I’ve been experimenting with Flattr since May. I started when it was a closed beta that required a waiting list to get approved, and it’s been about 4 months since it went to an open beta. Thus far, my results are … eh. It isn’t ridiculous, but nothing much has happened for me with it. I’ll occasionally get one or two flattrs on a post or podcast. Most get nothing, and the blog as a whole has two. I have done absolutely nothing to goose that, so this is the un-pimped base state.
Clearly, if I wanted more attention from the Flattr community I’d write more posts about Flattr itself (like, uhm, this one.) My biggest problem is that I don’t think the critical mass is anywhere close at this point. There is only one site in my general orbit that is Flattr enabled, which is Thomas Gideon’s Command Line. Generally I give him one flattr every month. I never ever run across any other site in my travels on which I can flattr someone else. Much like any similar project, Flattr suffers from the power law distribution. A very small number of items get a huge number of flattrs while almost all get few or none. It also seems like the German origins of this project shine through in that most of the really big hitter items that get large amounts of attention are in German. Items of English and American origin appear to have an uphill climb to crack that.
At this point, I have run all the way through my initial deposit. I flipped all the income I’ve ever received back into my allocation pool, and will continue doing that. Unless something radically changes in the system, I don’t plan on depositing another chunk of money. I’ll keep flipping my ever shrinking pool of income until the day it runs out and I have no more in there. If the accounts ever zero out, I’m done. I’d love to be surprised with some of my regular sites popping up with Flattr widgets on there so I can give them some money and use it more like a Digg replacement. Until that day, I’m hopeful it takes off but it’s not how I’m betting much money.