Not too long ago, I discovered a blog that inspires me a great deal. I noticed that the creator of the blog had a tip jar. A link to a paypal page asking readers to consider a small donation to help pay for server costs and such.
I tapped on the link and made a donation.
Later that day the creator of the blog sent me a note saying thanks and letting me know that in all the years of having a tip jar he has only received a few donations from people. I’m guessing thousands of people like me get inspiration and learnings from that blog.
We also see the same thing happening in the App Store. Extraordinary apps being created by indie developers (not venture backed and not part of a large company). At this time I have 5 indie apps on my home screen. Some are free, some charge a nominal amount.
For some reason, users have some reluctance to paying back unless it’s pushed in their face in some contrived system of addiction.
I’d love to see an easier system and a movement to give back to the makers amongst us. Kickstarter is clearly making it happen every day. What else should we be doing to inspire giving thanks and paying back?