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An Open Letter To The HubPages Staff and Management

Updated on November 25, 2013

Please Allow Me to Introduce Myself

My apologies to the Rolling Stones for borrowing a line from “Sympathy For The Devil,” but it seemed so perfect for this article.

My name is Bill Holland. You know me on your site as Billybuc. For sure a rather strange moniker, but it has been with me since my high school baseball days and since those were, and are, fond memories, the name has stayed with me lo these many years.

Anyway, as I approach my two year anniversary on your site, I thought I would drop you a line and tell you what I think of your writing platform, and if you don’t mind I have a couple suggestions I’d like to toss your way for consideration.

Since you just sent me a rather nice note congratulating me on my Best All Around Hubber Award, and since in that letter you told me I was one of your favorite Hubbers, I feel we have a rapport, a foundation of friendship if you will, and it is in that spirit of friendship that I write this missive.

Three of your Hubbers
Three of your Hubbers | Source

Let Me State My Concerns

I don’t know if you have noticed from your office in San Francisco, but there is a rather large number of former Hubbers who have jumped ship and swam over to Bubblews. Of course, I am sure you gain new Hubbers every week, so maybe the numbers even out or even sway in your favor, but still, when an exodus of this proportion occurs, I’m sure it is at least a tiny bit unsettling. I know it is for me because many of those refugees are friends of mine and quite frankly I miss them.

With my ear to the rumor mill I surmise that the number one reason why you are losing so many writers is because they can make more money at Bubblews, and that certainly seems to be the case. Now I’m sure you have lost a few here and there because of petty considerations, but for the most part this money issue seems to be the biggie.

Writers who have been with you for years are wondering how they can make a payout at Bubblews within a month when they rarely made one at HP in two years, and I have to tell you, that’s a valid question. Writers work hard. It is no easy feat to crank out 1,500 meaningful words plus do research, add photos, etc., and if after that work they see pennies from you and dollars from Bubblews well, as I said, it is a valid question that they ask.

There are those who wonder why there are rarely any cash contests, and why most of the praise is aimed at new writers while the veterans languish backstage patting themselves on the back. Oh heck, I could do on and on, but I’m sure I am not writing anything that you have not heard, and ignored, before.

Appropriate for this letter

Such great horizons are possible for HubPages
Such great horizons are possible for HubPages | Source

Now I Do Understand Your Position

I’m not an idiot despite what my former wife says. I have degrees in Marketing and Economics, so I’ve been around the Keynesian block a time or two. I know you are in this to make money. Pure and simple, right? And I say hooray for you and may the gods of Wall Street smile down upon you. I’m all for making money. Hell, most of your 77,000 published writers are all about making money too, so we do understand.

I understand that you make money on advertising. All of those ads that you put on our articles make you money. Every single time they are viewed they make you money. Every single time someone clicks on them they make you money. Hell, folks, you have a regular cash cow on your hands and again, I couldn’t be happier for you.

But you see, I come from a union household, and I can’t help but wonder about the little guy. I can’t help but ask myself how loyal those writers would be if you managed to just swing a few more pennies in their direction…..just spread a little more love their way.

Hell, folks, if you just had regular contests based on writing ability you might make a few more people happy. Hell, if you just relaxed your censorship rules a bit, or if you just did something other than sing the praises of keywords and SEO, you might make a few more people happy. How about a poet of the week award? Essayist of the week award? Flash fiction writer of the week award? Something that lets those who are not capsule-oriented and brainwashed know that their writing matters to the HP staff.

Are you satisfied with HubPages?

See results

Are you considering leaving HubPages in the near future?

See results

You Will Find This Odd

Here’s the thing: I love it here. I’m not going anywhere. I was tempted by Bubblews for about a week, but in the end I came back to HP because of the writers. Some of my best friends are writers on this site and I like hanging with them.

I don’t write for the money so it makes no difference to me what meager pittance you give back to me. I don’t write for the awards. I simply write because I love writing, and I stay at HP because I think you have some incredible writers here, and I know you have some incredible people here. I am not some disgruntled writer with a list of grievances; I am a satisfied customer who hates watching his friends jump ship for greener pastures and yes, that was a mixed and clumsy metaphor. J

But don’t you see, I’m in the minority. Many writers need the money. Many writers have no choice but to leave your site because they can make better money elsewhere, and I just find that sad.

I know you can do something about this. I am quite confident that you can wiggle a few more pennies out of the coffers and pay a little better. I know for a fact that you can hold more cash contests. I know you can give more praise to established writers who toil in relative obscurity. I have complete faith that you can do these things.

But will you?

It all comes down, then, to whether you are willing to step up to the plate and swing for the fences, or if you are content to bunt and sacrifice every time. I can tell you from decades of experience that there is nothing exciting about bunting. People follow the homerun hitters and always will. Homerun hitters get the girls. Homerun hitters get the glory. Homerun hitters, in this case, get the writers.

Thank you for listening to my thoughts
Thank you for listening to my thoughts | Source

What change would you most like to see at HubPages?

See results

So There You Have It

I write this letter for the little guy at HubPages. I write this letter for the struggling housewife who just needs an extra hundred bucks a month to break even. I write for the retired clerk who could use a few extra pennies over and above Social Security. I write this letter for serious writers who would love some recognition. I write this letter for the writers who have been loyal to you for years and have very little to show for that loyalty.

And this may surprise you, but I write this letter for you, the HubPages staff. I think, deep down, you want to have the best writing community online. I think you want everyone to be successful because you love writers and writing. I think you want these things but you have gotten so wrapped up in the daily tasks and chores that you have lost your vision of the future.

So don’t try to thank me. I was glad to help out. I know you would do the same for me. And seriously, if you need me to help you with this, and you want to chat about possible changes, then give me a call or drop me an email. I'm available to you any old time.

As 2013 comes to a close, let’s make a vow that you and I will try to make HubPages the best in 2014. I promise you that I will continue to support you, and I promise that I will continue to write high quality articles for your site. You, in turn, promise me that you will consider my suggestions and work towards some exciting new approaches.

Can we shake on that?

2013 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

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    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Peggy, I'm very happy that you found another site that you enjoy and that pays well. Best wishes to you there, and here. Thank you.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 3 years ago from Houston, Texas

      This was my first writing site and I have learned so much from it and do still enjoy it. I also enjoy Bubblews and have to admit that one can more easily earn money there much more quickly. I now have two homes for my writings.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      James, I appreciate the visit and the kind words. I didn't really expect to hear from HP and they didn't disappoint me. LOL Best wishes to you, sir!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      DealForALiving...still waiting for that response. What's it been, a year now? LOL Might be a long wait. Thanks for the visit.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mary, no, I never heard back from them. It will be interesting to see what happens with the merger...I know I have a lot of new followers all of a sudden. :) Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks for your thoughts Nadine. Still no response from the HP staff about this letter and I doubt I'll ever get one. This is a business and I understand that.....still...I hate to see writers leave HP for greener pastures.

    • JamesPoppell profile image

      JamesPoppell 3 years ago

      Thank you Bill for writing this hub, and thank you mary615 for sharing it with us this morning. Bill, I do not see how this hub can be any more perfect. It is clear, concise and to the point. Furthermore, I cannot fathom why you have yet to get a response from HP. Like you, I am not here for the money. I like Hubpages for the comradeship and the overall positive environment. Let's face it, Hubpages is unique because of its members. I have become acquainted with the best group of folks one could ever hope to know. On a separate issue, congratulations on your award for Best All Around Hubber. You certainly deserve it. Thank you for the live concert video. You can't go wrong with the Rolling Stones. The song made my morning. Voted up and have a fantastic day! (JP)

    • DealForALiving profile image

      Sam Deal 3 years ago from Earth

      Fantastic letter! I can't wait for you to get a response from HP so you can share that with us!

    • mary615 profile image

      Mary Hyatt 3 years ago from Florida

      I loved your letter, and wonder if HP ever responded to you about your concerns. I have no complains about HP. I know I could be earning more from my articles if I updated them and worked harder to produce more Hubs. It is just so time consuming to write a Hub worthy of Mr. Google finding it. I'm still on Bubblews, and have no complaint with them, either. They have never missed a payout to me, and they give me the opportunity of earning a few bucks each month, and the site really is fun to write on.

      I'm sure you are aware that HP has now acquired Squidoo, and I'm anxious to see how that plays out.

      Voted UP, etc.etc. and shared.

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 3 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      You said it all in this letter to them, but has it made any difference? So you never got any response? That is shocking!

      You wrote this article last year! I never knew about your Best All Around Hubber Award. I'm sure this award will be yours this year - 2014

      I'm at bubblews as well. I'm not in anyway a fast earner there, but that is because I prefer to write proper articles. I meet a lot of people who are truly struggling financially, so I tell them about Bubblews.

      I also occasionally write for Wikinut, but so far I only have 11 posts because I seem to favor hubpages. Money wise. I would love to earn from my articles. So far I think it will take me at least 1000 articles before I can truly say that I have created a passive small income from it. So I have 937 posts to go....Do I truly feel that loyal to Hubpages in order to do that? I'm not sure...

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Vicki, I think we will see the day when pigs fly before we see an HP response.

    • profile image

      Vickiw 3 years ago

      Hello Bill,

      Still waiting . . .and waiting . . .and waiting for a reply to your letter! Maybe you haven't had enough comments yet?

      Keep up the good work.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Shyron, I'll stick it out here because of people like you; as for DJ.....a nasty sense of humor for sure. LOL Thank you!

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 3 years ago from Texas

      Hi Bill, this is by far one of your best, but I still wish you would add, to the poll, What change would you most like to see at HubPages? 'All of the above.'

      As I said a couple of months ago, I don't plan on jumping ship, but! I will leave it at that.

      Your friend DJ Anderson, has a torturious streak, lol. I have a friend who lives near you, and she would get a kick out of your friend's humor.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      So very cruel, DJ. And I thought we were friends. LOL

      Actually this has been the winter that wasn't here in Washington. If we don't get some normal weather soon we'll be seeing drought conditions this summer. Weird, weird weather my friend.

      Having said all that, warm weather sounds delightful right now.

      I hope you are enjoying your Sunday; the big game is about to begin.

      bill

    • profile image

      DJ Anderson 3 years ago

      Sending you a little sunshine from Florida.

      Close your eyes and feel the warm sand under your naked feet. The surf is gentle and the tropical breeze is softly tossing a few hair away from your face. It is 80 degrees and the sun is beating rays of warmth on your bare skin. You can taste the salt on your lips as beads of sweat rise on your upper lip. Every muscle is soothed by the warm sand under your blanket--and when you move, the sand caresses your body. The mind begins to relax and the heart beat slows. Bev reaches over and takes your hand. All is well in your world.

      Compliments of sunny Florida and DJ.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Larry, I appreciate your comments and examples. Any of us who have been on HP for some period of time probably have similar examples. Oh well, I'm just here for the community aspect and to build my platform for ebooks, so HP can do whatever they want. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Paula, you do make me laugh. I need some of that feelgood today; could you FedEx some to me please? LOL

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      BonaguidaBrandon, thank you although I'm not sure I understand your message.

    • profile image

      Larry Wall 3 years ago

      I will offer an example regarding this issue and you can take it for what it is worth. I wrote a Hub on Jan. 31, 2014 and today is Feb. 1. In that Hub I announced I was taking an extended break from Hub Pages, for reasons I will not repeat hear. I did state, I was not following the HubPage format of three pictures, a video, multiple text capsules, etc. Shortly after submitting it, I saw the dreaded empty circle next to the Hub on the account page. So I went back, added two meaningless pieces of clip art, broke the copy into multiple text units and added a video which consisted of a still picture of Roy Rogers and Dale Evans with their theme song, "Happy Trails," playing in the background. I did change a sentence where I had previously announced I was not following the HP formula for formatting Hub by adding that I was now following the guidelines.

      That same Hub, same words, same headline, etc. is now a featured Hub.

      That tells me that actual content is not evaluated, but only the number of objects on a page. Books often do not have pictures and the same is for some magazine stories. HP needs to re-evaluate the methods it use to evaluate Hubs.

      The prior two comments showed up in my notification file. Since this Hub has some of the reasons I am taking an undetermined leave, I thought I would offer these comments.

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Dr. Holland.....I am so sorry. Apparently I left the door to the Flight Deck unsecured. This will not happen again. Nurse Feelgood

    • profile image

      BonaguidaBrandon 3 years ago

      It remains to be seen whether?O.F.P.S.?will be able to provide the requested agreements with the relevant foreign collecting societies as evidence. If that proves impossible,?O.F.P.S.?will be left only with the statutory presumption of the authorization to act on behalf of?Serbian?producers of phonograms. Here,?O.F.P.S.?may run into another difficulty. The first-instance court said in the quashed judgment that “drawing an expert report on the share of the use of phonograms in comparison to the rest of the festival program would be almost impossible, i.e. unreasonably burdensome, having in mind that the festivals in 2007 and 2008 lasted four days each, with tens of thousands of different songs performed at different stages”. The task of establishing which portion of the phonograms communicated to the public in 2007 and 2008 was produced domestically would be, if anything, even more daunting.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Marcy! I'll have to re-read this; I don't think I blamed HP for a drop in earnings or views. I do blame them for sticking with the status quo while the ship is sinking, and for not being responsive to suggestions. For the record, my earnings are up 400% and I love it here at HP. I was writing this letter for those who are jumping ship because of the lack of earnings and feeling of not being heard.

    • Marcy Goodfleisch profile image

      Marcy Goodfleisch 3 years ago from Planet Earth

      Just now found this after reading your comment in the Petitions thread - as you know, Paul mentioned the staff had read this hub. That's good news. I think what you wrote, as well as the comments here, shows there's a need for more validation for good writing. I'm not sure how that would ever work financially with creative hubs, but it does sound like the writers here want more interaction of some sort with the site.

      BTW - I don't place blame with HP for the decline in views or earnings - we are all feeling the impact of Google's changes.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Theresa, in a word....no! :)

      Have a wonderful weekend my friend.

    • phdast7 profile image

      Theresa Ast 3 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      Bill - Did anyone from HP management ever respond to your incredibly "civil" and well written letter? Theresa

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      NMLady....LOL....my goodness, that is a bit chilly for Arizona. We're at 27 this morning with tiny flakes falling. Anyway, I love your point about responses....points that have escaped HP for whatever reason.

    • NMLady profile image

      NMLady 3 years ago from New Mexico & Arizona

      billlybuc, It is a sure sign of good management when responses are made! I have been converted to a lifelong promoter and fan of the FB sites that DO respond: WinCo Foods writes me back promptly every time! America's Test Kitchen is also very kind. Biad foods too! Trader Joe's is pretty good too! Dukan Diet responds every time...once got a verbal spanking for posting a recipe BUT they kept it on the page, I think the response was viewed as wrong by the page!

      Anyway, keep warm! It is cold nearly everywhere today! (woke up to 34 degrees in AZ!!!!~water freezes at 60 here you know!)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      NMLady, you make some very interesting statements, ones I happen to agree with. Simone left a few months back; she was an employee of HP that everyone loved, and she was constantly working to improve things for the writers. I wonder why she left???? Hmmm

      Thank you for a great conversation starter too.

    • NMLady profile image

      NMLady 3 years ago from New Mexico & Arizona

      I have been following this with a great deal of interest.

      On further thought, HUB seems to be the latest example of the developers doing what they do which is innovate and develop and then move on.

      The new directors are management not leaders. Leaders would respond to you. Leaders would still be innovating.

      Still, a leader iseither empowered or not to lead by the organization and maybe the innovators/creators of HUB will not allow them to innovate?

      A leader that is inhibited by the organization they work for either moves-on or goes into hiding and functions on a low level which would mean they are not empowered and actually too cowered to respond.

      Thanks for the conversation starter!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      ajwrites, I appreciate that very much. Thank you and have a great weekend.

    • ajwrites57 profile image

      AJ 3 years ago from Pennsylvania

      billybuc, I forgot to to share last time I read your Hub. I shared this time. Thanks again and good luck!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      ziyena, I think they are starting to realize that. Their numbers have fallen dramatically...they are down to 75,000 writers, losing over half in a year. It is time for a change.

      hugs back at you young lady

    • ziyena profile image

      ziyena 3 years ago from ... Somewhere Out There ...

      Ah Bill ... as in all corporations, we the little who tow the line are just that ... last in line. HP must realize the old addage 'what goes around comes around' surely does ...

      Thanks for your effort in being our voice!

      Hugs

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I don't know, Vicki! I am a bit disappointed in them for not answering, but I'm sure they have their reasons. :) Thank you my friend. I hope all is well with you.

      bill

    • profile image

      Vickiw 3 years ago

      Well Bill, as they jump all over anything that might be considered "self" promotion," and are so stuck on their perception of "quality Hubs" I am also quite sure they are very aware of your letter. Pity they aren't so aware of plain good manners - responding to a letter. Maybe because everything you said is true?

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you ziyena. Too bad nobody in management felt like responding.

    • ziyena profile image

      ziyena 3 years ago from ... Somewhere Out There ...

      Awesome communication Bill!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Deb, there is no doubt that money talks. Anyone who doesn't think HubPages is a business is living in a dream world.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      This recommendation and solid reasoning cannot hurt, no question about that. I'll take a little extra cash. I was never selected for the apprenticeship program, I'm assuming because it was felt that I didn't need it. Money talks...

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Timetraveler, thanks again for sharing your expertise. I'm glad Bubblews is working out for you.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Dee, this seems to have become a forum all of a sudden. LOL I'll be glad to see you writing again. It is therapy and it is fueled by passion, and those two things can never be bad reasons for writing. Best wishes to you and again, thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Linda, as I said before, best wishes on Bubblews.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks again, Larry! I hope you are enjoying your weekend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you timetraveler.....I hope you are having a great weekend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Genius, very interesting and yes, a bit scary. Thank you!

    • TIMETRAVELER2 profile image

      TIMETRAVELER2 3 years ago

      Larry Wall: When I delete a hub, I always ask Google to de index it, and they do this fairly quickly. Does this not remove the article, the url, the data et al from searches?

      Also, as I said, I never delete on Bubblews because there is nothing there I would want o keep or use elsewhere. I use that site as a repository for all of my articles that just didn't do well on HP and Yahoo. That way at least I make some money for them, and so far I've made $520, so it's been worth it for me. I do also throw in some quickie articles, but there's no point in deleting those as I'd never use them elsewhere.

    • Dee aka Nonna profile image

      Dee aka Nonna 3 years ago

      This has become an amazing discussion. I had to come back after so many wonderful comments begin to show up. I know that I am not anywhere near as good as most of the writers on hubpages, and I know that there are hubs I need to update, etc., and I will. I am still struggling just a little with getting my motivation back after being ill, but little by little I am getting there. I love the craft of writing....the joy of writing....the therapy of writing, and one day if I live long enough I might turn into a really good writer. In the meantime, places like Hubpages provide a good platform to learn and grow. I am hoping that what is being said here will help the HP staff try to come up with reasonable option s to help their writers succeed.

    • LindaSmith1 profile image

      LindaSmith1 3 years ago from USA

      TimeTraveler: The same happens on HP! Your number of views change, your earnings drop, etc, etc, etc. They definately need to improve searching. Try searching for a topic, older article, etc on Squidoo.

    • profile image

      Larry Wall 3 years ago

      Metadata, which includes the Meta Tags we use to use before SEO became the catch word, is the data that search engines still check. Thus if the meta data is retained, and someone tries to find an article, which has been deleted, then they get a blank page. Think of it as having a hub, deleting the copy through the edit mode, but retaining the headline and the link. If you do that on Hub Pages, they will eventually delete the link and the underlying data. I do not know what Bubblenews. I have tried it, but have not been impressed by it.

    • TIMETRAVELER2 profile image

      TIMETRAVELER2 3 years ago

      LindaSmith When you delete an article from Bubblews, you owe them money, my friend. Yes, you can delete, but the proceeds you earned also get deleted. Delete too many and they can come after you for the money they paid you, which is why I never delete. Furthermore, finding older articles is nearly impossible.

      Geniusknight I don't understand what you mean by this. Please explain.

    • Geniusknight profile image

      Nell 3 years ago from Netherlands

      Bubblews retains the meta data of an article for a prolonged period driving traffic to deleted pages instead of your moved articles. Scary but true.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Timetraveler...who knows indeed.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Okay...well, thanks LInda.

    • LindaSmith1 profile image

      LindaSmith1 3 years ago from USA

      Bubblews does not own our work. We can deleted posts at any time which I have done multiple times.

    • TIMETRAVELER2 profile image

      TIMETRAVELER2 3 years ago

      Who knows, Bill? As my husband advised me, "Ride the horse until it dies"! That's why I'm still here ate HP also!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Good information Timetraveler. I hope many writers find success and financial reward there for many years to come.

    • TIMETRAVELER2 profile image

      TIMETRAVELER2 3 years ago

      Bill: With regards to your comments about Bubblews, let me say this: They have been successful because they do not depend on Google, but rather on their own community. They get around 6 million visitors a month and writers are permitted to click on ads. Advertisers pay big bucks for the exposure they get, and Bubblews splits the income 50-50. That's how they survive. However, once you write an article, it belongs to them, so while the money is good, placing work on that site that you might want to keep and use elsewhere is not a good option.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Joelle, I hope that your last statement is true because I love it here. This is the greatest community online for writers.....and you are very correct that the seasonal ones will catch fire year after year....I hope you hang in here and see some rewards soon. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Larry, I hope I'm wrong, but my guess is HP won't be around by this time next year. I hope I'm wrong. Thanks again for your thoughts.

    • kidscrafts profile image

      kidscrafts 3 years ago from Ottawa, Canada

      I hope that HP will read your hub and all the comments. Obviously you hit on the nail on this one when I see the volume of comments. At one point over the end of the summer, I started to move two of my hubs to Bubblews. Those hubs were not featured anymore because of lack of engagement. My problem is that some of the projects that I present are quite seasonal and they each have their peak somewhere during the year. But I must say I like the community in HP and I stopped moving my articles.

      I didn't want to argue with the people at the top because I think they are almost too removed of the reality of the writers. I also think that on the Web things change fast and I am confident that one point things will change :-)

      Have a nice weekend!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Genius, I had heard that too. It will be interesting to see how that goes. Thanks for the update.

    • profile image

      Larry Wall 3 years ago

      If HubPages is going the mobile route, they are going to have to change their suggestions about having three pictures and maybe a poll or something like that plus over 1,000 words. My Android based telephone was stolen when I was in the hospital in July. I am using an old Blackberry that cannot handle that amount of copy and artwork. I have no interest in trying to type comments on a telephone keypad. If HP does go that way, I will definitely say so long.

    • Geniusknight profile image

      Nell 3 years ago from Netherlands

      In one of the recent Hubpages developments, Hubpages is rolling in the mobile version with better ad support so you might expect an increase in you earnings and also the recommended articles will be from the same hub owner which the reader is on, so altogether hubpages is trying to entertain the mobile audience too. Hopefully the mobile version comes out soon ! :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Larry, I have very little to add to your comment, which was extensive and welcomed. If HP does not find the answers soon I suspect you are right on with your prediction. They are now down to about 75,000 writers; at one point it was much, much more than that, and they are losing them weekly. I am not impressed with Bubblews and I suspect that site will fold in the next few months. There is something there that I cannot put my finger on, but it just seems like a scam to me. I hope I'm wrong for all the friends I have who now write for them.

      Best wishes to you. I don't have the answers, but I will be sad if HP does disappear.

      Thank you for an excellent comment....by the way, you won't catch me anywhere near the forums. :)

    • profile image

      Larry Wall 3 years ago

      I was just notified today that Hub Pages was making a payout to me, about $53. I always knew the minimum payout they would make was $50, but I did not know it was being done automatically once you reached that threshold. Several things have been mentioned here that have all happened to me. I use to have an author score in the upper 90s and sometimes hit 100. I have been stuck at 88 for about two weeks. I once was a level eight commentator, but because of illness, I was out of action for a while.

      I am now down to level 6. I was averaging 62 to 70 views per day (not fantastic) today I am in the lower 30a. I have about 135 feature Hubs. I only had one held up for an unknown reason and one where there was a question about duplicate material. I have pulled a few hubs over the past two years because they were dated, or I did not like them.

      I do not know how to attract followers. I have more than 300, but have no idea how to attract 1,000. I know I can follow someone and ask them to follow me, but I cannot keep up with the work of 1,000 people, so I do not try to pile up people to follow, just so they will follow me.

      I have said this before. The forums are pointless, because of the way they are formatted, unless it has changed, it is almost impossible to keep tract of who the response is directed to, or if it is a new thought.

      The question section is being overwhelmed with pointless questions. They are also being turned into mini-forums with the ability to comment and then comment on the next answer.

      I do some Hub Hopping now and then, and recognized that many of these new Hubs are penned by inexperienced writers. Some are very good. There are others that should never be published. They are clogging up the system.

      After reading all the previous comments and adding my views, I have concluded that Hub Pages is collapsing under its own weight. There are too many Hubbers writing, making it impossible for other members to keep up with all that is written.

      We depend on Google to feature our Hubs, but we are not ones seeking to be in the top few of a Google search. I am not leaving, but am cutting back. I find Bubblenews a poor substitute. There are writing opportunities to make money, such as Text Brokers, do not offer too much room for creativity. Writing my own blog would be pointless, because I would have the same issues of getting it promoted as I am having with Hub Pages.

      No pun intended, I think the days for Hub Pages are numbered.

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Timetraveler, I am sorry to hear that you might be moving on, but I completely understand. Oddly my income tripled here in the last month and it makes no sense whatsoever. I'm not doing anything different from the first 22 months. Go figure! I wish it were easier for writers like yourself who put in the time and write quality articles. Whatever you decide to do, best wishes to you, and thank you for your friendship.

    • TIMETRAVELER2 profile image

      TIMETRAVELER2 3 years ago

      Bill: I hope you emailed a copy of this article to the team, because they need to read it. I still write here a bit, but right now I spend most of my time on Bubblews and my new blog. I never did that well here, and my HP income grows worse as time goes on, despite the fact that every single article I write is featured almost immediately. I'm at the point with all of this stuff that I may just stop writing altogether online...It's a lot of effort with very little return. I think HP is a great site and I have learned a lot here. It has great potential, but unless Google gets off its back, I fear it will never be able to move forward in a meaningful way. Thanks for writing this old friend...I think it took a lot of guts to do so.

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ann, I am quite certain they have read this; I am also quite certain it went in one proverbial ear and out the other. :) Oh well, I have some wonderful friends here and that is a gift that keeps on giving.

      Thank you, Ann, and I hope your weekend is memorable and restful.

      bill

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      Ann Carr 3 years ago from SW England

      You've said it all for us, bill! How good it would be to reward our loyalty. It's the same with insurers or banks - lots of incentives to join them and then loyalty is never rewarded. I'd like to see awards for the different genres of writing and, of course, a few more pennies for our perseverance. As for you, my presence here continues because I enjoy it, it gives me great writing practice and I've made so many friends. The feedback is better than any critic.

      I wonder if they will take any notice?! Hope so. Have a great weekend, bill! Ann

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Genius, thanks for stopping by and sharing your views. I have serious reservations about Bubblews; suffice it to say I won't be going over there in this lifetime. :)

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      Nell 3 years ago from Netherlands

      Well Bill I think Bubblews is a social crap ! No one reads what someone posts there except if it's something funny or seriously sick. You can't be sure of a payment every month unlike hubpages and you have to beg for your money. Well I get it what you want to say and I hope hubpages comes up with a way to increase the output ! :) fingers crossed !

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Marketing Merit, I'm afraid that is the order of the day. Thank you for your kind words.

    • Marketing Merit profile image

      C L Grant 3 years ago from United Kingdom

      Many thanks for expressing these sentiments so eloquently Bill.

      I've quickly scanned through the comments and didn't encounter a comment from any HubPages staff. Consequently, I can only surmise that ignoring accomplished writers, such as yourself, is still the order of the day over here at HP!

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I love your idea, Suzanne. A base pay of some sort, and bonuses based on quality and production...I could live with that being of a competitive nature. :) Thanks for your thoughts; hopefully HP will get around to reading some of these comments.

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sally, it really didn't take much courage because I don't care what HP thinks about me or my opinion. I just want them to hear what so many writers think.....I will always have a place to write, so upsetting them is the least of my concerns. Thank you for your kind words nice lady; you are appreciated.

      bill

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Lizzy, hope springs eternal or so I am told. The payout is ridiculous and almost an insult to a serious writer....I understand that HP can pay whatever they choose, but when they have paid well in the past and then suddenly the bottom falls out, it would be nice if it were explained to the writers in detail.

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Mekenzie; I suspect this will do not good whatsoever, but I felt better writing it. LOL I appreciate your kind words and I wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving.

    • Suzanne Day profile image

      Suzanne Day 3 years ago from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

      Thanks for this open letter. I would like to see Hubpages develop a base quality, so that writers can depend on getting the income they deserve day in and day out. It would then be up to the writers to produce the quality and content needed to get traffic. There are lots of poor hubs on here that could drag the site down.

      It is quite hard to work with glitches, traffic stats not updating frequently and other issues as you don't know what effect (if any) of changes you make and it can be hard to compare without waiting months.

      Hubpages is a great platform and has an interesting community. All it needs is steady base work which means that the sorts of hiccups with have people up in arms and feeling funny about Hubpages are removed.

    • sallybea profile image

      Sally Gulbrandsen 3 years ago from Norfolk

      Billy,

      Now if there ever was a Hub which deserved a Nomination for an Editors Choice Award - this is the one. I would like to suggest that every person who has commented on this page do the same - that way a real human being will definitely read it.

      I for one - could do with a few more pennies - I love writing on HubPages but even I can't afford to do it indefinitely for so little financial reward.

      I really hope this one gets noticed by HubPages Staff. I salute you for your courage to say it how it is.

      Voted up

      Sally

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 3 years ago from Oakley, CA

      Well said, Bill!

      I've been here 4 years, but did not enable adsense until about year 2.5. Even so, I've never seen more than pennies. It's a rare day when my daily earnings crack the $1. mark; I average about 70 cents a day. That means I see a payout only about quarterly. I could, indeed use a higher payout rate to help supplement our fixed income.

      Thank you for writing this: I do hope it gets noticed by staff.

      Voted up, interesting and shared.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Made, it is always so nice to see you...thanks for stopping by and thanks for the hugs. I hope to see you writing soon.

    • Mekenzie profile image

      Susan Ream 3 years ago from Michigan

      Billy, Bless you for boldly hitting issues right in the bulls eye for the little guy. The variance of pay with hubpages is distressing to me. Just when I begin to make money - the rules change and I go down to penny's again.

      Recently Hubpages changed their criteria for writers. For years I have been rated in the 90's, even hitting 100 a few times for my author's score. The author's score may not pay but it does affirm the writer and it did encourage me. My author's score has gradually gone down down down and now I am an 89. It would be helpful to me, the writer, to know what has changed.

      I agree with you about highlighting all the new writers when there have been countless hours put in by long time writers whose loyalty and commitment to hubpages seemingly fade to the back.

      Appreciate your straight forward attempt to talk to our hubpages staff. I admire you!

      Mekenzie

    • Made profile image

      Madeleine Salin 3 years ago from Finland

      Hi Bill, I'm sure HubPages is going to listen to you. I have not left HubPages and I'm not going to. I wrote for Bubblews for a week or two... The reasons to why I haven't been around are many, but it has nothing to do with HubPages nor their members.

      Hopefully I'll be writing for HubPages soon again. HubPages needed this hub. Thank you for writing it, Bill. :)

      Hugs, Madeleine

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Larry, bless you for writing about controversial topics. Someone has to or how bland this society would be. I believe HP to be in trouble; whether they will survive remains to be seen, but I have enjoyed my time in this community. I have run across a couple of those who are abusive in their comments and despite my natural tendencies to mix it up with them, I end up ignoring them and letting them continue their unhappy lives without interference from me.

      I wish you well and Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

    • profile image

      Larry Wall 3 years ago

      I really cannot add anything to what has been said, and I am in agreement. I have visited Bubblenews and am not impressed with it. I am making money by writing for TextBrokers. Granted, it is not creative writing, and my name never appears on anything, but I have made several hundred dollars in a couple of months. Of course, that leaves less time to write on Hub Pages. My page views dropped from an average of 62 per day (nothing to brag about) to about 32 per day, and the number is constant. It makes me think the counting software is not working correctly. I make nothing from adsense I cannot really complain; I do not clink on random computer ads.

      I know much of my writing is about controversial subjects, politics, the economy, Obamacare, and other similar items which many people dislike and skip, and a few really enjoy. I have a few Hubs that have generated thousands of views in a short time, but when it all balances out I make about $55 to $60 a year. I am about to take my payout for the year.

      I do not understand SEO and all that stuff. I know I get more hits from Google than I do from Hub Pages, so I must be doing something right.

      I do not know how long Hub Pages has been around. I know a lot of the numbers of skewed. I have one person listed as a follower, who is no longer a contributor. I have not won any awards, other than the accolade for 100 best answers. I have had disputes with HP over what was original material and what was copied. I do not copy material. Sometimes, my oil and gas hubs are picked up by other publications with a link back to Hub Pages. Maybe that is wrong, but HP is getting some free advertising.

      I am not leaving Hub Pages, but I will be spending less time here. I do not like having to find three pictures for each hub. The polls are pretty much pointless.

      I do not have an answer. I do not know if HP is making money, breaking even or in the hole.

      I have two major problems with HP that I have stated before. There are Hubbers who never write hubs, but just try to hijack discussions. There are others that are abusive in their comments.

      I agree with everything that has been said. Unfortunately, I do not have a solution.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mary, I sure hope they make it here because I'm not going anywhere else. Bubblews just does not work for me. If HP fails then I'll take my show to serious blogging....but it would be a crying shame if they did not make it My friends here mean a great deal to me.

      Thank you dear lady.....always appreciative of you.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you whonu and Happy Thanksgiving to you.

    • whonunuwho profile image

      whonunuwho 3 years ago from United States

      Nice going my friend. whonu

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 3 years ago from New York

      I started reading the comments here then realized it will take me forever to read every single one of them. I did read about halfway through and it is evident that you do not stand alone! Naturally I agree totally with every word you said. Larry and I are retired and HP is not my sole source of income. That being said, I love it here! I love the writing, the learning but most of all the people.

      I have met so many wonderful people that have become dear friends, like yourself. I wouldn't trade that for a bubble or a dollar. However, I have written a few bubbles on Bubblews and the people there are as warm and caring as here, mostly because the ones I've met so far ARE from here.

      I truly hope HP takes you up on your offer of help and spruces up the perks for the writers here. Everyone looks for a little pat on the back. The Hubbies are a perfect example and your suggest of a small dollar reward is a good one.

      This is truly a site beyond compare for serious writers and it would be a shame to see those writers change every year and lose the loyalty and continuity we've been enjoying. We have been feeding off each other and in that process learning and supporting each other.

      BRAVO! You soar again sensei.

      Voted everything but funny and totally shared.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Comfort, I can feel that smile this morning and thank you. You speak for many with your words and your experience. If money is an issue then HP is not the place to be right now. Hopefully that will change. I'll just stay here and record the happenings and hopefully we will see changes soon. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      LOL...Joan....Yee Haw to you my friend. Happy Thanksgiving to you and a hearty thank you.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      ajwrites, I suspect your comments echo the comments of many. It is not like the old days here at HP and may never be again.....but writers write...that's what we do...and we find income on other venues and in other ways. Thanks for your thoughts.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Hi Dolores and thank you for your perspective. Panda hit me, but them for whatever reason I rebounded. I now make three times the income and I have no idea why....I just write for the love of writing and don 't worry about incomes. Have a very Happy Thanksgiving.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Heidi, your words are very true my friend. As I stated before, the money that HP pays us is not an interest to me. I am here for the platform and community; anything else is a bonus. Thank you and Happy Thanksgiving!

    • ComfortB profile image

      Comfort Babatola 3 years ago from Bonaire, GA, USA

      As always my friend, you spoke from your heart. And, may I say that you're right on key with my thoughts on hub pages and the way things are done here.

      Having been a writer on HP for over two years and never once did I receive an award or recognition for any of my hubs (And I know most of my hubs are up to HP standard), I feel as if my hard work is being exploited.

      I didn't consider myself a writer before HP. And yes, I have learned a lot about writing and have met a lot of wonderful friends here too, you included (love your positive take on life in general).

      Yes, I also write on Bubblews, but I'm still as active here on HP as I can be. Bubblews do pay better (yes, I have families back home in Nigeria that I can help with that), but the connections and friendships I've made here is incomparable.

      I just don't have the energy to whip out 1500 words hubs right now with all that's going on in my life. With Bubblews, I can zoom in and out with one or two paragraphs that'll earn me more than some of my hubs here on HP.

      So I'm hoping you got HP's attention with this one Bill. We all do need something to happen to bring the village back together.

      The Lord is smiling down on you Bill. Thank you!!!

    • joanveronica profile image

      Joan Veronica Robertson 3 years ago from Concepcion, Chile

      Hi Bill! Just one word out of my newly learnt vocabulary! YEE HAW !!!

    • ajwrites57 profile image

      AJ 3 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Hi Billy, I have written for hubpages for about a year. I have noticed you from time to time. I started writing here as an experiment. I have 29 hubs and each one has been featured from time of publishing. I haven't made a payout and don't expect I will for another year or more. My last post on hubpages was in July. I have a blog on Blogger and have almost 70, mainly poems, posted there. I have made no money there. I have never fit in here on several levels, but have great feedback and found a great sense of community on G+. Thanks for your article. Expresses some of my thoughts well. Good luck!

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 3 years ago from East Coast, United States

      Congratulations on your Best all Around Hubber award! As an old timer here at HP, I've seen a lot of good people leave. Some of my favorite hubbers who wrote from the heart, engaging personal articles. But they were not making money. I decided after some time here, to write the kinds of stuff that I myself would like to read, figuring that I am not the only one who is looking for that sort of thing. It worked! My views increased. But every panda update slaps me down again. I can't blame HP for Google's algorithms.

      I like HP for the community, the easy formatting, and the attractive page layout. I haven't been writing as much as I did but that's for personal reasons (busy busy busy).

    • heidithorne profile image

      Heidi Thorne 3 years ago from Chicago Area

      I love the HP platform and find it a welcome alternative to the rigors (and expense) of running a professional blog. The tools and technology behind HP are free for us to use and we can potentially earn some money using them. (Plus, the community is awesome!) According to the documentation, hubbers earn 60% of the ad revenues. I guess the question is what do hubbers think is a fair split? Also, hubbers get paid when, and if, HP gets paid. So we're all in this together. I wish everyone here could make a whole lot more. But writing online is not a path to guaranteed income... only an opportunity.