No fundraiser on the blog - the background

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.

No fundraiser on the blog

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.

24 thoughts on "No fundraiser on the blog - the background"

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    Hello Tom - hello Saab friends,

    I have already read the article on the non-blogging donation “up and down” a few times - and my pulse keeps going up to what feels like 200 🙁

    What kind of frustration and resignation must have pent up in Tom to write these clear and above all - necessary words !?
    I think I don't understand the (SAAB) world anymore - have we really made it so comfortable in our comfort zone that we have to discuss possible costs for COC certificates and and and to Tom - what an indictment some supposed " SAAB fans “!?!?

    Here someone sacrifices a lot of free time, commitment, personal resources, heart and soul and of course the one or the other EURO - a mixture of quirk - love and maybe also a kind of "honorary office" and for that they get nice motivating emails as a "thank you" - great Thing !!!
    I always thought that the people reading Tom`s blog are real fans of our small Swedish brand and not bean counters or just people who drive a Saab because they just got it cheap as a commercial vehicle !?

    It doesn't matter - we (I also speak on behalf of the SAAB Friends of Thuringia) pay all our respect to Tom and, above all, thanks for his great work.

    In our WhatsApp group, after Tom's contribution has appeared, several of the active participants spontaneously accept donations and various questions about how we could possibly support you Tom? - Some ideas came immediately 🙂 (maybe we can get in touch personally)

    Ultimately, I would like to ask all real SAAB friends / fans - if Tom does not make an appeal for donations to maintain the blog this year, let's make this official!


    * we SAAB friends Thuringia are back….

    PS: without our blog, the CORONA pandemic would be even more modest to bear, right?

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    I will definitely be there again. You will still hear from us Saab friends from Thuringia.
    I read the news every day with great interest and can only be grateful to you, Tom, for the years of great work.
    In any case, it should continue, possibly with costs. Every real Saab fan would be missing something.

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    Year-end voltage

    What might come next?

    Most recently, Tom (in "My Saab Moments This Week") also addressed the topic of advertising and did not sound happy.
    On the plus side, there were increasing hits and readership. On the other hand, a lack of support and therefore Google Ads, which can sometimes be irritating.

    My personal browser history doesn't look much and the Google AI is obviously overwhelmed with me. Apart from the Saabblog, Wikipedia, Google Maps and Translations, Google rarely finds anything on smartphones.

    For me, advertising for cars, warehouses and industrial solutions dominates. I am not interested in any of these ads (no click, nothing new in the browser history, no gain in knowledge for Google). So every now and then I get test balloons, and I put who or what I really am on the Google test bench. I'm even less interested in these ads.

    Sometimes I'm a man, then a woman, young, old, poor, rich. It's also fun and satisfying to see the AI ​​fidget. But there are also trial balloons that are just annoying. The risk that someone else's page unintentionally opens when scrolling over a display is always present and spoils the reading pleasure. Who knows what the AI ​​will do with it?

    And who knows what Tom will announce in December?

    The way I experience it here (critical, reflective, factual, independent, voluntary as well as independent and inventive), I have - to be honest - a kind of basic trust. Whatever comes after careful consideration, it will be good.

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    Hi Tom,
    yes, I can understand you well ...
    No matter how the blog goes on, and I very much hope it goes on,
    You can count on my financial support.
    Saab is not just a car, it is part of a life philosophy….
    That's why I've been coming back to this brand for 40 years.
    In anticipation of your decision
    with Saab greetings

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    Good morning,

    How can I get rid of my money now? Services should always be paid for ... I don't have my Saab's repaired for free!

    Keep it up…..

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    Hi Tom,

    please go on, there are loyal readers who are ready to do their part.
    Thank you for everything that has been done so far and what the future may bring.


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    How awful, this announcement that you want to forego "donations" ...
    Dark clouds are gathering in the current blog sky ... 🙁
    ... but it continues beyond the horizon! An opportunity arises! Tom without SAAB, be honest, that's not possible! 😉 With a "gentleman" in the hangar (maybe reaching (I claim) there ... ;-)) a clear SAAB statement is made.
    Now it's time to endure the tension again, what will we readers be offered in December ???
    I see it as a real chance to resurrect the (universally) beloved SAAB in a new form. E.g. as a payment blog.
    I am in! 🙂
    A day without a SAAB blog is possible ... but much less beautiful. Therefore: The positive drug SAAB should stay! 🙂

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    Tom, I have an idea. You don't have to and shouldn't beg, God knows. But you shouldn't work completely for otherwise either.
    Just open the "pot" (deliberately not called the donation pot) and give those who are willing to give the chance to do it. And at some point you just close it again. Without reporting and without begging. after the comments here, I could imagine that a lot will come. And you shouldn't do without that.

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      @ Old Swede Thanks for the idea! But: To be fair, I would first like to outline my ideas for the future and put them up for discussion. In addition to the comments, there were a number of emails with readers' thoughts on the subject. Lots of reading material, lots of room to think.

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    I also like to read the Saab blog, give one or the other Saab driver the tip to take a look here, like to write guest posts and always donate an amount that I can. It is really a shame that there are so few and I hope that at least a few more will be added through such enlightening contributions. I spoke to some who also like to read here and who were not aware that there was so much effort behind this blog, they were of the opinion that this should be promoted by us readers.

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    I want to get to the point - and I agree with Hans the Swiss - in DE, greed is so hot that some good things just break or are made because someone thinks they have to get everything for free. There is lamentation at a high level about how expensive the parts and the workshops are, but the exclusivity, quality and diligent work on models, about which hardly anyone (except Tom) has a word or their price, is completely forgotten. Just like the effort of individuals to keep something going for a very long time ... like this blog.

    Imagine if this were available as a magazine at the kiosk, because you would easily leaf out at least a tenth every month to find out how many important and unimportant events related to Saab happened in the last month. And let's be honest, just because the medium is different, should you get it for free? How oblique, how measured is that?

    I can only hope that the bean counters among the blog readers will think about what kind of well-researched, well-formulated and varied infotainment is offered to them here. In case of doubt, if the "knickers" among the "blog readers" do not come to their senses, I am happy to take out a paid subscription. Which regrettably cuts you off from the outside world and access to insider information would only benefit an illustrious group. However, this would then be self-inflicted misery, which does not concern me.

    One way or another ... PLEASE CONTINUE IN ANY CASE!

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    Hi Tom,

    I got my Saab by accident. I read your blog regularly and with pleasure.
    Since I've only become a Saab fanatic since this year, I didn't know that this "small donation or membership fee" is such a difficult thing.
    I am happy to support you because I appreciate and love your work.


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    Tom, please go on, we are the last crazy species in a world that is getting more and more confused, I love this blog, it must not die.

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    Dear Tom, I was actually waiting for the call for donations. I will miss him all the more now. The blog is a big piece of culture and a tribute to a big, lost brand - for all those who love Saab and care about the preservation and care of these automotive treasures. So not only would something be missing, it would tear a big hole. A payment barrier as an alternative? I'm happy to.

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    The ideas and mindsets of some of the comments are interesting and quite deep. In principle, I see the situation as a half-full glass, not half-empty. Saabblog is the last surviving Saab site that brings real content. I don't think your readers want to see you die.

    So I think that a subscription would be the best solution in the future. The question for me would be whether the entire content can be hidden behind a payment barrier, or only part of it? I would like to read the ideas announced for December now ...

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    This blog must go on. Tom, I can understand you quite well. But hope that it finds a good way that makes it possible that we can continue to enjoy this blog. And it can cost something. Binn certainly interested and would participate. My daily Saab food must not disappear.

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    @Hans S. I absolutely agree with you. But I am just as convinced that the Saab drivers you sketched from back then no longer have much in common with most of today's Saab drivers. And that is why such a discussion is taking place or has taken place. Anyone who does not recognize what service is being performed here, or is willing to make an appropriate contribution (each according to their performance), should ask themselves whether they are sitting in the right car or have understood what owning or driving Saab means.

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    Hi Tom,

    I have loved your blog since I first ran it. It goes without saying that your blog also generates costs, and that every reader should be ready to absorb.

    As the previous reader put it so nicely, "without a blog tomorrow would only be half as good."

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    The annual budget and donation goal were always beyond doubt. And yet at the end of the year there were always comments that questioned this framework.
    There was on monthly Domain fees of € 0,29 and everything else possible and impossible.

    A little residual shame?

    Nobody really pronounced it publicly (or Tom deleted the corresponding comments, saved us), but between the lines or the bottom line there is more than just a stupid, defamatory and hurtful comment that casts doubt on the tight budget with suggestive hints Has. Apparently there were also corresponding emails.

    A real imposition ...

    Some people are not even allowed to do good. That is unfortunately the case. Small anecdote from your own haze: A design object (lamp for a four-digit NP) should be given away. AW of the beneficiary: "If you still replace the defective lamps, I'll take them."

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    So I pay weekly for a car magazine that is no longer worth the money. I would want to invest the money in a blog subscription instead.

    Hence my suggestion: Blog only as a subscription model. Fewer readers, a secure budget, and one happy author. Probably less technical effort in the background. The story that Tom can also be a millionaire was shown very impressively this year.

    The consequences? Some people would feel the loss of the stage that Tom gave them for 10 years. By that I mean workshops that still make excellent profits with Saab in Germany. As a collateral victim, the last Mohicans in Eschborn would turn the key in the lock and finally leave their offices. Bad? I think no.

    In return, the Saabs would (finally) be as cheap in Germany as they are here in Sweden. With us no pig (sorry) is interested in the brand anymore. The cars are being sold. There is no Saab blog here, just a manageable scene. And the sales of the workshops that still make Saab are in extreme decline this year.

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    Very easy to understand Tom!

    What's next With a paid blog? I am sure of it.

    I am Swiss, but I live in Germany. What I often notice is this small-minded shopper here in D. I have already spoken a few times about the blog donations and expressed my dismay when I read that there were actually readers who donated the violent amount of 5 euros to have. An absolute cheek, towards Tom, towards the blog and also against Saab. I've always thought that whoever drives a Saab thinks a bit different, a bit bigger, more generous, everything except ordinary, you know. When it appears to be an annual amount of 100 or 200 euros, this free-spirited individualism will probably end.

    Sad, very sad.

    It is like in real life, a lot of good, much different than this unfortunate mainstream goes down the drain, disappears in the fog and does not appear again. Unfortunately, fast-moving business is almost the only thing that counts, and superficiality is rapidly increasing.

    Sometimes I'm really happy to be in the autumn of my life!

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    Dear Tom,

    I can understand your frustration very well. Worked as an administrator in associations for over 20 years. When it comes to money, for me it was the increase in membership fees due to the inflation rate, there were discussions that I don't want to reproduce.

    Nevertheless, I ask you to continue the blog! I always look forward to a new story, report, etc. I really appreciate your neutral view of things! Quality journalism that is rarely found any more! A big thank you for that!

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    I understand you all too well. The day comes when you just have to look at yourself.
    I've noticed the debt collection in recent years and was always sad when you had to beg for 5 EUR. On the other hand, however, I could read in FB and other media that there was a multiple of it for polishing up, painting, new rims or the like. was issued.
    As a non-Saab driver and still interested, I would be happy about a continuation of the blog ...
    So I'll get a coffee and wait patiently for the information in December 🙂

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    Quite spontaneously: My complete approval! I wouldn't want to do that to myself either. I can still very well remember the situation a year ago and the resulting discussion.

    You can only keep it up with good nerves (after all, for almost 10 years). And of course the question is for whom and what? Nevertheless, I am building on a future out of pure selfishness. Tomorrow would only be half as good without a blog.


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