Canadian Publishing Industry News
24 June 2016, REGINA, SK
Briarpatch at risk of closure
The publication has a total annual budget of $148,000, which covers wages, printing costs, office expenses and overhead, contributor fees, distribution, and web hosting—but are now running on empty. There is currently only enough money in the budget to print the next issue.
“We aren’t keeping up with the financial demands of publishing a magazine that honours our commitments to fair pay and affordable access to media for all, “ editor Tanya Andrusieczko and publisher Rhiannon Ward wrote in a statement posted on their website.
“Our financial bind is urgent, but we’re not about to turn to capitalist models of publishing for an easy fix. For over 40 years, Briarpatch has delivered truly independent journalism from the front lines of social movements thanks to donations made by our treasured readers, and we’re not going to give up on that. But we need a boost from you now more than ever because we’re on the brink.”
This is how Briarpatch says readers can help:
1. Donate. Your donation of $10, $25, $50, $100, or $500 will ensure that Briarpatch can get on its feet again. This is the surest way to get to our goal of $15,000 by July 30th.
2. Sustain. Monthly sustainers provide much-needed stability in the face of shrinking funding. Our sustainers automatically receive an ongoing subscription and never receive a fundraising letter or renewal notice from us again! We are offering a special gift-subscription premium for new monthly sustainers: Become a monthly sustainer at $10 per month or more and you’ll get a free one-year Briarpatch gift subscription for a friend or family member. Already a sustainer? Give BP a raise by calling 1-866-431-5777 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
3. Subscribe. If you love our e-newsletter and digital content, you’ll love ourprint magazine. Who doesn’t love the smell and feel of paper?
4. Share. Tell your friends and networks that we’re in an urgent bind.
Donating, sustaining, and subscribing are all invaluable boosts that will help us achieve the three most essential things we need if we are to stay alive:
1. Doubling our reader and revenue bases. The stories in Briarpatch have to reach more people if we are to strengthen our social movements, and we need financial continuity if we are to pursue the best writers and the most important untold stories. We must build, or we will fold.
2. Paying our writers and artists a fair wage. Currently, we pay writers and artists a flat rate that is about ten times lower than the rates they deserve to be paid. What’s worse, we can’t afford to pay for online-only content at all. This can’t stand. Our writers and artists are everything. If they can’t afford to work with us, there will be no Briarpatch. With your help, we will tripleour contributor rates for all writers and artists within one year, and continue increasing it every following year.
3. Printing the magazine. 43 years ago, Briarpatch was born as a stapled-in-the-corner anti-poverty newsletter, and it has grown into a beautiful full-colour print publication distributed across Canada, the U.S., and the world. While we continue to improve our web presence with more online content, blogs, and photo essays, we also want to stay true to our print tradition, which we believe is the lifeblood of accessible, intergenerational movement building. Help keep us in print.
Our independence has always relied on the sustained support of our readers. We’re not about to give up on our independence, but we’re asking you not to give up on us.
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