Support the info
It takes time and effort to produce the information that ends up on this website and goes out in the Charlottesville Community Engagement newsletter. About a quarter of the audience is contributing financially, which I am grateful for. It is my hope to expand the business in the future and to extend to you the opportunity to help make that happen. Here are some ways to do so.
Subscribe through Substack
Substack is the newsletter platform that delivers each edition of Charlottesville Community Engagement in both podcast and written form. Signing up is free, but paying gets you a few additional perks. I try to produce first-look content that goes out to paid subscribers, and will continue to add more in the months to come. Many people pay $5 a month. Some pay $50 for a whole year, and “founding subscribers” pay $200 a year. The great thing is that the company Ting will match your initial payment. People who pay $200 a year get two “shout outs” a month. More on that below.
When I was first considering launching a business for my journalism, Patreon came to mind first. I support a few podcasts through this service and for a year and a half I’ve received a regular income. There was various tiers on Patreon.
- $5 a month gets you a complimentary subscription to the paid version of Charlottesville Community Engagement.
- $10 a month gets you access to experiment work that I may be doing, all of which are intended to be tests of potential new products I want to work on.
- $25 a month gets you the above as well as four shout-outs a month. You’ve seen these in the newsletter and have heard them in the podcast. These are intended to be public service announcements intended to get the word out about things that might be coming. I really enjoy working with the people and organizations who have taken advantage of this tier.
- $42 a month is something I put in when I created the site and in the near future, I’m considering producing versions of a very strange podcast I used to do in the mid 2000’s that never saw the light of day.
- $75 a month doesn’t get you anything extra but it means you really want the community to have a reporter working hard to keep an eye and ear on as much as possible.
Substack Patreon subscribers are eligible for a certain number of shout-outs each month. These are to be quick three to five sentence blurbs which I will read in the podcast and put in the newsletter. Click here to sign up!
These are ideal to publicize the work of nonprofits or the work of individuals, but there are some restrictions. This is still relatively informal, but in a year of doing this, I’ve really enjoyed the relationships I’ve built with those who are using this service. But, there are some restrictions:
- No political shout-outs or support for candidates for office
- Nonprofit organizations are fine, but know I am not an advocate and want to be very careful
- No commercial products except if it is a paid event that you want to sell tickets to
- I reserve right to reject any shout-out of PSA if I don’t feel comfortable saying it
- I encourage publicization of events or specials
- Consider using it to drive traffic to your own content
I also take checks and Venmo, but I like to know they’re coming. A lot of people resist an automatic payment each month, which I totally understand. You get the same benefits as the Patreon tiers above.
My hope is to find revenue sources that are not intrusive, build community, and fit in with my approach to providing information. This site and everything else in my is a constant experiment. Contact me if you want to ask about possibilities.
But the best thing you can do is forward on the newsletter or podcast on to someone else!