We’re Joining FM Publishing

By Deane Barker on October 11, 2005

Some exciting news for the site —

Later today, Gadgetopia will be joining the FM Publishing network of sites. This group is run by Jon Battelle and Bill Brazell — Jon founded Wired magazine, and Bill was in the group that started The Industry Standard. These guys have been around the publishing block a few times.

We’re the 12th site to join FM Publishing, alongside sites like Boing Boing, PVRBlog, MetaFilter, etc.

What does this mean for you? Well, some more advertising, to be brutally honest. But at least there’s going to be a strategy now. I’ve managed the advertising on this site myself, and I’m not very good at it.

Why more advertising? A couple reasons:

  1. Google Adsense has tanked. I don’t know why, but revenue from that source has dropped about 50%. I mentioned it in this post, and I’ve had conversations with Google about it, but there are no answers. They say click-through rate is just on a downward slide for this site, but I (and commentors on the post I mentioned) think it has something to do with a server outage we had two months ago.

  2. I want to do some new things, including a Podcast (do you capitalize that?). This is going to involve things like more bandwidth, and some strategy (and funds) from people who have done this for a while.

  3. I really have no idea what I’m doing, in terms of strategy. I got an offer a few weeks ago to purchase my entire domain namespace, and that really got me thinking about what I’m doing here and what I need to do to make sure I can keep doing it for years to come. We’re getting quite a bit of traffic these days, and I need some help in figuring out where Gadgetopia goes from here.

So, I just wanted to be as up-front as possible with everyone about what’s going on. I’m excited to snuggle in next to the other sites FM manages, and I’m interested to see where this is going to take us.

Comments are open, and I’m bracing for the worst. Let me have it.

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  1. as long as quality doesn’t deteriorate, and the volume of posts doesn’t go up, great.

    as I said in another post:

    I rely on you to produce a low volume of high quality links, I have no time for the incontinent blogs.

  2. Who did you pay off the use the phrase “quality content” ;-). Just kidding Deane keep up the good work!

  3. Well done.

    I second “bob”, the low quantity is appreciated. Similar sites seem to be so high volume that I often skip their entries.

  4. Have got to agree with the low quantity, it’s the right volume and length of posts that I can quickly scan and provides enough links that I can go into further detail if I really feel the need.

    So yeah, well done Deane, and hope this deal with FM pays off.. :-) oh, and thanks for being upfront about it!

  5. I read a post about Gadgetopia and whether this was “selling-out” or not. I find it odd, you techie people and how preoccupied you get with “selling out.” In fact, even Deane being worried some people will be turned off by FM is interesting…

    No one ever questions whether adding AdSense to their blogs is “selling out” to Google. But, Google is the next Microsoft so then again, is it selling out or not?

    I just think it interesting how monetization of something of any quality can ever be deemed selling out. This is a capitalistic society where philanthropy on a large scale only comes after huge profits.

    So, I say join FM, sell Gadgetopia to WEBLOGS Inc for $1 million (no they did not offer to my knowledge), sell to MSFT, GOOG, who cares….

    If there is something of value, people deserve a profit.

    But I will end with my question…does anyone view adding a bunch of AdSense to your blog as “selling out” or just good business?

  6. AdSense is own it’s own fairly unique marketing/revenue tool… Traditional advertising however (ie: getting sponsors) can be frought with selling out.

    Namely: 1) someone starts up a clock/watch review site 2) it gains popularity, to cover costs and maybe make a little profit (reward for effort and all that), they put up banner ads) 3) these banner ads are targeted at the readers by advertising clocks and watches 4) one of the major brands becomes the primary sponsor 5) to keep that primary sponsor happy (perhaps presured by that sponsor?) some of those articles reviewing their watches, gloss over the negatives and highlights the positives..

    Before long what was a quality impartial site can become little more than a site for puff-pieces…. So yeah, selling-out is an issue.

    For the record, I don’t think gadgetopia is going to go down that route.. But to say it’s not an issue whenever you change you revenue stream is denying reality.

    The network gadgetopia is joining has shown (in boing boing) that it’s interested in maintaining quality sites, and hopefully they’ll continue to do so, and not pressure gadgetopia into doing what it doesn’t want. But only time will tell.

  7. I was curious about how quickly this site would come up when i google for ‘gadget’. It doesn’t come up until the 8th page when it shows a link to my “This Old Gadget” post. Can you find a way to get this site to come up earlier in google? This may help with revenue also.

  8. Interesting comment about googling for “gadget”.

    Also Deane, you should see if FM Pub will add you to their homepage list of sites they are working with at fmpub.net

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