Why subscribe?

Seth Davidson pedaling along Old State Road in February, 2021, above Wofford Heights, CA

You can help support Cycling in the South Bay with a modest monthly donation of $2.99: Click here to subscribe via PayPal for a mere $2.99/month. You can also mail a check or money order to: Seth Davidson, 21250 Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 500, Torrance, CA 90503.

But why should you?

Glad you asked!

  1. I pay to provide great cycling-related content on a site that is ad-free, and have for more than ten years. It costs me about $560/year in hosting and for the WordPress web plan, plus $5k for a recent web site redesign. Why do I pay, when there are numerous “free” web site options? The answer is simple but long, and it’s this: Reading only really works when your mind is uninterrupted. The jarring effect of having each paragraph of text broken by a screaming ad, or by pop-ups, or by tailored and targeted messages rotating top/bottom/side of your screen, whether you realize it or not, is distracting af. Even The NY Times and WSJ won’t give you a quiet read to yourself anymore, let alone the junk-filled advertorials of every cycling “news” site out there. When you come here, you get peace and quiet and a space to concentrate. That silence and freedom to concentrate is the most valuable thing you will ever have, in reading or in life It’s not free. Click here to subscribe via PayPal for a mere $2.99/month. You can also mail a check or money order to: Seth Davidson, 21250 Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 500, Torrance, CA 90503.
  2. You aren’t paying people to advertise to you. Virtually all subscriptions, whether it’s cable TV or Spotify or the NYT, require you to pay so that once you enter the site you can be subjected to more ads. You are paying people to advertise to you. I detest this and am pretty sure that straight content that meets standards of relevance, punctuation, and basic grammar is rare on the Internet unless you also have to pay to get subjected to someone’s advertising. My model is the book model. Once you buy it, the transaction is complete, there’s no “up-sell” or tailored targeting. Click here to subscribe via PayPal for a mere $2.99/month. You can also mail a check or money order to: Seth Davidson, 21250 Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 500, Torrance, CA 90503.
  3. Privacy. Do you know why there’s no EULA on this web site? Because I collect and redistribute zero data. None. If you are an unregistered visitor, you are truly anonymous. No cookies, no backdoor download of your IP address, nothing. And if you are a registered user/subscriber? That info is on my account with the WordPress server and shared with no one for no reason. I don’t resell subscriber lists or use your information other than to activate your subscription. Is that privacy worth something? I think it is is. Click here to subscribe via PayPal for a mere $2.99/month. You can also mail a check or money order to: Seth Davidson, 21250 Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 500, Torrance, CA 90503.
  4. Fairness. I have subscribers who have been paying since I first began accepting money. Some have back-paid for a decade’s worth of subscriptions. Their loyalty and dedicated readership is worth a lot to me. It’s worth it financially but it’s also worth it as a motivator. You might think that $2.99 is a pittance, but there are days when I don’t feel like writing, and the knowledge that people are paying in the expectation that I will post something is a huge motivator. It’s not that way with people who simply read … I appreciate readership, but after almost ten years it’s the committed core of supporters who keep me fired up. Click here to subscribe via PayPal for a mere $2.99/month. You can also mail a check or money order to: Seth Davidson, 21250 Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 500, Torrance, CA 90503.
  5. One long-time reader and subscription refusenik said that every reader, paid or not, is “exposure“. That’s not true. What creative person gives away everything they make so that they can get “exposure”? Answer: People who don’t value what they make. If it takes time, effort, and expense to create, and people don’t want to pay for it, then perhaps it’s not very good. If it is good, then those who use it should be willing to pay for it, same as they do for Slurpees. Not saying this blog is even remotely as good as a Slurpee. Click here to subscribe via PayPal for a mere $2.99/month. You can also mail a check or money order to: Seth Davidson, 21250 Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 500, Torrance, CA 90503.
  6. “I’m just a cheapskate.” No, you’re not. You pay for milk, eggs, spare tubes, and the occasional, very occasional, new pair of underwear. You can afford this. Click here to subscribe via PayPal for a mere $2.99/month. You can also mail a check or money order to: Seth Davidson, 21250 Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 500, Torrance, CA 90503.
  7. Scarily, this site is a kind of library. It has over 2,000,000 words and more than 2,500 posts. Something that’s not evident from the way this site is set up is the depth and breadth of content. I can view reads/downloads from things that were posted years ago; a healthy chunk of site visitors are referring to old material. It’s no longer simply a matter of putting up new stuff, but it’s also a matter of giving access to a library of materials that cover the waterfront with regard to cycling. Hosting that space and keeping it current takes time and money. Should it be a public service? Maybe, but public services only work when they’re supported by the public. That’s you! Click here to subscribe via PayPal for a mere $2.99/month. You can also mail a check or money order to: Seth Davidson, 21250 Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 500, Torrance, CA 90503.
  8. Bare financial necessity: mine. Over the next few years I plan to be greatly reducing my workload as a lawyer, and to segue into doing way more of what I love doing most, which is riding and writing. Unlike people who write from a chair based on what they’ve read, this blog, in Michael Marckx’s words, is produced by “method writing,” a play on method acting. I do and then I write, and the doing costs (a little) money. It’s my goal over the next few years to build a subscription base that will make it feasible to go out and physically collect the data, whatever they may be. Click here to subscribe via PayPal for a mere $2.99/month. You can also mail a check or money order to: Seth Davidson, 21250 Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 500, Torrance, CA 90503.

Blog posts come out daily except when they don’t. Your donation does a lot more than help me buy the occasional spare tube. It confirms that what I’m doing has value. It communicates respect and it creates self-respect. Crucially, it pays for the trips, forays, and purchases that allow me to go out and mine material, which then comes back to you in the form of stories, analysis, experience, and inside knowledge. Click here to subscribe via PayPal for a mere $2.99/month. You can also mail a check or money order to: Seth Davidson, 21250 Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 500, Torrance, CA 90503.

Here’s the link if you’re feeling generous, and don’t hesitate to copy and paste the link of this blog or any story you like and share it with a friend!

Click here to subscribe via PayPal for a mere $2.99/month. You can also mail a check or money order to: Seth Davidson, 21250 Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 500, Torrance, CA 90503.

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9 thoughts on “Why subscribe?”

  1. Just a heads up: the Buy the Book! and Subscribe Here! links under the Pages dropdown no longer work. (I like the site refresh, btw.)

  2. What about funding the Dropout?…. kind of a pre-paid lay-away that you can tap into, As long as you promise not to spend it on frivolous bullshit, you know, those stupid gew-haws all the 45* master diapers have to, just HAVE to, have. He can take his margin up front, which supports another good cause, and you get tires and tubes and new toe straps…. and such….?

    1. Funding the Dropout is like taking 12 billion dollars and giving it to a heroin addict. Okay, that’s not true. It would be a much worse investment than that.

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