Save Dingo Fund
Hi, my name is McCrae. I started watching Big Brother in the summer of '06. I quickly became addicted and scoured the internet for more content. And then one day, I stumbled onto the Holy Grail of Big Brother update sites with a heaping helping of snark. I was in love ever since. I slowly started to become more vocal in the chat during episodes (hold for voting!) I would strike up convo with Dingo by praising her writing and we would talk about other streaming services and the like (JTV.) We became kinda close,( although I suspect she just learned to deal with my insane ramblings) and I picked up some tips for being cast from her site and it was always my Mecca of Big Brother. Time passes, I get cast on BB, I shout her site out during my eviction which leads to her site crashing (whoops!) I come out to the insanity of a post season and Dingo is always there to have my back. She reminds me when I'm being a little punk and she reminds me that people work hard in this community for very little in return. Dingo makes a bit of money off of clicks on her site, people that buy feeds through her links, and people using her amazon reference link, but sadly those avenues of revenue are drying up for not only her but all feeds updaters. I know Dingo has been having medical issues with her kid and I know that 2 season a year has been murder on Dingo without any benefit of extra money for those seasons. I've seen updaters go dark and it makes me sad knowing I could have spoke up for some of the good ones in this community after bitching only about the bad ones for so long. This is why I'm asking people for donations for Dingo. On top of the medical expenses they have and the dwindling revenue through officially sanctioned CBS streams, I would personally love it if we could raise enough money that Dingo wouldn't have to stress out during this upcoming #bb21 season. I think Dingo has been such a pillar in this community when it comes to things like ethics, not using clickbait, advocating against rabies, just someone that makes this community more of a net positive than a net negative. Have you ever read Dingo's tweets? Have you read any articles on Hamsterwatch.com? Have you ever used the site to get east coast feeds or feeds for Canada? Dingo has been doing this for 15+ years at least. I think we all owe her alittle something for that much content and information and entertainment over the years....
100% of all funds raised will go directly to Dingo Hamsterwatch, to help pay existing and upcoming medical bills for her daughter.
That said, let me summarize why I'm in such desperate need this year. Yes, feeds commissions have dwindled over the years for not just me, but probably all (or most anyway) of the BB sites. People keep All Access year round, there's always more competition, direct sales, plus illegal restreams and videos from feeds make a lot of folks think they just don't need to subscribe. All that's just facts of BB life and we deal with it or we throw in the towel. I've dealt with it as best I could (tho sometimes not so well lol!)
As many of you know, I've had Amazon links on my site forever and often tweeted "this is a good time to go shopping" etc, as I'd get a small commission from purchases. Well Amazon decided to kick me from the affiliate program after some 20 years. I won't go into detail (I'm likely not allowed to) but I believe I was always in compliance with their terms, but they still rejected my appeal for reinstatement. (That's Amazon USA by the way - I'm still in good standing with Amazon Canada). That never brought in a lot, but every bit helps when you're virtually doing a 24/7 job with no days off, no real paycheck, and hoping people will remember to use my links so I can earn a little something. But again, 'it is what it is' and I might see if I can start anew with Amazon (so please don't go yelling at them on social media about me!)
But the big issue has been medical bills for my daughter, who has serious mental illness. She's been relatively stable for years but had a severe break last summer (during BB) and was hospitalized for a week or so. I don't need to say how fast and how high those bills rack up, along with followup and maintenance doctors, meds, etc. She does have insurance, but of course it doesn't pay everything. She's over 18 so I'm not legally liable but like the Lannisters, 'we always pay our debts' and I've been gradually chipping away at them.
Then this month she had another severe psychotic break and was hospitalized again. (Well, she wasn't actually transferred from emergency psych to a mental hospital this time as there were no beds available anywhere in the greater Bay Area over the course of 4-5 days, but that's a whole nother sorry situation.) Last summer's incident also involved two ER visits and two (mandated) private ambulance rides, and this month's included one ER visit and one Urgent Care visit, though she was transported by fire dept ambulance this time, so whew for that. And of course several emergency doctor appointments during the buildup of each incident until she reached the critical stage where they'd finally admit her to emergency psych facility.
So yes, sidenote, the mental health system in this country is catastrophically underfunded, understaffed, under-resourced, and borderline cruel in a crisis, and that's a huge but separate issue. My issue is trying to pay for all that. Psychologically the best thing for her and for me would be to give up BB since it does take so very much time and energy with little reward (plus the ever-increasing stream of social media negativity which lands uninvited in updaters' mentions all day, every day can be kinda stressful), but I desperately need the dollars my site does generate.
When McCrae suggested doing this GFM I said no, I'm just not comfortable asking for help - everyone's got problems we're all dealing with, and I've always been self-sufficient and don't know any other way to be. But he and Marilyn and a couple other good friends in this BB family of ours urged me to let them go ahead with it so I did (which if you know me, is an indication of how dire my situation really is.)
So too late to make a long story short, but I just wanted to explain a bit and say how incredibly touched and grateful (and yes, squirrely) I am from all your support and kind words, and how much your donations will truly help us weather this storm! I've said it before and will say it til the cows come home: Hamsterwatchers are the best!! Thank you all from the bottom of my heart, you mean the world to me!