The Consumerist Gets A Tip Jar: Blogging Is Expensive, Or Something

Welcome back to a very Web 1.0 method of paying for news: Shoppers-fight-back blog The Consumerist, formerly of the Gawker network and now owned by Consumer Media LLC/Consumers Union (publishers of Consumer Reports), has launched a tip jar at http://donatetoconsumerist.com.

The bloggers posted last Monday about the change, but we were tipped off today by Folio:.

Co-executive editor Ben Popken writes:
“According to the data dwarfs, we have about 3 million visitors in a month. If everyone gives just $2.002, our blog skills will be unstoppable. For less than the cost of a burnt Starbucks, you can keep Consumerist running longer than Obama will be president. That’s change between the couch cushions you can believe in.”

We’re not exactly sure how the math works out here; it clearly doesn’t cost six million a month to run the blog. Six million every four years? If that’s the case, then Popken and Meghann Marco may be doing pretty well, finance-wise.

And keep in mind that while Consumers Union has said they have no plans to put Consumerist behind a pay wall, most of Consumer Reports is very walled-off from the rest of the world. Yet another example of a niche market with information that certain subsets of readers find incredibly valuable and thus are willing to pay for.