I hadn’t planned on flagging this part of what we do with the TPM Journalism Fund today. But I just got this note from TPM Reader JC which kind of touched my heart. So I wanted to share it with you. The context is that Journalism Fund contributions are what make possible our community membership program which provides free memberships to those in financial need and registered students.
I just wanted to say thanks to TPM and my fellow TPM members. For the past few years I have not been able to work full time due to a major medical event, and I am grateful for the existence of the community membership. Talking Points Memo was part of my political awakening way back during follies of the Bush Administration and I have been a reader since. So thank you to my fellow members and to TPM for doing a little extra to make this crucial resource available for those of us going through some things. 😉
These are genuine sentiments but I also thought maybe it could be a useful testimonial. Don’t know. I do try to kick in a nominal contribution to the Journalism Fund each year. At any rate I wanted to say thanks.
And thanks for keeping cool and holding the ship steady through these strange and disorienting times, for admonishing “self-womping,” and for being early in not treating the very real challenges to our democracy, despite the buffoonish theater they are cloaked in, as something that can be laughed off.
Here’s bit more context and history of this program. What were originally called “gift subscriptions” have existed since we launched TPM’s membership program back in the fall of 2012. This was my effort at the time to reconcile the organization’s values with what we needed to do to remain profitable or at least solvent. In the original iteration members could buy these gift memberships on the same page you bought a regular membership. You could buy one for what was then the price of a basic membership and then TPM would assign it to a reader who qualified.
Originally the gift memberships were just for people in financial need. Then at some point in 2017 we expanded it to include registered students, part-time or full-time. Then in 2020 we launched the TPM Journalism Fund and at that point we made the decision to fold these different programs together. So now, each contribution of $60 to the Journalism Fund creates a token (or multiple tokens for additional increments of $60) for one of these memberships. Now we treat the student and financial need route as just two ways to qualify for the same program.