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A couple of years ago I put in a (slightly desperate) call for ‘voluntary subscriptions’ to The Daily Grail to help keep the site running smoothly, and allow for continued development of new features. The wonderful response from readers was testimony to how much of a community site the Grail has become, and personally gave me a real boost of enthusiasm when things had been getting quite tough.

Over the ensuing years I’ve become more and more convinced that this may be a necessary approach for the continued survival of independent websites (and artists, musicians etc). Knowing myself how much work can be involved, I’ve taken it upon myself to donate to other websites, software developers, and artists whose work I appreciate and want to see continue.

As such, I thought that maybe it might be worth making the ‘voluntary subscription’ call an annual thing here on TDG, for those that appreciate the site and want to help it continue evolving into the future (please note the ‘voluntary’ part – the Grail will never become a ‘paywall’ site). I thought doing so around July 4 each year would be a good mnemonic; community contributions will ensure that TDG can remain a viable independent website into the future.

So what value to put on this voluntary subscription? I’d recommend $5 or $10 – the price of a beverage or two, in exchange for a whole year’s worth of information and dialogue on the cutting edge of science and history. But I leave that decision in your hands.

Here’s the link through which you can send a secure, voluntary subscription to The Daily Grail via PayPal (either using a PayPal account, or using credit card/bank account details):

(edit 11th May 2011: the button has now been removed due to a change in PayPal account)

I know some people prefer to send a cheque, but given that I live in Australia, in most cases doing so just ends up with my bank taking a hefty fee to change currency – so I’d rather you just keep all your funds (though I appreciate the sentiment). Also, for those that have previously noted my mailing address – it has since changed, so please do not send anything to the address you have on hand.

I’ll see if I can dig up a few neat prizes to go to random ‘voluntary subscribers’ as well, just to make it a bit more fun.

Also: note that if you’re inclined to give a larger amount, you might want to consider getting value for your money by purchasing some banner space to advertise your own project. If interested, email me via the contact page for details.