Thursday, January 24, 2008
A friend pointed me to a website that I think is amazing, many levels of amazing. It’s actually a blog site, here on www.blogger.com, which means it’s completely free of charges for the person who owns it; no hosting fees, no setup or maintenance fees, no traffic fees, nothing. And that’s just for starters.
The woman who created the site appears to be a hip, young, free-spirited, and very talented writer and photographer. She spent several years in San Francisco before deciding to return to New York City, then headed off on her Vespa motor scooter for a slow, scenic trip home. Along the way, she fell in love with many places, so it wasn’t long after she got to NY before she turned around and headed for the wide open spaces of Wyoming, where she’s been living in a one-room cabin, in a town of 300, for the past couple of years.
Now here’s the serendipitous part that pulls all the other amazing parts together: the project. Last spring an orphaned, newborn coyote wandered into her life. Both its parents had been shot, and it would not survive without some form of nurturing; so, since harboring a wild coyote is not illegal in Wyoming, she took the animal in. Being a photographer, she shot fantastic pictures of the baby daily. And being a writer, she supplemented the pictures with tantalizing stories of his development. The coyote has grown almost to adulthood and has stuck around to become part of a multi-species family: one female adult human, one tomcat, and Charlie the coyote.
www.DailyCoyote.blogspot.com is the popular site that’s the outgrowth of her adventure.
Before you take off to look for yourselves, I want to give a computer tip: If you hold the Shift key while you click on the link, the website opens up in a new window. Even better, if you’re using Internet Explorer 7 or FireFox as your browser, you can hold the Ctrl key while you click the link to bring up the website in a new tab of the current browser window. And if you’re using Windows Vista, you can click the link with the middle mouse button, if you have one, to open in a new tab. All of these options leave the window where you’re looking at my blog intact, so you don’t have to lose it or navigate back to it. And yes, there are Mac equivalents of the hotkey combinations, but darned if I know them….
I’ve had discussions with some of you about using the Internet to generate income. There are lots of people doing it, and lots of scams and schemes around that promise to shoe-horn you into an Internet business of your own… for a fee. They don’t all work, at least not for anyone but the person selling the formula. And many of them are really tacky implementations, not something you’d want your name attached to.
The DailyCoyote site, on the other hand, is an exemplary model of a tastefully executed website that offers visitors high quality content for as much or as little as they want to pay. The selling is subtly integrated into the site – photographic prints, coyote calendars, paid subscriptions for email delivery – all there if you want it, but not forced down your throat. And the site remains amazingly beautiful whether you buy or not.
I’m so impressed at the quality of DailyCoyote. The implementation is awesome and she deserves every ounce of success that’s bound to come her way. It leaves me wondering how to make a similar statement in a realm I’m familiar with. Quite a challenge!