December 30, 2011
By Adam Bink
It’s been another great year at Prop8TrialTracker.com, with great comments, great traffic, and a stellar community of vibrant discussion and action. And it’s been another exciting year in the trial, too.
P8TT, which is sponsored by the Courage Campaign Institute, has always been a labor of love. It’s never been something that really pays for itself in terms of how much time we spend on it. That’s why we need your support to keep it going. Consider:
- Jacob, our writing intern, and I blog each day, every day, 365 days a year so you can have fresh and interesting content to read. That costs time, a lot of it, for both of us.
- Rick, Arisha, Ana and others drop what they are doing to buy a flight or get in their car to go to the courthouse in San Francisco and sit for hours at a time typing away transcripts of the hearings in the Prop 8 trial. That costs money (for travel) and time.
- We aren’t just the same old site anymore — we’ve made improvements. Starting in the middle of 2011, we were finally able to bring on a full-time technical team to respond to site glitches and bugs, including when you have log-in or commenting problems. We did so because we believe the #1 site on the web with for covering the trial, with thousands and thousands of visitors each month, deserves a top-flight team. According to the recent user survey, 93% of you rated their performance at an 8/10 or above, so it looks like they’re doing a good job. That costs money for their retainer.
- Also starting in 2011, we now have Quick Hits for the first time, so users like you can post content that is just as visible as what’s post in the main section on the front page. We now have a second daily writer, Jacob Combs, to help with coverage of the trials — and he’s doing it without pay (your contribution will help so we can change that). We also have a set of community guidelines to clear up confusion on what the rules of the road are in the comments. We also now have a “where things stand with the Prop 8 trial” to meet the #1 most requested new feature here: an easy-to-understand, one-stop-shopping place to find out what’s going on with the trial. We just permanently linked to it in the banner at the very top of the site so you and new people here can always find it. All of that costs time and money for tech development and writing.
- Not to forget, while our mission has and always will remain the Prop 8 trial, we’ve expanded to cover the DOMA trials, repeal of DOMA in Congress, marriage equality fights around the states, National Organization for Marriage and their goings-on, and other issues. All of that costs time.
- Lastly, we’re doing our very best to bring you the best coverage of the Prop 8 trial. With the help of you in the comments, we cover every motion, every hearing, every brief. We get exclusive takes on the latest developments from LGBT equality’s legal minds like NCLR’s Shannon Minter and Chris Stoll, along with Lambda Legal’s Jon Davidson, and post it here. We track down the latest developments on Prop 8, whether it’s a poll, a report, a new boycott, a new play, a new lawsuit borne out of the trial. It’s what makes us the #1 search result for “Prop 8 trial” on Google, and we want to keep it that way, but all of that costs time, too.
If those reasons weren’t good enough, I have a few more to try on for size (and tell you why this is timely):
- All contributions made to Courage Campaign Institute, the sponsor of P8TT, before the ball drops on the night of December 31st will count as tax deductions come April.
- All donors who contribute before the ball drop are entered into our drawing for one brand new iPad 2 (so you can read the blog on the road!) and one of three $100 gift certificates to a 100% pro-equality business, as rated by HRC’s Corporate Equality Index. That could go towards a flight on United Airlines, a new pair of Levi’s jeans, a stay at a Kimpton hotel, a bunch of new books or a Nook from Barnes & Noble — there are close to 200 different businesses for you to spend where you like. So you have four chances to win a prize.
So please, if you like what you read here, take a moment to chip in so we can keep P8TT what it is and meet all the expenses I listed above. You’ll get a tax deduction, have a shot at winning a great prize, and help bring about full equality faster in our country.