“Don’t take it personally.”
It’s advice that, depending when and how you hear it, can induce some defensiveness / maybe a bit of anger and frustration but later, it can also trigger perspective. That’s what I have now, and I want to let you all know where we’re at with The Phoenix.
I’ll just wrap up last week’s saga in a sentence (or so): Every once in awhile – and despite reCaptcha, IP blockers and all the up to date everything, I’ve been getting fake subscriptions – sometimes singular ones, sometimes by the tens of thousands. Last week was 55,000 or so. It made me want to quit – because the admin time spent resetting after these attacks means less time for writing stories, which means people won’t be subscribing. Getting on a local server will help, but in the meantime I’m asking $4 a month and it’s impossible to grow a business on that.
When I posted my words on this last week, I was dreading crickets. I don’t know why, because what I got – overwhelmingly, was kind words and advice – really good advice. Whether it was technical, financial, or marketing-related, I’ve considered it all carefully, so thank you to everyone who has reached out. When your customers say they want to ensure The Phoenix stays – and they want to put their money where their mouth is (as one subscriber put it), well you have to listen – I am subscriber-based after all!
So, this brings me to another tough thing (for me, because I’m like that). I want to let you all know how you can help local, independent media have a place in Peachland:
- Sign up for a subscription! It’s less than the price of a fancy coffee per month. Right now, I’m still at $4 a month. The sooner you sign up, the longer you can take advantage of this super-low price before I raise my subscription rates, which will eventually happen. If you don’t want to pay monthly (and you want to save me the credit card processing fees), why not consider a six-month or one-year subscription via Etransfer? I’m happy to convert existing subscribers to this option, too! Just send me an email and I’ll set you up – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Don’t care for a subscription but like what I’m doing? Consider a one-time or recurring contribution! You’ll find a Support Local News button on my Home page. This helps me continue to serve Peachland by writing stories that matter. No rewritten RCMP press releases. No stories culled off local Facebook groups and reposted as news. This is more in depth council coverage + original journalism from a Peachlander, with story suggestions from subscribers. Stuff you won’t read anywhere else.
- Don’t want to donate OR subscribe BUT you’re still interested? Sign up for my email newsletter! Visit my Home page to sign up. You’ll get all the news headlines plus the free-access stuff like blogs and community group updates. I send it out every week / twice a week / whenever there’s something breaking.
Here’s my biggest reminder-about-life last week: When someone is attacking, even when it’s super suspicious and you don’t have evidence – it’s still probably not about you. That kind of thinking helps because-
A – You’re not the centre of the universe and not everything is about you (lol).
B – It then becomes easier to move on with YOUR plan for your business / life / day.
So yes, I’ve been faked. I’ve been told my stories aren’t worth $1 each. At least three community groups have been told by the local paper not to talk to me. All these things? They’re not about me.
Attacks are usually based on some level of fear. And as one of my favourite subscribers told me, there’s one challenge when you’re different:
“You stick your neck above the ridge line and idiots can target you more easily. It means you’re making someone uncomfortable. Good for you!”
So, as she said, you put your helmet on, you buckle up and you charge. It was the perfect image at the time. And it still is, because of these subscribers:
“We have your back”
“You and your journalism are treasured”
“The Phoenix is a valuable service”
Ok, I will….and maybe soon I will wash my car. I still have those decals. If you see a white SUV with The Phoenix on the sides, know that I’m here to stay.
And as always, thanks for reading,
PS: Some awesome markups fellow journalist Matthew Abrey made for me last week, just because. Here’s a couple of my favourites. Love the council one! Thanks, Matthew 🙂