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Keep TidBITS Publishing in 2015: Become a TidBITS Member

After the initial shock and sadness of hearing that both the print version of Macworld and the Macworld Expo trade show were shutting down, our reaction was one of reflection. If such stalwarts of the Apple community could disappear, what does that say about the long-term chances for TidBITS, lacking as we do the deep pockets of a corporate patron?

Had we continued to rely solely on sponsorships and advertising, we might be in much the same boat. Luckily, though, the TidBITS membership program that we started in 2011 has given us a solid financial foundation on which to base our work over the last few years. Our membership roll has grown by nearly 20 percent since our first year, pushing the total to over 2,700 supporters.

Thanks to the generous contributions from TidBITS members, we’ve been able to publish nearly 900 articles so far in 2014, and we were able to commission 64 features from outside writers to bring you compelling content that we couldn’t otherwise have produced.

But we are in this for the long run — our 25th anniversary is coming up in April 2015! — so ongoing support is essential. Early supporters who joined the TidBITS membership program when it launched in 2011 have started receiving email from me about renewing, along with a follow-up message from eSellerate. Those messages contain reminders and links for those who chose a manual renewal and confirmations for those who prefer to renew automatically. Thanks for continuing to support our work, and remember to visit your Member Benefits page!

If you haven’t yet joined the TidBITS membership program, would you consider it this year? We focus on content that’s practical, timely, and free of the constructed drama and conflict that so many other sites like to drum up. We’re here to help you make the most of your tech.

We thank all TidBITS members with a number of perks, including:

  • A version of the TidBITS Web site free of graphical banner ads.

  • A full-text RSS feed (non-members get a summary-only feed).

  • The option to receive articles in email as soon as they are posted.

  • The ability to post longer article comments, with live URLs.

  • Recognition of your membership (with colorful apple icons) when commenting.

  • A 30 percent discount on all Take Control ebooks. TidBITS members have saved over $6,700 on Take Control books with this discount.

  • Pre-release streamed books. Books we’ve streamed so far include Charles Edge’s “Take Control of OS X Server,” Josh Centers’s “Take Control of Apple TV,” and Jeff Carlson’s “Take Control of Your Digital Photos on a Mac.”

  • Discounts worth nearly $500 on an ever-increasing number of Mac-related products, including 1Password, LaunchBar, DEVONthink Pro, ChronoSync, TextExpander, Airfoil, PDFpen, SpamSieve, Keyboard Maestro, Audio Hijack Pro, PopChar, CloudPull, Default Folder X, MarsEdit, Voila, Dejal Simon, Password Wallet, Fetch, iThoughtsX, and even the stunning SizzlPix high-definition photographic prints. (If you’d like us look into a discount on a particular app or want to include your company’s products, drop me a note.)

You can choose among five different levels of annual support: $20, $50, $100, $250, and $1,000. Each level defaults to a manual renewal, but if you don’t want to fuss with the cart each year, an automatic renewal option is available. The membership perks are the same at each level, with one exception: the $1,000 level is a lifetime membership that includes a fine dinner with me and Tonya any time you’re in Ithaca or we’re in your city.

If you wish, we’ll acknowledge your membership on the site in the TidBITS Members list and with an apple icon next to your comments. You can control your acknowledgement status, name, and URL in the Account Info page. That page also lists your membership status and expiration date, and if our system ever stops email delivery due to too many bounces, you can restart delivery with a single click there.

Again, if you’ve found TidBITS valuable, or received personal help from one of our staff members simply because you asked, please become a TidBITS member to help us continue publishing the kind of articles you’ve become accustomed to reading each week. You’ll have our undying gratitude, and more importantly, you can rest assured that every article you read was made possible in some small part by your generosity. Thank you!


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Comments about Keep TidBITS Publishing in 2015: Become a TidBITS Member
(Comments are closed.)

ronald Lamars  An apple icon for a TidBITS Contributor 2014-12-09 15:43
Adam, please be aware that this is a long text. Who is going to read it all?
The essentials (what do we get when we subscribe) is second.
There is no mention of the price for the product on offer.
So who will become a tidBITS Member?

I would maybe. I've been reading tidBITS for years. But this does not motivate me.

Sincerely, Ronald Lamars
Adam Engst  An apple icon for a TidBITS Staffer 2014-12-09 16:43
Sorry you found it too long, Ronald. One of the points of TidBITS is that we provide depth and details, rather than just pretending that everything can be explained with a few sentences and a screenshot. The world is too complex for that.

My goal in writing what I did was as follows:

* Set a context for why the title is asking for support (because the print version of Macworld and Macworld Expo went away, and other Mac resources could follow).

* Explain briefly how the TidBITS membership program has been a success, and summarize what it has enabled us to do.

* Ask readers to join, and list the benefits.

* Explain the mechanics of price levels (which are sort of irrelevant, since it's all voluntary) and renewals and how people can login and get the benefits.

I could have just done an extremely short article that said "Please support TidBITS via our successful membership program and you'll get perks - here's the link." but TidBITS is itself an ongoing story that many of our readers have been following for 20+ years, and I want to add color to that story whenever possible, rather than just encouraging transactions.
Steve Werner  2014-12-09 23:42
I became a member because I realized how much I've gotten out of reading TidBITS over the years. It's really worth it! (Unsolicited comment by a member the past couple years)
Adam Engst  An apple icon for a TidBITS Staffer 2014-12-10 09:13
Thanks so much for the kind words and the support, Steve!
izidor  2014-12-11 04:43
To add to Steve, I have just increased my membership to 100 dollars from 50 dollars because compared to other things I have to pay, TidBits is worth at least this much. I would not want to lose it. Maybe the correct motivation is "How much would you pay not to lose TidBits?"

Anyway, in this age of hype and pure sensationalism, TidBits with its serious approach is very needed indeed.
Adam Engst  An apple icon for a TidBITS Staffer 2014-12-11 10:36
It's tremendously encouraging to hear such feedback, Izidor, since we often feel that just being sensible makes us seem like fuddy-duddies. So much of what's covered is there just to fill space and attract clicks, not to shed some light on the workings of our world.