Why are we fundraising?
I’d like to share a bit more info on what is currently happening with the site. Ali and I have started the migration of the site to my ownership. To that end I have opened a new account with a hosting provider. The annual hosting fee of US$ 102.77 has already been paid by me. The files have been transferred to my hosting account, so I am now sort of “in possession” of the site. That means I can now also get the professionals involved to help with making the site accessible again. By that I do not mean access for you, the users. The site is still online and visible for you – except for some parts of it that only show up as code. However, the main issue is that access to the backend of the site, i.e. the interface where the admin can manage the website, is currently impossible. That is caused by an outdated software version. Hence we need a web designer to help us make the site usable again.
This is where the fundraiser comes in. Apart from the hosting fees mentioned above, other costs will be incurred. I already have one estimate from a developer/web agency in Germany who charge €88 (US$ 100/£75) per hour. I have not got any estimate on how many hours they might need to sort this out, but I am guessing this is not a half-hour job… I am still waiting to hear another estimate from another developer – which may actually be a bit cheaper.
The bottom line is: We probably need a few hundred dollars *minimum* to get RAnet back on its feet. I hope that the items on auction and on sale for the fundraiser will appeal to you. They are either handmade items by me, as well as quite a number of items donated for future auctions by fellow fans (especially LoLo). Oh, and just to say that what you saw in the trailer above, was only a little sneak peek. There will be many more items available. Please do have a look from Friday, 29 November 2019 until Monday, 2nd December.
How does the fundraiser work?
- The auctions will start on Friday, 29th of November 2019. They will each run for 3 days, finishing on Monday, 2nd of December. Bidding on the auction items is through eBay – which allows easy access and reliable processing of the bids. The fees will be covered by the auction proceeds, as will the postage fees.
- Instead of a custom-made shrine, I am this time offering some handmade mini books for a fixed price. Since eBay’s fees for fixed price offers are quite expensive, I am going to sell the mini books via my Etsy store where the fees are less than half of eBay’s. Etsy is an online marketplace for handmade items, not an auction platform. There is no sign-up required in order to buy an item on the platform. Instructions and links will follow in the fundraiser post on Friday.
- The auctions will be staggered with a few minutes in between each auction – this is to give me time to activate the individual auctions and to process/add up the final bids on the last day. The mini books will all go on sale on Etsy at the same time on Friday.
- A post with descriptions of the items/sets will be published on Friday here on my blog as soon as all auctions have been activated. I will provide links to the individual auctions and to the Etsy items for easy click-through. Alternatively you can also follow the auctions through my seller page on eBay, or bookmark my (already existing) Etsy store. I am called “guylty” on eBay, and “ScissorsAndSmiles” on Etsy.
- Like in previous auctions, I will post updates with current bids over the duration of the auctions (most probably once every day). Highlights and milestones will probably also be communicated over on Twitter where you can find me as @GuyltyPleasure.
- The auctions are open to all, items are shipped anywhere in the world, free of charge.
- Finally, just a reminder that the auctions and the Etsy sale are a charity fundraiser. The proceeds will go to fund the update and migration of richardarmitagenet.com, one of our beloved fan sites. (Note: Postage costs will also be covered by the proceeds.)
- Since the auctions are a charity fundraiser, once an auction winner has been determined or an Etsy item been sold, the items are non-refundable. So please only bid and/or buy if you are willing to pay!
So much for the small print. The main point, however, is: This is an opportunity to have fun together and to club together in order to save a site that we all care for. We have taken the first step by setting up a new hosting plan. Now we need to tackle the technical issues. Let’s get it done together. I hope to see you over the Thanksgiving weekend – bidding, buying, tweeting, watching. Can’t wait!
Two addendi after original posting
- Some of you have asked whether donations are possible in case of missing out on auctions or when you don’t want to buy any fundraiser items. Yes, it will be possible to simply donate to the fund. I will facilitate that via Paypal as previously done in our birthday auctions.
- I forgot to mention – this is mini mini small print, but just to let you know: In the – hopefully – unlikely event that we are not able to rescue the site and funds from this fundraiser are left over, these monies will be donated to one of Richard’s charities.