Ten years old next month, The Tyee is an independent media success in British Columbia. Funny thing, though. We see thousands of Canadians across the country reading The Tyee, too. There seems a growing hunger for the investigative and solutions-focused journalism we publish.
It does make sense. Our award-winning coverage -- whether about energy, First Nations, food policy or the growing income gap -- is often already national in scope and impact.
Yet lately we keep hearing people beyond B.C. tell us: Do more! The Tyee's principled journalism, they say, is sorely needed at this political moment for Canada.
Which is why today we are launching a new drive. We are asking you to help build The Tyee's national content, reach and impact.
We are inviting you to become a Tyee Builder by pledging a monthly contribution to expand the funds we can use to hire and pay more reporters and commentators across Canada. We want to establish:
- The Tyee National Pool of knowledgeable commentators to hold power accountable and broaden the range of perspectives corporate media now publishes. We have commitments already from renowned veterans like Lawrence Martin and Stevie Cameron, and from a new generation of emerging voices as well. Like who? Click here to see some of the other great, tough-minded voices your money could fund.
- The Tyee Ottawa Reporting Bureau to cover national politics with fresh eyes. That means a Tyee reporter with Tyee values in Ottawa. Yes, focusing on the Senate when necessary, but also focusing on inequality, housing, the environment, secret trade deals and the like.
How much of this we can do depends on how many Builders we can recruit in the coming weeks. The goal we've set? $100,000 annually in new Builder subscriptions.
That's right. $100,000.
We've never asked you for this much before. But this is kind of a big deal. Are we crazy? Maybe. But we think Canada needs more independent reporting. Now more than ever. And this is how much we think it's going to take to help make a dent.
Think of it this way. If just 555 new Tyee Builders commit $15/month, we'll make our goal. That's just three per cent of readers who will visit The Tyee today, each giving less than the cost of a digital subscription to one of Canada's mainstream newspapers. Our target may be lofty, but we think it's achievable. You can make it happen.
A quick note to our loyal B.C. readers and Builders: We aren't changing our commitment to covering B.C. issues. This is all about adding to what we already do, not changing course or taking away from what we already do well.
So whether you live in Victoria, B.C. or Victoria, Newfoundland, here is how you can add your name to the Builders who already support The Tyee's journalism with monthly pledges.
What is the Canadian media missing?
At a time when our country is undergoing fundamental changes, our national media platforms are in collapse. News rooms are shrinking. There's no money for longer, in-depth investigative reporting jobs. Good reporters are leaving the business, locked behind paywalls, or assigned to trivial stories. It seems some media are more concerned with shareholder profits than what matters to you.
That's why, as with all of our fundraising drives, we need something more than your money. We need to know what matters to you most in terms of news and reporting and, in this case, the national conversation. Do you think Canada needs more environmental reporting? More reporting on inequality? Foreign affairs? Militarization? Sign up. Tell us.
Plus, The Tyee has been paywall-free since 2003. By joining The Tyee you're doing two things: you're paying for the quality journalism Canada needs, and you're giving that journalism to the entire country. Your gift to the nation. That's a pretty powerful act at a pretty critical time.
And for the political nerds...
For years, politicians have been playing with you. Now it's your turn to play with them. In anticipation of the 2015 federal election, we present The Party Leader Paper Dolls. Just a little gift from the political nerds at The Tyee to the political nerds who subscribe at levels of $15/month or higher. Prorogue away, parliamentary puppet master.
How much impact can The Tyee have on Canada's national decision-making? Quite a bit, based on our track record. We launched the 100-Mile Diet before the local food movement had taken off. We helped expose abuse of the federal temporary foreign worker program that became a national uproar. Our coverage of oil sands policies is referenced by U.S. major media. We sounded early alarms about flaws in the secretly negotiated, fast-tracked foreign trade deal with China, and a year later it hasn't been passed. This kind of hard-hitting national reporting and analysis The Tyee already publishes by Andrew Nikiforuk, Geoff Dembicki, Colleen Kimmett, Robyn Allan -- if we have the resources, we can do so much more.
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