Minimalism Documentary: see the film

The Minimalists

Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus help over 20 million people live meaningful lives with less through their website, books, podcast, and documentary. The Minimalists have been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe, Forbes, TIME, ABC, CBS, NBC, BBC, CBC, and NPR.

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Support The Minimalists by making a one-time or monthly
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About Your Contribution

We had a telephone meeting with a representative from Google recently. Their AdSense team had been reaching out to high-traffic websites and offering them ways to “monetize” their sites. After speaking with Google’s employee—an articulate, caring man from Silicon Valley—for half an hour, we received some exciting news: given the size of our audience, we would earn three to ten thousand dollars per month if we were willing to strategically place advertisements on our website and podcast.

Holy moly!
Ten thousand dollars a month?
That’s six figures a year!
Just for some ads.

Now, it’s worth noting that money is not the driver of our decisions at The Minimalists—but, come on, that’s a lot of dough! Although, of course, we know that cluttering our website with adverts would likely taint our message. While ads aren’t inherently evil, our personal values simply don’t align with hocking third-party consumer goods in our sidebar. Obviously.

Let’s face it: advertisements suck! So we politely—albeit reluctantly—declined: we said no to tens of thousands of dollars. “While this is an amazing opportunity,” Joshua told the kind man over the phone, “we’re sorry, but we can’t, in good conscience, place advertisements on our website.” The same goes for our podcast.

It’s interesting: we’ve always said we wouldn’t “sell out” our values for a big paycheck, but this is the first time that theory ceased to be theoretical. And, to be honest, saying no was not an easy decision.

You see, the main way The Minimalists generates revenue from our writings is from the sale of our books. In the past half decade, we have published three books. Each one takes a considerable amount of time to research, outline, write, edit, rewrite, proof, format, design, and bring to market, which means that from the time we contemplate a book idea, it takes a couple years for that idea to reach the eyes of a potential audience. Consequently, most of our ideas fall to the cutting-room floor because only a precious few can make it through the entire, tedious publication process.

With our blog and podcast, however, we can publish our work the moment it is created, making our ideas immediately available to everyone—for free. Because there is no cost to read or listen to our words, and because people are willing to share our essays and podcast episodes with their friends and family, this website is able to reach a significantly larger audience than our books or even our many major-media appearances.

Thus, we’d rather publish to this website than any other forum. Yes, we will continue to write books and host free events and even pursue other vehicles such as our documentary; but, since the objective is to communicate our message effectively, this website will continue to serve as our central broadcast medium.

Needless to say, operating this website and our podcast is rather time-consuming, not to mention expensive. And because we refuse to insert advertisements or hide our work behind a paywall, we’ve decided to let our audience support our work to whatever degree they wish. This way our essays, podcasts, interviews, and ruminations will remain freely available to everyone.

So, if you find any value in our work, you can now sponsor it directly with a one-time or monthly donation using the donate button below. (If you don’t want to donate online, you can mail checks to: The Minimalists, PO Box 4403, Missoula, MT 59806.)

We are honored to have a community of people who appreciate what we do. We appreciate you, too. Thank you for your support and generosity and for giving us the opportunity to contribute beyond ourselves in a meaningful way. We look forward to adding value for years to come.

Joshua & Ryan

Donate via PayPal

Support The Minimalists by making a one-time or monthly
donation using a debit card, credit card, or PayPal account.