Important Visitor Poll

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Would you be willing to pay $5/year for access to East Carolina Roots content if all advertising and tracking codes from Google and Facebook were removed from the site?

Click here for results.

What’s this all about?

I’m hearing a lot of concern from folks about Google, Facebook, and other big tech companies and how they collect and use data from people all over the internet.

I completely understand the concerns. I’ve wondered how to protect East Carolina Roots website visitors from being tracked by big tech on my site while still bringing in a few dollars each year to offset the cost of hosting and maintaining the site.

You’ve noticed ads on East Carolina Roots. They are served by Google Adsense, which I’ve used since the site was founded in 2007. That brings in a very modest amount of ad revenue each month and helps with the cost of maintaining the site. I’ve also previously had a Facebook widget on the site, but I’ve made the decision to remove that since it offers no benefit in terms of ad revenue.

Both of those “features” use cookies that allow Google and Facebook to know you have visited any site where their services are in use. In other words, virtually every site you are going to for news or information (unless it is a government site or a paid subscription site) is going to be using ads and tracking codes in some capacity. This is why you keep getting those cookie pop-up boxes asking you to consent on almost every site you visit.

It occurred to me if I charged a modest membership fee for East Carolina Roots, it would offset the maintenance costs and I could remove every single sort of tracking code on the site so your ECR site visiting experience will be completely free of big tech.

It’s ok with me either way. I am willing to keep the ads in place if you’d prefer to keep completely free access, but if you have found the site useful, or if you currently find the site useful, and you’d prefer to help maintain it with a modest subscription fee, I will get that set up right away and remove all tracking codes.

Or if you have some other idea, I’m welcome to that! Please leave a message in the comment box above.

1 Comment

  1. Rebecca

    It is becoming even more difficult to maintain some semblance of privacy. Thanks for your efforts.


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Find this site helpful? Consider donating to a great cause!

A couple of years ago I removed all advertising on this site from Google Adsense, as well as any sort of tracking scripts from Facebook or Google or any other parties. I invited visitors to chip in a few dollars to help offset the cost of hosting and maintaining the site. Many folks did step up and have offered to make donations, but now I own the server that the site is on and hosting is no longer an issue. BUT if you do feel helped out by the material here, please consider donating a few dollars to one of my absolute favorite genealogical resources, the Kellenberger Room at the New Bern Library.

Please send a check payable to New Bern Craven Co. Public Library with Kellenberger Room in the memo line to:

Craven-Pamlico Regional Library
400 Johnson St.
New Bern, NC 28560

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