July 19, 2015
Since early 2014 I decided to learn a bit more and installed adsense on the various sub-domains. As a result, there were a few months last year when revenues exceeded $100 (AUD) a month. This year, however, most months have received revenues of around $100.
The ad revenue chart below (June 2014 to June 2015) shows an average of around $100 per month (click for larger image).
Note that this particular blog doesn't get much revenues, with most of its readership being located in India. Indian adsense revenues (per click) are a tiny fraction of US/Western country adsense revenues. Most readers on my 'technical' and 'eyestrain' subdomains are from the West, and I receive more per click from them – even though total visits on those subdomains are a fraction of the visits to this blog.
I've now broken even with all (undiscounted) costs of running this blog and numerous other domains (for over around 15 years, in all – including very heavy costs in the initial years, when domains cost nearly $100 per year). However, it will take 15 more years to offset my significant health costs (RSI, eyestrain) arising from intensive typing/ computer work.
Tax treatment? I've concluded based on preliminary research that this "income" should be treated as hobby income. So, I believe that this income is not taxable till I cross around $3-5K per year – at which stage I'll consult a tax adviser.
Google adsense may well be a racket (as it doesn't pay till a minimum amount is accumulated) but if you put in some work you could offset your costs of running a blog.
I would recommend that all Indian classical liberals set up their own blogs.
Of course, I could have earned far more by writing for established newspapers, but I don't intend to do so for some more time. I want to continue researching various policy and political positions. Plus, independence is a key value to me. I don't write to please others. I write as I please.