As Zini said, low traffic site so advertisements wouldn't generate any revenue. In addition to that, it would involve someone in the project to handle money... which we want to avoid anyway. No one should be managing money for the project, this allows us to side-step a lot of problems.
Someone mentioned drama. OpenMW is a very low drama project. Let's keep it that way.
We've dealt with "drama" in the past effectively (Bethesda/Matt Grandstaff, Toxic People, etc.) but we certainly don't want more.
The idea behind patreon and bounties is to take the responsibility of "treasurer" out of the hands of the project and to support individuals who are interested in making a few bucks on features or assets that have languished on our issue tracker because no one was interested in doing them.
If you think something _very_ important, you can put that money in escrow on sourcebounty and it stays there until the bounty is claimed (feature or asset complete and accepted) or you withdraw your bounty. Multiple people can put bounties on the same feature/asset.
It is an additional incentive to develop OpenMW further including post 1.0 features.
In this way, OpenMW itself doesn't touch a single cent. It all happens between users and developers.
@aesylwinn: I understand your concern, you think that other people are going to make money off the backs of other's work. Well, there is nothing stopping people from taking OpenMW and making their own game (assets) and reselling OpenMW as their own so long as they abide by the GPLv3 license. This isn't an ethical question, the GPLv3 says you can sell OpenMW and that is one of the goals of the project anyway, make a game-engine that others can build on.
That being said, if some user somewhere in the world thinks that a particular feature is worth putting a 5 dollars (or whatever) bounty on, isn't that the choice of the user? If a developer comes along and says, I want to work on that feature anyway, I'll snag that Fiver while I"m at it, they have every right to do so. The developer is still contributing to the project and benefiting the community as whole and furthering the project.
I'm curious as to what Zini, Scrawl, Lgro and others think about all of this.