For those of you who’ve been with us from the beginning, you know about our history of challenging upgrades. Several times, we’ve introduced new versions and taken them back to the drawing board after hearing your feedback. Raw Story’s readers are a smart, incisive bunch, and we’ve always taken your critiques to heart.
At long last, we’re ready to bring the site to the next level, incorporating the feedback you’ve delivered.
But we need your help. Here’s some good news: The redesign has actually come in ahead of schedule and with it, our costs which involve paying our top notch design team, our programmers, our project manager and – finally! – our new webmaster. We’ve also witnessed (as have you) a catastrophic failure in our programming architecture that requires us to move more quickly than we’d originally planned. We know you want your Raw Story to load fast and after this, it will. It’s time for the new Raw.
Because of the soft economy, I’ve long shot down requests from within our team to go to you, the readers, for help. Nobody needs someone else asking for a handout. With unemployment at 9.6% and real unemployment at somewhere nearer to 20%, times are tight.
And all those ads! The truth is the ads allow us to support a stronger team of writers and editors than any site our size. We host a cutting-edge investigative team – including, just last week, a journalist who reported from Afghanistan and Iraq about the harrowing and untold cost of war: PTSD and the harrowing road to suicide for an Iraqi vet.
You’ve been getting regular exclusives from Sahil Kapur in Washington and Ron Brynaert in New York. David Edwards has provided you with video every day of the year. Editors Diana Sweet, Muriel Kane, Daniel Tencer, Stephen Webster, Eric Dolan and Annitra Morrison have ensured you’ve gotten the latest news. Larisa Alexandrovna, who many of you remember from her reporting on Don Siegelman and intelligence matters, has been working on a book. Next week, Brad Jacobson – our reporter who broke the story about the Pentagon using psychological operations on its own people – will deliver another in a series of hard-hitting pieces.
As you know, we have an incredible and valuable product. And we’re ready to take it to the next level. Scroll down to see what we’ve created.
I hope you can be a part of the new RawStory.com by giving whatever you can afford. Details on how much each dollar helps follow at the conclusion of this letter.
To donate by mail, shoot a check, payable to “Raw Story,” to:
PO Box 21050
Washington, DC 20009
Our new look will speed up page loads, acquaint you with content faster and allow for easier sharing. It’s part of a long-term effort to professionalize RawStory.com. We’ve also got an iPhone app in the stables (with an iPad app to come soon after that – we’re extremely excited about this).
At long last, we’re bringing Raw Story’s design in from the cold, and giving the content the face it deserves. (And with the new design you’ll see less ads on the page – yet another reason to help us out)
Help us help you by donating whatever you can afford. Gifts of $50 or more will be paired with an ad-free account, which will debut when the new site launches next month. Gifts of $150 or more will also come with a T-shirt bearing our new logo. And if you’ve really enjoyed us through the years and want a great chance to show it, give $250 and get an ad-free account, an honorary assistant publisher listing on the masthead for a year, and t-shirts for five.
Thank you in advance for your support.
Founder and Publisher,
* $50 will pay for one fifth of a freelance investigative piece, or one exclusive Raw Story news story
* $100 will fund technology required to bring you videos every day.
* $250 will pay for news gathering, page updating, and write ups summarizing news of importance to you.
* $500 will pay for one of our reporters to attend professional development conferences, learning the techniques that bring you important news we cover.
* $750 will pay for a month’s worth of our servers and technology.
* $1,000 will pay for a tenth of our new system development costs, or a week of on the ground reporting from places as far afield as Iraq and Afghanistan.
* $1,500 will pay for a major investigative piece, including the many expenses that come with their research.
* $3,000 will pay for a major investigative series.
* $6,000 will pay for our all of our design art, including logos, the front page, and all story pages, and will help support our expanded tech department.
* $25,000 will pay for our entire redesign project, including design, programming and project management.
Here are just a few of the stories your support helped us produce in the past few weeks — in the past few weeks alone:
From all of us at Raw Story, a hearty thank you!!