1. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    Since Metabunk quite often debunks some of the claims of evidence behind conspiracy theories, I quite often get accused of being in the pay of the government.

    One thing that people claim is that the site is suspiciously professional, and it must cost a lot of money. So how much does it cost to run?

    There are three costs
    1. Domain registration. I use Namecheap.com, for metabunk.org, .net, and .com. This is $36 per year.
    2. Server hosting. I use Linode.com, a Linode 2GB instance, at $40 per month. But this is shared with several other sites, so I'd say around $20 per month, or $240 per year
    3. Forum Software. Xenforo.com, This was $140 initially, then $40 per year for upgrades. So let's amortise that at $80 per year, assuming I'll be around for another 3-4 years.
    4. SSL Certificate. $8 per year. Comodo/Namecheap.
    Total = 36+240+80+8 = $366 per year. About $30 per month, or $1 per day.
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2013
    • Like Like x 4
  2. Strawman

    Strawman Active Member

    I have actually expected it to be a bit less expensive, not knowing how much forum software costs. Are server costs usually that high or did you decide to go with a pricier option?

    But still: even I could afford that, and I work a minor office position.
  3. Gavriel

    Gavriel Member

    As a customer of both XenForo and Namecheap, I can assure that these values are real.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Cairenn

    Cairenn Senior Member

    Less than the cost of a Sat night trip to a first run movie, a soft drink and popcorn there and a stop afterwards at a 'casual dining' restaurant for a burger and beer, and that is for a single person.

    Recently my hubby and I were trying to figure out another $80 a month (our van was stolen and the payments on the replacement are higher than we wanted). We realized that we spend $30-35 a couple of times a month on dinner at Applebee's or El Fenix, and $12-15 a couple of times a week on fast food.
  5. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    I went with a server that had spare capacity, as occasionally I get linked from a high traffic site, and the traffic jumps twentyfold. It's also running several sites on the same server. Just with normal usage you could easily use the $20 Linode, and possibly even a $10 Digital Ocean. However it would crash if I got linked from somewhere big. I've been with Linode for years now, and they are very reliable.

    Today I got a link from XKCD, which sent an extra 15,000 visitors in (and an extra 200GB of traffic out, as they linked to the contrail map), but the setup handled it very well.


    (Above bandwidth usage is reduced from actual by Cloudflare)

    There are free options for forums as well. But Xenforo is great.
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2013
  6. skeptic01

    skeptic01 New Member

    I was hoping that the community could please address my own pet conspiracy theory about professional skeptics and organizations such as Metabunk: namely, whether The Powers That Be are funding the project. Does Metabunk detail its finances anywhere?

    Apologies if I missed this. I did some poking around but didn't see this addressed on the site.
  7. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    Since I wrote the above I've moved Metabunk to a dedicated server, and cost have approximately doubled, and are now running at around $2 per day.

    Nobody is paid to post here, so there's no additional costs.
  8. skeptic01

    skeptic01 New Member

    All funded by you personally? I.e., do you receive any funding for administering, providing content, etc?
  9. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    All funded by me. I get not money at all. I'm a retired video game programmer. This is essentially my main hobby. People spend WAY more on other hobbies.
    • Like Like x 2
    • Agree Agree x 2
  10. skeptic01

    skeptic01 New Member

    Thanks Mick, good to know.
  11. deirdre

    deirdre Moderator Staff Member

    and shoes. :rolleyes:
    • Funny Funny x 3
  12. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Moderator Staff Member

    And just to add a perspective from someone else with "Staff Member" under my name: I can confirm that I have no financial involvement with Metabunk whatsoever. I'm just a regular poster who spends too much time on here, so Mick sent me a message a few weeks ago asking if I would do some moderation duties. (I live in the UK, so tend to be online during the night time in his time zone.)

    Nobody is paying anybody to post here.
  13. Trailspotter

    Trailspotter Senior Member

    This is an unsupported assertion; there always is a possibility of visiting trolls some members being paid by a third party;)
    • Agree Agree x 1
  14. tinkertailor

    tinkertailor Senior Member

    I, a humble member without 'Staff Member' under my name, am not getting paid either. If I was I would have found this place earlier... After all, debunking is something I can do in my pajamas in bed at 2 a.m. or noon, whereas in the big wide world I have to wear actual clothes and wipe the Cheeto dust off of my face. :(
    • Like Like x 1
  15. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Moderator Staff Member

    Good point. Ok, Mick isn't paying anyone to post here, and nobody is paying me to post here.

    I need a better agent ;)
  16. pLk

    pLk New Member

    Are you guys a non-profit, tax exempt, a corporation? Also do you have records or would you be willing to provide which state your beneficiaries, major donator, funders etc...
  17. Landru

    Landru Moderator Staff Member

    Did you read the first post in this thread?
  18. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    No, it's just me. I don't have any records (other than my server costs) because I derive no income from this site. The only ad I've run is one for my own book, which I just started doing in 2018.

    Metabunk 2019-01-11 07-55-05.

    (Note again, this is for more than one site, however Metabunk is now the vast majority, so I'd say it's $50 a month)

    Again, consider how much other retired people spend on other hobbies as a comparison.