Good day readers, as you can see this is the brand new “The Tinkering Corner” website. The reason why we have created a new site is because we are moving away from using free website hosting Weebly to a self hosted WordPress instance. This WordPress instance provides better performance, flexibility and control in comparison to the old Weebly website. Although Weebly has plans where they host your site and give you more pro features, it would be easier and cheaper to use WordPress while hosted on a DigitalOcean virtual machine. Their machines are very easy to work with since they are just Linux servers and can be easily configured with the guides that their community has provided. We have also acquired a domain for the site from Godaddy. They are pretty good when it comes to domain pricing and it’s easy to have the domain attached to your machine, whether it is a physical machine or a virtual machine provided by a vps.
So what is going to happen to the old website, Well the first website was mostly my blog which I have been using for years, and because of that I will most likely just change the link and the branding of it and turn it back into my personal website. I will not be writing much in it anyways and I will focus all my energy into putting on good content into this site. This also leads me to my next point which is that I will slow down a lot on the creation of Youtube videos, and start to create more written tutorials and articles.
Why Am I Embracing Text?
The reasons for my shift from video content to written content are the following:
- Overall lack of well written tutorials and guides online.
- Constant struggles between content creators and content distribution platforms.
- Personal reasons.
Let’s start with the overall lack of well written tutorials and guides online. If you have been paying attention to the content is distributed, a lot less people are writing content for the masses, be it tutorials, blogs, and opinion pieces. Most if not all of the people have are becoming famous in certain fields are doing so because of their Youtube videos becoming viral or gaining a lot of followers on other platforms, but none seem to be doing so by writing at all. I do think of course it is because of the convenience of sitting around on your free time and playing a video on your phone or wherever. But, however, when it comes to detailed content such as guides and tutorials, it is easier to write a very detailed post.
There is also the constant battles that we have to fight as content creators with the platforms in which we release our content. We have already heard of every single issue that has happened in Youtube in the last 3 years when it comes to creating friction between them and content creators. The most recent example was the so called “Adpocalyse” where a lot of Youtube content creators were restricted from getting any Advertisement income from their videos because their videos “Did not please the advertisers”, removing a lot of creators with their only source of income. This basically happened a lot of people as long as they were to show firearms, blood, political ideas opposite to the norm, and so on. For instance, the channel “Vet Ranch”, a channel which shows how a veterinary clinic in Texas helps animals in shelters to achieve optimal health and be adopted by families. They got their advertisement income taken away just because they used to show surgeries performed to animals, which mostly benefited training veterinary students and kids who wanted to become veterinaries in the future. Another example of issues just in Youtube alone was the constant strikes by troll companies trying to take down famous videos claiming that they own them. When that happens, Youtube mostly takes the position of “If you can’t prove that you’re not guilty then you’re guilty” and gives people’s account strikes. It is not a great system the one they have, but then again it’s their platform and if you want put your content in their site you have to abide by their ever changing rules. That is one of the reason why I wanted to self host my own website. I didn’t want Weebly to change their free or paid tier of hosted websites out of nowhere one day. Self hosting allows me to have more control in that regard, I end up being my own boss and the only person I have to really deal with is DigitalOcean. In the case that it doesn’t work, I can always get a backup of my machine and put it on real hardware at home. In any case, DigitalOcean is not restrictive at all and want people to do whatever they want with their machines (As long as it is legal of course). Which leads me to my next point, flexibility.
Flexibility is very important to me. From the flexibility I get from using an free and open operating system to being able to access all my files anywhere in the world, even though they are stored back at my room is very empowering. What makes writing more flexible and empowering than video? the fact that you can create it and edit it anywhere and whenever you want to. You can basically write an article wherever you go, whether you have a computer or just a piece of paper and a pen. Not only that, but after publishing, you can go back and edit things that maybe you feel didn’t sound right. Hell, I am sure that after today I will end up editing this post at least twice before I’m satisfied with it. This also allows you to take old content and update it to fit people’s needs at the current time, such as a Linux tutorial for the latest version of an operating system. You can do this with Youtube but it will never beat something like a blog, because think about it, in order to update a Youtube video you need to record the content you would like to update, insert it in the old video, re-render it, upload it, publish it and add anything else you need to add (While annoying people with an old video being re-uploaded and losing all your old views, likes and comments).
The fourth and last point is mostly personal. One thing that I have noticed while creating Youtube content is that, like teaching, your personality matters a lot. Your personality can be what makes someone keep watching a video or what makes them tune out of a video. Sadly because my personality is more relaxed, quiet and shy, for the most part I have noticed that people tune out or don’t watch my videos because of it. Just knowing that really drains your energy and makes you not turn on that camera and create content. This is why I like text better, it creates a barrier between your ideas and yourself as a person, focusing all the attention of the reader in your ideas.
Advertisement and Monetization
While the old site was free, this new one is not. The only fees that needs to be taken care of are the ones for hosting the site and paying for the domain name. Although it is not a lot, I would like for the website to pay for itself. In the future, I will play with the idea of creating a revenue stream for the website to be self sufficient and does not require me to pay for all the fees. There ways in which viewers of the site could support it for it to become self sufficient, these are Advertisement, donations or maybe (And this is a big maybe) a Patreon. Advertisements would be the easiest way and the most bulletproof one. I know, I know, everyone hates ads, but I feel that they have their benefits as long as the reader is willing to disable their adblocker just for this site. If we decide to use ads for the site, I will do my best to curate the ads to make them as bearable as possible. Donations are also a good pretty good, but the thing is that not a lot of people tend to donate to a site, mostly if they just come after a Google search to read one tutorial. Of course it will make it easier for people that like the site to directly support it even by throwing some change at us! The last option is to use Patreon, although I don’t think this will happen, it would be a good idea in order to get some constant donations coming into the site by people who truthfully appreciate our content. Both donations and a Patreon will not be bad ideas in order for the community to support us and have the website be ad-free.
Anyways, That is all I have to say for this post. Thank you for taking the time for reading. Feel free to let us know in the comments which way of funding do you think would work better for the site and any ideas to improve it.