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December 14, 2010

Editor’s Letter: Elephant, Inc.

This is my weekly editor’s letter on our Top 10 blogs of the week email newsletter—a great way to follow elephant without getting overwhelmed (as opposed to, say, twitter or Facebook, where we’re verrrrry active). ~ WL

You can’t change the world if you can’t keep your room clean. You can’t talk about sustainability if you can’t pay your bills.

A week ago, elephant launched our (as in, yours and mine) “paygate.” We’re asking the 5% of readers who click more than 4 articles a day to consider paying $1/month. If you don’t want to, you can come back the next day and read another four articles, free. You can always find fun articles or videos through Facebook (30,000 fans) or twitter (20K followers, named #1 in US for Green in 2010).

In the days since we launched, we’ve had 130 readers join. Our traffic has not only not declined, it’s risen (so far!). We’re on a pace to be able to cut the many small ads on our site that don’t pay much or are trade or donations, allowing our “staff” to focus on selling just a few big ads to green, mindful businesses that we look up to. We’ll be able to hire an editor, so you don’t have to read…interesting…writing or grumble through tpyos. We’ll be able to pay for a few design improvements (speeding and cleaning up our site). We might even be able to relaunch Walk the Talk Show, offering you original videos with Mindful Heroes (we’ve featured Deepak Chopra, Amy Goodman, Michael Pollan, Dr. Andrew Weil, Robert Thurman, Seane Corn, Alice Walker, Bill McKibben and Natural Products Expo, Patagonia, prAna, and 300 other videos), and we’ll put together a simple mobile app so it’s easier to read elephant on your phone and iPad.

If we can’t break even—and we haven’t since our days as a magazine—we can’t “bring together those working (and playing) to create enlightened society.” We can’t represent the best of old journalism values in a new media world. We can’t walk our sustainability talk.

Please consider subscribing to elephant.
Yours in the Vision of Enlightened Society,

Waylon Lewis
editor-in-chief, host
elephantjournal.com, Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis

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