For several years now, the appeal for donations has started on the blog in mid-November. A little tradition - I then collect the budget for the coming year. The campaign goes sometimes more, sometimes less well. As a rule, there is a small, loyal core of readers who willingly and immediately reach into their pockets and contribute their part to the budget.
But then it becomes difficult, and a lot of persuasion is necessary by the end of January the campaign comes to a positive conclusion. This year everything is different. There will be no appeal in 2020. The decision has been made, and there are many reasons for it.
Everything back to zero
Of course, everything has to do with Corona. The pandemic restricts freedom of movement - on the one hand. On the other hand, it creates space. You can use it for self-reflection and about what you do and how you want to do in the future.
There are some things that I would like to avoid in the future. In order to do it better, in any case differently. This also includes a portion of selfishness or self-protection. At the top of the list is the fundraiser. In principle it is like this: someone writes, performs, creates entertainment. Many read, have fun, distraction, maybe dreams. And if I have at least made the readers smile with my texts, then a lot has been gained.
This works until the clerk asks for money. Then the mood becomes icy and very clever people ask why all this should cost something. At the regulars' table it is argued that they also have a blog. Everything is free. If you ask, the last blog entry was in 2016. There were 4 or 5 readers. That's the way it is.
I get that. Nobody wants to pay for editorial content and journalism. Not even me. Only, without money, everything is nothing. Licenses cost money, as do good technical solutions. And writing doesn't work with air and love either.
One thing is certain, I will not expose myself to it anymore. I don't want to find any emails in my inbox asking me to disclose my costs. Then you could talk about whether it was all worth one or two euros. I also don't feel like hearing the wisdom of the regulars' table and all that "free of charge" chatter.
Freedoms such as those created by a pandemic are also possibilities. Setting everything back to zero, for example. Questioning some things in principle is part of it.
Correct undesirable developments
This also includes the High Mileage Club. I postponed its start until the future of the blog was clarified. Or that COC archive. For example, it has three types of customers. The ones who really buy a COC. They make up 10 to 15% of inquiries. The second group asks, never reports again because the COC is completely surprisingly not free. Group three is generous. She sends a list of her Saab collection, wants 10 COC copies free of charge, but offers a refund of the postage.
Of course, as the readers suspect, it is great fun to search through a guaranteed non-digitized archive for documents on Sunday afternoons. Writing emails is investing time, 85% of which is free. At some point, after a few years, you have enough of it, pull the brakes and suspend the service until further notice.
Don't leave it alone
Aside from my certainly harsh words, there is a small group of readers beyond that who support the Saabblog project on a monthly basis. With more or less large amounts, everyone as they want and can. I appreciate that very much and say thank you for it.
Not to leave this little crowd alone is a matter close to my heart. She will continue to receive a daily dose of Saab Entertainment in 2021. How is not clear yet, but ways will be found.
How the project will continue is open. The thought process is running, there are a number of options. The good news will be that Saab content will continue to exist. I still enjoy writing and branding. Maybe more than ever. Even if the motivation and the mission are completely different than 10 years ago.
A plan outlining the future will be available here in December.