What we’ve executed to this point and what you may assist us do subsequent…
Present Affairs has simply launched a brand new Kickstarter marketing campaign meant to assist us enhance our protection in 2020 and broaden our journal to construct a formidable left media establishment. We hope you’ll contemplate supporting it. Beneath is the textual content of our marketing campaign pitch. We’re additionally releasing a variety of particular podcast episodes over on our Patreon to kick off the marketing campaign. Thanks, and in case you just like the work we do, please contemplate donating and supporting us.
In 2015, Present Affairs journal launched with a Kickstarter marketing campaign. With the $16,000 we raised, we have been capable of publish our first print situation. Since then, we now have established ourselves as an essential impartial left media outlet, publishing 20 beautiful print magazines, over 70 podcast episodes, a whole lot of on-line articles, and half a dozen books. Our articles have been quoted all over the place from the New York Instances and the New Yorker to The Late Present. We’ve got been capable of open a bodily workplace in New Orleans and rent a small workers. We’ve executed all of this with none outdoors promoting or buyers, relying totally on income from our devoted base of subscribers.
Now, Present Affairs needs to go additional. Because the 2020 election season ramps up, it’s extra crucial than ever to have an impartial left media group holding candidates accountable and protecting races on the state and native stage. Journalism organizations have been decimated in recent times by company takeovers, and as a totally subscriber-funded publication, we’re in a singular place to fill the hole, producing highly effective and thorough impartial reporting and commentary. However we’re nonetheless a tiny group, with solely a really restricted finances. A lot of our writing is produced in-house by editorial workers, as a result of we will’t but afford to fee sufficient outdoors writing from freelance journalists.
Present Affairs has established a popularity for being well-researched, witty, sharp, and considerate. We’ve put out a lot materials that we’re pleased with, and we now have used our subscribers’ cash fastidiously and effectively to construct a sustainable media group at a time when so many newspapers and magazines are closing their doorways. Now we wish you to assist us broaden our operation and turn into the type of critical left competitor to mainstream media that’s so desperately wanted in terrifying occasions.
From beginning out of the editors’ lounge, Present Affairs now reaches 1000’s of subscribers in 25 nations world wide. We’re a part of a brand new era of leftist media shops which have begun to supply a strong various to current media establishments, and a reassuring voice throughout troubled occasions. As a 2017 profile in The Ringer put it: “Present Affairs is a part of a wave of print and digital impartial leftist media organizations gaining steam after the November presidential election…Their audiences are nonetheless in search of a substitute for the same old media mannequin, a extra intimate voice to assist them sustain hope throughout an administration that few anticipated.”
Present Affairs has revealed 20 stunning problems with our print journal. A Present Affairs print version is one thing exceptional to behold. Every situation is jam-packed with unique evaluation, colourful illustrations, satirical commercials, puzzles, video games, comics, cut-outs, and extra. We mix the zany visible spirit of MAD journal with the intensively-researched crucial evaluation of Noam Chomsky. Each version of Present Affairs is filled with each clever commentary and comical surprises.
All of our points are full of unique art work from a number of the world’s finest illustrators. A problem of Present Affairs makes a good looking show object, and incorporates some really exceptional visuals that give the left an entire new type of aesthetic panache.
Present Affairs editors Oren Nimni, Vanessa A. Bee, and Brianna Rennix engrossed in our print version
Some highlights of our journal’s work to this point:
Analyzing 2016 Appropriately – In February of 2016, Present Affairs warned that Hillary Clinton would lose a race towards Donald Trump, and inspired the Democratic Get together to appoint Bernie Sanders as an alternative. This led to an look on Democracy Now! and led Fortune journal to name us one of many few shops that efficiently predicted the election.
Bearing Witness To Injustice – In 2017, we drew consideration to a narrative that no person had coated: the execution of Robert Pruett, a Texas man who had been imprisoned repeatedly because the age of 15, when he was convicted of a homicide dedicated by his personal father. Present Affairs managed to get a beforehand unreported story within the pages of the New York Instances and produce Robert’s unbelievable autobiographical story to a large viewers.
Highlighted The Tales of the Disaffected – Malaika Jabali traveled to Milwaukee to talk with Black voters who had felt left behind by the Democratic Get together, and produced a strong report explaining a number of the less-understood causes for Donald Trump’s victory.
Tangling With Horrible Proper-Wingers – Our journal has been identified for writing thorough and persuasive deconstructions of right-wing arguments. We’ve got demolished the work of Ben Shapiro, Jordan Peterson, Charles Murray, Tucker Carlson, Ann Coulter, and Heather Mac Donald, amongst others.
Deconstructing Kavanaugh’s Testimony – Our journal attracted consideration in 2018 once we revealed a thorough clarification of why Brett Kavanaugh’s Senate testimony was self-evidently riddled with falsehood and deception. This text was shared broadly and led to an look on NPR.
For some consultant samples of our work, see:
Each version is a visible feast
In our first Kickstarter marketing campaign, this was the vow we made to our potential readers:
Present Affairs has a single mission, which we summarize in our casual slogan: Making Life Joyful Once more. It’s common to really feel despair on the state of the media. There may be nothing to learn, nothing to look at; every little thing is bland, dreary, and obsessive about the inconsequential and trivial. Present Affairs is placing an finish to that, as soon as and for all. We wish to be sure that no person in America is with out entry one thing contemporary, enjoyable, amusing, and clever to learn.
Take a look at a pattern version of our journal and see how we now have fulfilled that promise.
Our editors have hosted episodes on every little thing from actuality reveals to Malcolm X to pet peeves. Below the directorship of podmaster Aisling McCrea and host Pete Davis, we’ve put collectively a pleasant and distinctive listening expertise that mixes considerate dialogue with sketches and the weird. Take a look at the full feed on Patreon.
“Listening to the Present Affairs podcast and it’s so enjoyable and nonetheless mega attention-grabbing.”
“The podcast is nice. Similar to every little thing y’all produce, the quantity of effort you place into it’s clear.”
“My favourite new podcast. Simply completely beautiful.”
“That is SUCH a superb podcast (and the Chomsky Drop nearly triggered me to crash my automobile attributable to uncontrollable laughter)” [LEGAL NOTE: Present Affairs shouldn’t be liable for harm sustained because of hilarity.]
“The Present Affairs podcast whips ass.”
“Completely loving the brand new Present Affairs podcast.”
“Finest podcast I’ve come throughout”
And the decision from The Media:
“Very a lot price listening to, humorous and substantive” — Jeff Stein, The Washington Publish
“Past the enchantment of the hosts’ clear mind, the present units itself aside with footnotes clarifying obscure references and hazy assertions made through the dialog, and there are satirical commercials, too.” — The A.V. Membership
Present Affairs has additionally launched its personal collection of spin-off books via our personal publishing imprint.
Superpredator: Invoice Clinton’s Use and Abuse of Black America– An Amazon reviewer’s testimonial: “Via its deal with the results of Clinton’s narcissism on black lives at dwelling and overseas, this guide supplies an essential historical past of how Invoice Clinton remade the Democratic Get together. Additionally it is an essential contribution to the historical past of race in 20th century American politics.”
Trump: Anatomy of A Monstrosity – An Amazon reviewer’s testimonial: “They contents of this guide are past insightful. What Robinson is saying you aren’t going to listen to elsewhere and it’s going to resonate.”
The Present Affairs Mindset– Our first essay assortment, on topics starting from Hamilton to Silicon Valley. An Amazon reviewer’s testimonial: “That is the most effective new journal on the market. Fearless, sensible, and humorous. Present Affairs punches left, proper, and heart with out prejudice.”
The Present Affairs Large E-book of Amusements – A large assortment of our satirical commercials, puzzles, and video games, lavishly illustrated. An Amazon reviewer’s testimonial: “Present Affairs journal’s amusements are scathing, hilarious and on level! Additionally superbly illustrated – I discover one thing new each time I have a look at them.”
Fascinating Instances: Observations and Arguments – One other essay assortment. An Amazon reviewer’s testimonial: “Nathan J. Robinson is an essayist with out modern parallel. He presents well-reasoned and unconventional concepts with attribute accessibility and thoroughness.”
The Present Affairs Guidelines For Life – An Amazon reviewer’s testimonial: “It is a guide of gems from a unprecedented gifted and entertaining author… Guidelines for Life incorporates a number of the most rigorous and demystifying writing on, amongst different issues, totally different fashionable intellectuals and their indignant and apprehensive defenses of the established order.”
In December, St. Martins Press will publish the guide Why You Ought to Be A Socialist, a captivating and accessible introduction to left politics for a basic viewers. We’ve been capable of do all of those due to your preliminary Kickstarter help in 2015. Think about the following section!
Former Present Affairs editor Briahna Pleasure Grey, seen right here on ABC Nightline, now serves as Bernie Sanders’ Nationwide Press Secretary
We’re launching this fundraiser so to assist us take Present Affairs to the “subsequent stage.” We’ve got so many concepts for brand new tasks, and each greenback you give us helps us create a strong left competitor to company media. Right here we wish to let you know what our essential priorities are.
On-the-ground reporting and deeply researched journalism items in 2020 – In 2016, we have been capable of put out a number of the most correct evaluation of all the election season, regardless of not having the ability to afford reporting from the sector. In 2020, we wish to do a lot, rather more, providing precise reporting on the thrilling races unfolding across the nation and bringing you a number of the finest and most reliable evaluation. Together with your assist we can provide you with dependable accounts of the unfolding political drama of our time that goes far past the “horse race” punditry that saturates the mainstream media and affords a critical understanding of what’s really occurring and why.
Higher magazines, higher on-line articles – Our capacity to supply wonderful work is severely constrained by our finances. We’ve got to show down many nice pitches from writers as a result of we merely don’t have the sources to edit their work or pay them. Our journal itself, whereas beautiful, is totally laid out by the editor-in-chief on his laptop. Together with your cash we will have higher design, extra content material, deeper analysis, and extra skilled work.
A gorgeous, skilled overhaul of the Present Affairs web site – Our web site has lengthy been rudimentary in contrast with our lavish print version. We’ve got commissioned a full overhaul that may give our web site capabilities to match these of huge media corporations, enabling us to do interactive infographics and produce the beautiful visible qualities of the journal to the online. We’ve employed designer Jon White to carry our web site to an entire new stage. For a small style, see this prototype of only one sort of web page right here.
New books – Present Affairs want to broaden its guide collection and put out new volumes from a various vary of gifted left authors. We’ve got volumes deliberate on the case for open borders, the urgency of animal rights, the best way disingenuous right-wing arguments work, and the probabilities for an actual socialist economic system. However writing and modifying books takes appreciable time, and we stay severely constrained in our capacities. (We’ve additionally been unable to afford to advertise any of the books we’ve revealed to this point, limiting their influence.)
Even higher podcast manufacturing – We intention to supply a podcast that’s extra than simply free-flowing chat. We would like our podcast to really feel like an old-time radio present, and to be similar to the most effective of NPR in its manufacturing high quality (if not its politics). You’ll be serving to us supply new sorts of audio experiences that make the CA podcast an infectiously listenable communicator of left concepts.
New movies – YouTube is infamously crawling with fascists, and the far proper’s presence threatens to radicalize an entire era of younger individuals, with devastating political penalties. We’d wish to carry the type of thorough evaluation that we’ve produced for print to the medium of video. We’ve got already produced movies with dynamic left intellectuals like Adolph Reed Jr. and Abdul El-Sayed, and hope to supply every little thing from persuasive explainers of left concepts to fascinating interview reveals with a number of the most fun thinkers on the earth.
Upcoming Present Affairs movies being filmed, together with a “Medicare for All” explainer with former Michigan gubernatorial candidate Dr. Abdul El-Sayed
Wider attain – Present Affairs does no advertising and marketing, and we’re not in bookstores or newsstands. We rely totally on phrase of mouth, and we don’t have the workers sources accessible to get our journal out as broadly as we’d like. If our editors might afford to spend their time specializing in modifying, we might get extra articles out, and we might have the ability to dedicate some sources to coordinating our distribution so that you just’d have the ability to discover us in lots of extra bodily places world wide.
For a extra thorough clarification of Present Affairs‘ future growth plans, see Nathan J. Robinson’s essays “What We May Do With Your Cash.” An excerpt:
We publish plenty of wonderful political commentary, however we will’t afford to publish a lot precise unique journalism. It simply requires an excessive amount of cash. Typically that’s simply the worth of a aircraft ticket, nevertheless it’s greater than we will afford. When we now have been capable of do it, the outcomes have been wonderful… You don’t see the tales that don’t get coated, by definition, which has made it onerous to convey how a lot journalism has been misplaced via the decimation of native newsrooms. I can let you know that right here at Present Affairs, we now have needed to go on probably thrilling unique tales, as a result of we don’t have the fact-checking or reporting sources mandatory to truly pursue a “massive” story. I hear on a regular basis about tales that no person is aware of about. Company misconduct, malfeasance by prime legislation corporations, inner dysfunction in a significant labor union, corruption in a big faculty district, abuse in a jail. I want we might examine and report. We are able to’t… but.
If somebody gave us $150, we’d fee a web based article with it. In the event that they gave us $150,000, we’d rent three individuals full-time for a yr to make wonderful leftist political evaluation and journalism. If some benevolent soul occurred to provides us $1,500,000, I wager we might destroy FOX Information ceaselessly. We’ve got a wonderful group of sensible and dedicated younger individuals, and there’s no restrict to what we will do. Each extra greenback is an extra step towards constructing a extra humane and first rate politics and reworking political media from insupportable to effervescent.
This isn’t an exaggeration. We’re making an attempt to succeed in $50,000, but when we will transcend that, we will get even nearer to fulfilling our potential as a media group. There’s a highly effective, well-funded community of right-wing disinformation on the market to compete with (PragerU, for example, racks up billions of views on YouTube). These organizations typically have a whole lot or 1000’s of workers members. Present Affairs has been capable of do what we’ve executed with precisely two full-time staffers. Now think about what we might do if we had 50. Or 100…
Individuals who learn our journal are sometimes astounded by its breadth, vibrance, and high quality. That’s not some empty boast—learn this testimonial from reader Ben Wrobel about the best way Present Affairs can “make you actually bounce out of your seat with pleasure and surprise.” And listed here are the reactions of some outstanding left intellectuals:
“Present Affairs is a crucial breath of contemporary air. It stands out as by far probably the most intellectually refined, thought-provoking, and politically astute amongst organs of left commentary directed towards a well-liked viewers which have appeared in current a long time.” — Adolph Reed, Jr.
“Nathan Robinson’s articles, and Present Affairs typically, have been persistently difficult and thought-provoking, with incisive critique and informative dialogue, lucid and provocative, and centered on well-chosen problems with main significance. I discover myself commonly recommending Robinson’s articles to others, and re-reading them myself. Unusually helpful contributions.” —Noam Chomsky
“Nathan J. Robinson and Present Affairs are persistently wonderful, writing at a really excessive normal, and providing critical and compelling various views. Very price following and studying.” —Glenn Greenwald, co-founder of The Intercept
Political scientist Adolph Reed and filmmaker Michael Moore
Present Affairs has constructed up an unbelievable fan base, and we’re always getting letters from our readers speaking about what our publication means to them. We hear on a regular basis from individuals who have been persuaded to undertake left positions, or have The testimonials from our subscribers present simply how essential our work is and trace at what we might do if we might broaden our attain:
“Very briefly, I simply needed to thanks in your work with Present Affairs journal and the sensible articles you may have written and can proceed to write down sooner or later. I’ve (un)discovered a bunch from you, remodeled right into a extra well-informed citizen… and have persistently had a superb chortle studying your articles… I’ve not encountered many publications that unfold concepts in a fashion as sturdy, convincing, detailed, and comedic as Present Affairs does. Due to this journal, I’ve been in a position to consider points in gentle of a cultural and historic context that I commonly missed earlier than… and additionally take into consideration points I didn’t even know existed earlier than. So, right here is me very merely saying thanks.”
“Thanks in your tireless efforts to be a considerate and incisive voice for the progressive left— your article on Pete Buttigieg, particularly, flipped a couple of of my buddies who have been in any other case charmed by the hole glow that surrounds him within the mainstream media. I all the time love to listen to the views provided by you and the opposite members of the CA workers and I really feel I’m witnessing the baton being handed from nice fashionable socialist writers like Chomsky and (old-school) Hitchens to a brand new era earlier than my eyes. I believe if I had your consideration I’d be remiss with out expressing my help, and gratitude, for what you and the group do.”
“I’m an enormous supporter of yours and of Present Affairs (I’m a subscriber!). I’ve recognized a lot together with your writing and it’s made me really feel much less loopy for considering lots of the identical issues w/regards to morality, humanity, and so forth. You’ve a really unusual perspective and one which I dare say is invaluable to humanity. I’ve discovered a lot from you and your mates.”
“I like Present Affairs and see it as an enormous signal of hope that there’s a lastly a socialist journal that’s decidedly joyous and never dreary or pretentious in any manner.”
“After receiving the primary situation I can undoubtedly say that this was the most effective 60 dollars I’ve ever spent. The professionalism and readability of design are superior to publications 10 occasions your dimension. The art work is whimsical, witty, and drastically contributes to the influence of every article. The number of matters coated in every situation is refreshing in an in any other case myopic media panorama (Russia, Russia, Russia, Trump tweet, Russia!!!).Your journal is a good presentation each aesthetically and rhetorically of a constructive imaginative and prescient of what the left will be. Seeing this imaginative and prescient contrasted with the more and more sterile, homogeneous, and self-parodying aesthetic and rhetorical presentation of the best has cemented my confidence within the political alignment I’ve made previously few years. The left is extra enjoyable, witty, and affords a lot extra to so many extra individuals.”
As we develop, you may anticipate many extra reactions like this!
We’re holding this fundraiser so we will do extra, and we hope that you just’ll donate since you share our imaginative and prescient. However there are additionally causes of bare self-interest to help our marketing campaign! We’re providing you some once-in-a-lifetime alternatives. You may get ahold of a number of the last-ever copies of our first-ever situation. You may get articles and movies on topics of your selection. You’ll be able to even come get an unique tour of our journal’s places of work in New Orleans! Don’t miss these unbelievable possibilities.
We hope you may have gotten a powerful glimpse of what we will do. We’ve constructed up our operation to this point on a shoestring finances, and there’s a lot extra we will do with higher funding. In case you acknowledge the significance of vibrant impartial political media, please contemplate donating to this marketing campaign and serving to Present Affairs make life joyful once more.
Go to our Kickstarter web page right here.