I belong to a couple sites where there is no outside advertising whatsoever and only one is free and thats the Hobart Welders Forum which is running V-Bulletin just like Len is. The others are PPV and they aren't inexpensive by any means.
Typically a hundred bucks a year or more...
Everyone is a 'sponsor'
Everyone gets to advertise
Usually there is no censorship of content or language because they are 'private' in the sense that you can read the posts as a non-member, but you can't reply or make any comment. Moderation is still present but the users agreement is pretty loose.
I moderate on 2 publically viewed forums, one has much. much more traffic than this one does and correspondingly more issues because most people never read the users agreement prior to their first log on. They check the 'I agree' box and continue, oblivious to the fact that there are rules set forth by the forum owner 'Len' pertaining to how he wants the forum to operate.
I have no issue with site advertising, it keeps the site free for all. Moderation keeps the site from becoming a free for all. Of all the sites I frequent, this site pretty much self moderates, that is, the posters here act in a mature enough manner that outside moderation (by Len) is almost never needed.
Lots of the ads on this site are banner ads generated by the software that pertain to paid advertisers (sponsors) that pay Len a fee to advertise and it also allows them special privileges like 'sponsor' in their signature line. Those sponsors also defray the cost of maintaining a site because, nothing is free in cyber land, nothing.
I'm not fond of Dodge trucks either or John Deere Gators or Chevy Silverado's on my screen but thy are all a necessary evil in keeping this site free and available.
Finally, I presume Len isn't doing this for the joy of it. I realize hunting is a passion he shares with us but I always keep in mind (and often remind others) that Len has a nice outlet for quality merchanside that he's personally tested right on this site. I feel that it's good neighborly practice to try and buy from Len if possible.