Change happens at a rate that would make your head spin. Sites such as Bubblews come and go and are forgotten quickly.
Some time ago I predicted the death of Bubblews here and here and sure enough it has happened. Admittedly it took longer to happen than I expected. Their business model was just not sustainable, simple as that.
No warning, no opportunity to remove articles, no chance to get the money owed to writers. There one day and gone the next. Writers trying to access the site are being met with a notice informing them that the site is going to shut down, and a thank you to everyone for their contributions. Cited as the reason for their demise is “the climate for display advertising has drastically changed and made it impossible for us to sustain the business model and operations.” A rather abrupt and unkind way to show appreciation for all the endless hours writers spent there, don’t you think?
Sadly, the Wayback Machine doesn’t offer any hope for writers to retrieve their posts on Bubblews. If you were one of the people affected by the site shutting down, and hadn’t retained a copy of your articles / posts, then I sympathize. To all of you who faithfully published posts on Bubblews, mistakenly believing that once you reached the payout threshold of $50 that you would get paid, I really feel for you.
As for the founder / owner of Bubblews, Arvind Dixit, what shall become of him? The question in many people’s mind is what happened to all of the money that the site supposedly was making. Has Arvind skipped off with a sack load of pennies, or is he actually ‘in the hole’ himself because of poor management? I suspect the latter of the two.
The idea in theory was brilliant. Certainly a huge number of people saw the opportunity, jumped on the bandwagon and for a time made some nice pocket change. It wasn’t too long however, before Arvind and his team realized that under the then current pay out system they were going to lose their butts. They quickly changed things and the great earnings that were once being enjoyed were gone overnight. Instead of earning 1 cent for every visit / read of a post, writers would now need lots of visits before a cent would be earned. The savvy writers left the site in droves. Some who wrote just for the pure pleasure of writing and being read continued to create content.
I suspect we have not seen the last of Arvind. I am sure that it won’t be too long before we find him creating another site. Let’s just hope that he learned a lot from this exercise and will build something that has a business model that is not only sustainable but can also thrive. I for one will be dubious about anything that has his name attached to it.
Farewell Bubblews, it was great while it lasted. Nah, not really….