Donations are being requested because the service has costs but I can understand anybody being resistant to a pay an annual fee at this stage.
"Yes, I would prefer a subscription model but it is too early."
People who run forums or manage a business's social media accounts know how much work is involved and many of them do the work for the love of their site or the business.
Many ideas start off on a volunteer basis or we can get by on advertising and when the reality of the operating costs hit home they become desperate to raise money and attempt to do so in ways that alienate their users.
It used to be free, but now we helped you get it going you want to charge us, <Expletive deleted> off.
I am hoping to avoid this by making it clear that funding is needed and also play fair and say look, you can use the service without paying as proof that this is not a scam.
The key point of the Anti-Troll service is that codes are issued fully automatically by a computer but a real live person
checks any reports of misuse of the code.
Without manually reviewing reports of misuse the service has no credibility and it falls foul of the problem that it is trying to solve.
Real live people like to be paid, in the very early days this issue can be fudged but if the service catches on these costs have to be covered from somewhere.
"I thought that hosting a web-site was almost free?"
If you have a simple site then it is possible to get hosting that is almost free.
For the hosting company to be able to offer such a low price they tend to allocate a lot of web sites to a smallish pool of resources and if your site takes up too many of those resources you are asked to move on to a more expensive plan.
Once you need to move on the price start to increase rapidly and it is very easy to be paying £600-£2,500 per year to host what seems like a simple site. If this site takes off the way that I hope, hosting could easily be £10,000 per year.
It is a combination of how complex the site is, what it does times the number of users and how much back up and resilience you want.
"Can't you just stick some adverts up?"
There are two main problems with advertising.
The first is that it gets in the way of the page layout, if you don't stick your adverts in the most annoying places on the page they won't be clicked on.
Added to which adverts can easily create the impression that the site was created to sell advertising rather than do whatever the site was set-up to do. After all many sites do exist solely to sell advertising.
The second problem is that they don't seem to make much money, a lot could be forgiven if they did. It appears to me that sites designed to sell advertising can do very well indeed, they capture visitors who want what they are advertising.
If you look at sites specialising in on-line gambling, they only have adverts for on-line gambling, travel sites only have flight and accommodation adverts.
If you just plonk Google Ads onto your page you are offering ads to an audience who aren't interested in most of the ads and have probably already seen the ones that are of interest to them, if they are shown them at all.
As far as I understand it the current click rate is 0.35% for Google ads, that's 1 in 300 people and that is the average, possibly distorted upwards by the sites that are good at getting clicks.
If you are just looking to cover a basic site's hosting costs ads can be an easy way to do this, but covering the operational costs associated with a business with staff to be paid is another matter.