Martin Brinkmann's gHacks is one of the best resources for Windows-related tips and includes articles covering everything from useful utilities and tools to the latest, experimental browser features. Unfortunately, gHacks has been hit hard by the increased use of adblockers and as a result, is turning to Patreon to survive.
In a post from Friday, Brinkmann outlines the current state of the site, including the fact that close to 44 per cent of visitors use some sort of adblocking software. Because advertising is gHacks' only source of revenue, it's had a massive impact on the site's viability and despite Brinkmann's attempts to rectify the situation, nothing has worked:
I tried a lot to increase the perceived quality of the site. Removed some advertisement, rewrote hundreds of articles, installed a new theme, removed more than 10,000 tags and a dozen other things but none brought the desired result (a reversal of the process).
In addition to that, ad blockers and script blockers became increasingly popular. Since advertisement is what keeps this site alive, a yearly increase between 5 and 10% in ad-block usage is not something that you can endure for long especially if it goes hand in hand with a decline in traffic.
By the end of 2015, Brinkmann predicts the number of users using adblockers could hit 50 per cent or more.
If you'd like to support gHacks, you can head over to Brinkmann's Patreon and offer ongoing support in the form of currency. It's currently sitting at $US146 per month, with a target of $US280 to support server and hosting expenses.
It sounds like a good idea to me, especially for an independent site. I'm keen to read Brinkmann's eventual report on his experiences with Patreon and whether it can be considered a serious alternative or supplement to ads.
Ghacks is dying and needs your help [gHacks]