At least some of you will know that IrishCycle.com has researched reader-funded journalism for years, but now it’s make-or-break time. IrishCycle.com is asking readers to please become a member today via Ko-Fi.com at ko-fi.com/irishcycle/tiers
At its core, IrishCycle.com is independent journalism covering the resurgence of cycling in Ireland. It also covers related topics such as pedestrianisation, as well as other road safety and sustainable transport issues. There’s a bit of background below for newer readers.
I want to be upfront with readers here: Up to this point, articles were worked on and written on lunch breaks, late at night, and at weekends. Eating into family time and sometimes healthy sleeping time too. But not only that: IrishCycle.com has been subsidised for years by an unrelated full-time job in my family’s business, and a handful of readers kindly covering hosting etc costs.
To make this website more sustainable, I had been looking at the reader-funded model before COVID hit. The pandemic and lockdowns then added uncertainty. But my situation has changed — I’ve been made redundant from the family business. So, it actually is make-or-break time.
I’m mentioning the above not as a sob story, but to honest and upfront with readers that there’s a relatively short timeframe to get this working or to move on to do something else.
If you want to secure the future of IrishCycle.com please sign up for monthly membership at ko-fi.com/irishcycle/tiers — after consulting with readers and people who have made businesses like this work, I am asking that people please consider at least €4 per month and more if they can.
It will help:
- Support IrishCycle.com’s journalism covering cycling, and related issues.
- Promote best practices in infrastructe and cover when things go wrong.
- Allow for the time needed to produce a mix of indepth and shorter news and comment articles. For example, talk to more people, ask more questions, submit FOI requests etc.
- Aim to source guest articles from a broad range of voices.
- Fund a freelance budget and, hopefully, eventually a second member of staff.
- Seek to balance of coverage, ie more coverage outside of Dublin.
A bit of background for newer readers:
IrishCycle.com run by me, Cian Ginty — I have reported on and commented on cycling in Ireland for over a decade. I have a background in journalism, with a BA in Journalism from Dublin City Univerity (DCU), and an HDip in Print Journalism from Ballyfermot College of Further Education (BCFE).
Just over a decade ago, I was writing about cycling (and other issues) for national newspapers, and, in 2009, I started CyclingInDublin.com first for overflow stories and more details than any newspaper could print. That grew into what IrishCycle.com is today.
To help keep IrishCycle.com going please visit https://ko-fi.com/irishcycle/tiers today and sign up to give what you can per month. You can also use Ko-Fi to send one-off support, but, if you can, please consider monthly as it allows IrishCycle.com to plan ahead.
How reader funding is helping save independent media across the world
PS: A new redesign has also been implemented — this time with professional help from a WordPress developer to avoid any technical issues. We’re still making a few tweaks, but please comment below or Tweet @IrishCycle if you have any feedback.
Subscription drive update: IrishCycle.com reached its target of 270 subscribers by the end of August -- thank you to all who have helped! Our new target is to have 300 subscribers by the end of 2022 -- originally this was hoped to be exceeded by the first year of running the site full time (end of October).
If you can help push IrishCycle.com above 300 subscribers, please subscribe today for €5 or more. If you have already done so -- thank you!
Please remember, every month there's a natural drop-off in subscriptions due to people getting new cards, cards stolen, Revolut not topped up etc.
IrishCycle.com is a reader-funded journalism publication. Effectively it's an online newspaper covering news and analyses of cycling and related issues, including cycle route designs, legal changes, and pollical and cultural issues.
There are examples, big and small, which show that the reader-funded or listener-funding model can work to support journalism -- from the Dublin Inquirer and The Guardian to many podcasts. To make it work for IrishCycle.com, it just needs enough people like you to believe!
Monthly subscriptions will give IrishCycle.com's journalism a dependable base of support. But please don't take free access for granted. Last year IrishCycle.com had an average of 15,800 readers per month and we know our readers include people who cycle and those who don't, politicians, officials and campaigners.
I know only a small percentage of readers will see the value of keeping this open enough to subscribe, that's the reality of the reader-funded model. But more support is needed to keep this show on the road.
The funding drive was started in November 2021 and, as of the start of June 2022, 250 readers have kindly become monthly subscribers -- thank you very much to all that have!
But currently, it's only around 1.6% of readers who subscribe. So, if you can, please join them and subscribe today via ko-fi.com/irishcycle/tiers