Some of you may be aware that on 30th September my Bible site posted a notice of suspension of service due to lack of funds to pay for hosting. Since then I have been inundated with emails of support and sympathy. I wish to sincerely thank everyone for you kindness. Some have sincerely appologised for the lack of a credit card while others have offered to wire the funds to me.
First, let me explain why I do not wish to personally handle any funds in this regard:
The hosting company which hosts the bible charges 358 US dollars for a three-year period. I have implemented an automatic billing and payment recovery system with Paypal. Every time the bill is due the amount will be deducted from the Paypal account without human intervention. I set up this system in the hope that it will continue even after my time. Ever since I setup a PayPal donation link in Sept 2009, I have received USD 50.
Despite the fact that I have over a 100 online friends and about 50 clients from my advertising agency firm, I have I never asked them to sponsor this project in the last 6 years. I strongly believed that those who found this website useful would gladly contribute at least a couple of dollars a year for its upkeep. As you can see, I was obviously wrong, but I do not hold anyone personally responsible for our collective complacency to such projects.
I did give the matter some serious thought before coming to a decision to request public funds. You should realize that my attachment to this project is purely academic and not the least bit spiritual. USD358 is certainly an amount I can continue to pay for another three years as I have been doing in the past, but the question that came to my mind is how long should I personally finance a service for the benefit of my God fearing Christian brothers. Hence, as a matter of principle there was no more need to spend my personal funds on a project which could very well be put to use on other projects.
When I realized the website was not generating revenue to meet even hosting charges, through ads or from visitor contributions, the decision to stop funding came quite naturally.
The Malayalam bible will certainly not disappear from the internet just because of an individual or his website. The entire content will still be available on Wikisource, although the latest corrections and "Red Letter" verses will be missing. The content has already been given, with a few new corrections, to several parishes and Christian groups for further development, web hosting and print publication. Most of them will give credit to my effort, and I am forever grateful for their kindness. The site has been available for free all these years, but once it leaves my control I will not be able to ensure its freedom.
The deadline for renewal of the server space is November 15. If I do not receive the required amount, I will be forced to shut down the bible site completely. It is certainly unfortunate that it has come to this end. What pains me most is that I had hoped I would find at least a few individuals in a span of three years to pay the hosting charges. I was wrong. So terribly wrong.