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Finding friends for the Tyee: A plan for a reader-supported journalism program

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This report introduces the Tyee, an independent, online-only regional news magazine. Like most magazines, the Tyee constantly searches for new revenue sources to become financially stable. In 2009, the Tyee undertook a one-time fundraising campaign aimed at readers. It was so successful that the staff conceived the idea of enlisting reader support as an ongoing revenue source. This report identifies the factors that contributed to the success of the one-time campaign, considers their applicability to a continuing campaign, and describes the planning process that led to the design of an ongoing fundraising program, whose key element was to invite reader participation in editorial decisions in exchange for financial contributions. The report then describes the proposed program and offers recommendations for further development. It concludes by considering the feasibility of the proposed program and the contribution it can make to the search for new journalism funding models.
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