Update: Grâce aux gens de @99Media_org, tous mes articles durant mon voyage en Alberta seront traduits en francais. :)
Thanks to the generosity of 56 funders, we were able to raise over $2,000 in one week to fund independent journalism. Thank you all, from the bottom of my heart.
The Conservative party convention has unfortunately been postponed, on account of the terrible flood in Calgary. I will still be making the trip, covering the other three events (including the incredibly important Tar Sands Healing Walk, the cornerstone of a summer of Indigenous resistance), and if I am able to raise enough money here to cover a second trip, I will be at the re-scheduled convention.
When I set up the project I set a low goal because Indiegogo charges a much higher commission on campaigns which don't reach their target, and because I thought I'd be lucky to raise $2,000. I was hoping to pair whatever I got here with funding from some other sources which didn't come through. I also wasn't accounting for the fees, or the cost of new travel arrangments to a re-scheduled convention.
Indiegogo prevents changes to the target, but please don't stop contributing because I have passed $2,000. I need more than that, and with your help I can get it. I am truly blessed to have your support, I'll do you proud.
Fearless, independent journalism isn't free
"The best news in English on the Maple Spring came from rabble.ca writer Ethan Cox"
- Author and activist Judy Rebick
"Ethan is one of a kind in the much too concentrated media world. Free as a bird, he brings a fresh and original coverage of events."
- Political commentator and former MP Jean Lapierre
"l'un des meilleurs journalistes indépendants du Canada..."
- Economist and columnist Ianik Marcil
"Ethan Cox is an important voice that brings us key stories - his coverage of the Quebec Maple Spring was stellar, and his articles provoke and inspire"
- "Occupy Love" filmmaker Velcrow Ripper
"I refuse to promote this."
- Pundit and noted malcontent Andrew Coyne
My name is Ethan Cox, and I am an independent journalist based in Montreal. I spent much of last year covering Quebec's student movement for rabble.ca and have continued to try and report the stories from Quebec which the English media so often miss. I'm a regular political analyst for CJAD radio in Montreal, an occasional contributor to CTV News Channel and have freelanced for everyone from Vice Magazine to the National Post. I'm also what I call a "Twitter journalist", and live tweet almost everything I cover.
I am trying to raise funds to help cover the cost of travelling to Alberta at the end of this month to cover four events which I believe need to be covered from an independent perspective. Without your help, this trip won't happen and these stories won't be told. But for a tiny investment, you can ensure that the real story gets out, in many different news sources.
Although I set the deadline to the end of the trip so I can keep collecting money during it, I need at least half in the next week, so time is of the essence!
[The convention has been postponed as a result of flooding. If I raise enough money here, I will be at the rescheduled convention.] For the first time since their election in 2006, the Harper government appears vulnerable. Besieged by scandals, and facing an increasingly unruly back bench, this convention may mark a turning point in their rule.
[Will be rescheduled to coincide with CPC convention] Common Causes, a national coalition of progressive groups, is holding a teach-in concurrently with the last day of the CPC convention. Speakers will include Maude Barlow, Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, Theresa Spence and Dave Coles.
Activists from across the country will be converging in Edmonton for the second planning meeting in the ambitious project of building a Canadian social forum to take place in 2014. This forum will be modelled on a triadic structure which recognizes the Canadian, Quebec, and Indigenous nations as equals.
"On July 5th and 6th, people will come together from coast to coast to join First Nations and Metis in the Healing Walk, a gathering focused on healing the environment and the people who are suffering from tar sands expansion"
This gathering will include a walking tour of the devestation wrought by the tar sands, and will be attended by big-name Canadian and American activists like Bill McKibben, Naomi Klein, Daryl Hannah and many others, who will be joined by grassroots Indigenous activists like Clayton Thomas Muller, Crystal Lameman, Melina Laboucan-Massimo and Winona LaDuke. I have been invited to join the Quebec delegation as an embedded reporter, and will have an unequalled level of access to what promises to become an international news story.
What I Need & What You Get
Thanks to the generous support of the Council of Canadians, I have already been able to raise enough money to cover my plane ticket. This still leaves a number of other expenses which I hope you can help me to cover:
- My poor old laptop finally died this month, and I'm completely unable to work until I get a new one. For a journalist, our laptop is the most essential tool in the world, and we're helpless without it. By funding this campaign, you won't only be supporting this trip, you'll be subsidizing a piece of infrastructure I'll be using for the next several years to speak truth to power.
- Although my plane ticket is paid for, my other expenses, such as accomodation and food, are not. Without your support, I won't be able to make this trip.
Funds raised will be used to buy a new laptop and cover expenses related to the trip. Any funds left over will be used to support future journalistic projects.
But it's not just about me! By supporting my work you get access to some awesome perks too:
- If you donate over $25 I'll email you an exclusive photo of the tar sands, along with a story about how and where it was taken.
- If you donate over $50 I'll email you the photo AND do a fifteen minute skype chat with you after the trip to tell you all the stories I can't print about being on the road with Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois!
- If you donate over $100, in addition to the photo and Skype chat, I'll send you an email every few days with details of what I'm doing and exclusive photos and videos.
- If you donate over $200, in addition to everything you get for $100 I'll let you pick a question to ask two of the high profile activists I interview. We'll coordinate on who you want to question!
- If you donate over $500 I will host a dinner party for you and three friends in my Montreal home, where I will serve a four course meal I prepared myself. We can spend the night chatting about the Maple Spring, the Tar Sands or anything else you like. If you're not in Montreal we can arrange a suitable alternative!
Today, we face a crisis in journalism. The mainstream media too often push an editorial line which benefits their corporate owners, and not the population at large. Even within the corporate media, budgets are being slashed and our newspapers are turning into shadows of their former selves.
At this critical time in our history, faced with the impending disaster of climate change and governments the world over who are in thrall to the austerity agenda, we need journalists who will tell us the truth, free of editorial interference or self-censorship. But if we want that type of journalism we have to help fund it, or else it won't exist. Without your help this trip won't happen, and these critically important stories simply won't be told.
While I'm in Alberta I'll be writing for my regular outlets and pitching content to as many other outlets as I can think of. With a little luck this minimal investment will produce amazing amounts of coverage.
By helping to fund this trip, you'll be contributing to the solution. You can follow along from home as I ask the tough questions of Conservatives, report the words of so many brilliant activists and record the sorrow and hope of Indigenous people watching the destruction of their lands.
Together, we can build a better media. One story, one trip, at a time. We can fund the type of journalism we want to read, and help to spread the stories we want told. But it all starts with you, right now. Will you help to make this trip a reality?
Other Ways You Can Help
- Please share this campaign on all of your social media accounts, over email and in any other way you can think of. Tweet it and Facebook it every day and I'll love you forever!
- Indiegogo has neat tools embedded in this page to make sharing my campaign easier, use them!
- If you know friends or relatives with large followings on social media, ask them to share my campaign. The more buzz, the better chance of meeting our goal.
Finally, thank you all so very much. I do what I do for you, and your support means the world to me.