Do you get the feeling the news is accelerating?
We’re speeding toward the final act of a historic, unprecedented presidential election, one that has been scrambled at the eleventh hour by the death of an iconic Supreme Court justice and Republicans’ vow to replace her at once. We’re approaching what we hope to be the final act, too, of our crippling coronavirus pandemic—a vaccine on the horizon, but a season of dealing with COVID and flu simultaneously to navigate first. Whatever America looks like a year from now, it’ll be much different from today, and a big part of that will be the result of what happens over the next few short weeks.
All of which is to say: If you’ve ever considered leaving your freelister days behind you and becoming a full member of our Dispatch community, this might be the savviest possible moment to take the plunge.
We think so, anyway, which is why we’re trying to make the decision a little easier for you. If you sign up to join our team this week, your first month of access to our whole cornucopia of editorial products is on us. A fuller version of The Morning Dispatch, including more of our original reporting and analysis than you’d get on the free list every single day. More G-File and French Press. More of The Sweep and our other topical newsletters, Capitolism and Vital Interests. Or whatever bespoke combination of the lot lets you get through your week feeling knowledgeable and on top of things.
If you try the veal and decide it’s not for you, no hard feelings: Just slide on back to our free offerings and we’ll hustle harder to try to win you over next time around. In the meantime, we’ll grudgingly admire your canniness for managing to score the full Dispatch experience during the most consequential news month of our short editorial existence without ever forking over a red cent.
But we think you might just decide to stay, because we’ve got a product that you just won’t find elsewhere on the internet. That’s not a knock on all the other publications and reporters out there, many of whom do really good work. But the web traffic media model that defined internet news for decades is broken, and everybody involved knows it. As tech companies vacuum up more and more of the available ad money, all but the very biggest news giants are forced to scramble to squeeze more cash out of their dwindling slice of the pie just to keep the lights on.
That hurts the reader experience across the board. There are the obvious things, like those godforsaken autoplay video ads and sidebars hawking fungus creams (that doctors DON’T want you to know about). But there’s also the subtler effect of sites making editorial decisions based primarily on traffic considerations, turning to plain clickbait or—more dangerously—an editorial strategy premised on stoking reader outrage.
What we’re offering is different. There are no hidden motives or agendas, no click-whoring business model where our livelihoods depend on us playing our readers for suckers. What you see is what you get: It’s just us, a small group of conservative, curious journalists with a passion for fair and accurate news, and you, our community of readers. We make it our business to keep you up to speed on the goings-on of the country and world, and if we succeed, you pay us to help us keep doing it. That’s the whole model. (Okay, every once in a while we may try to sell you a T-shirt.)
The world is a richer, more complicated, more interesting place than most partisan media would have you believe. It’s also crazy—but it’s saner when you’ve got someone to help walk you through it. We’re very glad you’ve trusted us this far, and we hope you’ll take the opportunity to see what else we’ve got to offer you.