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Archive for February, 2012

It seems like getting the February issue out took FOREVER! I don’t know if that’s what it felt like for all of you out there, but it was certainly my experience. But, the important thing is that it’s out!  And, it’s kind of cool that we published the February issue on the one year anniversary of the first mass protest of the Wisconsin Uprising against governor Walker’s attack on working families. We are STILL Badgers! I’ll give you a little sense of what’s been going on behind the scenes; but, for the moment, here’s what you’ll find in the February issue:

Reminder: Subscribe and Be Entered in the RCP Monthly Give-Away!

I want to make sure to remind everyone out there to subscribe to Raging Chicken Press. If you subscribe by Monday, February 20th, you will be entered in this month’s Subscriber Give-Away! This month’s Give-Away includes two books hot off the presses: John Nichols’s book, Uprising: How Wisconsin Renewed the Politics of Protest from Madison to Wall Street and regular contributor to Raging Chicken Press, Lee Camp’s new book, Moment of Clarity: The Rantings of a Stark Raving Sane Man. All you need to do to subscribe is to enter your email in the subscription form on the right-hand side of the page. Subscribing doesn’t cost you a thing, but it does ensure that you will receive notifications of all new Raging Chicken Press content right in your inbox. Really, can you think of a downside?

Fundraising Campaign: Can You Help? 

I’ve been squawking about this for a while now, but we’re into the thick of it now. Twelve days ago, we launched our first ever fundraising drive on a web platform called WePay. We are attempting to raise $25,000. Yes, that’s what I said, $25,000. I’ve gone back and forth as to whether I should even try to raise this kind of money at this point. It’s a lot of money, I know. But, here’s the deal. I’ve said from the very beginning that I am building Raging Chicken Press for the long haul and I intend on building it in away that is both realistic and sustainable. That is, up until this point Raging Chicken Press exists on whatever money I can stash away, sales in the Raging Chicken Press store, and the affiliate programs we are using. While these sources help, they are by no means sufficient for developing a serious progressive, activist media site.

The $25,000 number comes from thinking about what I’d like to do with RCP in the next few years and what it would take–financially–to make that happen. I’ve talked about some of these projects before, but here’s a flavor of the kind of things I think Raging Chicken Press can do if we get the support:

  • Annual Best of Raging Chicken paperback book and eBook, featuring the best articles of the year. Ideally, we can have the first edition ready for our one year anniversary in July.
  • Three paid internships a year: 1) a fall internship on issues in PA public and higher education; 2) a spring issue focusing on PA policy and budget issues; and, 3) a summer internship on PA environment and sustainability.
  • “Broadside” editions of each issue of Raging Chicken Press to be distributed to regional coffeehouses, bars, hangouts, etc.
  • Annual presence at the PA Progressive Summit and Netroots Nation.
  • Payment for contributors to Raging Chicken Press based upon similar progressive publications’ payment structures.
  • Press passes for Raging Chicken Press reporters.
  • Promotional materials including a banner, fliers, and Raging Chicken Press swag.
  • Shifting t-shirt sales from our Zazzle.com store to locally produced, union printers (the issue here is that in print t-shirts locally in unionized shops, we need to buy larger quantities of shirts and to keep stock on-hand. Buying large numbers of shirts is a chunk of change).
  • Establishing a brick-and-mortar presence on Main Street (or close to it) in Kutztown as a base of operations, meeting space, and store front for t-shirts, buttons, posters, books, and other progressive materials.

This is not a comprehensive list, but representative of some of the major initiatives I’d like to move on in the very near future. Some of these items will require on-going fundraising and grant applications (which I am also working on). The brick-and-mortar presence is a perfect example an initiative that needs up-front money AND a fairly predictable budget.

There is an additional reason for beginning a fundraising drive at this point. I’ve wanted to avoid having to go the advertising route as a way of sustaining Raging Chicken Press. I think the potential strength of this project is dependent upon a decision progressives in our communities deciding to support the development of this progressive, activist media site. In short, I need to know if progressives in PA and beyond believe this project is worthwhile. Are you willing to help build this site? Do you think it is valuable to build progressive alternatives to mainstream media? Do you think it is valuable to have media site that gives progressive writers, videographers, podcasters, artists, and activists an outlet for their work? Those are questions that I don’t have the answer. I need to know from you: Can you help? Can you help build a regionally focused progressive, activist media site?

You can contribute any amount over $2. EVERY LITTLE BIT HELPS! We hope that there are enough of us out there who want to join with us to help build progressive media alternatives. I, for one, think we are going to need it.

Call for Submissions for March Issue

Yeah, I know we just published the February issue, but I’d like to get a jump-start on the next issue. Give the deep cuts being proposed by PA governor Tom Corbett and the ramping up of the election cycle, I want to put out the call for the March issue sooner rather than later. Here’s the deal:

Deadline for Submissions for March Issue: Saturday, March 10th. 

If you think you’ve got something to send our way, check out our submission guidelines. If you still have questions, drop me an email at ragingchickenpress@gmail.com.

Wrapping Up for Now

I’m going to leave things there for now. There are a couple more things that I want to tell ya, but this post is long enough already. I will say that I will be looking for your input for the 2011 Best of Raging Chicken Press book pretty soon! Look for your chance to help pick which Raging Chicken Press articles will make it into our first-ever “Best of” book!

Bread and Roses,

Kevin Mahoney
Founder and Editor Zero, Raging Chicken Press

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Raging Chicken Press Ready to do Battle, But We Need Your Help

Earlier today PA Governor Tom Corbett, announced a 20% cut to PA’s 14 campus State System of Higher Ed. Cuts to the state-related institutions (Penn State, Temple, Pitt, and Lincoln) are looking at close to 30% cut. That’s after a 25% cut to PASSHE last year.
That’s not all. $320 million cut to the Department of Public Welfare, cutting 650 state jobs, and continued million dollar handouts to corporations — NOT small businesses. The attack is here AGAIN.

Raging Chicken Press was founded to cover activists’ responses to these kind of attacks to working people and the commons. We are here to amplify, agitate, and activate. But we need your help to build this progressive media movement.

I know people are strapped and uncertain about the future. But I’d like to ask you to consider contributing whatever you can to our fundraising drive. Even small donations of $5, $10, $25 helps sustain independent, progressive, activist media. Together we can turn the tide against these attacks by Corbett and his fellow slash and burn corporate-sponsored politicians across the country.

Please consider donating. We are fighting for our future. Click the link below to learn more.

https://www.wepay.com/donations/raging_chicken_press_fund

Bread and Roses,
Kevin Mahoney
Founder & Editor, Raging Chicken Press

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Why We Are Raising Money

While there are a number of excellent, progressive publications across the country, there is a significant lack of regionally based progressive publications that focus on local, state, and regional issues. Raging Chicken Press seeks to fill a gap between dynamic local and regional activist organization on-line (blogs, facebook, twitter) and more nationally focused progressive publications.

We want to turn what started as a one-person operation into a sustainable progressive media site for Pennsylvania and beyond. The funds raised from this campaign will help fund three paid internships, an annual “Best of Raging Chicken Press” book (both paperback and eBook), paper “Broadside” edition for distribution, and the expansion of our audio and video contributions. In addition, we will be able to begin to build toward our goals of establishing a Community Advocacy Institute, a small progressive publishing house, and a brick-and-mortar presence in Kutztown, PA.

From the outset, we’ve seen Raging Chicken Press as more than another on-line publication. We see the potential to be an organization that provides opportunities for the next generation of progressive media activists and citizen journalists to gain practical experience. In short, we see what we do as part of the necessary work of building a powerful progressive movement. And we need your help to make this happen. We want to follow a model of community supported media and avoid relying upon advertisements to fund our work. Yes, we really do need you to make this happen.

What you can do

Obviously, we’d love for you to contribute to our fundraising campaign. Check out our fundraising site for suggested levels of donations plus a whole range of thank you gifts we will send you for contributing as specified levels. Don’t worry if you can’t give a lot. Every little penny helps. Ideally we can raise funds from smaller donations from a large number of people. Again, the goal is to be a community supported organization that does not have to rely upon advertisements for revenue.  The suggested donation amounts listed on our fundraising site are just that, suggestions. You can contribute whatever you can (minimum of $2.00). Even if you can only spare $5.oo, that will help. Even better, at check out you can choose to spread your contributions out over several months. For example, you could choose to contribute $5.00/month for 12 months = $60. In fact, in the near future we will be setting up a membership option that will ask members to do just that.

Even if you can’t make a contribution, you can still help out tremendously just by spreading the word, telling people about Raging Chicken Press, and encouraging them to make a contribution. You can help by publicizing our fundraising campaign through facebook, twitter, and blogs. Really, everything helps.

You can also help support our work by using some of our affiliate links on the right-hand side of our webpage. For example, if you click on the Amazon.com box you will be taken to the Amazon.com web page. By using that link, Raging Chicken Press will be given at least 6% of everything you buy. And here’s the bonus: it will not cost you a penny more than if you had not clicked our link. A few readers have already made use of our affiliate links and it helps quite a bit. Best thing you can do is click on the Amazon.com (or other) affiliate link and bookmark it on your browser and use it every time you shop.

And, of course, you can always pick up cool, progressive stuff at the Raging Chicken Press store. 10% of all purchases at our store go directly to help support our work. You can find t-shirts, posters, stickers, bumper stickers, mugs and more.

If you have suggestions for other fundraising ideas, I’m all ears. I’ll do whatever I can to make Raging Chicken Press a strong voice in support of progressive, activist politics in PA and beyond.

Thanks in advance for your time and help!

 

Bread and Roses,

Kevin Mahoney
Editor Zero, Raging Chicken Press

 

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