What is Buy Me Coffee™?
tl;dr: Buymecoffee.co is not for everyone, but that’s entirely the point.
Buy Me Coffee™ adds friction back to social networks by creating a personal paywall. We believe that what we are getting for “free” on social media now is far from what we should be getting. Our view is, over time, people have replaced quality and authenticity with meaningless quantity in the form of shallow follows and “friend” connections. This is great for companies that want us addicted to a “feed” filled with mostly inane content in order to serve us ads, but is NOT actually good FOR US. We rarely share anything near and dear to us on these feeds simply because most social media platforms are visible to too many people. And even when we restrict access, it's hard to trust an advertising-funded social media company to not sell or abuse our data.
There was a time when we were comfortable being “just” normal or “weird” online in view of our close friends (e.g. the dubious choice for your AIM screen name---we're laughing with you, fartMonst3r69), but these days, all we see is the “aspirational” highlight reel of social media. Highlights are what we are are willing to show strangers and people we barely know. But what of our closest relationships? Don't we need to nurture these relationships to be happy? Shouldn't technology enhance real world relationships instead of primarily helping to serve ads or track users (and manipulate democracies)? Sadly, despite how things seem on Facebook or Instagram, many of us are actually less happy now than we were before social media technology became such a prevalent feature in our lives.
The secret to happiness, we believe, is simple: To be happy, we need to 1.) be satisfied with what we are doing and where we are going in life through meaningful accomplishments, and 2.) be surrounded by people whose company we enjoy. Buy Me Coffee, we believe, is a step in the right direction.
How does BMC Work? | How does BMC benefit its users?
Buy Me Coffee™ is open (and free) for anyone to create content, but to “follow” someone means to donate a token amount per year, something like $6. In the case of a $6 donation, $4 goes to the person being followed (net of transactions costs), and $2 goes towards the operations and development of Buy Me Coffee™. We believe $6/year is small enough to not be a burden to supporters and friends, but goes far to show support and to encourage writers and podcasters to create high quality content.
By adding a cost for users for value they receive, we’re attempting to pull people away from the poison of advertising-backed social media platforms. Frankly, if a service is free, it likely means you’re not the customer---you’re actually the product. Our pledge is, Buy Me Coffee™ will never sell advertisements on its user pages, and it will never sell its users’ data. Ever. With our model, we are purposely “shrinking” the Internet in order to add clarity into your true circle of supporters and to make it easier to help each other succeed.
Our model makes it prohibitive to subscribe to more than a handful of your closest friends and confidants. With a smaller set of followers, it’s easier to cut through the noise and pay closer attention to the people willing to “buy you coffee.” We believe that users will also be inclined to produce good and useful content when they are followed as each follower spent the time and the money to demonstrate their support. This because we're human, and by and large, we want to do right for the people we like and like us. As Buy Me Coffee™ grows and develops, we hope to see users having deeper and more frequent conversations and collaborations with their friends and supporters, which in turn empowers users to accomplish more over the longterm.
We think Buy Me Coffee™ is perfect for people who are tired of the Internet of More, and want the Internet of Great. BMC = MIGA™.
Is It Free?
Buy Me Coffee™ is free for anybody to create an account and start blogging or podcasting. The site only makes money when friends and supporters agree to "buy their friend coffee." In the case of $6/year to show support to a friend, $4 is for the friend being followed and $2 is for Buy Me Coffee™ to support its operations and development. That's it! Buy Me Coffee™ makes absolutely no money from advertisers or data brokers. And we never will.