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21 June 2000

The atom-smashing machine that's had people up in arms has begun operations. The planet's still intact.


  • Sports Night No Go on HBO [Mr. Showbiz, via Lake Effect]
    ...ABC had been in talks with HBO to pick it up, but now insiders say that that deal is a no-go...

    Since Sorkin has said he had his heart set on producing the show for HBO and no other network, it finally looks like the end of the road for Sports Night.

Much like what Courtney Love is planning to do with her music, web writers could have a 'tip jar' where readers could easily pay writers voluntarily if they feel like it. Apparently this is possible today with PayPal. Huh.

  • Enabling Goodwill on the Internet: Rethinking Micropayments [Misnomer]
    People who pay to read a book online pay that fee because they can't see the content otherwise. This means that everyone who sees it, pays, but no one else sees it. Conversely, when something that is freely available asks readers to pay, only a fraction will. However, this leaves the possibility that if something is good, it is that much more likely to be discovered (and potentially paid for) by a larger number of people.

Folks on MetaFilter are debating this. I think the people who say 'no one will pay for something they can get for free' are just the ones who would never consider voluntarily paying; not everyone feels that way.

In a voluntary-pay system, it's perfectly acceptable not to pay, but in my case, I'd happily throw a few bits (and possibly a lot more) to some favorite sites, even though I know that I don't have to in order to see their content.

Seth says he won't tip that way until it can be done without being tracked. I sympathize, but I would still do it some of the time even if I'm being tracked.

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