UPDATE: The campaign tipped to more than $3,000 on Sunday!
The good folks at The Sun Journal, after six years of amazing help, have been forced to pull support for NewsPageDesigner.com because of their own financial issues.
We need help.
The Society for News Design has begun an effort to assist NPD founder Tim Frank in keeping the site afloat. We hope you can help.
We need to buy servers to keep the site up and running. That will cost us at least $2,500. We can use more, though.
Unfortunately, we may not complete the programming for the ground-up redesign before we lose our server space. We need to keep the thousands of news pages that are uploaded. Losing all this would be tragic for the news design community, so we have launched a campaign at The Point. We are appealing directly to you because the Society does not have the surplus in its budget to fund this effort without additional help.
Here’s why we are still asking for help beyond the initial $2,500:
The server space we asked for with the $2,500 was the least we thought we could get away with and still be operational. More space could be purchased with any extra money. We know we will need more space as more pages are uploaded.
The maintenance and hosting of the site were not figured into the $2,500, either. If we collect more, we could also put the extra toward that cost.
We may have to “buy” the name from the folks in Maine, so if they want some money for that, well, we will be able to offer it. (Eds: Read the comments and tell us whether you believe any of the donations should be used for this purpose.)
Some members have asked why we need to appeal directly for this effort (and not just fund it), so we think you should know that this was an unexpected expense for which the Society was not prepared. That’s why we are making this unique plea.
The Society’s overall funding has been impacted by the downturn in the economy as news organizations cut back on their support to SND, members themselves face hardship as jobs go away, and our investments suffer because of the decline in the markets.
As a non-profit, the Society always counts on members to help fund important initiatives. We see keeping this amazing portfolio site alive as an excellent service to the entire design community.
NPD founder Tim Frank has always been a part of the Society, a member of SND’s decision-making group, and we have long been of help to NewsPageDesigner.com in an advisory way. This is the first time, though, that we needed to put our money where our mouth is. Now we need the money.
And to see the outpouring since this fledgling effort launched on Friday night, you do understand the importance of a thriving NPD. It’s been humbling to see so many of you jump in through the viral efforts on Twitter and Facebook. We cannot thank you enough.
We hope more of you will see the value in helping NPD.
Matt Mansfield is the vice president of the Society for News Design and an associate professor for Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. Matt has used NewsPageDesigner.com since it launched six years ago, and hired dozens of visual journalists because he first “met” them on NPD.