The past 12 months have been remarkable for
. I can safely say that our traction has vastly exceeded even my most optimistic expectations. In the past year, our readership and revenue have increased by 500 percent.
On a more personal note, I am proud to have grown the hobby website that I worked on while nursing my second baby into an international meeting place for high quality debate, with virtual offices in Sydney, London, Toronto—and now Stockholm.
I employ four co-editors (soon to be five) and have published hundreds of contributing writers. We’ve managed to keep costs low and quality high— without sacrificing any of our editorial independence, which we value above all else.
And we feel like we’re just getting started. We have exciting plans for expansion in 2019.
Our new editor
We’re delighted to welcome
as our European Editor. Paulina has been the Editor-in-Chief of the Swedish magazine
where she led nuanced discussion of sensitive issues not addressed by the more risk-averse local media. Paulina is a trained lawyer and is fluent not only in the Scandinavian languages, but also in German and Polish, and she also reads French. Paulina will be sourcing stories of interest to an international readership, focusing on the culture and politics of the European continent. We’re looking forward to the writers that she brings to
We’re also expanding into another vertical—events! Next month we’re hosting the first ever
in Toronto. We reached maximum capacity in less than 48 hours, which is further evidence of the hunger out there for meaningful face-to-face conversation.
And stay tuned for information on two more events in the works. We are preparing a February event with some high profile figures of the "intellectual dark web" in my home town of Sydney, Australia. Also, we’re planning a joint event with Think Inc. in San Francisco this coming June, featuring an exciting group of speakers you know.
Bad news we'll make good
As you know, we are crowdfunded. Our primary revenue stream is the direct patronage of our readers, who currently support us through Patreon with US$23,400 a month. Up until now, Patreon has been a safe, reliable and mostly politically neutral solution. Recently this has changed with the targeting of creators as part of what we see as a move against free speech. Now, we and many other creators have been forced to consider other options, including
. (Please see the sidebar or below, depending on where you're reading this, for more information.)
We have chosen crowdfunding over a more traditional ad-driven model because it allows us the freedom to focus on quality over quantity; to publish voices and points of view that we know our readers appreciate, even if they may not attract always massive clicks or mainstream advertisers. We're proud to be a boot-strap operation. We’ve raised no venture capital and answer to no board of owners/investors. This gives us absolute editorial freedom, but it also makes us reliant on readers. Please consider joining more than 3,500 readers who support us monthly.
team wishes you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and thanks you for your continued support of our mission. We all look forward to reading
articles right along with you in the coming year.