With the media landscape seemingly becoming more corporate-owned, many independent media outlets are having a hard time staying above water financially. Even with the apparent freedoms the Internet presents, recent challenges such as the failed AT&T/T-Mobile merger and the SOPA/PIPA congressional measures have given a glimpse into what suppression of free speech could look like, especially for independent content producers. Many supporters believe that independently owned journalism is the true representative of the so-called “99 percent,” as many mainstream media outlets only cover news that is supportive of corporate interest.
Dozens of groups are organizing Support Your Media Day – “a one-day virtual fundraiser that encourages our communities to contribute to independent media organizations through a single online giving platform on Feb 15, 2012.” The fundraiser is being coordinated by The Media Consortium, a national network of over 50 leading, progressive independent media outlets.
“Independent media is vital to democracy and will play a critical role in the 2012 election year. Support Your Media Day is a chance for communities to stand up and support the media for the 99%,” says Jo Ellen Kaiser, Executive Director of The Media Consortium. “This day is also a critical opportunity for our members to target new donors, strengthen the TMC community, and experiment with a new revenue generation strategies in a low-risk environment.”
Participating media outlets will be able create pages on the Support Your Media website and solicit donations from their supporters using social media tools. Throughout the day, TMC will offer ten US$1,000 matching grant prizes to participating outlets that complete a variety of tasks, such as the outlet with most creative donor page and the first outlet to get over US$10,000 in donations. The Media Consortium partnered with Razoo, an online platform that simplifies giving for nonprofits. According to a statement, “Razoo helped create two similar days in Minnesota, netting US$24 million in donations for 4,000 nonprofits.”
So if you want to support independent media and keep free speech alive, don’t forget to donate here for this worthy cause!