Fundraiser, Michigan — August 4, 2017 at 8:44 am

Independent progressive websites are slowly disappearing


Let’s face it, progressive blogs, especially here in Michigan, are becoming more and more rare. In our state, there were once two major progressive political blogs: Michigan Liberal and Blogging for Michigan. Neither of these websites exists today. In fact, Eclectablog is one of the only progressive sites in the state still bringing you news and commentary about what’s happening in a state that can only be described as Ground Zero for Republican government overreach and the devastating impacts of gerrymandering.

There are a lot of reasons for this but the main one is that people who run blogs can’t sustain it forever because they invariably have day jobs. I certainly do. I could never pay my mortgage and all of my other bills on what I make from this site. In fact, some of our writers probably make more from Eclectablog in a year than I do. So bloggers burn out or move on and their voices are silenced.

This is why the conservative blogosphere has an advantage over us: they are far more likely to be supported by corporate benefactors. Our main “rival” is clearly Michigan Capitol Confidential, the blog of the corporatist front group Mackinac Center for Public Policy. They hire former journalists and others, put them on staff, and pay them a salary. They are able to do this because they have generous donors like the Koch brothers and the super-wealthy DeVos family.

We have nothing close to that on the progressive side.

I have always operated this site based on two premises. First, if we provide great content that isn’t hyperbolic, isn’t shrill or silly or stupid, and that is professional in all ways, people will be willing to support that to keep it going. Second, the site could never be a charity that I pay into month after month and/or that exploited the creative work of others. In other words, all of the regular content providers need to be compensated. So far, it’s been working out as planned.

However, this year’s fundraising has been … difficult. During a time when the costs to run the site have increased substantially, we raised less money at our annual party than in previous years and, frankly, the quarterly fundraisers have not been as successful as in the past, either. But I am confident that we can turn that around. And it’s important that we do so that Michigan’s last remaining progressive news and commentary site doesn’t have to close its doors and so we can continue to expand, improve the site and the podcast, and add new writers.

Please consider making a contribution and join the growing community of supporters here at Eclectablog who sustain us. You could, for example, consider making an recurring monthly donation. You can choose your monthly giving level using this form:

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There are two other ways to help, as well. First, you can use the handy PayPal form at the top of the right sidebar to make a one-time donation via Paypal in the amount of your choice. Second, you can send a check (which avoids Paypal taking out a percentage of your donation) to Chris Savage, P.O. Box 32, Dexter, MI 48130. Please make the check payable to “Eclectablog”.

If you are able to help support us financially, we would be most grateful. There was never a more easy way to #resist. Thank you for your support.