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The economy, she is a-sucking

The company I've been working with and am a minority partner in, as I've mentioned before, is teetering on the edge of bankruptcy. It's been closed down for the past three weeks, and tomorrow the principals and shareholders are holding an emergency meeting to decide whether or not to keep the company going. At this point, the equation is very simple: We have $100 left in the checking account, and debts in the hundreds of thousands. We get more venture capital or we die.

This is, as you might imagine, putting a beating on my own finances. My Web site is the only thing keeping a roof over my head right now, and it's not bringing in enough.

So, decision time.

The situation: I'm in a lease here until May. The lease can not be broken for any reason. That commits me to Atlanta whether I like it or not, and I don't have the capital to move, even if I were to try to sneak out in the middle of the night.

Biggest expenses are credit card bills, run up many years ago when the company was first getting started and was paying me in stock rather than cash. (Stock which is now worthless, of course. Ha!)

The options:

- Pray for a miracle at Spectrum. Ha!

- Find a 9-to-5 job somewhere else. Possibly in IT or Web work, possibly in prepress, possibly in advertising, possibly saying "You want some fries with that?"

- Hang out my shingle as a computer consultant again. I'm told the market's pretty good for consultants, as companies fire their in-house IT staff and outsource.

- Find a way to increase the revenue from my Web site. Doubling it would let me survive; tripling it would mean I'm actually better off than I was before.

I'm leaning toward the latter option right now. To that end, one of the things I'm working on is setting up an affiliate system for Onyx, my sex game. Affiliates would get a unique URL, and would get a share of every sale they made. I know a lot of folks out there have Web sites and wouldn't mind some extra income of their own.

Another of the things I'd like to do is to print and sell posters of the Map of Human Sexuality I've created. A lot of folks have asked me about this, and I (just) have enough room on a credit card to pay for a production run of offset posters, of which I would need to sell 77 in order to break even. Doing this and not breaking even would be a disaster at this point.

So, here's the scoop:

- If you ae interested in selling copies of Onyx from your Web site, let me know. I'm still setting up the affiliate management software. I'll have to make banner graphics for it as well. Right now, I'm looking at probably paying out $10 for each affiliate sale.

- If you'd buy a poster at $12 (plus shipping), let me know. I'd like to gauge interest before I commit the funds. A part of me thinks I need to be committed for even considering taking that gamble.

- Any other brilliant ideas? I'm all ears!



( 57 comments — Leave a comment )
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Jan. 14th, 2009 08:30 pm (UTC)
I'll buy one! Paypal preferred...
Jan. 14th, 2009 09:45 pm (UTC)
Unfortunately, I can't have a PayPal account.

Many years ago, back before eBay bought PayPal, I used a PayPal account to accept registrations for Onyx. When eBay bought PayPal, they went through the PayPal merchant account list and banned anyone using PayPal for "adult" services. (The founder of eBay is an evangelical Christian--nuff said.) I, and many other people, got an email saying "As an adult merchant, you are hereby banned for life from PayPal. There is no appealing this decision."

I've heard they've relaxed about it recently, but the ban still holds.
Jan. 14th, 2009 08:32 pm (UTC)
Ditto...I'd buy one, paypal works :)

Perhaps get 38.5 ppl to commit(and pay!) before making the poster run?
Jan. 14th, 2009 11:37 pm (UTC)
what a pretty,sparkly icon :)
(no subject) - stacycat69 - Jan. 15th, 2009 12:06 am (UTC) - Expand
Jan. 14th, 2009 08:37 pm (UTC)
must find silver lining somewhere!
are you feeling at least healthier?? :(
Jan. 14th, 2009 08:39 pm (UTC)
Re: must find silver lining somewhere!
h mmmm I'd love to buy a paper copy of Onyx.... you know so my slow computer doesn't maker ut implausible to play it....- I 'll bug my partner about it (still thinking)
NOt a big fan pf paypal but he might be- I'll check with him....
Re: must find silver lining somewhere! - tacit - Jan. 18th, 2009 09:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: must find silver lining somewhere! - skittenwench - Jan. 19th, 2009 01:12 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: must find silver lining somewhere! - tacit - Jan. 14th, 2009 09:46 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: must find silver lining somewhere! - skittenwench - Jan. 14th, 2009 11:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: must find silver lining somewhere! - tacit - Jan. 18th, 2009 09:31 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: must find silver lining somewhere! - skittenwench - Jan. 19th, 2009 01:08 am (UTC) - Expand
Jan. 14th, 2009 08:38 pm (UTC)
I would go for the last two options concurrently, and probably for the posters as well, depending on interest and feedback from Penthouse. I mean if Penthouse is going to run an article about the map, it may drive sales up, and $12 (+s) is a good price. Of course everything remains to be seen. I'll pass some of this info along to Petri and see if he's interested in selling Onyx from his website. Not sure if that would work or not, but I'll check.
Jan. 14th, 2009 08:45 pm (UTC)
If you know Penthouse is going to run the article, definitely get the posters made, and stipulate that they have you put "the poster is available at http:\\franklin's-sex-poster.com". I can talk to amorsalado about some funding, maybe.

Edited at 2009-01-14 08:46 pm (UTC)
Jan. 14th, 2009 08:49 pm (UTC)
I'd do $12 for a poster, probably 2 or more. I'd even go to $15-ish if you'll sign it :)
Jan. 14th, 2009 08:51 pm (UTC)
I'd pre-pay $25 (including shipping) per poster; right now it looks like I'd only need 2 (damn the lack of kinky friends.)
Jan. 14th, 2009 08:52 pm (UTC)
It could get confusing, but there's a great consulting group called Onyx that has offices in Decatur. You'd probably kick ass there.
Jan. 15th, 2009 09:57 am (UTC)
Hey, and if you buy a poster, you can save on shipping and pick it up in person...
(no subject) - sylvar - Jan. 15th, 2009 12:08 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - tacit - Jan. 18th, 2009 09:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jan. 14th, 2009 09:02 pm (UTC)
The posters are brill. I need to get one for my sis.
Jan. 14th, 2009 09:08 pm (UTC)
I'd buy a couple of posters :)
Jan. 14th, 2009 09:12 pm (UTC)
I'll buy two posters for $25 each. I'd prefer paypal, as well.
Jan. 14th, 2009 09:13 pm (UTC)
I can buy two posters and pay you in advance through paypal if you like. (can i only pay 1 shipping charge, though since they're coming to the same place?)
Jan. 14th, 2009 09:47 pm (UTC)
Sadly, I can't use PayPal--got "banned for life" from them as an "adult" vendor back when eBay first bought them. :(
(no subject) - beckycaret - Jan. 14th, 2009 09:49 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jan. 14th, 2009 09:21 pm (UTC)
If I can set up a website, I'd be interested in being an affiliate. There's a couple other sites that interest me as being an affiliate member with them, too, and I also need some income!

That said, I've never had a website, and don't know html or java, so this might be a long term plan. Although I hear it's pretty easy to set up a quickie site -- a freind of mine did, and she's not a techie!

Being currently unemployed myself, I can't help you with a poster right now. Sorry. Wish I could.
Jan. 14th, 2009 09:30 pm (UTC)
When you have a banner, I'd like to put one up on my store's links page. Might send you some traffic...
Jan. 19th, 2009 05:35 am (UTC)
Jan. 14th, 2009 09:33 pm (UTC)
I've already BOUGHT my copy of Onyx, thanks. What I'd suggest, tho, is that you start doing some semi-public games. Premier it at some cons that cater to that kinda thing. Get the word out.
Jan. 19th, 2009 05:36 am (UTC)
An excellent idea. Doing presentations at cons would be great, though at the moment my con attendance budget is nil.
Jan. 14th, 2009 09:34 pm (UTC)
Re: must find silver lining somewhere!
I'd definitely buy a poster, perhaps two. I'd also love to give a paper copy of Onyx for a non-geeky friend.
Jan. 14th, 2009 09:44 pm (UTC)
You could absolutely count me in on at least one poster at this time. I would also be willing do it for $25.00 as others have stated and be willing to pre-pay.
Jan. 14th, 2009 10:06 pm (UTC)
I would definitely buy a poster!

There are days i think hard about creating a web-distributed Advertising agency(physical office? who needs a physical office?).... If only i could afford non-job related health insurance. Blargh.
Jan. 14th, 2009 10:19 pm (UTC)
I definitely buy a poster for $12.
Jan. 14th, 2009 10:20 pm (UTC)
I would love to buy a poster, for me and everyone I know, but as I am currently unemployed I cannot guarantee that this would be in a timely enough manner for you to be able to count on me for it.

I have an idea though. You could market the poster to college and university classes that have a sexual component like psych of sexuality, soc of sexuality, forensic psych, criminal justice classes that deal with sex offenders, etc. If you wanted you could add a glossary and maybe some pictures of some of the more obscure things mentioned and turn it into a powerpoint presentation that you could probably get universities to buy. You could also overcharge them like a motherfucker. You might want to try emailing a few professors that teach these types of classes and see what they think.
Jan. 14th, 2009 10:36 pm (UTC)
I took a look at Onyx a few days ago (the demo) and I liked it, I found it creative, amusing and just plain fun! Passed word onto some of my poly friendly friends. They may buy full copies.

I think I could get some people interested in the poster as well (including myself). I know how much it sucks to be in a spot, I was there a while back and I'm almost back to where I want to be.

I'll keep an eye out on here if you do get the poster thing up n going. I'll push it to some people I know. Perhaps it will help.
Jan. 15th, 2009 12:15 am (UTC)
Now that I think more on it I wonder if I could get away with posting a link on Suicide Girls in my account somewhere. I'll have to do research.
Jan. 14th, 2009 10:37 pm (UTC)
I could see buying several posters at $12 or $15 or even $18, what great gifts!
Jan. 14th, 2009 10:45 pm (UTC)
Out of curiosity, what size poster does $12+s buy? Wouldn’t work in my house, but I’ll spread the word around as I’m able.
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( 57 comments — Leave a comment )