Letter from the executive director: What’s in store for Current in 2018

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Three cheers for a new year! So many of us were eager to turn the calendar on 2017, a year of too many natural and manmade disasters. Hopefully, 2018 will bring better news.

Here’s a start: I’m feeling immense gratitude for the 200 donors who contributed to Current’s year-end fundraiser. Thanks to the foundations behind the News Match campaign, the $19,900 you donated will become $39,800. You gave! They doubled! Let’s dance!

The Public Media Honor Roll inspired many of our donors to recognize people who had the greatest impact on their careers or on public media itself. Anyone who missed the chance to nominate heroes and sheroes: Current will accept your tax-deductible donations at any time and continue to update the Honor Roll and send digital certificates to your honorees.

In 2018 we’ll be back at public media’s major conferences, reporting for those of you who aren’t there and connecting with those of you who are. Last year, our engagement campaign sharing your stories and photos with the hashtag #IAmPubMedia provided a steady stream of warm fuzzies and inspiration through our website and social media channels.

This year, we’ll be bringing our Currently Curious project to hotel conference halls. After receiving excellent questions submitted by readers via the Hearken-driven platform, Current’s reporters have tackled interesting and surprising stories. We’ll be collecting your questions at conferences throughout 2018, so be sure to tell us what are you Currently Curious about.

Speaking of curiosity, we also want to know what you think of Current. We are preparing a reader survey to collect feedback about how to meet your needs for timely news and insights on what’s happening in public media. Please tell us how we’re doing and how we can improve our services to you.

One recent decision, based on guidance from readers and advertisers, will make our survey especially significant. This year we’re reducing the number of print editions from 14 to eight and experimenting with digital delivery of two additional issues.

It’s true that many readers rely on the paper to stay abreast of public media news, and print editions are a very effective way for advertisers to reach public media decision-makers. But last year too many editions didn’t net enough revenue to justify the tremendous efforts of our staff to deliver a publication worthy of your attention and investment. So, like you, we embark on 2018 as another year on the winding road of digital transition and disruption.

Change is scary. Innovation carries risks and rewards. Stay tuned, stay with us, and stay committed to the mission of public media. We’re in this together!

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