Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Democratic web tax

Rich nations subsidise good websites
  (-6)(-6)
(-6)
  [vote for,
against]

It's often hard for a good website to make money. Advertising is the standard means nowadays, but the little revenue left by tired and jaded surfers is being eroded by ad-blockers and screen-scraping tools. Many sites now sell merchandise, but this is basically selling popularity in favour of money - try to get too much out, and you have nothing left of either. A site can find itself paying for huge numbers of hits withoug getting much revenue.

I suggest that citizens of rich countries pay, either forcibly to the government or voluntarily to some charity, a quite reasonable amount of money. This money goes into a pot and gets distributed around the sites that are deemed worth supporting.

What sites are chosen? The ones you vote for. Using your citizen ID, or some similar anti-spoofing method, you would go to the organization's site and vote for those sites that you think deserve your money. So even though the halfbakery has no adverts and sells no merchandise, you are still supporting it.

Your votes will be kept private of course. Porn and spam will be forcibly excluded from the list, and sites with an obvious source of income (such as large companies) may need more votes before they are included than a poor little blog.

sadie, Oct 04 2002

Halbakery Merchandise http://www.halfbake...dise.html#new-sizes
[whimsickle, Oct 04 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

[link]






       //So even though the halfbakery... sells no merchandise...//   

       You mean you haven't got your Halfbakery t-shirt (see link)? Call yourself a supporter of the site?
whimsickle, Oct 04 2002
  

       Didn't notice them. Anyway, the point stands - i doubt if hb gets the money it deserves.
sadie, Oct 04 2002
  

       I'm sure that this idea, or something broadly similar, has been posted before but I just can't quite find it at the moment.

There are a number of issues that this raises though. What is a 'reasonable' amount of money? Why should any particular type of site be excluded just because you or I don't happen to like it? Why should I subsidise your hobby? Why should website owners expect payment anyway? If they want money for running the site then they can just make it a pay site. And there's nothing to prevent you sending money now if you like a particular site so why set up a bureaucracy to administer such a system when it's not required? Oh,and just lots of other questions as well.
DrBob, Oct 04 2002
  

       Exclude porn and spam? Why on earth?   

       This idea would only begin to make sense if getting people to vote for you is somehow nobler than getting people to give you money directly. I don't think that's the case.
jutta, Oct 04 2002
  
      
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