Please support our work
I just want to thank everyone who donated this week. We’ve raised enough to pay our all-freelance staff of writers for another two or three weeks.
Last week we were able to bring some more in-depth coverage to important in our area. We were to first to report the deadline facing Nickelsville and we were the only journalists to accompany the homeless encampment on its move.
Former Weekly reporter Phil Dawdy brought you a more in-depth story about mayoral candidate and City Councilwoman Jan Drago, and whether she really is Mayor Greg Nickels’ “Mini-Me.” as well as a story about the problems being a pedestrian in Seattle.
Late Sunday, we’ll post an exclusive story about how we almost saw people with guns walking around the Bite of Seattle.
We’ve been around for three months now. We’d like to keep going and do more by bringing more journalists on board. Most writers on this site are volunteers. We are able to pay a few people to freelance.
We’re still far short of our goal to find 1,000 people willing to donate $10 a month or to raise a total of about $100,000, to keep us going for a year. Reaching that goal would allow us to pay more journalists and bring you more stories. We’d love to raise enough to pay more of our former P-I colleagues write regularly about the environment, the port, youth violence and transportation.
Our goal isn’t to compete with seattlepi.com or seattletimes.com, but to do the stories that aren’t being done after more than a third of professional journalists have lost their jobs in recent years.
If you’ve donated already, thank you very much.
- Please consider signing up for a recurring monthly tax-deductible donation though our fiscal sponsor, KCTS-TV. You can cancel at any time, but having more monthly donors will give us some more certainty, which will in turn help us find other forms of funding.
- If you haven’t donated, please consider helping as well.
- You can also donate through joining our Facebook Causes page:
- Or to have an even bigger impact, please donate and email others to donate. You can do that as well by joining our Facebook Causes page and forward invitations to others.
- Keep in mind we also have a $3,000 matching donation for the next two months, so your donations will be matched dollar for dollar.
I also wanted to post an answer to some good points left in our comments section about how we need to better define why we are here.
Mary posted this comment: “You have got to “pick a focus” that is unique (unique selling proposition as we say in marketing) . . .local and regional and state government, big issues, as someone said earlier . . we need the “Walter Cronkite” of our local/regional/state journalism – balanced . . .asking the hard questions . . . keep government and business honest!
And then she wrote, “What can you do “better” or what can you do that others are NOT doing?…You have to give us a reason to sign up for a daily email . . .quickie to entice us to go to the website regularly . . .or a reason to just visit daily. “
Another person said, I’m sending in a check for $10 for another month subscription. I am a regular reader of the P-G, but as much a skeptic as a supporter. But I agree that the P-G needs to focus its content and its purpose–and soon. WHY should I read the P-G every day? Over the long term I need better reasons than ideological ones–to “save” quality journalism, or put former P-I reporters to work. I need to know that I will get information about my city that I need daily. The occasional “calling the politician to task” story is not enough. I also think that the commenter who posted about the liberal slant has a point, albeit a small one. …Seattle doesn’t need another outlet for liberal ideology, what it needs is a news source that is willing to be fairly critical of all interests and positions in this city.”
Thanks for those comments.
To give you an idea of what’s happening in Seattle, the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild, which represents employees of the P-I, the Times and other newspapers, has shrunk by half in large part because of layoffs. While not all of those who’ve been laid off were journalists, dozens more reporters at non-union papers such as The Seattle Weekly, the Stranger and neighborhood weeklies such as the Capitol Hill Times have lost their jobs.
As a result, there are far fewer full-time journalists working in town. There are bloggers, who predominantly have real jobs and do their blogs on the side.
We aren’t trying to compete with the P-I or the Times. Our remaining colleagues are doing a heroic job continuing to do what they can to report the news. We hope you’re reading their sites. But there is only so much that they can do. The layoffs have meant there’s much less information being presented to the public. The reporters who are left still manage to dig deeply into some issues. But our surviving working journalists simply can’t dig into as many issues as they could when there were almost twice as many of us.
So we’re trying to fill in the gap. We’ve reported stories that have been picked up by other sites, but may have gone unnoticed had we not been here. The $40,000 bonus given to the superintendant of City Light, or the fact that Seattle faces disproportionate bus cuts comes to mind. Others are simpler stories, like one we reported after the mayor’s office issued a press release about how streetlights would be replaced more often. Other sites duly reported the press release. We were able to report that it’s now taking human48 days to fix a street light. We’ve reported other stories like the life of a man killed in an hit-and-run accident that wouldn’t have been reported. We’ve given attention to issues like Nickelsville or looming cuts in county human services agencies that haven’t gotten much attention. Please click on our Best of the PostGlobe tab for some other examples of stories we alone have told or we’ve told in greater depth than other news outlets have been able to tell. This isn’t meant as a criticism of them. As I said there’s only so much they can do – and so we’re trying to add to the body of information that’s out there. And while our site is far smaller, bigger sites often link to our stories allowing us to reach a broader audience.
But so much more needs to be done. If we can reach our goal of 1,000 donors, we’d like to delve more deeply into the issues affecting our city from transportation to poverty. We’d like to have more environmental stories as well as delve into education and Seattle’s attempts to reduce youth violence.
Unlike other cities, such as San Diego and Minneapolis, where major donors have stepped up to help launch similar sites, we haven’t been successful getting a large amount of startup funding. That’s why we’re asking you to help us build something that might make up for the loss of professional journalists in Seattle. Others sites such as InvestigateWest, made up of the P-I’s former investigative team, are springing up to to look at West Coast-wide issues. In a sense, we are a local version of that. We hope you will support them, too.
Please donate to us and join our Causes page on Facebook.
We also would love to have a volunteer development person to help us get grants and major donations. If anyone is interested, please let us know by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.