Penny Arcade to go ad-free with Kickstarter

Popular games comic and blog Penny Arcade is offering fans the chance to remove all advertising the site – if they pay $1m.

The website’s creators have started a Kickstarter campaign promising that all ads will be removed if it raises enough money – specifically $999,999. If they reach $525,000, only the ads on the homepage will be removed. The leaderboard ad will be scrapped at $250,000.

There are a number of other milestones and rewards – such as the revival of Penny Arcade’s DLC Podcast for $825,000 – stretching all the way up to $1.4m.

The pledge prizes are typically daft. Among the likes of internships and lunch with the site’s creators Gabe and Tycho, pledgers have the chance to be the duo’s Xbox friends list or getting their tweets retweeted by the Penny Arcade team.

The sentiment behind the Kickstarter is something that will no doubt resonate with consumers: Penny Arcade wants to go back to the way it was before it, like the rest of the web, became reliant on advertisers.

"After the "dot com bubble," we ran the site entirely on donations for over a year," the team explain.

"The word crowdfunding hadn’t been invented yet; back then, people simply called it ‘begging’, but those days are long past. We look back on that period with incredible fondness, and I don’t think we’re the only ones.

"We had assumed it wasn’t possible to do it that way anymore – to operate a site at this scale without advertising dollars – but it occurred to us that we’d never actually asked. What I’m saying is that we want to sell out, and we would love to sell out to you."

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