Well, first of all we hope we've made our start page interesting enough where you'll find something useful or entertaining on it every single day. We've added interactive games and contests and more useful links. And, did you know that our start page people are the first to see new tips and tricks - even before they're published in our InfoAve newsletters? With all the new features of our Start Page and new features being added all the time, we hope you will make our Start Page your home page not only to help us, but because it is useful to you too.
We don't like banners and popups anymore than you do. We eliminated all pop ups and pop unders from our site months ago even though we lost thousands of dollars by doing so. We have been removing all "FastClick" ads too. While there might be some left on our site in places, we're removing them as fast as we become aware of them. There are, as of today, 12,120 Web pages on Thundercloud.net. That's a lot of pages to keep track of. So if you notice an offensive FastClick ad somewhere on our site, let us know and we'll remove it.
Most of you know that we could have made millions of dollars by accepting the offers of dozens of spyware/adware companies to bundle their software with ours. Now, in a business sense this makes us idiots because we could have been sitting on the beach in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands right now instead of struggling to keep our Web site going. Some of you are going "sure! sure!" - hey I can hear you! But, I swear it's the truth.
In an average month, we serve over 250,000 free downloads. In the autumn and winter (our busiest time) we serve over a half-million downloads a month and more. We've been offered anywhere from 10 cents to 50 cents PER DOWNLOAD to bundle garbage like adware and spyware with our downloads. We have never done so and we will never do so. You do the math. Since 1999 over people have downloaded over 25,000,000 million free things from us. Because we chose to take the high road, we need your help. Using our Start Page every day, helps us a great deal.
How does using our start page help? Google pays us a penny or two for each search you perform from our start page. That's it. That's the major source of revenue for the start page. Now of course to make this work we need lots of you to make our start page your home page. The secret is in getting 25,000 or more of our subscribers (and there's over 400,000 of you) to use our start page as your home page. So far we've not reached our goal, but you can help by asking just a couple friends each to try our start page.
We're well aware there are start pages out there that let you modify your settings and change colors etc. And to do this they need to collect some personal information. There's nothing wrong with that but it does leave them open to questions. We're not trying to be another Yahoo, MSN, Ask Jeeves-MyWay (Good Lord forbid!) or an all-in-one portal. We're trying to offer you something nice with features that you won't find anywhere else. Like our tips and tricks, site news, rants, members' gifts, and so on. We might not be as good as Yahoo, MSN, or the others, but we do offer you something nice without advertising and without collecting any personal information. And, did you know that we personally update the start page every single day (except Sunday)? We don't rely on scripts or automation, we do it ourselves every morning.
We cannot make you use our start page, we can only ask you and make sure you know why we're pushing so hard to make this a success for us and for you too. We listen to your suggestions. The dictionary/search and the motivational quotes were suggestions from you. The Weather feature was changed because so many of you don't live in the United States - now the weather is available to all of you regardless of where you live and it can be set in metric as well as in U.S. measurements. And, we'll be adding more features as we are able and listening to what you have to say. We really do care about our visitors and we really do care about our reputation.
We hope you will decide to set our start page as your home page and help us continue to provide over 5500 truly free, family-safe downloads. We promise that everything you download from us is free from trickery, spyware, adware, virus, worms, and Trojans. We'll continue to expose the shams and deceit on the Internet as we have always done.
Please tell your friends about our start page and ask them to help us too. If you have a Web site please link to us - for instructions and graphics click here. This idea will only work if thousands of you help us make it work Without your support we cannot do it.
Thanks to all of you who help us and to
those who've sent us suggestions and comments about out start page.
If you have a comment or suggestion please