If you are a regular reader of 'The Garlic', you know that in our link-laden posts, we often highlight the voices of those on Firedoglake.com, people like Jane Hamsher, Marcy Wheeler (Emptywheel), David Dayen, Blue Texan, TBogg, Lisa Derrick, Attaturk and others.
This morning, founder Jane Hamsher announced an ambitious project - Firedoglake Membership Program;
The Washington Post is supported by Kaplan. The Huffington Post was supported by venture capital, and had to sell out to AOL in order to expand their reporting capabilities. Think Progress is supported by CAP. And there are many entities that are subsidized by the political parties, and the money that tries to influence them. But the fact is that online advertising revenues provide only a small fraction of what their dead tree counterparts did, and will not sustain the same kind of staffing and resources necessary to pay people for their efforts.
At FDL, 75% of all our expenses go to paying the salaries of our staff, and the rest is devoted to technical and other costs that help them do what they do. Some of that revenue comes from advertising, but most comes in the form of donations. But those donations are usually tied to individual issues, and don’t provide a steady stream of predictable revenue that allows us to plan and grow.
Last year, Craig Newmark of Craigslist said he thinks that by the year 2020, NPR will be a “dominant force” in media because of their membership model.
“I have a feeling that membership models and philanthropy models will be stronger than advertising-supported organizations, because people are willing to pay for trustworthy news,” he said.
We agree. If you trust and value the reporting at FDL, from Hillman Award Winner Marcy Wheeler’s work from Scooter Libby to Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, to Dave Dayen’s work on mortgage foreclosure and Jon Walker’s reporting on health care, from Wikileaks and Bradley Manning to Audit the Fed and the BP oil spill, consider becoming a Founding Member of the Firedoglake membership program. Your annually renewing membership will help us do a lot more of the things we want to do, like sending Dave Dayen to report on the Wisconsin labor protests, or Michael Whitney to the Gulf to cover the BP oil spill, or the three-person team that covered the Prop 8 trial in San Francisco.
But the hard truth is, FDL doesn’t have a Sugar Daddy like the Brothers Koch. We don’t have a Fortune 500 media company behind us. And we’re not running interference for Democratic politicians just because they’re calling themselves Democrats — we’re holding them accountable. What a concept.
Maybe your tax return is dropping in the mail this week ... Or you got a bonus for your hard work ...
For as little as $45 dollars (what's that, about a weeks' worth of coffee?), you can become a 'Founding Member" of Firedoglake.com and get a good feeling of supporting a well-worthy cause.
Go to the Membership Page and sign up, be on the ground floor of this great project.
Get a glove, get in the game ...