I’m not a very good writer, but I do like to read.

These days most of what I read is on the Internet. I have books, but I only reach for them if my phone and laptop are charging.

Books I haven’t read

I like to read about people. Stories of individuals, stories of societies, stories of cultures. I like stories about personal journeys — career growth, child-raising, mental health issues.

I read science articles, but I’m not a scientist so I read the ones with a human angle. The ones which involve research communities or solitary individuals, the ones which display the best of human collaboration and the ones which get scarred by jealousies. I suppose I’m interested in how knowledge develops and spreads, and how a steady effort is required to keep it from degrading over time.

I read about food. Not recipes (because I gave up on that a long time ago), but travel blogs involving food, and usually (always) forwarded by my mother. I don’t do much travelling myself, but I save some of the articles just in case I do one day.

There is so much on the Internet. So many experiences, so many opinions, so many ways to approach Life.

And it’s basically free. For ₹1000 a month paid to an ISP we get all this beauty and wonder beamed magically to our phones.

“Hold on,” you say, “nothing is free — the entire online advertising economy basically pays for all of this.” And that’s true, and that’s a Good Thing.

Nothing wrong with advertising

It’s a good thing because ads are optional — optional to look at, optional to click through, and entirely optional to buy whatever’s being advertised. And Optional = Good.

But from my point of view as a reader, a consumer of content, the advertising network is an entirely impersonal way to appreciate the creator.

Let me put it like this: if another person on the Internet has gone through the trouble of putting together an article, researching, writing, editing and beautifying it along the way, and then has made it available to me for free — then sometimes I want to pay them back.

Sometimes I want to pay them back.

There are instances when I want to make a large donation. In these cases, there are services which let me do that — outside India I’ve used PayPal and within the country I’ve used Instamojo.

But sometimes, often, every day — I want to give just a little more than a Like.

Likes are great too

This is the primary motivation behind IndiTip — to make it easy to give a little more than a Like.

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