Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on September 4th, 2015 at 4:21 pm
Last Friday I did something I’ve never done before: I made a request for your support and I got real about the current state of BikePortland — and what it means for our future.
Your response has made me very happy. I asked you to step up, and you did. So far about 340 of you have contributed over $13,000. I have been smiling all week as I see all these new and familiar names come across my desk with supportive words and contributions.
I had no idea what to expect when I published that post; but that response, combined with all the supportive emails, hand-written letters, comments, and phone calls I’ve received is exactly what I needed to keep moving forward.
A big part of how I feel about this site comes down to faith and confidence — or lack thereof. Do I really believe I can do this? Is it possible this thing I’ve toiled on and fussed over for 10 years will ever become the news outlet and community resource I envision it to be? Is it time to be grateful for the good run we’ve had and walk away to something that is more stable for me and my family?
In this strange, independent advocacy news business I’ve gotten myself into, keeping the faith is one of the hardest things to do. And believe me, I have doubted myself and my future with this site many times in the past year or so. The constant controversies, meeting your always-growing expectations, the financial instability, the endless work… It takes a toll.
Remember this story in the May 2013 edition of the Portland Business Journal, Why BikePortland.org’s future is far from certain. In that story I told the reporter I was giving myself a year and-a-half to figure out what our next step would be.
Now, thanks to your support, the path ahead is much clearer and I’m more confident than ever that we’ll be able to ride down it.
Your investment in this site is the start of something new and exciting here at BikePortland.org. A future where you have even more ownership of this resource because you directly support it. And with your support, we can build on the unbelievably strong foundation we’ve established and do things you might have never thought possible for “just a bike blog.”
Thanks to your support, in the coming weeks we will polish up our subscription program that will be released next month along with some new site design enhancements. We can also now put a down payment of sorts on the faith of the most important behind-the-scenes player in this business — my wife and accountant Juli. She’s the one who’s been on this wild ride with me for the past decade, holding on over all the bumps and crashes, hoping the smoother section of the ride would finally arrive.
This last week has been such a relief. We’re not across the finish line yet by any means, but the route doesn’t seem nearly as tough as it once did.
To celebrate the past and the future, I hope you’ll join me on October 2nd for our big birthday bash at Velo Cult. I’ll share more details on that and our subscription program and other new feature next week.
Stay tuned… and thank you!