The Weekly Needs Your Kokua: An appeal from the Publisher
Support the Weekly…
…so that we can keep supporting you.
Your donations ensure that Honolulu gets the best coverage of Art, Food, Movies, Entertainment, and Local Issues.
Last Wednesday, two weeks after we celebrated the Weekly’s 20th anniversary, I almost closed the paper down. I was tired of struggling to meet payroll and printing bills, and the future looked bleak. The final blow was receiving a letter from the lawyers for David Black’s Oahu Publications (owner of the Honolulu Star-Advertiser and MidWeek), demanding immediate payment of $20,000 in past-due printing bills. The letter was first faxed, so my staff saw it before I did. That felt like a slap in the face.
But I couldn’t bring myself to shut the Weekly down. I thought it through again, slept on it and decided to make every effort to keep the paper going. Close friends and supporters came to the rescue with a quick influx of loans and donations. And now Im asking you, our readers, to chip in.
Think about what the Weekly means to you. What do you read it for? Events listings? Fine arts and performing arts coverage? Movie, theater and music reviews? Restaurant reviews, food writing or articles about local agriculture? Coverage of controversial issues such as gay marriage, the Turtle Bay development and rapid transit? John Pritchett’s editorial cartoons? Tom Tomorrow? All of the above?
Then think about what you would do without the Weekly. Where else would you find this kind of information, opinion and entertainment? Certainly not in a single publication. And in some cases, not anywhere.
With these things in mind, please consider the value added to your life on Oahu by the Weekly. And then decide to give something back. Decide to give whatever size donation you can afford, to help keep the Weekly a part of your personal life and the life of the community.
Every Wednesday, we distribute as many as 38,000 free copies to newsstands around Oahu. People snatch them up fast because, week after week, they depend on the Weekly. We want to keep it that way–free, punctual and indispensable.
Part of our problem is that, more and more, our advertisers are turning to public relations and social media to promote their businesses. Social media has its place in this era of lightning fast information, but we can’t turn our backs on the outlets that provide valuable community news and reports on topics that are ignored by the mainstream press.
A number of promoters and public relations firms want to rely on the free publicity the Weekly gives them, without considering the essential financial support that we need to operate. As a result our income dwindles while expenses rise.
The problem is not new, but ongoing. To help soften the impact, I haven’t taken a salary for the past three years. And our sales representatives and I have done all we can to prevent these sources of income from drying up.
So, please, do what you can to help. If you have a business that can advertise, think about using the Weekly. Despite our difficulties, circulation is strong and we have an enviable demographic in our readership.
All donations, big and small, are gratefully received. You can send a check to us at 1111 Fort Street Mall, Honolulu, 96813, or use the PayPal button on our website. Ask your friends to chip in, too. Working together, this community can prevent the Weekly from disappearing.