and all that crap. Secondly, it pays your costs of living, so you don't have to get a second job, so you can focus on your website fully. Surely the quality's going to be higher when you're spending all your effort on it. Or would you rather website makers put 90% of their effort in their mindless day job?

    You're just making enough money to cover your costs. Now imaging you made so much money off it you were making ten times more than you were in your old job, meaning you could quit. Surely you wouldn't turn that down, or is your post thinly-veiled bitterness that someone else's site is more success?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 17, 2005 @10:45AM (#13086546)
    (a) make $10,000/month
    (b) work only couple of hours a day and from home
    (c) links to ebooks on how to do this
  • by jc42 ( 318812 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @10:57AM (#13086603) Homepage Journal
    So yes, there are people out there who set up websites just for fun, and not for the money. So if this is a good thing, why do so many people tell me I am stupid for doing it?

    No mystery there. Lots of people believe that you should only do things that are profitable, and by "profitable" they mean you get money. They don't understand that there are other kinds of profit.

    Much of this can be understood as the "economic" model of human behavior. Some years ago, my wife was working toward a degree in economics, and she liked to describe a discussion topic that kept popping up at school: One way that scientific theories are tested is by using them to make predictions, and see which predictions come true. Most economic models aren't very good at prediction. Some are a bit better, and those are the ones that include things like fame and power as motivating forces. These don't translate easily to/from money, but they can be independently measured, so they can be used in models. Such theories aren't politically acceptable, however, because they're considered "Marxist".

    Myself, I like another illustration: If you consider it stupid to do things for fun and not for money, you would never have children. If humans actually worked that way, our species would be extinct within a century. This hasn't happened. So at least a significant minority of us must not have money as our only motivation. In fact, if you look at the costs of raising children, you have to conclude that some humans are stongly motivated to do some things that are financially really stupid. Most economists would call such people irrational. But without them, we would be extinct.

    Maybe you're one of these people.

  • by onepoint ( 301486 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @11:15AM (#13086692) Homepage Journal
    You enjoy what you are doing, Never let anyone tell you different. I have a small site that I have updated daily since 2000, it does not generate alot of traffic but it helps my in my hobby. Also it's nice to recieve a thank you letter from people ( that's the best reward from my point of view ). so keep up the great work.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 17, 2005 @01:11PM (#13087220)
    As someone who has been employed by one of the major news organizations you mentioned as a news writer, I disagree that "they" have any better insight than you or I or some blogger. The majors have an AP wire and subscriptions to the NY Times and the Wash Post.

    Then they rewrite it.

    Nothing, nothing is reported on a radio or TV network that is not a rewrite of a wire service or newspaper story. The sole exception might be a fire or hurricane where a network affiliate has sent a camera crew. But as far as news about politics or Washington or any other topic of substance, a good blogger may have just as much insight as the networks, and possibly more, since he or she does not have to worry about getting fired (or, more realistically, placed on next year's layoff list). On the other hand, anybody can start a blog, and it is harder to find a blog featuring a talented blogger than it is to find news by flipping between channels 2, 4, or 7.

  • by Iggert ( 900426 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @02:47PM (#13087654) Homepage
    All I see is a bunch of wannabe critics who obviously ooze with jealousy because they've never been able to achieve this level of success outside of their mere rantings they contribute to the comments section of Slashdot. Of course some of those who are posting such harsh criticisms are probably guilty of nothing but ignorance because they have yet to figure out how to do what many are doing... Personally, I believe the opportunities that come along with ads on blogs and websites are a win-win situation. Advertisers like them, Publishers like them and Uncle Sam likes them - why shouldn't you? And even if you don't, no one is forcing you to click. Sheesh! Besides WHAT are ya'all complaining about? At least the folks making money from blogging or a variety of other internet based avenues are helping support the millions of people on welfare regardless of what part of the world they are in. Helps keep YOUR taxes lower, don'cha think? Got things to say? Get a Blog! Perhaps people will like you well enough to click on you too! Iggy
  • by Just Another Poster ( 894286 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @05:16PM (#13088498)
    Seems to me, the people who should be making a profit are the ones giving their free advice and building the community.

    But the owner is the one who expended resources to set the site up in the first place. Without him, there would be no free advice or community.

  • by ThePromenader ( 878501 ) on Sunday July 17, 2005 @06:26PM (#13088896) Homepage Journal
    Hey, I am completely in the same boat as you.

    I started a site to share (and as an excuse to continue my interest in) my love for the city where I live - every two weeks I would add a new section with a map itenerary covering a new section, some new photos and a bit of text describing the history of the land covered. It began simple but became much more... shall we say important.

    Some told me that I should have people pay for all the info I give out for free, but I don't think the web is ready for that yet (most prefer some for free over something more complete but pay-access - and as far as I'm concerned people are still wary of paying for anything through the web), so I chose instead to make a place for ads and have visits "make my site worth its while" in that indirect way.

    Not only am I told that I am stupid for doing this, but that I am naive. True that, open since a month and a half already, but not yet generating a lot of traffic, I am already finding bits and pieces of my info elsewhere on the web on sites that appear higher up in the SERP's than mine, sites that also sport google ads, and sites that probably also generate much more "click-through" cash than mine.

    By being honest, how are we to compete?

Loose bits sink chips.