I love this community! [and an update]

Never in my life have I known a community as supportive of each other as the Asperger’s/autistic community here on WordPress.  Holy cow, you guys are amazing! ❀

Before I get started, I’d like to send out a massive thank-you and shout-out to the lovely author of An Autism Observer in particular for her especially kind support!  She knows what I mean.  We’re working on processing as we speak!  πŸ™‚ ❀

I wanted to let everybody know what’s been cooking over the last few days!

YouTube Channel!

First, I did indeed create a The Silent Wave YouTube Channel.  It does not have any videos uploaded yet, but they’re coming soon!  There’s a bit of a learning curve to “doing YouTube”, especially if you’re a perfectionist like I am and want to do it “right” (well, “right” for me, anyway).  πŸ˜‰

Before now, I hadn’t been involved much with YouTube, other than watching the cat videos and comedy snippets that made YouTube famous lol.  So, I look forward to branching out and meeting new people on the Asperger’s/autism spectrum on YouTube as well!  It looks like there’s a whole community out there.  Much like I hadn’t known about or really searched for Asperger’s/autism blogs before realizing I’m on the spectrum myself, the same holds true for YouTube.  I’m not exactly proud of that, but I am working hard to change that.  There’s a whole other world out there to explore!  πŸ™‚

Blog Ads or No Blog Ads?  NO Blog Ads.

Next, I’ve been looking into several options of how to make a tiny bit of revenue with the work I do here.  (Well, actually it’s not really “work”, because it’s fun, but it does take some time.)  I’ve been looking for the least invasive ways to do this, and I’ve specifically, staunchly avoided pandering and what some call “cyberbegging”.  I don’t have anything against people who do this, but I didn’t feel comfortable doing it myself.  (Please don’t take “I don’t feel comfortable doing this” to mean “I look down on you for doing this”; it’s just a personal modus operandi.)

My partner and I had looked into various ways to “monetize” this site (ugh, no, bad!), and so I decided to humor our curiosity by doing my own research on the topic.  In short: NOT HAPPENING.  The ad revenue is quite piddly unless you reach millions of views per year (hundreds of thousands per month), and even then, it’s a modest “revenue stream” at best.  (I’m putting words like “monetize” and “revenue stream” in quotes to indicate a snarky sarcasm and my distaste for those words because they sound so slimy.  I’m a former Business major in college/university, and I still think the majority of the sales industry and many of today’s business practices are quite underhanded and cheesy.)

So anyway… Not only have I decided NOT to opt into any ad-revenue-generating programs for this site, I’m actually considering going the other way…

…into a totally AD-FREE site (!)  As in, any ads you see at the bottom would be REMOVED, and there would only be clear, white space.  (Yay!)

To do that, I’d have to sign up for one of WordPress’s paid plans.  If I’m going to pay for a WordPress plan, I might as well go for the gusto and opt for the best plan they’ve got, with the most options and capabilities.  They call this the “Business” plan, although I have no intentions on turning this blog into a business.  This blog has been active for a year and a half, I’ve been blogging actively for over nine years, and I haven’t used any of those blogs for business yet, so I probably never will?

Crowdfunding Instead?

Instead, I’d rather take to heart some of the awesome advice offered by a few of my lovelies here on WP, and create a crowdfunding account.

Actually, I’ll set up two types of accounts, one for an ongoing monthly pledge and the other for non-recurring single/periodic donations, so that anyone who wants to donate has a few options.

Option 1 ~ Patreon:

For those who would like to donate on a monthly basis, I’ve already opened a Patreon account, which has three tiers so far, ranging from $5USD to $25USD.  I’ve got it set to where it’s a monthly recurring thing, not a pay-per-post.  I’ve seen some bloggers refer to it as sort of a “tip jar”, if you will.  I’ve got the first goal set at $300, in order to bring this site into the ad-free Business plan status, and then $300 each year to maintain that status.  This way I can break even  πŸ˜‰

The Patreon account is not yet live.  I’ve got it built; all the specifics have been filled in.  You can view a preview of the page here, and I’m humbly asking anyone (given that you have the time and energy) to click on that link and share any feedback you have before I turn it on officially (which I hope to do in the next few days!).

Option 2 ~ PayPal (?)

The other option, for those who would rather make one or more donations whenever they like, without committing to a monthly pledge, I’m thinking about using PayPal.

I don’t have the PayPal account set up yet, nor have I committed to PayPal specifically, but that’s looking like the front-runner right now.  Any ideas or suggestions in this area are welcome, too!

(I realize that WordPress opens up several “monetization” options once you go to the top-tier plan, but they just don’t pay out that well, and they clutter up the site.  The site admin still retains little control over the ads that are shown, and the income generated is peanuts.  Plus, ads are annoying and jarring for readers, so I’d rather keep this blog as an ad-free space.  At the top tier, they DO allow you to put in a PayPal button, I think, which is one of the reasons I’m considering PayPal – that and the fact that PayPal is pretty common and established; many people already have a PayPal account.)

My Ultimate Goals…

My current plan is for both the Patreon and the PayPal accounts to be directed toward the same credit union/bank account, which will be completely separate from our regular living expenses account.  My goal is to fund my Asperger’s/autism community-supportive efforts, ad-free blogging first and then YouTube video production second.

I’ve already covered the goals and whatnot of this blog above, so I won’t repeat myself here.  However, I haven’t yet talked much about the YouTube aspect in pragmatic terms, so I’ll do that now….

What’s involved in the YouTube production in terms of a desire for funding?  There’s an awesome (but pricey) Adobe software suite with which we can create logos, images, and video intros.  My partner is a student, so we get a great discount on the Adobe suite, but it is an ongoing monthly cost.  We already have it for business purposes (we’re self-employed, very small), but we were thinking about discontinuing it because of the expense.  But then I thought, hey – we can use the Adobe suite for The Silent Wave blog/vlog stuff, too (!).

And if there are paid tiers for YouTube (especially without ads), I may be able to keep the YouTube Channel ad-free for longer, putting off that (ugh) “monetization” for a while longer, depending on how much can be raised in donations.

I’ve not yet figured the YouTube expenses into the Patreon account yet, but if there’s any surplus beyond my ad-free-blogging goal, that’s where those funds will likely go.

(“Warning”: the YouTube Channel will likely feature me talking, so you’ll get to laugh at my Texan accent!  Should be a hoot πŸ˜‰ )

Any feedback, ideas, etc y’all have is always greatly appreciated!!

Y’all have been extremely inspirational and supportive, and I can’t express how much that means to me.  I never even imagined I’d be writing a post like this, about all this new stuff and new ways to branch out to support the community through several avenues like this.  This community has made my whole world!  ❀

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86 Comments

    1. Omg omg thank you!! I’m so relieved that you already know you like the Texan dialect 😁. I was hoping I wouldn’t have to try to disguise it – I can’t do a British accent very well πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‚. Thank you bunches for subscribing! πŸ’πŸ’πŸ’. Do you have a channel as well? I’m just getting into this, but can’t wait to connect with peeps! πŸ’œπŸ’™

      Liked by 4 people

      1. I have a couple.
        One is related to my podcast

        The other is associated with my food blog
        This one hasn’t been updated for a long time
        https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCG1KINQTRhTfH1ZzYbLOg3Q

        I’m thinking of killing the podcast one. Over the last month or so I haven’t been doing a real video. I just play the audio and show the thumbnail. Earlier ones had me speaking to camera. I need to rethink it a bit.
        Please never try to disguise your accent. It’s important to be the real you.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I like the idea of implementing both Patreon and PayPal.

    I favor keeping overhead costs low by using the lowest-cost (free if possible) services that provide the minimal functionality needed. I want crowdfunding to go into your pocket (to compensate you for your thoughts and ideas) rather than to corporations. I haven’t been bothered by ads currently on your WordPress sites (which my adblocker has probably blocked). I recommend keeping the free WordPress plan (which I believe allows links to Patreon and PayPal) unless there are compelling reasons to upgrade. My adblocker is not as successful at blocking YouTube ads (which annoys me) so it might be worthwhile going ad-free there.

    I don’t know anything about the Adobe software suite you mention, but logos, images, and video intros are all unimportant to me. I’m mostly interested in your personally-generated content.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Thank you so much, Judy!! I really, really appreciate your feedback and your thoughts, and I’m grateful to you for sharing them! I agree, on all points – I run an adblocker myself, and I advocate them, especially on the “bigger” websites that don’t rely as much on the revenue (because they push subscriptions or have tons of ads seen by tons of users). πŸ™‚ I also love the idea of keeping overhead low; that’s important! I’m waffling a bit on the WP plan right now, although I’ve thought about upgrading anyway for a while now, simply because of the added functionality and increased support, not to mention the domain name (before anybody registers that lol – I think we might already have snatched it up, but I’m not entirely sure, as my partner handles all of that stuff lol).

      I’m only interested in the production aspect of the videos for adding title screens (those are the “intros”), or maybe separating out a multi-point post (especially ones with “lists” – “5 ways to…”, “10 things about…”), and whatnot. I’m also very interested in adding Closed Captioning to improve accessibility, or so that people can play them at work or in a public place or on a muted device and still get the benefit. (I’m really new to all this, so I don’t know what’s required to accomplish which goals, etc πŸ˜‰ ).

      I’ve learned a lot in the past few days about “really making it” on YouTube (which, unlike the blog-ad world, *will* pay out decent revenue, which we could totally use), but the more I learn, the more I realize I *don’t* know… and then there’s another aspect…

      …All of the “how to make it on YouTube” “rules” are written from more of an NT-based perspective. Appealing to a different/lower common denominator (not saying that NTs themselves are lower in any way; I think y’all know what I mean – “NT” in terms of how the “regular” brain thinks and processes information, what the “average” person is attracted to or captivated by, etc etc.) And those “rules” they spell out may or may not necessarily hold true for the Spectrum community in general, because of the traits/characteristics we tend to have (again, speaking in general terms). πŸ™‚

      As y’all can tell, I’m still really chewing on this mentally, thinking it through carefully. Wanting to get going with stuff, but wanting to do it right, in a way that pleases as many as possible without putting anybody out or leaving bad tastes in anyone’s mouths. πŸ™‚ ❀

      More to come, in future posts and upcoming videos, I'm sure πŸ˜‰

      Again, thank you so much for your insight!! I'm learning a whole lot from you and others like you as well, and I'm taking it ALL under deep consideration. I'll definitely be my natural self and Content Comes First (otherwise what's the point? Lol) πŸ˜‰ ❀

      Liked by 2 people

  2. ive lived all over, and even had texan roommates (ive even technically been to texas– though i dont think the airport really counts, even if i was on foot) so i probably wont laugh at your accent too much.

    if you say “howdy” though im going to fall over. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Lolol!! That’s exactly what I say (ROFLMAO; I’m on my desktop, so I can’t make all the emojis, but you get the idea) πŸ˜‰ ❀ I'll say it just for you – but I want video of you falling over!! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ ❀ ❀

      Liked by 3 people

  3. All this is full of great ideas! I wish you much success, and I’ll do my best to help. I just use Ad Blocker Plus, so I don’t know what everyone else sees, lol.
    I think most monetization is bribery to get you to stay, but they make a lot of money off blogs, especially those that become popular.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think you’re definitely onto something! You’re the bomb, my friend πŸ˜€ I use AdBlocker Plus, too – it rules! I think it brings the internet experience back to where it should be. Especially on those websites with particularly obnoxious advertising that gets all in your face and starts crawling up your leg lol πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ Ironically enough, it’s the very sites that whiteout your screen and except for a snarky little message “uh-oh! You’re blocking our ads! Won’t you please whitelist us!” (or “you’ll have to whitelist us to see our fartcatchy cool content (that if you Google again, you’ll be able to get from somewhere else!)” – it’s actually those sites that motivate me to download the adblockers! And Motivation for me is a Big Deal lol πŸ˜‰ ❀

      Like

    1. Thank you bunches! I’m so glad it comes through, because sometimes I see myself as very intense and sometimes unlikable lol. πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‚. I really really appreciate your kind words and good vibes! Sending you bunches, too! πŸ’—πŸ’—πŸ’—

      Liked by 2 people

  4. I upgraded mine only so I could have more room to post all of my pictures!
    And I like the no ads at the bottom too.
    I have a youtube account but only posted on it a few years back for my muscle disease info. I actually did it because some women with the same disease said that their family had been calling them lazy and did not understand the day to day challenges. So I made videos for all of those family members to give them some education and yep there is a great support system on youtube just like here on wordpress! Looking forward to your first youtube video!!!!!!!!!!!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. What a wonderful thing you did!! You’re amazing, girl πŸ˜˜β€οΈπŸ‘πŸΌ. Am I following you on YouTube already? Or if not, do you mind if I do? Please feel free to share the link to your channel here if you like! Or if you don’t mind if I follow but don’t want to post it publicly, please feel free to contact me through my Contact page on here 😘😘

      The first video is indeed online (!) πŸ˜±πŸ˜‚πŸ˜Ž

      With an explanation here:

      https://thesilentwaveblog.wordpress.com/2017/11/22/my-first-youtube-video-3/

      Thank you so, so much for your support, luv!! πŸ˜˜πŸ˜˜β€οΈπŸ’–πŸ–πŸΌπŸŒŸ

      Liked by 1 person

          1. I forgot my youtube account password so it took me awhile to make a new one. If you search me on youtube my channel should pop up. I don’t actually know the name!!!!! Sadly!!! Like I didn’t know my password

            Liked by 2 people

            1. Lol I’ve been there! Many times πŸ˜˜πŸ’“. I’m trying to rescue one of my email addresses as we speak lol 😱🌺. I think I found your channel! Is it the one with the Ferris wheel as the banner? πŸ’šπŸ’™

              Liked by 1 person

                1. Yay!! Awesome!! Thank you so much for providing the link, girl! 😘😘❀️❀️. Looks like I followed a couple people by mistake lol πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‚. Wow!! I’m going to watch tonight when I get home πŸ’šπŸ’™. Cuddled up with a kitty, of course πŸ€—πŸ’œπŸ’œ

                  Liked by 2 people

                  1. LOL. Well THAT me doesn’t look like THIS me because I had some scraggly hair that I wacked off so now I’ve got my badasss mohawk doooo so I don’t look the same. But same me!!!! They are long videos. Just educational for the muscle disease I have and I put some of my sweet owl on their too

                    Liked by 2 people

                    1. I dig a Mohawk!! Badass is the best kind 😎. You are beautiful, luv! Somehow you’re one of those people who can pull off anything and always be gorgeous, inside and out 😘❀️❀️

                      Liked by 2 people

                    2. Well thank you!!!!!!!
                      On the day my husband and I went to the butterfly place I TOTALLY forgot I made my hair into a mohawk that morning and I spontaneously asked him to take me to see the butterflies and it wasn’t until we were there that I looked at myself in the mirror and said …um you didn’t mention the mohawk. He just smiled. Gotta love that the guy just accepts whatever I have for the style of the day! They both did veto my audrey Hepburn look the other day though. Apparently I am not a bangs kind of girl. Who knew?!

                      Liked by 2 people

                    1. That’s an awesome question! I think it’ll probably run a bit like the blog; some information, some opinion, some creativity, etc. I’m thinking about someday putting some videos up of performance of different songs I’ve written (?). I’ve always wanted to do that 😁. Always through the Asperger’s/autistic lens, with that as my central theme. Maybe some discussion of the intent of–or further information about–some of the blog posts. Maybe some tips and tricks I use to get through life. Maybe some demos of stim toys when I get them. Or what my stimming looks like. Maybe some Q & A from readers/viewers/commenters. I’d like to make it a really interactive place! And I always want to build a bridge between the different neurotypes, to foster understanding, to get the word out about Asperger’s/autism πŸ‘πŸΌ. Probably some autism advocacy in there, too 😊. I’m really open to ideas/suggestions/requests, too! It’s going to be really fun, I think πŸ’œπŸ’™πŸ’œπŸ’

                      Liked by 1 person

                    2. Well damn that sounds about as well rounded as anything I’ve heard in a long time. I LOVE it. Can’t wait to see more! Would love to see the songs you’ve written!!!!!

                      Liked by 2 people

                    3. Oh cool!! Omg I’m excited that you love it!! πŸ€—πŸ€—. It’s going to be a blast, and your encouragement only makes me want to do it more!! Seriously, it makes a huge difference and it means SO much to me! πŸ€—πŸ’–πŸ’–.

                      Yeah I just have to figure out how to get the songs recorded lol. I’m totally lost in that department lol. I’ve got to get on it soon 😁. Hell, I might even try to figure out how to perform the songs by others, with my re-written “lyrics” to them πŸ˜‰πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ’πŸ’πŸ’

                      Liked by 1 person

                    4. I need to ship you here. My daughter has all of her recording STUFF. Idk what it is but her mic is $400 and she has tons of recording equipment and keyboards and things just sitting there hoping to be used again. She used to record a lot but not in years.
                      Yes, I do love it. I love watching things on youtube. I watch my friend CarolAnne on her channel. Hmmmm I don’t know her channnel name. THerapy bits maybe??? But I like to learn more, and open my mind to the passions of others.

                      Liked by 2 people

                    5. Oh wow!! Your daughter sounds amazing! πŸ€—πŸ€—. It would be so fun to hang out with y’all sometime! πŸ’ž. Carol Anne–is she the 20-something Existentialist? Or someone different? I’ll look up Therapy Bits and see where that goes! πŸ‘πŸΌπŸ’“
                      Yeah, YouTube is quickly revealing itself to me as an amazing wonderland πŸ˜πŸ’—πŸ’œ

                      Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m doing pretty well, thank you! Fell asleep early last night, so I woke up early this morning, after a second/third (?) night in a row of really weird surreal dreams, but whaddaya do? πŸ˜‰πŸ’ž. How about you? Doing well? πŸ’œπŸ’œ

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Oh god I hear you about the insomnia!! Almost 8 years now. Will be 8 in March 😳. I feel you πŸ’žπŸ’ž. Hehe I’m hankering to do another video!! 😁. Probably soon! πŸ‘. Probably nothing super-fancy, another “home video”-grade, but the first one was super-fun, and I want to make another πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‚πŸ’—πŸ’—

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Yes! Insomnia! I feel your pain! Really! Well hanker youself on that youtube please πŸ˜‚

            Trust me it doesn’t have to be fancy… yep! You damn shore did look like you where having fun😊! Blue eyes

            Like

  5. I enjoyed reading this post for several reasons. I have thought about the various methods of how to make some money. The tip jar idea probably works best for me but that would be way down the line. I don’t get enough viewers to warrant worrying about that. Anyhow, I kind of forgot about the Autism community here. I am on the spectrum. I have asperger’s syndrome but to frank I don’t discuss it often. Typically I blog about alcholism related topics or kill some time with bad puns or post inspirational quotes sprinkled with my humor at the end. Anyhow I really know how to talk about alcoholism and tell bad jokes but I am not very used to talking about asperger’s but I may try.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh wow! Thank you so much for reading and commenting ❀️. I encourage you, if you want, to go ahead and put out a virtual tip jar! πŸ‘πŸΌπŸ˜Š. No traffic requirement πŸ˜‰πŸŒΊ. I’m interested to hear what you have to say! Your topics are right up my alley πŸ‘πŸΌ. I’ll be heading over to your blog πŸ˜πŸ’™

      Like

  6. I was at one point going to be diagnosed with Aspergers but they are actually no longer prescribing anyone with it. They have actually taken down the Aspergers syndrome diagnosis! Anyways nice post and cool blog πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, my friend! 😊😊. Yeah, in most countries the Asperger’s diagnosis is no longer used. It is still listed in the current international diagnosis list (!) (the ICD-10). But most countries still use the (ugh) *DSM* πŸ™„. Asperger’s has been melded into the Autism Spectrum now, which has its pros and cons. Chances are, you’d still fit the neurotype πŸ‘πŸΌ, but it would probably be a bit harder for professionals to spot now, given what most of them think they know about autism and how the stereotypes refuse to die πŸ’“. I only say all this in case it’s any help or reassurance to you 😊. I’m really happy to know you enjoyed the post and that you like the blog! Please feel free to make yourself at home anytime, and comment on anything no matter how far back it was written πŸ˜‰. All of your thoughts are welcome here! πŸ’šπŸ’™πŸ’š

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks! Thats really interesting because in the state I live in, they no longer use it. Like you said! Certain groups use it certain ones dont! I was eventually diagnosed with a Anxiety Disorder instead but I honestly dont know! Thanks for the wonderful information!

        Like

    1. Thank you! I’ve done 2 videos so far and I’ve loved it! It’s been a couple weeks now, so I’m trying to squeeze a third one in this week before I leave town for 10 days πŸ˜‰. Thank you so much for your encouraging words, friend πŸ’“πŸ’“

      Liked by 1 person

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