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I've long had the desire to share ideas with the world. Before I started this journal though, I didn't have an outlet for that. So there was already built up pressure to express myself. The spark that started the fire that is this journal was personal events in my life and how they related to my principles. Ever since, I've shared as many good ideas here as I've had time and motivation for.
Occasionally people reach out and send me feedback. Knowing that at least a few people read my ideas has done a lot for me. I'm grateful that this journal has gotten the attention it has. But I often wonder if there's a better way to promote my ideas that would reach more people. Maybe I should publish books? Publishing ideas is fulfilling, especially when others give thoughtful responses. But marketing and SEO bore me to death. The result seems to be a lot of good ideas in one place receiving less attention than they deserve.
One concern I have about this journal is that I'm preaching to the choir. The people who read this journal are probably those who need it least. For instance, my last non-update journal entry was about how people should not have children. Ideally, I want the first worlder that wants a large family to read that entry because that's who really needs to read it. I don't think I'm reaching that demographic though.
I want to reach a wide audience. I want my ideas to make a difference in the world. I don't want to put in all this effort for a small group of only 5 or 10 people. Otherwise I feel like I'm shouting into the void. I'm not a total keyboard warrior because at least I have my own platforms and don't leech off social media, but still. I've put a lot of effort into making this journal accessible on many different platforms. I don't want that effort to be wasted.
I plan to start keeping track of how many site requests are made. Right now, my only metric for estimating read count is the occasional email I receive. If you would, please email me letting me know how often you read this journal, which platform you're using to access it, and any other demographic information you're comfortable providing so I get an idea of my audience.
I have no way to collect analytics for Flounder, Gitlab, Gemini, Freenet, or Zeronet. I'm against adding tracking scripts on the web version of this journal. Pageviews don't necessarily translate into interested readers and that's about all I can see. So if you're reading this, I'm counting on your input. But I digress.
I've been thinking it would be nice if I had a way to monetize my writing. Donations aren't working but I'm uncomfortable with my ideas being restricted from people just because they don't have enough funds. So I'll always make my thoughts available through my writing on a "pay what you want" basis, even if that payment is zero. If I decide to try my hand at writing ebooks rather than online journal entries, I'll give the ebooks away for free with the option of payment.
Format-wise, I write rather than making videos or podcasts because I just don't want to put myself out there that much. I care about my privacy. Perhaps I'll make this journal accessible to passive listeners by running entries through a text-to-speech engine. If I were to raise enough money through donations, I could pay for human voiceovers instead.
Unlike popular online educators, I don't hold back controversial viewpoints in the name of appealing to a mainstream, normie audience. I just write whatever the hell I want. On this journal, I give readers brutal honestly instead of trying to win them over. I'm trying to spread good ideas that will age well. Sometimes that means losing the popularity contest.
But I understand there is a balance to strike between diplomacy and truth if you want to have a decent sized audience. There is also something to be said about how a message is communicated. Effective communication is the difference between being listened to by millions and being ignored. I also worry that some folks may be put off by my style of writing. Perhaps that could be improved too.
In every journal entry I've written so far, I've done a lot of filtering. Every entry I write gets edited, reorganized, reviewed, and proofread before I publish it. Since raw thoughts aren't optimal for consumption by others, it makes sense to clean up my writing before publishing. But I wonder if there's a downside to this.
Perhaps if I wrote more freeform, that would make my writing more appealing. Instead of seeing only my heavily filtered thoughts, you would get a behind the scenes look at my intuitions as well. And that's sort of what this journal entry is. It's an experiment in being less filtered to see if people respond better.
Of course when I'm communicating ideas, I strive to be as clear as possible. And that means I have to revise a lot. But maybe not every post needs to be so organized. I don't know. I need advice. Email me and let me know your thoughts.
Every time I get emails about this journal, they're always very thoughtful and that's one of the things I love about doing this. I'm sure the responses to this entry are going to be no different. There are other things I love about writing this journal too. Who knows? Maybe I'll write about them in another entry. Until next time, thanks for reading!
1: About Page
Unless otherwise noted, the writing in this journal is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0.
Copyright 2019-2021 Nicholas Johnson