Here's one opinion of the upcoming change. Go ahead and read it, then come on back here and read the rest of this post. It's o.k. I'll wait.
Yes, it's true.
After two years of broadcasting, we're switching over to a pay-per-download format, which will cost you all of-
a whole dollar per two-hour episode!
My God! How can we live with ourselves? The immorality! The chaos! The anarchy!
If we went to two episodes a month, every month, as Mr. Sloat suggested (which likely would be an occasional special episode and not every month, though we haven't discussed it yet), that would be-holy shit! $24.00 a year! We are bastards, aren't we?!
O.k. I'll stop with the sarcasm and elaborate a little on our reasoning.
First, the whole Hauntcast crew hates having to subject you to all the commercials we have to run in order to pay for hosting and all the minutiae running a website costs. While we really do love our sponsors and the products they provide (I mean, Hi-Rez designs? What an amazing product!), the commercials make up approximately twenty to thirty minutes of time per episode. We all felt that was time we could be using to put in other content.
Second, we'd really like to add a segment of real, honest-to-god product reviews for our listeners. You're all aware of the concept of "don't bite the hand that feeds you," and to an extent, that applies to doing product reviews other than the products that are sponsored on the show. (We're very fortunate that the products we do have on the show are good quality and the sponsors have good feedback on their customer service. Not everyone does!) We really want the freedom to review other products and tell you if they work or if they suck before you spend your hard-earned cash on them. No sponsors=honest reviews.
Third, we all spend a lot of time on each show that is released. My segment, including research time, writing time, recording, editing and producing, can take anywhere from ten to twelve hours to create. (Mr. ShellHawk is extremely cool with my doing this, but you know every once in awhile he has to wonder why I'm spending time on something that doesn't pay me after being out of work for two years!) Rev has two segments to produce, Johnny has his, and Chris does the rest, i.e. the lion's share of the work. He takes anywhere from 40-60 hours to put together an episode, and doesn't even make minimum wage for it. (Think about it: 60 hours, and not even making $1 an hour. Would you do it?) Guy, our art director, spends his time and effort designing our site and making us look good-for almost nothing. We all have our real life responsibilities-both Johnny and Chris have kids, fer chrissake!-and the show takes us away from those responsibilities. Add in travel, food, and hotel for conventions-because we all pay for those out of our family budgets so we can cover those events for the show-and anyone with even half a brain can see that this little venture is getting spendy for all of us to continue, particularly in this crappy economy.
I did a little research on the yearly cost of a few things you're probably already spending money on:
- Starbuck's coffee, small: about $2.35 each. For five days a week, not even seven days a week, that's $11.75. $47 per month, and $564 per year.
- Haunted Attraction Magazine, 1 year subscription: $35.00. One year does not equal twelve issues.
- One pack cigarettes: about $5 a pack. One pack a week will cost you $20.00 per month and $240.00 per year.
- Redbox DVD rental: One movie, one dollar per night. Do the math.
- Kindle eBook download: $7.99 and up per book. How much do you read per year?
- I Tunes download for a three minute song: $1.29.
Hey, Mr. Sloat is certainly entitled to his opinion, and is welcome to continue getting all the free stuff he can get. From what I understand, it's something of a lifestyle choice and a mentality. It seems pretty limiting to me, but hey, that's just my opinion.
All of you certainly have the same option. It's a free country, right?
You could go the other direction, like Ghoulish Cop of Devil's Eve has. (Thanks, man!) We of Hauntcast obviously hope you do.
The bottom line is that the Hauntcast crew all want to kick the show's quality and content up another notch and make year three (hell, just have a year three!) better than the last two years.
We really hope that you want to share it with us.
P.S. At this time, Hauntcast will remain a once-per-month show, (at only $12.00 per year) just to clear up any confusion caused by Mr. Sloat's post.