"Give in"? You act as if I sullied myself, or something. I just decided to give it a try. It was a big job, to translate all those book links (that I'd had up for a couple of years) into the affiliate links, but I guess I finally had the energy to do it. And I figured, why not? I like trying new things once in a while, and other sites, similar to mine, had done it too. And maybe I'd make a little money as well. So, why not?
Another "why not?" moment.
They exist to allow me to express myself and to help other people. Like I'd been doing, at my own expense, for a couple of years before I signed up for the affiliate program.
Uh, yeah. I think that the checks we get in the mail give us this hint that we are going to get money. ;)
But the sites are going to exist whether or not they make money. If Adsense and the bookstore affilate program folded tomorrow, the sites would still remain. Because I did them as a labor of love and because I enjoy sharing the information that is on them.
The reason I got involved with Adsense and the bookstore was kind of like, "Why not?" and "The money would be nice, what have I got to lose?" I had done all the work anyway, and did the work without any expectation of compensation. But since there was a way to make money that wasn't too gaudy or tacky and wasn't going to turn off my visitors (this is an issue with me), then, once again, why not? Why see a site make $0 when it can make $XXX just because you added a few snippets of code to each page? Why not?
Obviously I do not take this issue to heart as much as you do, and I do not feel as passionate as you do about it. The spirit and content of sites have always been #1 for me, not the money. The sites are some of my proudest accomplishments. I didn't do them for the money, the money is a wonderful afterthought and I really like it. But they existed way before money was a consideration, and would so again, if it came to that.